I am interested in understanding how the large-scale environment affects galaxy evolution. An active member of the DESI collaboration, I am working on updating VoidFinder (Hoyle & Vogeley 2002) to identify the dynamically-distinct voids in the large-scale structure in DESI's upcoming galaxy survey. Not only will we be able to use the voids to study the influence of the void environment on galaxy formation and evolution, we will also be able to measure various cosmological parameters and study the evolution of voids. I am also working with Prof. Michael Vogeley at Drexel University and Prof. Segev BenZvi at the University of Rochester to develop new void-finding algorithms.

One of my other current interests is studying the dark matter content of galaxies. Alongside Prof. Regina Demina at the University of Rochester, we measure the ratio of dark to baryonic matter in galaxies using SDSS MaNGA. In conjunction with this, I am leading a secondary targeting campaign in DESI to measure the rotation curves of spatially resolved spiral galaxies that are part of the Siena Galaxy Atlas. Not only will this substantially increase our sample size of spiral galaxies with measured kinematics, it will permit us to map the peculiar velocities of these galaxies via the Tully-Fisher relation.

In addition, I am also developing a photometric classification scheme to identify galaxies in the Green Valley of the color-magnitude diagrams. This transient population will allow us to study galaxies transitioning between the star-forming Blue Cloud to the queiscent Red Sequence, incluidng understanding the various quenching mechanisms responsible for shutting down a galaxy's star formation.

My PhD thesis compared dwarf galaxies in voids with dwarf galaxies in more dense environments, in an effort to understand how a galaxy's environment affects its star formation history and chemical evolution. My work on the oxygen and nitrogen abundances in blue, star-forming dwarf galaxies in SDSS indicates that the void galaxies are retarded in their star formation and that they have larger dark-matter-halo-mass to stellar-mass ratios than dwarf galaxies in more dense environments.

  • Publications

    The Impact of Void-Finding Algorithms on Galaxy Classification. F. Zaidouni, D. Veyrat, K.A. Douglass, and S. BenZvi. (2024) Submitted to ApJ. arXiv:2403.20008

    A Full Accounting of the Visible Mass in SDSS MaNGA Disk Galaxies. N. Ravi, K.A. Douglass, and R. Demina. (2024) Accepted for publication in ApJ. arXiv:2310.11422

    The Early Data Release of the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument. DESI Collaboration (2023) Submitted to AJ. arXiv:2306.06308

    Validation of the Scientific Program for the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument. DESI Collaboration (2023) Accepted for publicaiton in AJ. arXiv:2306.06307

    Target selection for the DESI Peculiar Velocity Survey. C. Saulder, C. Howlett, K.A. Douglass, et al. (2023) MNRAS, 525 (1): 1106-1125. arXiv:2302.13760

    Void-finding systematics using crossing numbers. D. Veyrat, K.A. Douglass, and S. BenZvi. (2023) Accepted for publication in ApJ. arXiv:2302.05469

    The DESI Survey Validation: Results from Visual Inspection of Bright Galaxies, Luminous Red Galaxies, and Emission Line Galaxies. Lan, T.-W., et al. (2023) ApJ, 943 (1): 68-86. arXiv:2208.08516

    Updated void catalogs of the SDSS DR7 main sample. K.A. Douglass, D. Veyrat, and S. BenZvi. (2023) ApJS, 265: 7-18. arXiv:2202:01226

    Overview of the Instrumentation for the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument. Abareshi, B. et al. (2022) AJ, 164: 207-269. arXiv:2205.10939

    VAST: the Void Analysis Software Toolkit. K.A. Douglass et al. (2022) JOSS, 7 (77): 4033.

    Dependence of the ratio of total to visible mass on observable properties of SDSS MaNGA galaxies. K.A. Douglass and R. Demina. (2022) ApJ, 925: 127-141. arXiv:2009:10083

    The influence of the void environment on the ratio of dark matter halo mass to stellar mass in SDSS MaNGA galaxies. K.A. Douglass, J.A. Smith, and R. Demina. (2019) ApJ, 886: 153-161. arXiv:1906.08327

    Large-scale environmental dependence of chemical abundances in dwarf galaxies and implications for connecting star formation and halo mass. K.A. Douglass, M.S. Vogeley, and R. Cen. (2018) ApJ, 864 (2): 144-160. arXiv:1706.07099

    Large-scale environmental dependence of the abundance ratio of nitrogen to oxygen in blue, star-forming galaxies fainter than L*. K.A. Douglass and M.S. Vogeley. (2017b) ApJ, 837 (1): 42-55. arXiv:1612.04908

    Determining the large-scale environmental dependence of gas-phase metallicity in dwarf galaxies. K.A. Douglass and M.S. Vogeley. (2017a) ApJ, 834 (2): 186-198. arXiv:1604.08599

  • People

  • Graduate students

  • Nitya Ravi (UR, 2022-present)

    Hernan Rincon (UR, 2022-present)

    Nesli Erez (UR, 2019-21)

    Rayleigh Parker (UR, 2019)

    Dahlia (Dylan) Veyrat (UR, 2018-23)
    PhD in Physics from the University of Rochester (2023)

    Gregory Zengilowski, PhD (UR, 2017-18)
    PhD in Physics from the University of Rochester (2021)
    Currently a Research Scientist at the University of Arizona

  • Undergraduate students

  • Sunny Woo (UR, 2024 - present)

    Julia Largett (UR, 2023 - present)

    Lara Stroud (UR, 2023 - present)

    Grace Barner (Duquesne, NSF REU, Summer 2023)

    Sara Moore (Butler, NSF REU, Summer 2023)

    MJ Keller (UR, 2023)

    Amii Matamoros Delgado (UR, 2023)

    Joey Siciliano (UR, 2023)

    Rianna Ehrenreich (UR, Fall 2022)

    Lorenzo Mendoza (UR, Fall 2022)

    Lewis Drakeley (UR, 2022-23)

    Taryn Lovan (UR, 2022-23)

    Casey Ann Horvath (Ohio U., NSF REU, Summer 2022)

    Hayley Nofi (Villanova, NSF REU, Summer 2022)
    Currently a graduate student at Johns Hopkins University

    Yinqi Fang (UR, Spring 2022)

    Navya Uberoi (UR, 2021-22)
    Currently a graduate student at Yale University

    Jordan Coney (Morehouse, NSF REU, Summer 2021)
    Currently an NSF GRF graduate student at UCLA

    Juan Garcia Vega (SSU, CAMPARE REU, Summer 2021)

    Grace Chiodo (Villanova, NSF REU, Summer 2021)
    Currently a graduate student at the University of Vermont

    Nate Brunacini (UR, 2021-22)

    Josh Ratajczak (UR, 2021-22)
    Currently a graduate student at the University of Utah

    Yinglei Peng (UR, Spring 2021)

    Debra Dunham (CSB/SJU, NSF REU, Summer 2020)
    Currently a graduate student at Virginia Tech

    Uzair Tahamid Siam (UR, 2020-21)
    Currently a Data Scientist at MA General Hospital

    Yifan Zhang (UR, Spring 2020 - present)
    Currently an RA at the University of Toledo

    Cindy Olvera Perez (CSU Chico, CAMPARE REU, Summer 2019)

    Kaelyn Dauer (CSU Fresno, CAMPARE REU, Summer 2019)
    MSc in Physics from Boston College
    Currently a Physical Scientist at the US DOE

    Joshua Lemberg (UR, 2019-20)
    Currently a ML Software Engineer at Trimble Maps

    Fatima Zaidouni (UR, 2018-21)
    MSc in Astrophysics from the University of Cambridge
    Currently a graduate student at MIT

    Michaela Guzzetti (Smith College, NSF REU, Summer 2018)
    Currently a graduate student at the University of Washington

    Jacob Smith (UR, 2018-19)
    Currently a graduate student at Stony Brook University

    Leilani Gamboa (UR, 2018-20)
    Currently an HCQ specialist at MDX Hawaii

    Andrew Klug (UR, Spring 2018)
    Currently at Quantum Networking

    Daniele Schneider (Drexel, 2016-17)
    Currently a Backend Engineer at Bloomberg LP

    Jinfu Dai (Drexel, 2015-16)

    Salvatore Zerbo (Drexel, STAR, Summer 2015)
    Currently a graduate student at Columbia University

    Brean Prefontaine, PhD (Drexel, STAR, Summer 2014)
    PhD in Physics from Michigan State University (2022)
    Currently a Research Associate at Horizon Research, Inc.

  • High school students

  • Genesis Oquendo (White Plains High School, 2022-present)

    Sujay Champati (The Quarry Lane School, 2021-22)
    Currently an undergraduate at Caltech