Dr. Sheila Rowan

DR. SHEILA ROWAN is an experimental physicist, and since 2009, Director of the Institute for Gravitational Research in the University of Glasgow in the UK. Her research is focused on optical and mechanical systems for use in interferometric gravitational wave detectors such as the Advanced LIGO observatories – the detectors which were responsible for picking up the first gravitational wave signals from colliding black holes in 2015. She was awarded Fellowship of the American Physical Society in 2012, made an MBE for services to science in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list in 2011, and received the Hoyle Medal and Prize of the UK Institute of Physics in 2016 in recognition of her pioneering research on aspects of the technology of gravitational wave observatories. In 2016, she was seconded (part-time) to be Chief Scientific Advisor to the Scottish Government.