Major: Astronomy & Astrophysics
Research Interests: Interested in extragalactic globular clusters, astrobiology, and cosmology
Research Projects: Finding and Characterizing Globular Clusters in Nearby Galaxies:
Presenting observations and discoveries of globular clusters in M81 and M83 from the Galaxy Halos Outer Disks Substructure Thick Disks Star Clusters (GHOSTS) survey. We search for and find clusters of stars in these fields by plotting and looking for over densities of stars. We gathered information about globular clusters from a catalog of globular cluster candidates in the galaxy M81. These candidates had previously been found using a Hubble Space Telescope (HST) survey.
Globular clusters that we confirm in the stellar halo of these galaxies could be there as a result of a merger. The process of ripping a globular cluster from a galaxy is similar to the process of ripping dark matter from a galaxy. By finding, confirming, and characterizing globular clusters we are able to examine their properties and possibly relate it to dark matter or the past history of a galaxy and its tidal interactions. Also, by establishing characteristics of globular clusters we potentially will be able to “filter out” other stars and background galaxies, allowing us to find and study globular clusters much more effectively.