Dr Nikki Nielsen
Astronomy PhD, New Mexico State University, United States
Dr Nielsen is a postdoc in the Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing at Swinburne. She completed her PhD in Astronomy at New Mexico State University (USA) in 2015, focusing on how galaxies evolve by studying the behavior of massive reservoirs of gas known as the circumgalactic medium in relation to the host galaxies. Because of the diffuse nature of the circumgalactic medium, Dr Nielsen studies this gas using bright background quasars whose light pierces the circumgalactic medium of foreground galaxies, which leave behind absorption fingerprints in the quasar spectra. She focuses on cool, low ionization gas, which has been shown to accrete onto galaxies from the cosmic web and also to blow out of galaxies from star formation and supernovae. By understanding the kinematics, ionization conditions, and chemical content of this gas, Dr Nielsen's work provides insights into how gas flows onto and out of galaxies, and how it is processed along the way. These insights are key to understanding the processes that govern galaxy evolution and can be studied up to 11 billion years ago.
PhD candidate and honours supervision
Higher degrees by research
Accredited to supervise Masters & Doctoral students as Associate Supervisor.
Fields of Research
- Cosmology And Extragalactic Astronomy - 510103
- 2019, Swinburne, Highly Commended for Vice Chancellor's Research Excellence Award (Early Career), Swinburne University of Technology
- 2017, Swinburne, Highly Commended for Vice Chancellor's Research Excellence Award (Early Career), Swinburne University of Technology
- 2015, International, Alumni Association Outstanding Graduate Award for the Graduate School, Ph.D., New Mexico State University
- 2013, International, Zia Award for Outstanding Astronomical Research, New Mexico State University
- 2012, International, East Asia and Pacific Summer Institutes Fellowship, National Science Foundation, USA
Also published as: Nielsen, Nikki; Nielsen, N.; Nielsen, Nikole; Nielsen, N. M.; Nielsen, Nikole M.
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