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Physics (KIPAC)

Lawrence Peirson

Data Science Scholar

I am a Ph.D. student in Physics working with Roger Romani at KIPAC. My research covers high energy astrophysics, astrostatistics and applications of machine learning as a NASA FINESST fellow.

Currently, my work mainly focuses on two areas: characterizing the polarization behavior of astrophysical jets and achieving state of the art sensitivity for NASA’s upcoming X-ray polarization mission, IXPE. As the first substantial X-ray polarization telescope, IXPE will open up a new window on the high energy universe. Astrophysics has always been a data intensive field; with the data science scholars I hope to further bridge the gap between data science and astrophysics.

Before embarking on a Ph.D., I received my bachelors and masters (MPhys) in Physics from the University of Oxford, Christ Church, where I specialized in theoretical and particle physics. There I spent time at CERN working on beam parameter measurement software for the CLIC test facility's electron-positron collider. Outside of Physics, I enjoy collaborating on creative projects, e.g. Dank Learning: an image captioning network to generate memes, and competing for the Stanford judo and triathlon teams.