Blackstar, which came out on Bowie’s 69th birthday, has been praised for its boldness and the creation of a new hard jazz sound.
It also contains the single Lazarus which has a poignant video featuring Bowie levitating from a hospital bed and returning into a dark closet.
Prior to this week, Bowie’s highest-charting US album had been The Next Day, which reached number two in 2013. He also reached No 4 in 1983 with Let’s Dance.
Blackstar is the first posthumous number one album in the US since Michael Jackson’s This Is It soundtrack topped the chart in November 2009.
Nine other Bowie albums also made the Billboard 200 this week with the Best of Bowie reaching number four and The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars at number 21.