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Kelly Lampayan ’15: Starry-eyed

The Research

Kelly Lampayan’s research attempts to answer the question of whether it is possible that host galaxies have star formation rates large enough to power observed radio emission. Lampayan, a double major in physics and astronomy and applied mathematics and statistics, is studying a large sample of galaxies that are known to host radio-quiet quasars, some of the most remote and powerful objects in our universe. By measuring the star formation rates, she can predict the amount of radio emission that can actually be attributed to star formation and compare these predictions to the observed emission.

In Her Own Words

“If you had asked me what a quasar was before I started this project, I probably wouldn’t have been able to tell you. I was pretty naive about how astrophysics research is done. The wonderful thing about research, however, is that you learn so much while doing it. A lot of work has gone into the research paper using our data, and it’s been surprising to see just how many hours of work are actually behind a single sentence.”

Adviser: Nadia Zakamska, Assistant Professor, Physics and Astronomy