Kovacs, Attila

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Dr. Attila Kovacs

Postdoc
Caltech


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Area of Expertise: data reduction algorithm development, instrument design, submillimeter technologies, data acquisition
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Summary
I graduated from Harvard University with an A.B. in physics, astrophysics, and astronomy in 1997, and received my Ph.D. in physics from Caltech in 2006 in the submillimeter astrophysics group lead by Tom G. Phillips. As a student, I pioneered a novel data reduction approach (CRUSH) and new observing modes (e.g. Lissajous scans) for submillimeter imaging arrays, designed wide-band SIS mixers, and brought the first far-infrared characterization of the submillimeter galaxy (SMG) population. Later, I worked at the Max Planck Institute for Radioastronomy in Bonn as post-doc, mentored by Karl Menten, where I was active in the optimization and commissioning of the APEX bolometer cameras LABOCA (and its polarimetry frontend PolKa) and SABOCA and conducted surveys with them. In 2009, I became an independent postdoc at the University of Minnesota, focusing on improving and commissioning the GISMO 2-mm camera for the IRAM 30-m telescope, and innovating the concept of lithographic on-chip spectrometers for the (sub)millimeter. Since 2012, I have been back at Caltech as a post-doc with Jonas Zmuidzinas, working on SuperSpec and MAKO, and the readout solution for kinetic inductance detectors (KIDs). I also am a part of the ongoing collaborations for the SOFIA/HAWC+ upgrade, the GISMO-2 camera, and the CCAT short-wavelength camera (SWCam). Beyond the technical work, I am very interested in studying the high-z mm-bright star-forming populations and in developing empirical dust models for understanding them.
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