Solar System Small Bodies

My current research advisor at the University of Arizona is Vishnu Reddy ( With his help, I will continue my studies in Space Situational Awareness and expand into the characterization of small bodies in the solar system (asteroids, comets, etc.).

Space Situational Awareness

At Applied Optimization, Inc. (AO), my research focused on data collection and analysis for Space Situational Awareness (SSA). I worked with government and corporate clients and partners to develop viable solutions to complex problems in the Earth’s space domain.

AO supports the tracking and monitoring of man-made satellites in the Earth’s orbit by developing algorithms spanning the control of optical equipment and collection, calibration, reduction, and analysis of electro-optical data for astronomical and man-made objects. Some of the projects I have worked on have focused on:

Quad telescope used for research
  • Space object characterization
  • Optical design and implementation for spectral imaging
  • Electro-optical calibration
  • Standardized file format for electro-optical data (EOSSA)
  • Operation, maintenance, and support of telescope sites in Dayton, Ohio, USA
  • Remote telescope operation using collaborative hosting in Coonabarabran, New South Wales, Australia
Light curve of Galaxy-19 (33376) with panchromatic data taken from three telescope systems at two separate sites. The plot shows the target’s magnitude versus the longitudinal phase angle.
Graph taken from Castro et al., 2016

Atmospheric Research


The Turbulence and Aerosol Research Dynamic Interrogation System (TARDIS) is a Rayleigh beacon system using integrated commercial off-the-shelf hardware. The measurements produced by the system will contribute to research supporting characterization of turbulent atmospheres, mitigation techniques, and electro-optic sensing modalities. Part of what makes the TARDIS unique is its location in a humid, continental environment which is representative of a threat-like environment where the Air Force may likely be operating. End goals of the research support the Air Force mission of electro-optic sensing for space situational awareness.

Visit my publications page for a link to the Zuraski 2018 AMOS paper or the Summer 2018 news release from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base about the project.
Photo by Bryan Ripple , 88th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

The TARDIS Rayleigh beacon laser being fired near Polaris for alignment.
U.S. Air Force Photo by Dan LeMaster, 88th Air Base Wing