My long-term academic interests lie in the area of instrumentation design, a research area that I was introduced to by interning with Dr. Morgan Burks at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories during my undergraduate summers. I’ve found that working on radiation detection systems has allowed me to combine a lot of my interests together. My engineering background allows me to assist in the design and manufacture of detector elements, project management and planning, and FEA/CFD simulations. My physics background allows me to understand the theory behind what is occurring within the detector and enables me to collect, analyze, and interpret data quickly using programming tools such as Python, Matlab, and Root. Over the past few years, I’ve gained an interest in earth and planetary science applications of sensor devices. As an outdoor rock climber, I’ve always had an interest in how the formations I climb on were made. My recent work on gamma-ray spectrometers for space applications, such as the 16-Psyche Discovery mission, has resolidified my interest in planetary science, geology, and geophysics. Space exploration brings researchers from different countries and backgrounds together in pursuit of a common goal to benefit humanity. I would like to use my knowledge and experience to contribute to humanity’s dream of being able to boldly go where no one has gone before. However, though space may be “the final frontier,” we are still stewards of this Earth. I am also interested in taking my many skills from working on planetary sciences equipment, to applying them for use in climate sciences and environmental surveying. If I can use my skillset to help keep our planet healthy, I would take that over space exploration any day – after all, Earth is my home.
Prior to attending UNM and Chico State, my background consisted mainly of assisting in automotive repair. My parents own their own automotive repair business, so since I was able to walk I’ve been around the automotive industry. From my father I’ve learned hundreds of skills from shingling rooftops to soldering electronic circuits, from pouring concrete to gas welding. I am an avid rock climber, backpacker, runner, photographer, musician, baker, cook, writer, and artist in my limited spare time. I am very passionate about exploring the world around me and exploring worlds beyond our Earth.
I am attending Arizona State University’s School of Earth and Space Exploration and am working with Dr. Craig Hardgrove and Dr. Lindy Elkins-Tanton, doing research on nuclear processes related to planetary science.
The photo above is of me (left) and my friend Addie Ford (right) making parking lot coffee in the morning in Bishop, CA before heading out to rock climb in Owen’s River Gorge. Photo by Ashley Rose.