Professor Krawczynski works on experimental and theoretical astroparticle physics. His work aims at revealing the inner workings of astrophysical black holes, and using black hole and neutron star observations for testing the theory of General Relativity and the Standard Model of Particle Physics in regimes not accessible in terrestrial laboratories.
Krawczynski is the Principal Investigator of the balloon-borne X-Calibur polarimetry mission. X-Calibur studies the polarization of hard X-rays from mass accreting black holes and rotation and accretion powered neutron stars. The experiment was flown for the first time on Sept. 17., 2016 from Fort Sumner, NM. The next flight is scheduled for December 2018 from McMurdo, Antarctic. Krawczynski is furthermore a member of the science team of the Imaging X-ray Polarimeter Explorer (IXPE) - a NASA mission targeting black holes and neutron stars which is scheduled for launch in 2021. Krawczynski's group develops analysis methods and astrophysical models for IXPE.
In his lab, Krawczynski works on the development of semiconductor and cryogenic X-ray and gamma-ray detectors for future NASA missions. He collaborates with scientists at the Brookhaven National laboratory on the development of room temperature Cadmium Zinc Telluride detectors, and with scientists of the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) on the development of cryogenic microcalorimeter arrays read out by Transition Edge Sensors. Both types of detectors can be in the focal plane of a future hard X-ray imaging spectroscopy mission following up on NASA's successful NuSTAR mission.
On the theoretical side, Krawczynski studies general properties of radiation processes, the observational appearance of black holes (based on General Relativistic ray tracing studies) and gravitationally lensed black holes, and on models describing the continuum emission from the ultrafast outflows of mass accreting black holes.