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K. Shwetketu Virbhadra

K. Shwetketu Virbhadra, PhD

Assistant Teaching Professor
Department of Mathematics


  • PhD, Physical Research Laboratory

Research Interests:

  • Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity
  • Astrophysics
  • Cosmology


K. Shwetketu Virbhadra earned his PhD from the Physical Research Laboratory in India. Before joining Drexel University as a full-time teaching faculty in 2017, he worked on four continents at many institutions worldwide, including the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (Mumbai, India), the University of Cape Town (S. Africa), Duke University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Rutgers University. He has vast teaching experience, having taught over 40 different elementary to advanced-level courses in mathematics (pure and applied), physics (theory and lab), and astronomy (theory and lab). As a researcher, he has worked on four topics; however, his work on gravitational lensing is the most well-known. The famous Virbhadra-Ellis lens equation resurrected the theoretical research in black hole lensing, and the term relativistic images formed in the vicinity of black holes is used worldwide in the literature. As the sole or the leading author, he has many renowned (500+ citations) and famous (250+ citations) category papers. He has collaborated and published papers with three renowned scientists: Nathan Rosen (of Einstein-Rosen fame), G. F. R. Ellis (of Hawking-Ellis fame), and S. L. Adler (of IAS, Princeton). Virbhadra is a life member of reputed academic societies, such as AMS, APS, ISGRG, ISQG, DGRAV, DAP, IAGRG, and IMS. He is also an elected member of the IAU. He served as a reviewer for 35 journals, including most of the leading ones. He has supervised undergraduate and graduate research projects leading to publications in good, refereed journals. He is an inspirational teacher and research mentor. He introduces students to research in a manner in which they get deeply involved and quickly acquire self-confidence to carry out independent research work. With teaching 36 credits (plus independent study courses) in a year, he continues publishing seminal papers.

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