I am a particle astrophysicist currently working with the IceCube Neutrino Observatory to look for transient sources of high-energy neutrinos from outer space. I recieved my Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis where I worked on the Double Chooz experiment measuring neutrino mixing parameters at a large nuclear reactor in northern France.
My work on IceCube has focused on the search for high-energy neutrinos associated with observed gamma-ray bursts (GRBs). GRBs were long expected to produce high-energy neutrinos through the acceleration of protons within the jet. Interactions between protons and gamma-rays would lead to neutrinos. Neutrinos are ideal cosmic messengers because they are stable neutral particles that do not participate in electromagnetic interactions. This allows neutrinos to stream, unimpeded, along straight line paths over cosmological distances before being detected on Earth. In order to have any chance of detecting these particles, an enormous detector is necessary. The largest neutrino detector in the world is the IceCube Neutrino Observatory, located at the geographic South Pole. With an instrumented volume of one cubic kilometer, IceCube is large enough to detect neutrinos from astrophysical sources.
Artist depiction of a neutrino event recorded below the IceCube laboratory at the South Pole.