My primary research interest and focus is galaxy evolution. Currently I am studying mergers of massive disk galaxies by matching numerical simulations to multi-wavelength observations. I am using these dynamical models to frame star formation and active galactic nuclei (AGN) in the context of merger-driven activity and to run hydrodynamic simulations to test models of star formation. I am also undertaking molecular line surveys of local LIRGs to examine tracers of the dense gas associated with star formation. I am a member of the Great Observatories All-sky LIRG Survey (GOALS) and much of this work is being done in collaboration with other GOALS members.
Recently I have begun working on the evolution of low-mass galaxies and how interactions between them differ from interactions between massive galaxies. I am a member of the TiNy Titans (TNT) team, which is using an SDSS-selected sample of dwarf galaxy pairs to study interactions between dwarf galaxies as a function of environment.
I am currently a prize postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Astronomy at the University of Florida. In 2014 I defended my PhD dissertation (“The Dynamics and Cold Gas Content of Luminous Infrared Galaxy Mergers in the Local Universe”) in the Department of Astronomy at The University of Virginia. I have previously been a:
- FONDECYT Postdoctoral Fellow (2014–2017), Departamento de Astronomía, Universidad de Concepción and the Instituto de Astrofísica, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
- Graduate student (both as a Teaching Assistant and a Research Assistant; 2007–2014), Department of Astronomy, The University of Virginia
- Visiting Graduate Student Fellow (Jan–Jul 2013), Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, California Institute of Technology
In addition to my research activities, I am interested in public outreach and am always happy to talk to astronomy clubs and do classroom visits (in person or via Skype). Please contact me at the email below if you are interested in working together on outreach.