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Welcome! My name is George Privon. I am a FONDECYT postdoctoral fellow in the Instituto de Astrofísica at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. I am an astronomer and my research is focused on merger-driven transformation of galaxies across a wide range of mass. I use observations—from telescopes such as ALMA, the VLT, and the VLA—in concert with N-body simulations to understand the interplay between star formation, active galactic nuclei, feedback, and the interstellar medium in mergers. In particular, I study the molecular gas properties of extreme starbursts and the evolution of starburst and AGN activity as mergers progress.

In addition to my research, this website has some information about my teaching, public outreach interests, and some biographical information.

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Latest News

  • 12 June 2017: We have released a preprint for “ALMA [NII] 205 micron Imaging Spectroscopy of the Interacting Galaxy System BRI 1202-0725 at Redshift 4.7” (Lu+). In this paper we use observations of emission from carbon monoxide and ionized nitogen along with previously obtained empirical correlations to estimate the dust temperature in a high-redshift galaxy pair. This paper has been accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journal Letters.
  • 31 May 2017: A preprint for “A 33 GHz Survey of Local Major Mergers” (Barcos-Muñoz+) has been released. In this paper we measure the sizes of starbursts using 33 GHz radio continuum and use them to compute luminosity surface densitites for the starbursts. We find a number of sources that likely exceed the luminosity surface densities for starbursts limited by radiation pressure. The paper has been accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journal.
  • 12 May 2017: Two recent papers I co-authored were the subject of press releases. For Ricci+2017 NASA announced that “Merging Galaxies Have Enshrouded Black Holes”. And for Kim+2017, the Chandra X-ray observatory announced the discovery of “CXO J101527.2+625911: Astronomers Pursue Renegade Supermassive Black Hole”. The press releases are based on papers recently publshed in MNRAS and ApJ, respectively.
  • 24 April 2017: A preprint for “Extreme CO Isotopic Abundances in the ULIRG IRAS 13120-5453: An Extremely Young Starburst or Top-Heavy Initial Mass Function” (Sliwa+) is now available on the arXiv. In this paper we find spatial variations in emission from molecules with different carbon and oxygen isotopes and conclude the variations can only be explained by either a very young starburst (< 7 Myr) or an increased production of high-mass stars. The paper has been accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journal Letters.
    Update (11 May): The article is now available from ApJ Letters.
  • 20 April 2017: We recently had a paper accepted with an identification of a recoiling supermassive black hole candidate. “A Potential Recoiling Supermassive Black Hole CXO J101527.2+625911” (Kim+) will be published in The Astrophysical Journal and a preprint is available.
    Update (12 May): The article is now available from ApJ.