51 Pegasi b Fellowship: Application Guidelines

The 51 Pegasi b Fellowship Program sponsored by the Heising-Simons Foundation provides an opportunity for promising recent doctoral scientists to conduct novel theoretical, experimental, or observational research in planetary astronomy. The fellowship program supports postdoctoral fellows to advance our fundamental understanding of planet formation and evolution, solar system science, planetary atmospheres, protoplanetary disks, exoplanet science, or other closely related topics. The fellowship program recognizes early-career investigators of significant potential and provides them with the opportunity to conduct independent research at a selected host institution.

The Program also sponsors an annual summit for the 51 Pegasi b Fellows and their mentors to increase and facilitate the exchange of information and ideas in the field of planetary astronomy through the networking of students, postdoctoral researchers, young faculty members, and established researchers.

The Foundation anticipates awarding six to eight fellowships this year. The Heising-Simons Foundation is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion within its community. Thus, we particularly welcome applications from individuals who belong to groups that have been historically underrepresented in planetary sciences and astronomy such as women, persons with disabilities, racial and ethnic minorities, gender and sexual minorities, and others who may contribute to diversification of the field.

Awarded postdoctoral fellows are expected to carry out a strong, coherent research program. Each recipient will receive a three-year grant of up to $375,000 to cover salary, benefits, highly-flexible discretionary spending (e.g., travel, child care, personal computers, etc.), and indirect costs. 

51 Pegasi b Fellowship research must be pursued at one of the 14 following host institutions:

California Institute of Technology University of California, Berkeley
Cornell University University of California, Los Angeles
Harvard University / Harvard-Smithsonian University of California, Santa Cruz
Massachusetts Institute of Technology University of Chicago
Pennsylvania State University University of Michigan
Princeton University University of Texas, Austin
University of Arizona Yale University


  • Applicants can come from any academic institution or research lab, both nationally and internationally.
  • Applicants are not required to have US citizenship; however, all visa and work permit paperwork is the responsibility of the fellow and host institution.
  • Applicants must have received a doctoral degree in astronomy, physics, earth and planetary sciences, chemistry, mathematics, engineering, or a related discipline. Doctoral degrees must be awarded after August 31, 2011 and before August 31, 2021.