My research interests are primarily concerned with the study of brown dwarfs, low mass objects that cannot sustain stable Hydrogen fusion. In 2006, I initiated the Brown Dwarf Kinematics Project (BDKP) in order to use astrometric measurements to investigate fundamental physical properties of the brown dwarf population. Since that time, myself and collaborators have been collecting proper motions, parallaxes, and radial velocities for all brown dwarfs within 20pc as well as more distant objects of specific scientific interest (e.g low-surface gravity, subdwarfs, or extreme photometric outliers). The first major papers to emerge from the BDKP are:
- A velocity analysis of the population leading to a correlation between near-infrared color, kinematics, and age. The Brown Dwarf Kinematics Project I. Proper Motions and Tangential Velocities for a Large Sample of Late-Type M, L, and T Dwarfs
- Identification of wide benchmark brown companions to age-calibrated main sequence stars discovered through their proper motion. The Brown Dwarf Kinematics Project. II. Details on Nine Wide Common Proper Motion Very Low Mass Companions to Nearby Stars
- Analysis of luminosity trends and model comparisons for normal, low-surface gravity and subdwarfs The Brown Dwarf Kinematics Project (BDKP). III. Parallaxes for 70 Ultracool Dwarfs
- Detailed Characterization of the 50-100 Myr Brown Dwarf 2M0355, which shows striking similarities to giant exoplanets 2MASSJ035523.51+113337.4: A Young, Dusty, Nearby, Isolated Brown Dwarf Resembling A Giant Exoplanet
At present, we have continuing astrometric programs in both South America (Chile) and North America (Arizona) to measure parallaxes and proper motions for both published and unpublished sources. Radial velocities are in hand for numerous sources and analysis is underway (Burgasser et al. in prep; Schmidt et al. in prep).