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Sumant Krishnaswamy (1952–2015)

Krishnaswamy grew up in India and obtained his PhD at the University of Maryland, studying the formation of dust lanes in spiral galaxies. He became an integral and beloved member of the San Juan College community, teaching math and science.

Published onDec 28, 2020
Sumant Krishnaswamy (1952–2015)

Photo courtesy of Nikhil Krishnaswamy.

Sumant Krishnaswamy died on Thursday, the 31st of December 2015.

Sumant Krishnaswamy, 63, of Aztec, New Mexico, passed away on the last day of 2015. He was born November 8, 1952, in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India, to A. Krishnaswamy Aiyangar and Hema Krishnaswamy. Sumant grew up in India, where he received a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology in Kanpur.

After moving to the United States, he pursued his lifelong passion for astronomy, and in 1982 completed a PhD in astronomy at the University of Maryland under the direction of Professor Donat Wentzel. His dissertation was entitled Formation of Dust Lanes in Spiral Galaxies by Radiation Pressure [1].

In 1997, he and his family moved to San Juan County (New Mexico) for the area's beautiful night skies. He became an integral and beloved member of the San Juan College community, teaching math and science.

Sumant also loved science fiction, literature and film, and was known as an inspirational influence on those around him. He is survived by his son, Nikhil Krishnaswamy; brother, Jayant Krishnaswamy; sisters, Chitra Rengarajan and Chandra Varma; ex-wife, Uma Krishnaswamy; and daughter-in-law, Heather Krishnaswamy.

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