People

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    Jorge Martínez-Palomera

    I was born in Los Andes, Chile. I conducted my middle and high school studies at the Instituto Chacabuco (Marist Brothers). Then I moved to Santiago de Chile to complete my undergrad studies at the Faculty of Physical and Mathematical Sciences of the Universidad de Chile. I obtained my B.Sc. in Astronomy in 2014. I obtain a Ph.D. in Astronomy from the same institution at the Astronomy Department in 2018. During my Ph.D. I was a scholar visitor at the Insitute for Applied Computational Science (IACS) at Harvard University for 4 months. At the end of 2018, I moved to Berkeley, CA, to start my first postdoctoral position at the Astronomy Department of the University of California at Berkeley. I'm currently a member of Prof. Josh Bloom's Lab advocated to apply ML tools to astronomical challenges.

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    Andrew Mayo

    I’m a 2nd year graduate student studying exoplanets at UC Berkeley. I completed my bachelor’s degree at Harvard College in 2017 followed by a one year Fulbright Fellowship at the University of Copenhagen and the Danish Technical University.

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    Chris McKee

    Professor Emeritus of Astronomy, Physics

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    Anna McLeod

    Postdoctoral Fellow

    I am a Hubble Fellow working on feedback from massive stars in the Milky Way and nearby galaxies, with special focus on integral field spectroscopy and resolved stellar populations. At Berkeley I work with Dan Weisz, and I also am a science visitor at Texas Tech University.

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    Burkhard Militzer

    CIPS Director; Associate Professor of Earth and Planetary Science, Astronomy

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    Chelsea Miller

    Research Administrator: CSS

    501R Campbell Hall

    (510) 642-6424

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    Philipp Moesta

    I am a NASA Einstein fellow at UC Berkeley. I am interested in the engines of extreme core-collapse supernovae (type Ic-bl, superluminous, GRB-SN) and the electromagnetic signals from compact object mergers (NS-NS, NS-BH, BH-BH). Before joining UC Berkeley, I obtained my PhD at the Max-Planck-Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert-Einstein-Institute), Postdam and was a postdoc at the California Institute of Technology.

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    Sarafina Nance

    I am a first-year grad student in astronomy. I'm interested in a variety of topics, largely under the umbrella of theoretical astrophysics.

    I was an undergrad at The University of Texas (Hook 'Em!), where I majored in Physics and in Astronomy. There, I worked with J. Craig Wheeler to probe the structure of pre-supernova stars using asteroseismology.

    I grew up in Austin, Texas. Besides astronomy, I like tennis, yoga, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and Game of Thrones.​

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    Aaron Parsons

    Associate Professor of Astronomy; RAL Director

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    Massimo Pascale

    I am a first year graduate student in astronomy and an NSF fellow. I graduated with a B.S. in Astronomy, Physics, and Math and a minor in Computer Science at the University of Arizona in the Spring of 2019 where I worked with Prof. Brenda Frye in gravitational lensing. My current interestes lie in cosmology and high redshift astronomy, where I enjoy putting my computational and mathematical background to use. Feel free to come by to my desk in 202A if you want to chat!

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    Ekta Patel

    I am a first year Miller Fellow working on understanding the dynamics of satellite galaxies orbiting around the Milky Way and Andromeda. I am specifically interested in the individual orbital histories of these galaxies and how the collective phase space information of these systems of satellite galaxies can reveal important properties of their host galaxies. I received my PhD in Astronomy & Astrophysics from the University of Arizona in 2019 and my B.A. in Physics from New York University in 2014.

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    Dick Plambeck

    Research Astronomer (Radio Astronomy Lab)

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    Abigail Polin

    I am an NSF Graduate Research Fellow working on my PhD at the University of California, Berkeley with my advisors Peter Nugent and Dan Kasen. I am interested in computationally modelling astrophysical transients. Specifically taking hydrodynamical simulations and performing radiative transport calculations to translate theory into observable signatures.

    Recently my focus has been exploding White Dwarfs below the Chandrasekhar mass as potential type Ia progenitors.

    Before coming to Berkeley I enjoyed earning a Bachelors degree in Physics from New York University. As an undergrad I tried everything from experimental condensed matter, to working with gravitational wave detectors before landing on computational astrophysics.

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    Kara Ponder

    My main research interests are exploring dark energy through supernova cosmology. I am currently working with Saul Perlmutter's group reducing the data for the Nearby Supernova Factory. As a graduate student at the University of Pittsburgh, I worked on the SweetSpot observing program with gathered nearby type Ia supernova light curves in the near infrared. 

    I am also an active member of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) Dark Energy Science Collaboration (DESC). The latest project I worked on with this collaboration is the Photometric LSST Astronomical Time-Series Classification Challenge (PLAsTiCC), which is a publicly released classification challenge hosted on Kaggle. 

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    Eliot Quataert

    Professor of Astronomy, Physics; TAC Director; Astronomy Department Chair

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    Emily Ramey

    I am a first-year grad student interested in Cosmology and Radio Astronomy. I got my Bachelor’s degree in Physics and Computer Science at Washington University in St. Louis before coming to Berkeley and did undergraduate research in pulsars, quantum physics, gamma-ray detectors, and nuclear physics (not all at the same time). I grew up about an hour south of here in San Jose, and in my (limited) free time, I like to read, hike, go to the beach, or play with my two tabby cats, Socks and Chewie.

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    Sean Ressler

    I was born in Philadelphia and am obnoxiously proud of it.  I got my undergraduate degree at N.C. State University and was strongly encouraged to go to Berkeley by Stephen Reynolds, my undergraduate research advisor who earned his PhD under Chris McKee here at UCB.  

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    Stephen Ro

    I specialize in stellar winds and outbursts. I received my BSCh in mathematical physics (Queen's University, 2011) and PhD in astrophysics (University of Toronto, 2017). My doctoral supervisor is Chris Matzner and my academic siblings are Kaitlin Kratter, Mubdi Rahman, and Sherry Yeh. 

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    Nina Ruymaker

    Dept/Program Coordinator, CSS Bearbuy Liaison

    501C Campbell Hall

    (510) 643-2457

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    Ellie S. Abrahams

    Hi! I am an NSF Graduate Research Fellow in the Astronomy and Statistics Departments at Berkeley. I am interested in variable stellar systems, and I build novel machine learning architectures to study the time-domain properties of new and rare stellar systems. I work with Josh Bloom, Fernando Perez and Courtney Dressing on an array of projects on and off the main sequence. Before coming to Berkeley, I worked on time-domain studies of faint Kepler stars with Jackie Faherty and Ruth Angus as a Helen Fellow at the American Museum of Natural History. I graduated from the  City College of New York in 2017 where I wrote my senior thesis on the magnetic characteristics of M Dwarfs with David Hogg, Kelle Cruz and Peter Williams.

    I am an avid hiker and kayaker and when I’m not studying the stars, I love to be outdoors.

     

     

     

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    Nathan Sandford

    I am a second year graduate student in the Department of Astronomy at UC Berkeley. I have a deep love for galaxies, big and small, and am particularly interested in how they form and evolve over cosmic timescales. I currently work with Dr. Dan Weisz on the chemical evolution of dwarf galaxies.

    I graduated from Pomona College in 2017 with a BA in Physics and a concentration in Astronomy. While at Pomona College I worked with Dr. Yu Lu at the Carnegie Observatories to study how galactic feedback affects radial metal distributions in disc galaxies using a semi-analytic model for galaxy evolution.

    I grew up in Santa Clara, CA and am excited to return to the Bay. In addition to astronomy, I love picking up new hobbies! These currently include: flailing around on the tennis court, gardening, cooking, and building IKEA furniture.

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    Uros Seljak

    Professor of Physics, Astronomy

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    Ken Shen

    Assistant Researcher

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    Andrew Siemion

    Director, Berkeley SETI Research Center

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    Zachary Slepian

    Born by the seashore in Connecticut, I went to public high school, college at Princeton, a year in England obtaining a Master’s degree in philosophy of physics at Oxford, and then PhD at Harvard advised by Daniel Eisenstein.

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    Steven Stahler

    Research Astronomer

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    Wren Suess

    I am an NSF Graduate Research Fellow and Berkeley Chancellor's Fellow here in the UC Berkeley Astronomy Department. I work with Mariska Kriek using observations of post-starburst galaxies to investigate the formation mechanisms of compact quiescent galaxies.

    I did my undergraduate studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and received a BA in Physics in 2011. I worked both with Jeremy Darling to identify OH megamasers in the ALFALFA neutral hydrogen survey and with Marty Snow to model solar extreme ultraviolet irradiance. 

    I grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina. Outside of research and talking about physics, I love to hike, rock climb, read, and bake bread.

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    Jamie Sullivan

    I am a first-year graduate student and Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellow in the Berkeley Astronomy Department. I am interested in theoretical and computational astrophysics.

    I completed my undergraduate studies at the University of Texas at Austin, where I received B.S. degrees in Astronomy, Physics, and Mathematics in 2018. While in Texas I got my start in astronomy numerically modeling the massive star Betelgeuse with Prof. J. Craig Wheeler and Sarafina Nance and worked to test the viability of ultralight axion dark matter with Prof. Volker Bromm and Dr. Shingo Hirano as part of my astronomy honors thesis.

    I was born in Washington D.C. and grew up in Northern Virginia. When I’m not working on research I like to fence, brew coffee, and explore the bay area.

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    Emma Turtelboom

    I am a first-year graduate student in the Department of Astronomy. My research interests included exoplanets and planetary science. I graduated from MIT with a B.Sc. in Physics, and did undergraduate research projects on near-Earth asteroids, stellar rotation in open clusters, and exoplanet atmospheres. Outside of astronomy, I enjoy biking, baking, and drinking tea.

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    Sergiy Vasylyev

    I am a first year graduate student working on gravitational wave and optical follow-up of compact objects with Alex Filippenko. Specifically, I am searching for Black Hole-Neutron Star and Neutron Star-Neutron Star mergers to probe extreme physics and to measure cosmological distances. I received my B.S. in Physics from UC Santa Barbara, where I worked with Andy Howell and Iair Arcavi on the optical follow-up of gravitational wave candidates at the Las Cumbres Observatory. I am excited to be part of the new era of multimessenger astronomy! 

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    Jason Wang

    I'm a graduate student working on the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) and the GPI Exoplanet Survey with James Graham to discover new exoplanets. I'm studying both debris disks and exoplanets imaged with GPI and I'm also developing the software infrastructure for the survey. Before Berkeley, I did my undergradate studies at Cornell where I worked on FORCAST, a mid-IR camera for SOFIA, NASA's airborne observatory. I've also done a brief stint in software development at Microsoft.

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    Dan Weisz

    Assistant Professor of Astronomy; Head Graduate Advisor

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    William (Jack) Welch

    Professor Emeritus of Astronomy, Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences

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    Dan Werthimer

    Chief Scientist, SETI

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    Martin White

    Professor of Physics, Astronomy

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    Michael Wilson

    My skills set lie in the fields of Large-Scale Structure Cosmology, particularly that of spectroscopic galaxy surveys and lensing of the Cosmic Microwave Background.

    I work primarily for the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument, collaborating with Prof. Martin White and the broader collaboration.  In the past, my reasearch has built upon the VIPERS galaxy redshift survey and the Atacama Cosmology Telescope.

    Today, my focus is Lyman-break galaxies and an aim to exploit the z>2 Universe, which threatens to unveil the nature of Inflation and the neutrino mass hierarchy.  This has potential ramifications for the successors to DESI. 

    Originally, I hail from Belfast, Northern Ireland.  In 2017, I crossed the pond to UC Berkeley and have loved it ever since. 

    I completed my PhD at the University of Edinburgh under the supervison of Prof. John Peacock.  My thesis was dedicated to redshift-space distortions with the VIPERS galaxy survey.   

    Prior to that, I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of Oxford, working with Prof. Blake Sherwin, Prof. D. Spergel and Prof. Jo Dunkley on the Cosmic Microwave Background.

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    Michael H. Wong

    Planetary Scientist

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    Melvyn Wright

    Research Astronomer

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    Keming Zhang

    I’m a first year graduate student in the Department of Astronomy at UC Berkeley. I received my Bacheler’s degree from Columbia University in 2018 where I worked with David Schiminovich and Greg Bryan on galaxy evolution using both observational and numerical techniques. I first became interested in astronomy on a stargazing trip at the age of 12, and I’ve been a devoted astrophotographer since then.

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    Yong Zheng

    I'm a first-year Miller Fellow. I'm interested in galaxy formation and evolution, baryon cycles between galaxies and their circum-galactic medium (CGM), including inflows, outflows, and gas recycling. My research focuses on constructing a coherent picture of how baryons cycle and recycle between galaxies and their CGM using multi-wavelength spectroscopy (UV Spectroscopy, HI 21cm, IFU, etc.) and cosmological simulations (Enzo & FOGGIE).

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    Tom Oriyan Zick

    I'm Lawrence Graduate Fellow at UC Berkeley focused on connecting low and high redshift observations to learn about extreme star formation in the early Uiverse. I use state of the art stellar population synthesis modeling and bayesian fitting techniques applied to local group Globular Clusters to turn back the clock and learn about their formation. Meanwhile, I'm investigating extremely compact (<100pc) lensed sources at z>2 (less than 3 billion years after the big bang), using spectroscopy with the Keck telescopes. By combining these two avenues, I hope to place globular clusters in a cosmological context and shed light on their currently mysterious origins.

    I am also incredibly interested in science communication and public outreach. To that end, I lead a crowdfunding campaign to fund developement of Virtual Reality demos aimed at communicating astronomy to the public. To see some of our demos check out Berkeley's monthly Astro Nights (restarting April 2019).