Research

or stuff that excites me and keeps me up at night …

Image Sources: Lorimer Burst, GBT, VLA, Arecibo

My research focused on detection and study of Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs). Discovered by Duncan Lorimer in 2007, these bursts are very bright flashes in the sky, originating in the galaxies far far away. As the name suggests, FRBs have been seen only at radio frequencies (400MHz-8GHz). Therefore, I used the amazing radio telescopes in US (VLA, GBT, Arecibo) to search for these enigmatic phenomenon. Sarah Burke-Spolaor was my amazing supervisor. My thesis is available here: Searching Harder, Localizing Better, Classifying Faster: Optimizing Fast Radio Burst Detection And Analysis.

I was also a part of the Realfast collaboration, which performs real-time fast transients searches using VLA. Taking advantage of the large baselines of VLA antennas (and the fact that it is an interferometer), the Realfast system can localize FRBs to a very small region in sky (~sub-arcseconds). This is useful as localization is necessary to pin-point FRBs to individual galaxies, which is essential to identify their progenitors.

I also thought a lot about efficient search and classification algorithms for FRBs. I (along with Devansh) developed a Deep Learning based classifier called Fetch for classification of FRB candidates from noise (RFI) candidates. Fetch is currently being used at more than half a dozen radio telescopes all around the world, and has detected hundreds of bursts!

I led a project called TPP (The Petabyte Project) to perform a uniform sensitivity automated search for FRBs on more than a petabyte of archival data.

I also developed many software packages for FRB analysis: classification, period search, data processing, etc. Take a look at my Github for more information.

You can find a full list of my publications here.