Welcome! I am an assistant professor at the Institute for Astronomy (IfA) of the University of Hawaii at Manoa. My research group focuses on the structure and evolution of solar-type and low-mass stars using observational techniques such as asteroseismology, optical long-baseline interferometry, spectroscopy and broadband photometry, as well as the discovery and characterization of exoplanets.

I was born and raised in Vienna, Austria, and earned my PhD in Astrophysics at the University of Sydney, Australia. I then worked as a member of the Kepler team at NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California, before returning to the University of Sydney to take up an ARC DECRA fellowship. In January 2017 I joined the faculty at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Research

My group is leading research projects broadly related to the study of stars and exoplanets in our galaxy. The links below provide brief summary of current research projects and recent publications. For more information see the NASA ADS listings of all my refereed publications, my refereed first-author publications, and my ORCID profile.

  • Asteroseismology

  • Exoplanets

  • Optical Long-Baseline Interferometry

  • Stellar Populations of Transit Surveys

  • Galactic Archeology

  • Adaptive Optics Imaging

Group

University of Hawaii:
Jamie Tayar (Hubble Fellow)
Lauren Weiss (Parrent Fellow)
Travis Berger (PhD)
Ashley Chontos (PhD)
Sam Grunblatt (PhD)
Erica Bufanda (699-2)
Connor Auge (699-1)
Jessica Stasik (699-1)

University of Sydney (co-advised with Tim Bedding):
Isabel Colman (PhD)
Jie Yu (PhD)

Outreach & Press

  • ABC Live Breakfast Television

  • Hubble: Mission Universum (starting at ~2 min)

Kepler Space Telescope's First Exoplanet Candidate Confirmed, Ten Years After Launch (Chontos et al. 2019) :
NASA Discovery Alert
CNN
University of Hawaii Press Release
Universe Today

University of Hawaii Astronomer Awarded Prestigious Sloan Foundation Fellowship (February 2019) :
University of Hawaii Press Release

Symphony of stars: The science of stellar sound waves (July 2018) :
NASA Feature Article

Revised Radii of Kepler Stars and Planets Using Gaia Data Release 2 (Berger et al. 2018):
Science News

UH astronomers to uncover the secrets of stars and exoplanets with NASA's TESS satellite (March 2018) :
University of Hawaii Press Release
Forbes

Newly Discovered Twin Planets Could Solve Puffy Planet Mystery (Grunblatt et al. 2017):
IfA Press Release
Space.com
Universe Today

Stellar Variability in the Seven Sisters of the Pleiades Cluster (White et al. 2017):
University of Hawaii Press Release
Big Island Now

Discovery of magnetic fields in the cores of red giant stars (Stello et al. 2016, Nature):
ABC AM Radio

Discovery a near Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a Sun-like Star (Jenkins et al. 2015):
ABC Live Breakfast Television
ABC Radio
Sydney Morning Herald
3AW Radio

Discovery of the oldest known system of sub Earth-sized planets (Campante et al. 2015):
The Conversation (authored)
ABC Science Online
Sydney Morning Herald
Space.com

Discovery of the first Spin-Orbit Misalignment in a Multiplanet System (Huber et al. 2013, Science):
Nature
NBC News
Space.com
Scientific American
IB Times
CS Monitor
Welt der Physik

NASA/KASC press conference announcing Kepler asteroseismology results (Huber et al. 2011)
Wall Street Journal
MSNBC
Voice of America
Wired Magazine
Press Release Material (including star sounds!)

Discovery of the triply eclipsing triple system HD181096 ("Trinity") (Derekas et al. 2011, Science)
Phys.org
University of Sydney Press Release
Press Release Animations

Discovery of gravity-mode spacings as a tool to probe the cores of red-giant stars (Bedding et al. 2011, Nature)
Space.com
NBC

Asteroseismology meets Contemporary Art - Collaborations with NY-based artist Jeff Talman:
Nature of the Night Sky, Bavarian Forrest, Germany (2011)
NPR interview with Jeff Talman
Moments from the Sun at Rothko Chapel, Houston, TX (2014)
Under the Sun, St. Peter's Church, NYC (2018)
Beyond the Sunset & In Your Stars, Mt. Wilson Observatory, CA (2018)
Beyond the Sunset & In Your Stars, Mt. Wilson Observatory, CA (2018)

Talks

Recorded Talks:
"Asteroseismology for Exoplaneteers": KITP, UC Santa Barbara (May 2019)
"Asteroseismology with WFIRST": Invited Lecture at 2017 Sagan Workshop, Caltech, Pasadena, CA (Aug 2017)
"Asteroseismology with Red Giants": Invited Talk at KITP Conference "The Milky Way and its Stars", Santa Barbara, CA (Feb 2015)
"Asteroseismology Data Analysis Tutorial": KITP, UC Santa Barbara (Feb 2015)
"Towards Improved Occurrence Rates of Exoplanets": SETI Institute, Mountain View, CA (Apr 2014)
"Asteroseismology of Exoplanet Host Stars": Invited Talk at Second Kepler Science Conference, NASA Ames, Mountain View, CA (Nov 2013)

Other Invited Talks and Colloquia:
"Exoplanets III", Heidelberg, Germany (Jul 2020)
"Stars and Their Variability Observed from Space", Vienna, Austria (Aug 2019)
Fourth TESS Asteroseismic Science Consortium Conference, MIT, Cambridge, USA (Jul 2019)
"Kepler and K2's 500,000 high-precision light curves", AAS Seattle, WA (Jan 2019)
TESS Splinter Session, AAS Seattle, WA (Jan 2019)
"Science with SONG: 4 more years", Tenerife, Spain (October 2018)
"A revolution in stellar physics with Gaia and large surveys", Warsaw, Poland (Sep 2018)
Astrophysics Science Division Colloquium, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, MD (Mar 2018)
Exoplanets and Planet Formation, Shanghai, China (Dec 2017)
"Know Thy Star, Know Thy Planet", Caltech, Pasadena, CA (Oct 2017)
NASA Sagan Workshop, Caltech, Pasadena, CA (Aug 2017)
Third TESS Asteroseismic Science Consortium Conference, Birmingham, UK (Jul 2017)
Colloquium, Columbia University, New York City, NY (Mar 2017)
International Advanced School in Space Sciences, Azores, Portugal (Jul 2016)
K2 Science Conference, Santa Barbara, CA (Nov 2015)
New Horizons in Astronomy: Frank N. Bash Symposium 2015, Austin, TX (Oct 2015)
Chaos Among the Stars, Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI (Aug 2015)
Advances in Stellar Physics from Asteroseismology, IAU General Assembly, Honolulu, HI (Aug 2015)
Annual Scientific Meeting of the Astronomical Society of Australia, Perth, Australia (Jul 2015)
Kepler & TESS Asteroseismic Science Consortium Conference, Aarhus, Denmark (Jun 2015)
Colloquium, Australia National University, Canberra, ACT (Apr 2015)
Colloquium, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI (Mar 2015)
Colloquium, Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA (Mar 2015)
Colloquium, Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (Mar 2015)
Colloquium, Yale University, New Haven, CT (Feb 2015)
LAMOST-Kepler Workshop, Beijing, China (Aug 2014)
18th Cambridge Workshop on Cool Stars, Stellar Systems, and the Sun, Flagstaff, AZ (Jun 2014)
Colloquium, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON (Apr 2014)
Colloquium, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL (Apr 2014)
Colloquium, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH (Sep 2013)
Giants of Eclipse, AAS Topical Conference, Monterey, CA (Jul 2013)
Sixth Kepler Asteroseismic Science Consortium Conference, Sydney, Australia(Jun 2013)
Kepler Special Session, 221st AAS Meeting, Long Beach, CA (Jan 2013)
Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network, Santa Barbara, CA (Jan 2013)
Fifth Kepler Asteroseismic Science Consortium Conference, Balatonalmadi, Hungary (Jun 2012)

Conference Organization:
Coordinator, "Better Stars, Better Planets: Exploiting the Stellar-Exoplanetary Synergy", Apr 15-Jun 28 2019, UC Santa Barbara, CA
SOC member, "Keck Science Meeting", Sep 19-20 2019, UCLA, CA
SOC Co-Chair, "4th Kepler Science Conference", Jun 19-23 2017, NASA Ames Research Center, CA
SOC member, "Asteroseismology & Interferometry", Oct 4-6 2017, Nice, France
SOC member, "Ages^2: Taking Ages to the Next Power", Sep 18-22 2017, Elba, Italy
SOC member, "Cool Stars 19", June 6-10 2016, Uppsala, Sweden
SOC Chair, "5th Australian Exoplanet Workshop", December 9-10 2015, Sydney, Australia

Teaching

Planetary Systems: A Data-Driven Exploration, University of Hawaii AST735 (Spring 2019)
Radiative Transfer and Stellar Atmospheres, University of Hawaii AST631 (Spring 2018)
Coding Practices, University of Hawaii AST699DR (Fall 2017)
Astro-ph Seminar, University of Hawaii AST734/735/790 (Fall 2017-2019)
Oscillations & Waves, University of Sydney PHYS1001 Regular (2016)
Interferometry & Asteroseismology, Cape Breton University Undergrad Guest Lecture (2014)
Asteroseismology, UC Santa Cruz ASTR-112 Graduate Guest Lectures (2012)