University Professor of Astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley, USA.
Shu, is regarded as one of the world's leading theoretical astrophysicists and the leading theorist in star formation.
Among Shu's contributions have been major innovations in our understanding of spiral structure in galaxies and in Saturn's rings, the transfer of mass in binary star systems, the formation of stars and the origin of the solar system. In recent years he has looked at the geochemical composition of meteorites, in search of clues to the early history of the solar system.
Current Projects :
With his collaborators and students, Professor Shu works on the dynamics of spiral galaxies and their interstellar media, the mechanisms of mass, energy, and angular momentum transfer in interacting binary stars, and the structure and dynamics of planetary rings.
Current research interests lie in various problems of star formation: studies of how the sites of low-mass star-formation condense from giant molecular clouds; the gravitational collapse of magnetized, rotating, molecular-cloud cores; the physical properties of the protostars and surrounding disks that result from such collapses; the origin of stellar winds, jets, and bipolar outflows; and the formation of planetary and stellar-sized companions in the disks of young stellar objects. In addition to these dynamical investigations, Professor Shu and his collaborators have also constructed radiation diagnostics of the objects and phases of evolution of interest, and have proposed an astrophysical explanation for the origin of chondritic meteorites and the chemically and physically anomalous inclusions that are found in them. He also has interests in the modeling of ultracompact H II regions as photoevaporating disks,and the formation of high-mass stars in dense compact groups.
2000 Heineman Prize for Astrophysics (awarded jointly by the American Institute of Physics and the American Astronomical Society).
He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and Academia Sinica.