Postdoc astrophysicist, Mississippi State University

My research work involves the development of the Starchive Open Access Stellar and Planetary Database and radial velocity follow up of transiting planets.

Starchive is an open access web database that will contain observable meta-data on stars within our stellar neighborhood (initially within 25 parsecs) like photometry, radial velocities, distances, etc. as well as derived physical parameters such as mass, radii, luminosity, etc., similar to current astronomical archives such as SIMBAD, Vizier, and exoplanets.eu. In addition, it will also host stellar images and spectra, making it a valuable resource to the community. With Starchive, the astronomical community will have access to populate the database with data of all known stellar, sub-stellar, and planetary objects within 25 parsecs.

I am also actively involved with carrying out radial velocity follow up measurements of transiting planet candidates from the HATSouth transit survey and measuring the spin-orbit alignments of transiting exoplanets by observing the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect using the newly commissioned fiber bundle CYCLOPS2 at the Anglo-Australian Telescope.

This research will help us better understand the processes involved in the formation of planets and the mechanisms driving planetary migration and spin-orbit misalignments.

Other areas of research interest include atmospheric studies of exoplanets and the detection of biosignatures in planetary atmospheres (basically anything pertaining to exoplanetary science, astrobiology, and the search for life).

Experience

  • –present
    Postdoc astrophysicist, Mississippi State University

Education

  • 2015 
    UNSW, PhD