Prof. Ralph Pudritz, Ph.D.
Ralph Pudritz is Professor at the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the McMaster University, Hamilton.
He studied theoretical physics at the University of Toronto. After his Ph.D. in astrophysics in the group of Greg Fahlman at the University of British Columbia in 1980 he took up an NSERC postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute of Astronomy at the University of Cambridge. He went on to further postdoctoral research with Chris McKee and Jon Arons at the University of California, Berkeley, and with Colin Norman at the Johns Hopkins University. He joined the faculty at McMaster in 1986. He is the founding director of McMaster‘s Origins Institute (OI). That institute’s scientific mission is to engage in fundamental transdisciplinary research on the origin of structure and life in the cosmos. Ralph Pudritz is a theoretical astrophysicist and fascinated by the questions of how stars and planets form - "Arguably two of the most exciting and still largely unsolved major problems in contemporary astrophysics" he states. Both of these problems are also major drivers for the question of how and where life originated in the cosmos.
He is a Visiting Fellow in May and June 2018 in the context of the CAS Research Group "Recreating the Origin of Life" following an invitation from Prof. Dr. Dieter Braun. On 29 May 2018 he will give a lecture on "Origin of the RNA World: The Fate of Nucleobases in Warm Little Ponds" at the Faculty of Physics.