I graduated with a degree majoring in physics and minoring in philosophy from University College London in 2016. I loved this combination because it allowed me to focus on the theoretical side of physics, whilst also being able to keep my mind open to the broader questions that philosophy encourages you to ask. Asking the big questions, I believe, is something one should never stop doing – as strange as it can feel to sit and ponder over our own existence or what else is out there! You don’t have to be a scientist to ask these questions and you certainly don’t have to be a scientist to be interested in the thoughts surrounding them.
After my undergraduate I worked for a UK Space Mission to learn more about the exoplanets in our galaxy. Exoplanets are planets which orbit stars, like our sun, in different solar systems. Why I love this particular topic in Astrophysics so much, is that it reminds us just how very tiny we are. In the universe there are at least 100 billion galaxies. In our galaxy alone there are 100 billion stars which means there could be as many as 40 billion Earth-like planets. We are one planet and we are unimaginably tiny. The human race should be restless to learn more about what else is out there, surely we can’t be content with the affairs the happen on this pale blue dot alone?
Between 2017-2018 I studied MSc Theoretical Physics at Kings College London, graduating with a distinction. After this I began an Astrophysics PhD at University College London but soon realised I was committed to theoretical physics and the study of gravity. From October 2019, I joined the Gravity Group at the University of Southampton. Here my PhD research focuses on gravitational wave emission from intermediate-mass-ratio black hole inspirals. This is a fascinating area at the forefront of theoretical physics, combining gravity, black holes and space missions.
I have always loved to write about science and I find it greatly helps me consolidate my understanding of ideas. I know that everyone asks themselves “big” questions at one time or another but then they get all too quickly distracted with something else. Often it is asked, what good is it to ask such questions, what benefit will it bring us now? I believe we should be impatient to ask such questions because we are fortunate enough as a species to be able to be here and to actually do so – which in itself seems very special indeed. Of course direct benefits may not occur in our life time, or the next, but if we continue to ask these questions we continually progress on the path to rationalising the universe.
If you have a blog you think I would enjoy, please leave a comment below and I shall be sure to check it out. I hope my articles interest you and leave you wanting to know more.