College of Science

Breanna Binder and Krishna Sigdel Join the Faculty of Physics and Astronomy at Cal Poly Pomona

Binder and Sigdel Join Physics and Astronomy Dept at Cal Poly Pomona

The Department of Physics and Astronomy is pleased to welcome two new tenure-track Assistant Professors at the beginning of the 2018-19 academic year.


Dr. Breanna Binder received her PhD in Astronomy from the University of Washington in 2013. She was a postdoctoral researcher and a lecturer at University of Washington and Cal Poly Pomona before transitioning to the faculty position at CPP in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. An Inland Empire native, Dr. Binder got her start in astronomy as a high school student when she took summer introductory astronomy courses at Mt. SAC.

Dr. Binder’s research interests focus on the evolution of massive stars and their impact on their local environments. She frequently utilizes multi-wavelength observations in her research, including X-ray, optical, infrared, and radio data. She has published several papers with undergraduates. Dr. Binder has served on peer review panels for the Chandra X-ray Observatory, as a referee for The Astrophysical Journal, and is currently a member of the Great Observatories Science Analysis Group

When not at work, Dr. Binder enjoys spending time with her husband Eddie (a NASA Postdoctoral Fellow in astrobiology at UC Riverside) and their son Wade. She is an avid runner, enjoys cooking and baking, and loves high-fantasy fiction novels.


Dr. Krishna Sigdel has a research background in investigating biomolecules at single molecule level. Dr. Sigdel's overall goal is to perform the highest quality interdisciplinary research to address central problems in biomedical sciences utilizing state-of-the-art physics-based apparatus. His research interests are in single molecule biophysics generally, with a focus on the dynamics and interactions of membrane proteins in native lipid environments. He would like to address fundamental problems in membrane biophysics and eventually facilitate innovative approaches for new drug development.

Before joining Cal Poly Pomona Dr. Sigdel was a Senior Research Associate at University of Missouri-Columbia working on development and application of ultra-stable atomic force microscopy platform for single molecule biophysics studies. He completed his PhD from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, MA and his research work was on the investigation of the thermal behavior of liquid crystal mixtures with nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes and ferroelectric nanoparticles.