My thesis work was "Origin of the Satellites of the
Jupiter and Saturn Systems." Simulations of forming moons around the gas
giants were performed using a FORTRAN N-body integrator. Current planet
formation theories indicate that determining the origin of regular
moons and of the outer planets may hold the key to developing a
complete model for the solar system.
My dissertation was on
"Isolated Early-Type Galaxies and X-ray Diagnostics of Compact Groups
and Merged Systems." For my doctoral research, I determined the
properties of X-ray gas in compact groups, fossil groups, and isolated
elliptical galaxies. I also created a sample of isolated early-type
galaxies (IEGs) from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The IEGs are
separated from any bright galaxy neighbors by at least 2.5 Mpc,
insuring that these galaxies have not undergone any large-scale
interactions or mergers within the last few billion years.
research program at Rollins is designed to build on my past work while
further using the SDSS as well as the Two-Degree Field Galaxy Redshift
Survey to search for other samples of IEGs. Additional analyses of the
X-ray properties of individual galaxies and galaxy groups will be made
using the Chandra X-ray Observatory, in order to better constrain the
formation and evolution of galaxy systems.