Mark AvaraAstrophysics Graduate Student
Department of Astronomy, Room CSS 0228
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20740
mavara <<\at>> astro.umd.edu
Here you can read about my research interests, outside interests, access my teaching resources, or follow me to my frequented links.
Plasma and accretion physics, specifically theoretical and numerical studies of black hole accreiton disks and jets, and instabilities that arrise in weakly collisional plasma found in clusters of galaxies. I am currently working with Professors Jonathan McKinney and Chris Reynolds of the University of Maryland - College Park. I also worked with Prof. Tamara Bogdanovic (Georgia Tech) when I was focused on conduction and turbulent properties of the intra-cluster medium.
Gravitational radiation as a probe of fundamental physics. I have worked with Prof. Peter Shawhan in the physics department investigating the use of networks of gravitational wave interferometers to search for scalar mode gravitational waves which are allowed in many alternative theories of gravity.
High energy processes in astrophysics, primarily the dynamics and environment of AGN (unification models)
and compact objects such as neutron stars and black holes, including the role that gravity plays. With Prof. Jonathan McKinney I am studying the physics of thin black hole accretion disks using the grmhd code HARM.
I play the violin and piano. I play mostly classical now, which is likely the only sort of music you'd see me play at a concert, but there are a few spots in north central Texas that I get to from time to time where I play the music I was raised on, traditional folk music, bluegrass, and ol' time Texas fiddling.
I am a naturalist at heart and am always excited to discuss earth-friendly energy sources and small-footprint living.
My most recent obsessions are chess, and especially elusive yet fundamental problems in classical mechanics.