Student Research

2014 Research Students As a Jansky fellow at NRAO, I have had the opportunity to work with an amazing and diverse group of research students as a part of three different programs: the NRAO Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program, the National Astronomy Consortium, and an exchange with Nanjing University in China.

I am grateful to have had the chance to mentor such talented students, and look forward to having them as colleagues in the future!

Summer 2015

Kevin Gima
Kevin Gima had just begun classes at the University of Maryland as a transfer student from Prince George Community College and alumnus of the GRAD-MAP program when he started as an NRAO summer student researcher. Kevin's project involved analyzing a new ALMA dataset of dense molecular gas around our Galaxy's supermassive black hole, and resulted in the identification several cool clumps of gas with unusual chemistry. Kevin is currently doing undergraduate research as an S-Stem scholar.

Tierra Candelaria
Summer 2015 was Tierra Candelaria's's second summer of research at NRAO, having just graduated from the College of Idaho. Tierra worked to measure the hottest gas present in a sample of molecular clouds as a function of their distance from the Galactic center. She is currently continuing this research, having started as a graduate student at New Mexico Tech. She is writing the results of her research up as a first author paper (Candelaria, Mills et al., in prep.).

Summer 2014

Jonathan Barnes
Jonathan Barnes came to NRAO in summer 2014 from Norfolk State University, and as an alumnus of the GRAD-MAP program at the University of Maryland. His work on a project to study the excitation of the HCCCN molecule in a sample of Galactic center clouds identified a new high-column-density, low-excitation component in these clouds (Mills, Ginsburg, Barnes et al., in prep.). Jon is currently a graduate student at California State University- Los Angeles, doing research as part of the Direct-STEM program.

Aspen Clements
A Chemistry Major at the University of Nebraska-Kearney, Aspen Clements worked at NRAO in summer 2014 on a high-frequency VLA survey of molecules in Sgr B2. Her analysis of the excitation and distribution of NH$_2$D in Sgr B2 identified a new warm but highly-deuterated core that may represent an early stage of massive star formation (Mills, Clements et al., in prep). Aspen is currently an Astrochemistry graduate student at the University of Virginia.

Alex Teachey
As a student at Hunter College, Alex Teachey worked with me, Dr. Dave Meier, and Dr. Juergen Ott at NRAO in summer 2014 on a project to study ammonia in Galactic center clouds. His work led to a new technique for identifying ammonia masers, and a dozen new maser candidates, more than doubling the number of these sources known in our Galaxy (Teachey, Mills et al. in prep). Alex is currently a graduate student and NSF graduate fellow at Columbia University.

Bingqing Sun
Bingqing Sun, a student at Nanjing University in China, spent Summer 2014 at NRAO studying ammonia in the circumnuclear disk-- the gas around the black hole in the center of our Galaxy. Her analysis yielded new temperatures for this gas that better constrain its density, yielding further evidence that this gas is not forming stars. Bingqing is currently doing research at the National Astronomical Observatories of China.