About Me


Hi there! My name is Howard Chen and I am a fourth year graduate student at Northwestern University’s Department of Earth & Planetary Science, associated with the Center for Interdisciplinary Research & Exploration in Astrophysics. Starting in Fall 2019, my research will be supported by a three-year Future Investigators in NASA Earth and Space Science and Technology (FINESST) Research Award. Before arriving to NU, I graduated with a B.A in Physics at Boston University in May 2016.

I was born in Taipei, Taiwan, to a doctor and an ecologist. I spent my childhood in beautiful Burnaby, Vancouver, one of the suburbs in Canada’s West Coast. I moved back to Taiwan in middle school and then came to the US for high school/college, and now for graduate school here at Northwestern.

I am interested in research topics driven by cornerstone questions at the intersection between Earth science, planetary science, and astronomy. In general terms, I use sophisticated general circulation models to study the nature of exoplanets across spatial and temporal scales. In particular, I seek to understand the forcing agents that drive the evolution of exoplanets as well as their implications for observational measurements. My research employs complex, state-of-the-art numerical modeling techniques in conjunction with observed data of stellar characteristics (such as those from the Hubble Space Telescope) in an effort to understand the impacts of stellar activity and variability on the attendant planets.  

Now, I am primarily working with climate scientist Dr. Daniel Horton and collabs at NASA Goddard Sellers Exoplanet Environments Collaboration group on modeling the atmospheres of Earth-like and terrestrials planets around low-mass stars.

Please see my Google Scholar page for a list of my recent publications.

Lastly, take a look at my recent interview with CNN and Space.com. As for other social media platforms, this is my Twitter profile.