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Personal profile

Research

I am a Senior Research Fellow (Forskare) at the Department of Astronomy and Theoretical Physics at Lund University, Sweden. My work centres on understanding how planetary systems form, how they change with time, and what their ultimate fates are.

I completed my Ph.D. at the Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge, where I studied the interactions between planets and debris discs with Mark Wyatt. I then moved to the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid for my postdoctoral work on the effects of stellar evolution on planetary systems with Eva Villaver, and thence to Lund at the start of 2014, where I continue to study many aspects of exoplanet dynamics.

I use computer simulations and mathematical analysis to understand how planets' orbits change with time, and work out the implications for our knowledge of how planets form. My specific areas of interest are:

  • How does stellar evolution (stars becoming large red giants and then dead white dwarfs) affect a planetary system?
  • What sets planetary system multiplicity? Why are some planets single but others are gregarious with many companions?
  • How do planets interact with comets and asteroids (the building blocks of, and debris from, planet formation)?
  • Are there links between where a planetary system formed, or where it is located now in the Galaxy, and the properties of its planets?

To address these questions, I work both with other theorists to understand general physical processes, and with observers to understand and interpret known planetary systems. In particular I am active in working groups/work packages for the European Space Agency's CHEOPS and upcoming PLATO space missions, both aimed at better characterising transiting exoplanets

Outreach

A few years ago I was interviewed for Lund University's Youtube channel about my work on Planet 9. Did the Sun steal it from another star?

I regularly give talks at public events such as Kulturnatten and NMT Dagarna.

Teaching

I am Course Responsible for Dynamical Astronomy (ASTM28) and have lectured on the PhD courses Dynamics of Planetary Systems and Exoplanets: Detection, Formation and Dynamics.

UKÄ subject classification

  • Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology

Keywords

  • Exoplanets
  • Theoretical astrophysics

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