Erik Aver, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Physics

Profile photo of Professor Erik Aver

Contact Information

  • SUMMER I 2018 | MAY 21-JUNE 29
    Monday - Thursday: 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.*
    Friday: 10 - 11 a.m.

    * during lab (as available)

    Also available by appointment

  • 509-313-5979
  • Visit my website

Education & Curriculum Vitae

Ph.D., Physics, University of Minnesota

B.S., Physics, Montana State University

B.S., Applied Mathematics, Montana State University

Courses Taught

PHYS 103 - Scientific Physics I

PHYS 204 - Scientific Physics II

PHYS 104 - SI: Astronomy

PHYS 300 - Mathematical Methods

PHYS 205 - Modern Physics

PHYS 301 - Intermediate Mechanics

PHYS 306 - Electricity & Magnetism

PHYS 415 - Cosmology & Astrophysics


A. S. Hirschauer et al., “ALFALFA Discovery of the Most Metal-Poor Gas-Rich Galaxy Known: AGC 198691,”  Astrophys. J. 822 (2016) 108

E. Aver, K. A. Olive and E. D. Skillman, “The effects of He I λ10830 on helium abundance determinations,”  JCAP 07 (2015) 011

E. Aver, K. A. Olive, R.L. Porter and E. D. Skillman, “The primordial helium abundance from updated emissivities,”  JCAP 11 (2013) 017

E.D. Skillman et al., “ALFALFA Discovery of the Nearby Gas-Rich Dwarf Galaxy Leo P. III. An Extremely Metal Deficient Galaxy,”  Astron. J. 146 (2013) 3

E. Aver, K. A. Olive and E. D. Skillman, “An MCMC determination of the primordial helium abundance,”  JCAP 04 (2012) 004

E. Aver, K. A. Olive and E. D. Skillman, “Mapping systematic errors in helium abundance determinations using Markov Chain Monte Carlo,”  JCAP 03 (2011) 043

E. Aver, K. A. Olive and E. D. Skillman, “A new approach to systematic uncertainties and self-consistency in helium abundance determinations,” JCAP 05 (2010) 003

Cosmology / Astrophysics

My research is on the Primordial Helium Abundance. The focus is on determining the amount of helium produced in the very early universe (3 minutes after the Big Bang) by analyzing the spectral emissions of dwarf galaxies.