Di Li, Professor, Ph.D. Supervisor
Telephone:  +86-10-64806305
Address:  National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 20A Datun Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, China
Postcode:  100012

Research Areas

Observational study of the Galactic star formation;
Instruments and technologies in radio astronomy;
Astrochemistry and spectroscopy;
Pulsar search and fast radio burst (FRB);
Data analysis and algorithm.


Ph.D.: Astrophysics, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY                                                           Feb​2002
Bachelor of Science: Nuclear Physics, Beijing University, Beijing, China                         July 1995
Graduation Certificate: Computer Science, Beijing University, Beijing, China                July 1995


    Dr. Li has lead numerous research programs, including spectroscopic and mapping projects of VLA, GBT, Arecibo, FCRAO, SWAS, Spitzer, Herschel, SOFIA and ALMA. He pioneered several observing and data analysis techniques, including HI narrow self-absorption technique and a new inversion solution to the dust temperature distribution. These techniques facilitate important measurements of star forming regions, such as the formation time scale. His work has been featured on《Nature》magazine as a research highlight. He was awarded the National Research Council (US) “residence research fellow” award and was a member of the NASA outstanding team award (2009). He is now leading the science preparation efforts of the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST). He served on the Steering Committee of Australia Telescope National Facility (ATNF), is now a co-chair of the “Cradle of Life” science working group (SWG) of SKA, a member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences Major-facilities Guidance Group, an adviser to the Breakthrough Listen initiative.

Work Experience

Chief Scientist                                                                                                 Jan 2012 - Present
Radio Astronomy Division, National Astronomical Observatories of China    
Research Scientist                                                                                           Jan 2007- Dec 2011
Jet Propulsion Lab, California Institute of Technology          
National Research Council Fellow                                                                 May 2005 - Dec 2006
Jet Propulsion Laboratory/California Institute of Technology
Astronomer                                                                                                     Feb 2002 - May 2005
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Teaching Experience

Honors & Distinctions

Member of Group Achievement Award, NASA, 2010
    citation:“Outstanding achievements in the successful development of critical hardware …”
Residence Research Fellow Award, the National Research Council (US), 2005



Li, L., Huang, Y., Zhang, Z.,Li, D., & Li, B. 2016, "Intensity Distribution Function and Statistical Properties of Fast Radio Bursts”, accepted by RAA (arXiv:1602.06099)

Zhang, L., Hobbs, G., Li, D., Lorimer, D., Zhang, J., Yu, M.; Yue, Y.; Wang, P. , Pan, Z., Dai, S. 2016, “Wide-bandwidth drift-scan pulsar surveys of globular clusters: application to early science observations with FAST”, RAA, 16, 151

Tang, N., Li, D.*, Heiles, C., Wang, S., Pan, Z. & Wang, J. 2016, "Physical properties of CO-dark molecular gas traced by C+", A&A, 593, A42

Lin, Y.-X., Liu, H.-B.,Li, D., Zhang Z.-Y., Ginsburg, A., Pineda, J. E., Qian, L., Galván-Madrid, R., McLeod, A. F., Rosolowsky, E., Dale, J. E., Immer, K., Koch, E., Longmore, S., Walker, D., Testi, L. 2016, “Cloud Structure of Galactic OB Cluster-forming Regions from Combining Ground- and Space-based Bolometric Observations”, ApJ, 828, 32

Li, D.*, Pan, Z. 2016, “The Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope Project”, Radio Science, EGU Publication, Volume 51, Issue 7, p1060-1064

Ren, Z.Y. &Li, D.2016, “Massive Quiescent Cores in Orion. VI. The Internal Structures and a Candidate of Transiting Core in NGC 2024 Filament”, ApJ, 824, 52

Pan, Z., Hobbs, G.,Li, D., Ridolfi, A., Wang, P., Freire, P.  2016,  “Discovery of two new pulsars in 47 Tucanae (NGC 104)” 2016, MNRAS, 459, L26

Wang, B.-R., Qian, L.,Li, D., & Pan, Z.C. 2016, Water abundance in four of the brightest water sources in the southern sky”, Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics, 16, 003

Liu, T., Zhang, Q., Kim, K., Wu, Y.-F., Lee, C.-W., Goldsmith, P. F.,Li, D., Liu, S.-Y., Chen, H -R., Tatematsu, K., Wang, K., Lee, J.-E., Qin, S.-L., Mardones, D., Cho, S.-H. 2016, “Discovery of an Extremely Wide-angle Bipolar Outflow in AFGL 5142”, ApJ, 824, 31

Xu, J.-L.,Li, D., Zhang, C.-P., Liu, X.-L., Wang, J.-J., Ning, C.-C., Ju, B.-G.  2016,  “Gas Kinematics and Star Formation in the Filamentary IRDC G34.43+0.24”, ApJ, 819, 117

Xu, D.,Li, D.*, Yue, N. & Goldsmith, P. F. 2016, “Evolution of OH and CO-Dark Molecular Gas Fraction across a Molecular Cloud Boundary in Taurus”,  ApJ, 819, 22

Liu, T., Zhang, Q., Kim,  K.-T…Li, D.(24 of 40)  2016, “Planck Cold Clumps in the λ Orionis Complex. I. Discovery of an Extremely Young Class 0 Protostellar Object and a Proto-brown Dwarf Candidate in the Bright-rimmed Clump PGCC G192.32-11.88”, ApJS, 222, 7

Li, D., Xu, D., Heiles, C., Pan, Z., & Tang, N. 2015, “Quantifying Dark Gas”, Publication of Korean Astronomical Society, 30, 75

Qian, L.,Li, D., Offner,  S., & Pan, Z. 2015, “A New Method for Constraining Molecular Cloud Thickness: A Study of Taurus, Perseus, and Ophiuchus”, ApJ, 811, 71 

Li, H.-X.,Li, D.*, Qian L., Xu D., Goldsmith P. F., Noriega-Crespo A., Wu Y. -F., Song Y. -F., Nan R. -D. 2015, “Outflows and Bubbles in Taurus: Star-formation Feedback Sufficient to Maintain Turbulence”, ApJS, 219, 20

Liu, T., Kim, K.-T., Wu, Y.-F.,Li, D., Lee, C.-W., De Pree, C. G., Qin, S.-L., Wang, K., Tatematsu, K., Zhang, Q.-Z., Mardones, D., Liu, S.-Y., Cho, S.-H. 2015, ApJ, “Extremely Energetic Outflow and Decelerated Expansion in W49N”, 810, 147

Li, L.-B., Zhang, Z.-B., Huang, Y.-F., Wu, X.-F., Kong, S.-W.,Li, D., Chang, H.-Y., Choi, C.-S. 2015, “Radio afterglows and host galaxies of gamma-ray bursts”, MNRAS, 451, 1815

Li, J., Wang, J., Zhu, Q.,  Zhang, J., &Li, D.2015, “Sulfur-bearing Molecules in Massive Star-forming Regions: Observations of OCS, CS, H2S, and SO” ApJ, 802, 40  

Zhang, G.,Li, D.*, Hyde,  A.~K., et al. 2015, “350 mum map of the Ophiuchus molecular cloud: core mass function”, Science China Physics, Mechanics, and Astronomy, 58,  15  

Zhang, Z.-B., Kong,  S.-W., Huang, Y.-F.,Li, D.,  & Li, L.-B. 2015, “Detecting radio afterglows of gamma-ray bursts with FAST”, Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics, 15, 237   

McClure-Griffiths, N.~M., Stanimirovic, S., Murray, C.~E.,Li, D.,Dickey, John M., Vazquez-Semadeni, Enrique, Peek, Josh E. G., Putman, Mary; Clark, Susan E., Miville-Deschenes, Marc-Antoineet, Bland-Hawthorn, Joss; Staveley-Smith, Lister 2015,  “Galactic and Magellanic Evolution with the SKA”, arXiv:1501.01130 

Wang, J., Zhang, J. Gao, Yu, Zhang, Z.,Li, D., Fang, M. & Yong, S. 2014, “SiO and CH3OH mega-masers in NGC 1068”,  Nature Communications, 5, 5449

Schnee, S., Mason, B., Di Francesco, J., Friesen, R.,Li, D., Sadavoy, S., Stanke, T.  2014, “Evidence for large grains in the star-forming filament OMC 2/3”, MNRAS, 444, 2303S

P Palau, A., Zapata, L.A.,  Rodr'iguez, L.F., Bouy, Hervé; Barrado, David; Morales-Calderón, María; Myers, Philip C.; Chapman, Nicholas; Juárez, Carmen;Li, Di,  2014, “IC 348-SMM2E: a Class 0 proto-brown dwarf candidate forming as a scaled-down version of low-mass stars”, MNRAS, 444, 833   

Phan-Bao, N., Lee,  C.-F., Ho, P.T.P., Dang-Duc, C., &Li, D., 2014, “Characterization of Molecular Outflows in The Substellar Domain”, arXiv:1408.4506   

Ren, Z., Wu, Y., Liu, T., Li, L.;Li, D.; Ju, B. 2014, “A CO observation of the Galactic methanol masers”, A&A, 567, A40   

Ren, Z.,Li, D.*,  & Chapman, N. 2014, “Massive Quiescent Cores in Orion. V. The Internal Structures and Physical and Chemical Properties of Two Extremely Dense Cores”, ApJ, 788, 172

Li, H.,Li, D., & Nan, R. 2013, “Feedback of outflows in the Taurus Molecular Cloud”, IAU Symposium, 292, 47

Yue, Y., Li, D., & Nan, R. 2013, “FAST low frequency pulsar survey”, IAU Symposium, 291, 577

Li, D., Nan, R., & Pan, Z. 2013, “The Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope project and its early science opportunities”, IAU Symposium, 291, 325

Li, D., J. Kauffmann, Q. Zhang & W. Chen, “Massive quiescent cores in Orion. IV. Their dynamic state revealed by high resolution ammonia maps” 2013, ApJL, 768, 5L

Qian, L.,Li, D.*,  & Goldsmith, P.  2012, “13CO Cores in Taurus Molecular Cloud”, 2012, ApJ, 760, 147

Li, D.& Goldsmith, Paul F., “Is the Taurus B213 Region a True Filament?: Observations of Multiple Cyanoacetylene Transitions”, 2012, ApJ, 756, 12

Zhang, J.S.,Li, D., & Wang, J.Z. 2012, IAU Symposium, 287, 350

Wu, Y., Liu, T., Meng, F.,Li, D., Qin, S. & Ju, B. 2012, “Gas Emission in Planck cold dust clumps---A Survey of the J=1-0 Transitions of 12CO, 13CO, and C18O”, 2012, ApJ, 756, 76

Melnick, Gary J.; Tolls, Volker; Goldsmith, Paul F.; Kaufman, Michael J.; Hollenbach, David J.; Black, John H.; Encrenaz, Pierre; Falgarone, Edith; Gerin, Maryvonne; Hjalmarson, Åke;Li, Di; Lis, Dariusz C.; Liseau, René; Neufeld, David A.; Pagani, Laurent; Snell, Ronald L.; van der Tak, Floris & van Dishoeck, Ewine F., “Herschel Search for O2 toward the Orion Bar”, 2012, ApJ, 752, 26

Liseau, R.; Goldsmith, P. F.; Larsson, B.; Pagani, L.; Bergman, P.; Le Bourlot, J.; Bell, T. A.; Benz, A. O.; Bergin, E. A.; Bjerkeli, P.; Black, J. H.; Bruderer, S.; Caselli, P.; Caux, E.; Chen, J.-H.; de Luca, M.; Encrenaz, P.; Falgarone, E.; Gerin, M.; Goicoechea, J. R.; Hjalmarson, Å.; Hollenbach, D. J.; Justtanont, K.; Kaufman, M. J.; Le Petit, F.;Li, D.; Lis, D. C.; Melnick, G. J.; Nagy, Z.; Olofsson, A. O. H.; Olofsson, G.; Roueff, E.; Sandqvist, Aa.; Snell, R. L.; van der Tak, F. F. S.; van Dishoeck, E. F.; Vastel, C.; Viti, S.; Yıldız, U. A., “Multi-line detection of O2 toward ρ Ophuichi A”, 2012, A&A, 541, 73

Goldsmith, P. Liseau, R., Bell T., Chen J., Kaufman, M.,Li, D., Lis, D., Melnick, G., Neufeld, D.,Hollenbach, D., Snell, R., Benz, R., Bergin, E., Black, J., Bruderer, J., Caselli1, P., Caux, E., Encrenaz, P., Falgarone, E., Gerin, M., Goicoechea, J., Hjalmarson, A., Larsson, B., Bourlot, J., Le Petit1, F., Luca, M., Nagy, Z., Olofsson, H., Pagani, L., Roueff, E., Sandqvist, A., van der Tak, F., van Dishoeck, E., Vastel, C., Viti, S. & Yildiz, U. 2011, “Herschel Observation of Molecular Oxygen in Orion”, 2011, ApJ, 737, 96

Nan, R, Li, D., Jin, C., Wang, Q., Zhu, L., Zhu, W., Zhang, H., Yue, Y. & Qian, L. 2011, “THE FIVE-HUNDRED-METER APERTURE SPHERICAL RADIO TELESCOPE (FAST) PROJECT”,  International Journal of Modern Physics D, Volume No.20, Issue No. 6 (arXiv:1105.3794)

Chapman, N.L., Goldsmith, P.F., Pineda, J.L., Clemens, D.P.,Li, D., & Krco, M. 2011, “The Magnetic Field in Taurus Probed by Infrared Polarization”, ApJ, 741, 21

Melnick, G. J.; Tolls, V.; Snell, R.; Bergin, E.; Hollenbach, D.; Kaufman, M.;Li, D.; Neufeld, D. 2011, “Distribution of Water Vapor in Molecular Clouds”, ApJ, 727, 13

Pineda, J.L., Velusamy, T., Langer, W.D., Goldsmith, P.F.,Li., D., Yorke, H.W.,  2010, “A sample of [C II clouds tracing dense clouds in weak FUV fields observed by Herschel”, A&A 521, 19

Velusamy, T., Langer, W.D., Pineda, J.L., Goldsmith, P.F., Li., D., & Yorke, H.W. 2010, “[CII observations of H2 molecular layers in transition clouds” A&A 521, 18

Langer, W.D., Velusamy, T., Pineda, J.L., Goldsmith, P.F.,Li, D., & Yorke, H.W. 2010, “C+ detection of warm dark gas in diffuse clouds”, A&A 521, 17

Lis, D.C., et al. 2010, “Herschel/HIFI discovery of interstellar chloronium (H2Cl+)”, A&A 521, 9

Tian, W., Leahy, D.A.,Li, D., 2010, “The Distance to the SNR CTB 109/AXP 1E 2259+586 System”,  MNRAS, 404, K1

Qin, S.L., Wu, Y., Huang, M., Zhao, G.,Li, D., Wang, J.J., & Chen, S. 2010, High-Resolution Submillimeter Multiline Observations of G19.61 - 0.23: Small-Scale Chemistry, ApJ, 711, 399

Goldsmith, P.F.,  Velusamy, T.,Li, D., & Langer, W.D. 2010, Molecular Hydrogen Emission from the Boundaries of the Taurus Molecular Cloud, ApJ, 715, 1370  

Pineda, J.L.,  Goldsmith, P.F., Chapman, N., Snell, R.L.,Li, D., Cambresy, L.,  & Brunt, C. 2010, The Relation Between Gas and Dust in the Taurus Molecular Cloud , ApJ, 721, 686

Smits, R., Lorimer, D.R., Kramer, M., Manchester, R., Stappers, B., Jin, C.J., Nan, R.D., &Li, D.2009, Pulsar science with the Five hundred metre Aperture Spherical Telescope, A&A, 505, 919

Krco, M., Goldsmith, P.F., Brown, R.L., &Li, D.2008, “An Improved Technique for Measurement of Cold H I in Molecular Cloud Cores”, ApJ ,689, 276

Velusamy, T., Peng, R.,Li, D., Goldsmith, P.F., & Langer, W.D. 2008, “Dichotomy in the Dynamical Status of Massive Cores in Orion”, ApJL, 688, L87

Goldsmith, P., Heyer, M., Narayanan, G., Snell, R.,Li, D.& Brunt, C., 2008, “Large--Scale Structure of the Molecular Gas in Taurus Revealed by High Spatial Dynamic Range Spectral Line Mapping”, ApJ 680,428

Narayanan, G., Heyer, M., Brunt, C., Goldsmith, P., Snell, R. &Li, D.2008, “The Five College Radio Astronomy Observatory CO Mapping Survey of the Taurus Molecular Cloud”, ApJS, 177, 341

Li, D., Velusamy, T., Goldsmith, P.F. & Langer, W.,  2007, “Massive Quiescent Cores in Orion part II – Core Mass Function”, ApJ, 655, 351

Goldsmith, P.F.,Li, D.& Krco, M. , 2007, “The transition from Atomic to Molecular Hydrogen in Interstellar Clouds: the 21cm Signature of the Evolution of Cold Atomic Hydrogen in Dense Cluods”, ApJ, 654, 273

Ridge, N., Di Francesco, J., Kirk, H.,Li, D., Goodman, A., Alves, J., Arce, H., Borkin, M., Caselli, P., Foster, J., Heyer, M., D. Johnstone, D. Kosslyn, M. Lombardi, J. Pineda, S. Schnee, M. Tafalla , 2006, “The COMPLETE Survey of Star-Forming Regions: Phase I Data”,  AJ, 131, 2921

Goldsmith, P.F &Li, D.2005, HI Narrow Self--Absorption in Dark Clouds: Correlations with Molecular Gas and Implications for Cloud Evolution and Star Formation, ApJ, 622, 938

Zubko, V.,Li, D., Lim, T., Feuchtgruber, H. & Harwit, M. 2004, Observations of Water Vapor Outflow from NML Cygnus, ApJ, 610, 427

Li, D.& Goldsmith, P. F. 2003, HI Narrow Self Absorption in Dark Clouds, ApJ, 585, 823

Li, D., Goldsmith, P.F. & Menten, K. 2003, Massive Quiescent Cores in Orion I. Temperature Structure, ApJ, 587, 262

Darling, J., Goldsmith, P. F.,Li, D.& Giovanelli, R. 2003, A Search for 6.7 GHz Methanol Masers in OH Megamaser Galaxies at 0.11 < z < 0.27, AJ, 125, 1177

Goldsmith, P. F.,Li, D., Bergin, E. A., Melnick, G. J., Tolls, V., Howe, J. E., Snell, R. L., & Neufeld, D. A. 2002, Tentative Detection of Molecular Oxygen in the Rho Ophiuchi Cloud, ApJ, 576, 814

Li, D., Goldsmith, P.F. & Xie, T. 1999, A New Method For Determining the Dust Temperature Distribution, ApJ, 522, 897


Research Interests

Observational study of the Galactic star formation;
Instruments and technologies in radio astronomy;
Astrochemistry and spectroscopy;
Pulsar search and fast radio burst (FRB);
Data analysis and algorithm.


"Introduction to the Largest Aperture Spherical Telescope in the World", 2015 IEEE International Topical Meeting on Microwave Photonics, 2015-10, Cyprus, Di Li
"The Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope", Chinese Astronomical Society Annual Meeting 2015, 2015-10, Di Li
"Initial Conditions of Massive Star Formation", The Olympian Symposium on Star Formation, 2014-05, Greece, Di Li
"Quantifying Dark Molecular Gas", The Asia-Pacific IAU Regional Meeting, 2014-08, Korea, Di Li
"The Status of Science Preparation for FAST and Possible Synergy Between FAST and TMT", 2014 KIAA-PKU Astrophysics Forum, 2014-11, Beijing, Di Li
"Millimeter and Submillimeter Spectroscopy in Space", The 38th International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter and Terahertz Waves, 2013-09, Germany, Di Li
"Tracing the Transition from Atoms to Molecules", From atoms to pebbles: HERSCHEL’s view of Star and Planet Formation Symposium, 2012-09, France,Di Li
"The Promise of a Giant Radio Telescope", The 28th IAU General Assembly, 2012-08, Beijing,Di Li
"FAST Project", The International Pulsar Timing Array: Current and Future Telescopes, 2012-06, Australia,Di Li
"The Core Velocity Dispersion (CVD) for Taurus Dense Core Clusters", 220th Meeting of the American Astronomical Society, 2012-06, America,Di Li
"From Atoms to Stars: Key Science Goals of FAST", the 5th Sino-Frech Workshop in Astronomy, 2012-03, France,Di Li


Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics,
Peking University,
Tsinghua University,
Guizhou Normal University



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