My research focuses on the intersection between galaxy formation and cosmology, with emphasis on near-field cosmology and galactic archaeology, through the use of state-of-the-art cosmological hydrodynamic simulations.
I am leading the Latte Simulations, a suite of cosmological zoom-in baryonic simulations of Milky Way-like galaxies, part of the Feedback in Realistic Environments (FIRE) project. With these simulations, I am pursuing a multi-faceted program to elucidate the physics that governs the evolution the Milky Way and its satellite dwarf galaxies, to address fundamental questions regarding (1) the relative roles of gas accretion, stellar feedback, cosmic environment, and the epoch of reionization in driving galaxy formation, (2) the use of galactic archaeology to probe the formation histories of the Milky Way and galaxies in the local Universe, and (3) the nature of dark matter on the smallest scales. My research is highly computational, involving developing, running, and analyzing the next generation of cosmological zoom-in simulations approaching petabyte scales. My work also emphasizes close connections with observations, including pursuing observational projects myself.