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Where you are now:

You happened to have come across the homepage of Nadia L. Zakamska.

Where I am now:

I am an assistant professor of astrophysics at the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins University. Before I came to JHU, I was a research associate at Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at SLAC/Stanford University and a five-year member at the Institute for Advanced Study. I got my Ph. D. in Astrophysics from Princeton University in 2005.

Latest news

June 10, 2015:

Dr. Dominika Wylezalek becomes inaugural Akbari-Mack Fellow! Congratulations to Dominika, and many thanks to Dr. Akbari and Mr. Mack for their support!

May 20, 2015:

Kelly Lampayan and Georges Obied, both undergraduate researchers in Zakamska research group, share the Donald E. Kerr Memorial Award for outstanding Physics majors. Prasenjit Bose receives Rowland Prize for innovation and excellence in teaching for outstanding work as teaching assistant in Special Relativity / Waves by Zakamska, following several years of excellence in teaching courses for non-majors. Prasenjit continues the streak of awards to teaching assistants for Special Relativity / Waves, following Edwin Chan (teaching award in May 2013) and Anirban Ghosh (teaching award in May 2014). Congratulations!

Aug 1, 2014:

Prospective graduate students wishing to start in September 2015 can apply as described here. Here is our flyer, and this is some general information regarding our astrophysics graduate program.

Jan 19, 2014:

"Nadia L. Zakamska wins the 2014 Newton Lacy Pierce Prize of the American Astronomical Society"
Pictures from the award ceremony, June 2014
JHU press release,
IAS news,
Princeton news

May 12, 2013:

The materials for the IAS public lecture are posted here.

Research group at JHU:

Dominika Wylezalek (Ph.D. 2014 from ESO / LMU), postdoctoral researcher
Rachael Alexandroff, graduate student, demographics of high-redshift quasars and quasar feedback at peak galaxy formation epoch [Winner of the Best Student Speaker award, Penn State neighborhood cosmology meeting, April 2013]
Kirsten Hall, graduate student, quasars in CMB data (joint project with T. Marriage)
Erini Lambrides, graduate student, infrared spectra and photometry of active galaxies
Joseph Cleary, undergraduate student, modeling orbits in axisymmetric and non-axisymmetric potentials
Michael Kelly, undergraduate student, active galaxies in MaNGA survey
Some of our ongoing research projects are listed here, and more are available for interested graduate and undergraduate students (feel free to contact me; email is best).

Former group members:

Guilin Liu (Ph.D. 2011 from UMass), postdoctoral researcher 2011-2014, now postdoc at Virginia Tech, a series of papers on IFU studies of quasar-driven winds
Matthew Hill, undergraduate student 2012-2014 [Recipient of the 2012 Dean's Undergraduate Research Award and the 2012 Provost's Undergraduate Research Award], now graduate student at Yale, our paper
Kelly Lampayan, undergraduate student 2013-2015, star formation in quasar host galaxies [Recipient of the 2014 Dean's Undergraduate Research Award], now at APL, one paper submitted
Peranat Dayananda, undergraduate student 2014-2015, high energy emission of quasar winds, now at AWR Lloyd (consulting, Thailand)
Georges Obied, undergraduate student 2014-2015, modeling of scattered light in quasars [Recepient of the 2014 Provost's Undergraduate Research Award], now graduate student at Harvard, one paper in final stages of prep.
Peter Schiavone, undergraduate student 2014, Milky Way structure using APOGEE data
Bridget Ratcliffe, undergraduate student 2014, Milky Way structure using APOGEE data

Research interests:

  • Most of my current interests are in observational extragalactic astronomy, on topics that can be broadly summarized as evolution of massive galaxies and their supermassive black holes.
  • Specifically, I study Active Galactic Nuclei at all wavelengths and all redshifts (here you can find a popular article about black holes, Active Galactic Nuclei and their luminous subclass - quasars). Most of our current group activities are focused on determining the prevalence, energetics and physical structure of quasar winds -- an important phenomenon that shaped the properties of massive galaxies.
  • I am involved in a range of projects to study extreme starburst galaxies and physics of interstellar medium in them (these galaxies form stars at a rate hundreds of times higher than the Milky Way, and they are uncommon now, but were much more abundant in the past).
  • I am interested in multi-wavelength surveys and data mining (e.g., Sloan Digital Sky Survey) and in teasing out very rare objects from large datasets.
  • In addition, I maintain active interest in theoretical astrophysics, including (but not limited to):
  • Outflows from compact objects -- black holes and neutron stars;
  • Dynamics of planetary and stellar systems (here you can find a popular article about extrasolar planets).
    Some past research topics are described here in more detail.
  • My academic tree:
    is presented here, and I didn't have to lift a finger to make that happen, so instead I gratefully acknowledge the work of the PhD-Tree folks, and I greatly enjoyed learning about my tree.