Susanna Widicus Weaver

Vozza Professor of Chemistry and Astronomy

College of Letters and Sciences | Departments of Chemistry and Astronomy

Hometown: Mt. Vernon, IL

Susanna Widicus Weaver, Vozza Professor of Chemistry and Astronomy at the University of Wisconsin, is an expert in prebiotic astrochemistry. Her research, combining laboratory spectroscopy, observational astronomy, and chemical modeling, is aimed at understanding the mechanisms driving interstellar chemistry and the pathways for the formation of life. She received a bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Illinois Wesleyan University (2000) and her Ph.D. in chemistry at Caltech (2005). She was a postdoctoral fellow in Chemistry and Astronomy at the University of Illinois from 2005-2008. Before moving to Wisconsin, she was a Professor of Chemistry at Emory University.


The Chemistry of Space

Interstellar clouds house the ingredients that become building blocks for new stars and planets. Understanding how molecules form in these regions gives us clues about how life on Earth may have started, and where life might exist elsewhere in the Universe.