Ian Czekala
  • KY16 9SS

    United Kingdom

Accepting Postgraduate Research Students

PhD projects

Title: Using ALMA to Search for Planets as They Form: Non-Keplerian Flows in Protoplanetary Disks

This Ph.D. thesis will investigate the structures and kinematics of protoplanetary disks using high resolution, sub-mm interferometric observations with the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA). Through programs like MAPS, exoALMA, and others, ALMA has consistently demonstrated the ability to detect "non-Keplerian" motions of the molecular gas in protoplanetary disks hosted by pre-main sequence stars. Many threads of evidence suggest that these motions are directly caused by (proto)planets embedded in the disk, however, there are other disk processes that could altern the Keplerian flow of gas. It is the goal of this project to explore these possibilities using high resolution observations of protoplanetary disks, as well as any ancillary information. In order to analyse the rich, Fourier-type datasets from ALMA, this project will develop and employ statistical and machine learning techniques concerning Bayesian inference and Regularized Maximum Likelihood Imaging (RML).

* Zawadzki, Czekala, et al. 2023: https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2023PASP..135f4503Z/abstract
* Izquierdo et al. 2023: https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2023A%26A...674A.113I/abstract
* MAPS large program: https://alma-maps.info/
* exoALMA large program: https://www.exoalma.com/

Personal profile

Academic/Professional Qualification

  • Lecturer, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of St. Andrews, UK; Jul 2023 - present 
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pennsylvania State University; University Park, PA USA; Aug 2020 - Jun 2023 
  • ICDS Co-Hire, Institute for Computational and Data Sciences, Pennsylvania State University; University Park, PA USA; Aug 2020 - Jun 2023
  • NASA Hubble Fellowship Program (NHFP) Sagan Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California Berkeley; Berkeley, CA USA; 2018 - 2020
  • Porat Postdoctoral Fellow, Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology, Stanford University; Stanford, CA USA; 2016 - 2018
  • Ph.D. in Astronomy and Astrophysics, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA; 2012 - 2016
  • Masters of Arts in Astronomy and Astrophysics, Harvard University;   2010 - 2012
  • (double) Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering, Astronomy, University of Virginia; Jefferson Scholar, Graduated with High Distinction; 2006 - 2010

Research overview

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, The Fundamental Properties of Young Stars, Harvard University

1 Sept 201030 May 2016

Award Date: 20 Apr 2016

Master of Arts, Astronomy and Astrophysics, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

1 Sept 20101 Jul 2012

Award Date: 25 May 2012

Bachelor of Science, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Astronomy, University of Virginia

28 Aug 200620 May 2010

Award Date: 25 May 2010


  • QB Astronomy


Dive into the research topics where Ian Czekala is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles