Dr. Erin Cox is an observational astronomer that studies star and planet formation. Her work focuses on how magnetic fields influence the earliest stages of protostellar collapse (~10-20 kyr), and how this affects disk formation. Erin uses high-resolution, dust polarization observations at multiple frequencies to determine the mechanisms responsible for this emission in these high density regions. She has also used ALMA to study the physical characteristics of older, pre-main-sequence disks (~ few Myr) that are likely forming planets.
An Astrophysical Journal paper presenting data obtained with SOFIA’s HAWC+ camera was highlighted by being chosen for NASA’s “Astronomy Picture of the Day” on February 27th. Professor Giles Novak and CIERA visiting scholar Marc Berthoud led the development of the data pipeline for HAWC+. The lead author of the paper is Professor David Chuss of Villanova
NASA, SOFIA, D. Chuss et al. & ESO, M. McCaughrean et al.