Extrasolar Planets—My work involves characterizing the atmospheres of exoplanets and searching for new ones with adaptive optics imaging and spectroscopy. I was the PI of LEECH, a 70 night direct imaging search for exoplanets with the LBT. I am currently using my instrument, ALES, to extend spectroscopy of directly imaged planets into the thermal infrared. I am also Co-PI of the JWST Early Release Science program to directly image planets and debris disks.
Cold Brown Dwarfs—I am leading a spectroscopic study of the coldest brown dwarfs to understand their properties in preparation for the next generation of imaging surveys. I obtained the first spectrum of the coldest known brown dwarf, which at ~250 K, is the first object outside of our Solar System to show evidence for water clouds.
Instrumentation—I am interested in instrumentation that can not only discover new exoplanets, but also characterize them with multi-wavelength imaging and spectroscopy. I was the instrument scientist for the Large Binocular Telescope Interferometer, which includes 2 AO systems, a 1-5 μm science camera (LMIRCam) an 8-13 μm science camera (NOMIC) and a nulling/Fizeau interferometer. I am the PI of ALES, the world’s first 2-5 μm integral field spectrograph, which is optimized for exoplanet imaging.