Brief History of My Work


I completed my undergraduate degree in Honours Astrophysics at St. Mary's University (in Halifax, Nova Scotia). During my luxurious stay I worked with D.A. Clarke on the steady-state solutions to the Cosmic Ray Mediated Magnetohydrodynamics (CR-MHD) Jump Shock Conditions (with oblique B-fields). After that I was implementing the Skilling Equation (an alternative to the Two-Fluid model method of treating the cosmic rays) into the tried and tested ZEUS-3D numerical fluid dynamics problem solver. That work unfortunately got cut a bit short and is probably driving someone else nuts now.


I have packed up my car and moved to the `Big City' (swimmin' pools, movie stars) to try my luck as an Upper Canadian and a rather different field of research. I am presently working for C.D. Wilson in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at McMaster University. I finished my Masters thesis in which I measured the CO line ratios in the starburst dwarf irregular galaxies IC 10 and NGC 6822 to determine the physical conditions of the molecular clouds in these galaxies. I also have some REALLY cool maps (taken at JCMT) of M82 and M83 in all sorts of transitions including CO(J=4-3), [CI], and 13CO(J=3-2). The paper on the M83 data can be found in The Astrophysical Journal or off of my main page.

I spent some time preparing for the launch of the ODIN satellite by trying to get the JCMT to believe that it would be very important to have locations and lots of ground based observations of the clouds on the ODIN target list before it actually launches.


I got time at OVRO to map some barred galaxies that have Near Infrared Isophote twists (shown below) in the nuclei which may indicate the existence of a bar-within-a-bar. These may be responsible for fueling Active Galactic Nuclei. I was also been granted a nice chunk of time at the JCMT to map/sample these galaxies in a variety of wavelengths to see if the physical conditions of the molecular gas determine the type of nuclear activity we see (AGN or starburst).

I have also finished a paper based on the data taken of M82. I analyzed the CO line ratios of the upper-J rotational transitions and have found some interesting line ratio gradients that run across the galaxy.


I am currently at the University of Maryland continuing my studies of the molecular gas distributions and dynamics of double-barred galaxies. I get to use BIMA a lot in my studies. I am also planning on performing some double barred galaxy simulations while I am here to see if we can reproduce some of the gas distributions I saw during my Ph.D. studies. Go Back to find out more details.