Research

My scientific interests lie primarily in experimental cosmology, with a focus on the cosmic microwave background (CMB) and direct detection dark matter searches.  The CMB is a radiation field of relic light left over from the big bang, and is measured with high precision to be almost uniformly 2.72 degrees Kelvin.  Although seemingly uniform and isotropic, anisotropies on the level of 1 in 105 exist in the CMB’s temperature from location to location on the sky.  By measuring these slight fluctuations in the CMB’s temperature, cosmologists can learn a great deal about the universe’s history and composition.

Cosmic Microwave Background
WMAP map of the CMB. Credit: WMAP team

As an undergraduate, I wrote my first junior paper on a test of the a-theorem, a conjectured extension of Zamolodchikov’s c-theorem, for the special case of adjoint supersymmetric quantum chromodynamics under the supervision of Dr. Brian Wecht at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS).  Feel free to read my Junior Paper on the topic, “Central Charges in Adjoint SQCD.” 

During the second half of my junior year, I worked with Professor Frank Calaprice on the development of a low background detector to measure 39Ar levels in underground Argon extracted for use in direct detection dark matter experiments.  My work culminated in the completion of my second Junior Paper, “A Low Background Detector for Measurements of 39Ar in Underground Argon for Dark Matter Detectors.” 

Following my work with Professor Calaprice, I spent my senior year working under the supervision of Professor Lyman Page.  During this time, I used data from the Atacama Cosmology Telescope, a six-meter off-axis Gregorian telescope located in the Northern Chile, to better characterize Sunyaev-Zel’dovich galaxy clusters detected in the cosmic microwave background (CMB).  My work culminated in my senior thesis, “A Study of the Sunyaev-Zel’dovich Galaxy Clusters.”  Following graduation, I spent four months working on-site with ACT as a research technician, controlling observations and data collections.

Following my time in Chile, I returned to Princeton, where I spent ten months working with Professor Calaprice’s research group to continue to develop the low-background Argon detector I had contributed to during my junior year at Princeton.  This work culminated in a month spent collecting underground Argon data at the Kimballton Mine in Southwest Virginia.

Since then, I have been continuing my studies as a graduate student at Johns Hopkins University, under the supervision of Tobias Marriage.  I’m continuing to work on the construction and analysis of data from ground-based, sub-millimeter telescopes studying the CMB.

A full list of published papers to which I have made contributions can be found on my NASA ADS Listing.

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