Prof Simon Vaughan

Professor of Physics

Simon Vaughan

School/Department: Physics and Astronomy, School of

Telephone: +44 (0)116 207 4


Address: School of Physics and Astronomy University Road, Leicester, LE1 7RH, UK


I am a professor in the School of Physics and Astronomy. I teach throughout the physics degrees and am a member of the Astrophysics Research Division.


My research includes the study active galactic nuclei (AGN) gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) and black hole X-ray binaries in our Galaxy. My particular research interests include probes of strong gravity time series astronomy Bayesian data analysis in astronomy and dust-scattering from GRBs (I discovered the first known example of the latter phenomenon in 2004). I've published more than 100 refereed papers and received well over 6000 citations to date. I have extensive experience with data from ESA's Cornerstone X-ray mission XMM-Newton (including being PI or Co-I on several ""Large Programmes"") NASA's Great Observatory Chandra NASA's RXTE and the joint US-UK-Italy mission Swift as well as many previous high-energy astronomy missions. I've been awarded guest observer time as PI on all these missions and was a member of a Working Group and Science Team for future ESA mission Athena.


Full publication list available through NASA's ADS.


X-ray studies of accreting black holes including AGN and X-ray binaries.

Analysis and modelling of variability from accreting black holes including developing and deploying methods for time series analysis. 


  • PA1710 - Mathematical Physics 1.1 
  • PA1900 - Experimental Physics 1 
  • PA2720 - Statistical Physics
  • PA2900 - Experimental Physics 2
  • PA4602 - Scientific Data Analysis 
  • Year 3 and 4 research and literature projects
  • academic and personal tutorials


  • Fellow of the Institute of Physics (IOP)
  • Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society (RSS)
  • Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS)
  • Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA)
  • Member of International Astronomy Union (IAU)
  • Member of European Astronomical Society (EUA)
  • Member of COSPAR 


  • Distinguished Teaching Fellowship (University of Leicester) 2015
  • Finalist Discovering Excellence Awards (2019)
  • SU Superstar Award (multiple nominations in 2018 2019 2020)
  • Citizen's Award (Ignite Innovator 2021 - with Prof Mervyn Roy)
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