Department of Astronomy Center for Radiophysics & Space Research

Lukas Leisman

Professor Riccardo Giovanelli & Professor Martha Haynes
Lukas Leisman

Research Area:

Extragalactic astronomy

Research Projects:

The ALFALFA survey (Arecibo Legacy Fast Arecibo L-Band Feed Array survey)


A member of the extragalactic group (EGG) in the Cornell Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, I study the evolution and origin of galaxies outside of the Milky Way. Specifically, I am part of the ALFALFA team, analyzing cold gas in nearby galaxies using data from the Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico. By understanding the nature of this gas and its connection to galaxies' stars we can establish a means of comparison for future studies of more distant galaxies in an effort to observe how galactic populations form and change with time.

Beyond research, my favorite part of graduate school is the chance to interact with students and people interested in science. I love teaching, and am involved with the ALFALFA undergraduate observing team, which focuses on giving undergraduate students opportunities to do real observing with world class telescopes. In addition to observing the heavens, I enjoy reading, writing, and playing violin. I also find a little time for both playing and watching sports, especially hockey, baseball, and football, and hanging out with my friends.


Haarsma et al. "Brightest Cluster Galaxies and Core Gas Density in REXCESS Clusters." The Astrophysical Journal, Volume 713, Issue 2, pp.

1037-1047 (2010)