My research focuses on the evolution of galaxies as seen through our telescopes and modeled using computer simulations. My interests include starburst galaxies near and far, the large scale structure of the Universe, the evolution of galaxies and galaxy clusters, black holes, quasars and radio galaxies. While most astronomers these days specialize in narrow well-defined areas, I do not discriminate on the basis of redshift, wavelength, object, etc. You can read more about my work on my Research and Publications pages.
I work at the National Observatory in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The Observatório Nacional (ON) is part of the Ministry of Science, Technology, Innovation and Communication (MCTIC). We do research in astronomy and geophysics, operate a graduate school in both areas (MSc and PhD), and introduce undergraduate students from nearby universities to research in astronomy (Scientific Initiation). The observatory, the oldest astronomical institute of Brazil founded in 1827 by Emperor Dom Pedro I, is located on a charming hill overlooking the vibrant tropical city of Rio de Janeiro.
Something about my academic history: I studied Astrophysics at Leiden University in the Netherlands, where I obtained my MSc Degree in 2001. I performed two graduation research projects, both supervised by Huub Röttgering. In the first project I studied the extended emission line gas around a distant radio galaxy. In the second project, I calculated the clustering of large samples of distant radio sources in the NVSS and FIRST radio surveys. These works were published in Astronomy & Astrophysics in 2001 and 2003. In 2002 I started working on my PhD in Astronomy at Leiden University under the supervision of George Miley. This work was motivated by observations of distant galaxies and clusters using the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) that had recently been installed during a servicing mission of the Hubble Space Telescope. I spent about 1.5 years working at The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore as a visiting graduate student with the ACS Science Team. In 2002 and 2003 I also worked with the great Dan Harris at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge to study distant radio galaxies using the Chandra X-ray Satellite. During my PhD I was very fortunate to conduct observations at the magnificent Very Large Telescope of the European Southern Observatory in Chile. I finished my thesis and obtained my PhD degree in May 2006. Following my PhD I was an Assistant Research Scientist at The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore (2006-2007), a postdoctoral fellow at the Max-Planck-Institute for Astrophysics in Garching (2007-2011), and a fellow at the University of Texas at Austin (2011-2013). I left this position early to take up a staff position at the Observatório Nacional in Rio de Janeiro. In September 2015, I was awarded a FAPERJ “Young Scientist of the State 2016-2019” grant. In 2018/2019, I was awarded a FAPESP visiting professor position at the Institute for Astronomy, Geophysics and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of São Paulo (IAG/USP), where I was responsible for organizing the São Paulo School of Advanced Science on First Light: stars, galaxies and black holes in the epoch of reionization.
Other fun facts:
My (relaxed*) Erdos-Bacon number is 13.
* I never appeared in a film, but I did appear on a television show when in elementary school.