Greetings, and welcome to the Origins Lab. We are part of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at California State University, campus of Northridge, in the city of Los Angeles. Our research focuses on two main areas: planet formation and ice shell convection. In planet formation, we are interested in the origin of the Solar and extrasolar systems. Through ice shell convection we are exploring the evolution of icy moons. Our mission is to understand the origin and nature of habitable planets through astrophysical and geophysical numerical simulations. We are also interested in black hole mergers in active galactic nuclei and the LIGO detections. Our group has strong ties with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory given the geographical proximity and overlapping research interests.
Dr Natalia Dzyurkevich, expert on star formation and astrochemistry, joins the group as a postdoctoral scholar. Dr Dzyurkevich has 9+ years of work experience in 3D numerical simulations. She will be hosted at JPL.
Leonardo Sattler-Cassara defended his MSc thesis, with a paper submitted. Above, one of the ice shell convection simulations in the paper. Leo is from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) and he joined the Origins Lab for one year to work on his thesis.
Blake Hord, Origins Lab high school intern, got his paper accepted. Above, Blake presenting the work as finalist in the Siemens research competition for high school students. Blake is off to Stanford for undergraduate studies.