Francis Halzen

Francis Halzen is the principal investigator of IceCube, Hilldale and Gregory Breit Professor at UW–Madison, and a theoretician studying problems that span the particle physics, astrophysics and cosmology communities.  In 1987, Halzen started working on the AMANDA experiment, a first-generation neutrino telescope at the South Pole that represented a proof of concept for the IceCube Neutrino Observatory. Halzen also serves on advisory committees for the SNO, Telescope Array, and the Auger upgrade experiments, the Max Planck Institutes in Heidelberg and Munich, the ICRR of the University of Tokyo, the US Particle Physics Prioritization Panel, and the ApPEC particle astrophysics advisory panel in Europe. Halzen’s complete CV is available to download


Select Publications

Evidence for High-Energy Extraterrestrial Neutrinos at the IceCube Detector
IceCube Collaboration: M. G. Aartsen et al
(Journal Article) Science 342 (2013) 1242856, 22 November 2013; DOI: 10.1126/science.1242856 | |

First Observation of PeV-energy Neutrinos with IceCube
IceCube Collaboration: M. G. Aartsen et al
(Journal Article) Physical Review Letters 111 (2013) 021103; e-print archive arXiv:1304.5356 [astro-ph.HE] |

An Absence of Neutrinos Associated with Cosmic-Ray Acceleration in Gamma-Ray Bursts
IceCube Collaboration: R. Abbasi et al
(Journal Article) Nature 484 (2012) 351-354, 19 April 2012 |

Observation of Muons Using the Polar Ice Cap as a Cerenkov Detector
F. Halzen, D.M. Lowder, T. Miller, R. Morse, P.B. Price and A. Westphal
(Journal Article) Nature 353 (1991) 331, 26 September 1991

Observation of high-energy neutrinos using Cherenkov detectors embedded deep in Antarctic ice
AMANDA collaboration
(Journal Article) Nature 410 (2001) 441, 22 March 2001

Honors and Awards

    • Doctor of Science, Honoris Causa, Southern Methodist University (2017)

    • Balzan Prize for Astroparticle Physics (2015)

    • European Physical Society Prize for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (2015)

    • International Franqui Professor, VUB-ULB-UGent-UMons-UA-ULg-KULeuven, Belgium (2014)

    • Smithsonian American Ingenuity Award for Physical Sciences (2014)

    • Doctor Honoris Causa, Ghent University, Belgium (2013)

    • University of Wisconsin Hilldale Award (2013)

    • Affiliated Distinguished Professor, Technical University Munich, Germany (2012)

    • International Helmholtz Award of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany (2006)

    • Halzen Mesa, Antarctica (latitude -77.39, longitude 161.44) (2005)


(608) 890-0541

University of Wisconsin–Madison
Department of Physics
5293 Chamberlin Hall
Madison, Wisconsin
222 W Washington Ave
5th floor, Room 5213
Madison, WI 53703

Faculty Profiles

WIPAC faculty and students are involved in IceCube, the Askaryan Radio Array (ARA), the High-Altitude Water Cherenkov (HAWC) experiment, Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA), Big Data, and DM-Ice.


In keeping with our vision, we encourage and support visits from researchers who have interests, or who wish to develop interests, in several of our research areas.


The postdoctoral fellowship program was created to honor the late John Bahcall, a prominent physicist and a founding member of the IceCube experiment.  In 2015 the Balzan Fellowship was created after Francis Halzen was awarded the Balzan Prize.