Rachel B. Fernandes
I am a Ph.D. graduate student at the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory & the Department of Planetary Sciences at The University of Arizona. I work with NASA NExSS Earths in Other Solar Systems (EOS) team,
a 5 year-long astrobiology research program aimed at understanding how and where habitable, Earth-like planets with biocritical ingredients (volatiles and organics) form.
Under the guidance of Dr. Ilaria Pascucci and Dr. Gijs Mulders, I use data from both ground- and space-based telescopes to search for extrasolar planets and statistically study the demographics of exoplanetary systems
My research background in planet formation spans from my undergraduate work at the University of Cincinnati from where I hold a dual Bachelor of Science degree in Astrophysics and Physics, with a minor in Mathematics. Under the mentorship of Dr. Mike Sitko, I used a Monte Carlo Radiative Transfer (MCRT) code to model the near-IR variability and the outer structures (gaps, rings, spirals arms, etc.) of the dust component of protoplanetary disks around Herbig Ae/Be stars.