Dr Devika Kamath

Macquarie University
Research Field: Astronomy

The chemical elements in stars are the very same elements that make up our bodies and everything around us. My research addresses a critical long-standing question in astrophysics: How are chemical elements in the universe synthesised? 

Using large telescopes around the world and in space, Devika pioneered the hunt for rare stellar fossils – a class of dying stars. Through their spectra, these stars preserve a fossil record of their entire life and element production. Using observations of these stars with computational models, she reconstructs their life to learn how and when they make the chemical elements. Her work is building a framework for understanding the chemical make-up of galaxies and their impact on the evolution of the universe.

Devika initiated MQ Space Travels, a new Livestreaming Series that intertwines astronomy and astrophysics with state-of-the-art technology and storytelling. She has also conducted virtual tours of the night sky through Sydney Observatory and visited regional schools as a part of the LEAP program.

Dr Kamath completed her PhD in 2013 at the Australian National University. She is currently an ARC DECRA Fellow and Senior Lecturer in Astronomy and Astrophysics at Macquarie University