When Antarctica Just Isn't Cold Enough: South Pole Telescope (SPT) Fridge Cycle

As you might have heard on my website, my newsletter, my Twitter, or, if we’re colleagues at Caltech, at work, I am currently working on the South Pole Telescope (SPT) onsite at the South Pole in Antarctica for January-November 2016 (I am employed by the University of Chicago). I have taken a sabbatical from my NSF Astronomy Read More …

Durham University Institute for Computational Cosmology visit

Visit to the Durham University Institute for Computational Cosmology I spent last week hosted by the Institute for Computational Cosmology at Durham University, staying in “Castle” one of the historic colleges of the university, an actual, honest to goodness Castle and a World Heritage Site. Durham University has a lot to offer, a huge cosmology and astronomy department, Read More …

Population III stars were fusing hydrogen before it was the hot thing to do

featured image credit: M. Kornmesser/European Southern Observatory Sobral et al. in recent work slated for publication in The Astrophysical Journal, claim observation of a galaxy, CR7, likely hosting a large contingent of Population III stars. The New York Times also has good summary; you know it’s important when actual stars get the movie star treatment. While I’m not in a position to Read More …

book review: Quantum Computing Since Democritus

There is both room for and a need for many different types of physicists and scientists to kick progress up a notch. Some of the most mind-stretching and inspiring are those who are philosophical about their work, as well as those who are interdisciplinary in their understanding. Scott Aaronson fits in both camps and shares Read More …

Happy Academic New Year, 2015

June 1, 2015 I was thrilled to start my 3 year tenure as an NSF Astronomy and Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellow (NSF AAPF) at Caltech. I am therefore declaring June 1 as my official academic New Year. I’m treating this fellowship period as my shot to make a scientific difference, and here’s to the next 3 years. I have an structured routine scheduled, Read More …

#OCCUPYMARS: my experience as a SpaceX intern

I spent my Fall as an intern in propulsion analysis at SpaceX. I had unparalleled mentors in rocketry, computational physics and software engineering. The intern program is top-notch, and to me represented the most effective “in” to the notoriously selective and demanding company. Moreover, the internship duration was a perfect interlude in my academic career. Read More …