Research Work

I am an undergraduate physics and mathematics major at the University of Illinois at Chicago. My research work mainly deals with astrophysics and planetary science. I am interested in pursuing graduate studies in these related fields once I graduate in 2018. Here are my current research projects.

Neutron Star Mergers and The R-process
Undergraduate Research

UIC Student Research Forum 2017

About half of the elements of the periodic table that are present today in the Solar System were synthesized before the formation of the Sun via a rapid neutron capture process (r process). However, the astrophysical site of the r process is a longstanding problem that has captivated both experimental and theoretical astrophysicists. Up to date, two possible scenarios for the site of the r process have been suggested: the first involves the high entropy wind of core collapse supernovae, and the second corresponds to the merger of two compact stellar objects such as neutron stars or a neutron star-black hole pair.

In this work, we will study the robustness of the nucleosynthesis abundance pattern between the second and third r process peaks as produced by neutron star mergers with r process-like neutron exposures. We will do this through the Truran r-process code[1] coupled with density and temperature trajectories obtained from hydrodynamical calculations from Rosswog et al. 2013[2].

First, we will vary parameters to obtain an understanding of the astrophysical mechanisms that create the r process. Next, we will create a program to obtain the best possible parameters based on a chi-squared test. Once we have the best fits, we will test the effect of fission in the overall isotope abundance pattern distribution. Later on, we will vary the ratio of masses of the two fission fragments and study its effect on elemental abundances. One last parameter to vary will be the ratio of the masses of neutron star pairs. Ultimately, we hope to gain an understanding of the astrophysical origin of the r process.

[1] Truran et al., ApJ 222, L63(1978).
[2] Rosswog, S., Piran, T., & Nakar, E., MNRAS, 430, 2585 (2013).

We are fortunate enough to have won the LASURI 2017 grant for funding of our research.

Lacunarity and the Crater Distribution on Venus

Immature Test run of code

This research project will begin in the Summer of 2017. I will be working as an intern with funding from the Space Grant Program. More to come soon.