Group members

Sebastian F. Hoenig

Associate Professor in Astrophysics, group leader

PhD 2008 (University of Bonn, Germany), then postdoc at the Max-Planck-Insitute for Radio Astronomy (2008-2010), DFG Fellow at the University of California Santa Barbara (2010-2013), and Dark & Marie Curie Fellow at the Dark Cosmology Centre (2013-2014). My main interests are active galactic nuclei (AGN) in the infrared as seen with the highest angular resolution. I created the CAT3D radiative transfer code to interpret the dust emission of AGN and use interferometry (mostly the VLTI) to unveil the mass distribution on parsec scales around the black hole. More recently I work on establishing the AGN dust emission as a cosmological tool. I am PI of the ERC Starting Grant project DUST-IN-THE-WIND.

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Triana Almeyda

Research Fellow

PhD 2017 (Rochester Institute of Technology, NY, USA). Postdoc at the University of Southampton since September 2017 working on optical/infrared reverberation mapping of AGN as part of the VEILS ESO public survey.

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Daniel Asmus

Research Fellow

PhD 2012 (University of Kiel, Germany). Postdoc at the Max-Planck-Institute for Radio astronomy 2012-2014, ESO Fellow in Chile 2014-2017, Marie Curie Fellow in Southampton since 2018. Daniel's main interest focuses on the mid-infrared emission of AGN. During his time at ESO, he served as VISIR instrument fellow and was involved in the recent instrument upgrade.

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Bella Boulderstone

PhD student

MPhys 2014 (University of Lancaster), MPhys 2015 (Queen Mary University London), Mayflower PhD student at the University of Southampton since 2015. Bella works on infrared reveberation mapping of a local sample of AGN.

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Ella Guise

PhD student

MPhys 2018 (University of Southampton), STFC PhD student at the University of Southampton since 2018. Ella is studying the optical and infrared variability of AGN and transients in the VEILS and VOILETTE survey. She is responsible for the near-realtime data reduction of the optical support for VEILS.

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James Leftley

PhD student

MPhys 2016 (University of Southampton), PhD student at ESO and the University of Southampton since 2016. His first two years were spent at ESO's Chilean headquarters in Santiago before returning to Southampton in 2018 to finish his thesis. James graduated with a Master of Physics degree from the University of Southampton. He uses infrared interferometry (MIDI, GRAVITY) and ALMA to resolve the mass distribution and accretion processes around supermassive black holes.

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Marta Venanzi

PhD student

Master in Theoretical Physics 2016 (University of Rome La Sapienza), ERC PhD student at the University of Southampton since 2016. In the course of her final research project at the master level, she spent some time at QMUL. Marta's thesis project focused on developing and exploiting effective and efficient methods to solve the radiative transfer problem in radiation-hydrodynamical simulations of dusty gas around AGN. Specifically, she studies the infrared radiation pressure on dust and its potential as a wind launching or amplifying mechanism.

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David J. Williamson

Research Fellow

PhD 2013 (St. Mary's University, Halifax, CA), then postdoc at the University of Laval, Quebec, CA (2013-2016), and in Southampton since 2018. He is an expert in hydrodynamic simulations and develops our new 3D radiation-hydrodynamical model of the dusty environment around AGN.

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Jiren Liu

Long-term visitor, China NSF Fellow

Jiren joined the group as a long-term visitor in an exchange programme between the China NSF and the ERC. He collaborates on X-ray signatures of dusty winds in AGN.

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