Congratulations, Alicia!

I wanted to pass along the good news that UM Research Scientist Alicia Aarnio has accepted the George Ellery Hale Postdoctoral Fellowship in Solar and Space Physics at the University of Colorado Boulder. The fellowship is jointly supported by CU and the National Solar Observatory, which has recently relocated headquarters to Boulder. Alicia will continue her work on young stars and the solar-stellar connection both theoretically and observationally; this is an exciting opportunity as NSO prepares for the DKIST (Daniel K Inouye Solar Telescope) first light.

Congratulations, Alicia!


PS. You can keep up with Alicia’s research at her new home page: and email:

First RS CVn star spotted in Kepler dataset

Dr. Roettenbacher recently posted our accepted article on KOI-1003, a new spotted, eclipsing RS CVn binary in the Kepler field.  This work not only fully solves for the distance and component masses of this binary system but offers an unprecedented opportunity to study starspot evolution in this class of hyperactive magnetic stars.

See preprint here:


UM UROP students present their work

Over the past 7 months, Mariam, Veronika, Jacob and Scott have worked to build motor controller boards designed by our collaborator Laszlo Sturmann (CHARA).  In addition, they have designed enclosures for the boards using CAD software and using 3D-printing technology.

We estimate these efforts will save over $30K in costs for our new CHARA instrumentation, allowing us to automate more aspects of the instrument and leading to better data throughput and quality.

Mariam, Veronika, Jacob and Scott show off their hard work

Mariam, Veronika, Jacob and Scott show off their hard work


NSF Funding for MYSTIC!

Our NSF proposal to build a new near-IR combiner MYSTIC was selected by NSF.  MYSTIC stands for the Michigan Young STar Imager at CHARA and will focus on making images of T Tauri stars with on-going planet formation.  We hope to detect signposts of forming planets directly and debut new observing modes, including measuring polarized light.

Our group is interested in recruiting a new graduate student to work on this project as a thesis. Any postdoctoral researchers wishing to base a Hubble or Sagan Fellowship on this project should contact Professor Monnier.