Biography - Dick Carrigan  updated March 3, 2016  D. Carrigan (subject line must be sensible)

Channeling Adv. Accel. Infrared/Dyson SETI

            2004Dick Carrigan


Dick Carrigan is a Scientist Emeritus in the Accelerator Division at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) pursuing an on-going physics program there. He is also interested in investigations of the possibility of life and intelligence in the Universe. Prior to retiring Carrigan was a member of the Fermilab Beams Division where he worked on advanced accelerator projects. From 1994 to 1997 he was Associate Head of the Research Facilities Department in the Fermilab Research Division. During the 1992-1993 period he was detailed to the Division of High Energy Physics of the U. S. Department of Energy.  Prior to that he was Head of the Fermilab Office of Research and Technology Applications in the Director's Office and coordinator for the Fermilab Industrial Affil­iates. In this position he was responsi­ble for facilitating the transfer of technology developed at Fermilab out to wider use.  He was active in Fermilab public information activities for many years, including service as the correspondent to the CERN Courier.  At Fermilab he also served at various times as Assistant Director, Director of Personnel Services, Assistant Head of the Research Division, and Administrative Head of the Physics department. From 1995 to 2004 he was a co-director of the summer school on non-accelerator particle astrophysics at the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste, Italy.

Carrigan has been involved in several programs to stimulate the development of high technology industry in Illinois.  He also served a key role in a vigorous attempt to locate the Space Telescope Science Institute for the Space Telescope Program in Illinois.  From 1990 to 1993 he was concurrently an Adjunct Professor of Physics at the State University of New York in Albany.


Carrigan is an active physicist.  His major technical interests have included channeling of high energy particles, hyperon physics, the magnetic monopole conjecture, high energy scattering, pi and mu mesic atoms, photo production, SETI, and facility planning.  He has been associated with several joint USA‑USSR collaborations studying high energy particle behavior at Fermilab and in Russia.  He is the author of more than a hundred scientific publications and the author or editor of a number of books and monographs including Non-Accelerator Astroparticle Physics (World Scientific 2005 with G. Giacomelli, A. Masiero, and N. Paver), Particles and Forces: At the Heart of Matter (Freeman 1990 with W. P. Trower), Particle Physics in the Cosmos (Freeman 1989 with W. P. Trower), Relativistic Channeling  (Plenum 1986, with J. Ellison), Magnetic Monopoles (Ple­num 1983, with W.P. Trower),  The State of Particle Accelerators and High Energy Physics and Physics of High Energy Particle Accelerators  (AIP 1982, with F. Huson and M. Month).

He is a member of Sigma Xi, the American Physical Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.


Carrigan was born in Miami, Florida and attended P. K. Yonge Laboratory School in Gainesville, Florida and schools in Ithaca, New York.  He en­rolled in the University of Florida, then received a BS degree in physics from the University of Illinois.  He served in the Army Ordnance Corps at White Sands Missile Range working on systems analysis in Headquarters for the Corporal and Nike missiles.  At the same time he was enrolled in the graduate physics program of New Mexico State University.  After military service he entered the Graduate College of the University of Illinois and received an MS degree and a Ph.D. from that institution.  During part of the period he held an ESSO Industrial Fellowship.  His thesis was in the area of high energy physics.  He then joined Carnegie-Mellon University where he was a research physicist and assistant professor of physics.  Concurrently he was a visiting physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory.  He spent a year on leave from Carnegie-Mellon University as a Senior Fulbright Research Fellow at the Deutsches Elektronen Synchrotron in Hamburg, Germany.  After returning from Germany he joined the staff of the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory as a physicist.

He was married to Nancy Jean Carrigan a Chicago artist and poet.  Nancy passed away in 2014. Carrigan has two grown children, Caroline and Steve. Steve is married to Lisa. Brooke is their daughter. Caroline is married to Steve Levy. Jake is Steve Levy's son. Dick and Nancy published two novels, The Siren Stars and "Minotaur in a Mushroom Maze." Dick lives in Warrenville, Illinois and Aspen, Colorado.