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Staff Record
Photo of Lucyna Chudczer
Research Fellow

Lucyna Chudczer (Kedziora-Chudczer)




Research Group(s): 


Doctor of Philosophy (1993-1999)  Research Centre for Theoretical Astrophysics, University of Sydney, Australia

Master of Science (1991-1992) Department of Theoretical Physics, University of Sydney, Australia

Master of Astronomy (1982-1988)  Department of Astronomy, OAUJ, Jagiellonian University, Cracow, Poland

Graduate Diploma in Education (2008- ) Department of Science Education, University of New England, Australia

Research Interests: 

Atmospheres of Solar System Planets

I use the near-IR spectra of giant planets of our Solar system taken at the AAT and the high-resolution spectra obtained from the Gemini telescope to determine chemical constituents of the atmospheres and cloud distribution above the planetary surfaces. This is done by using the radiative- transfer code VSTAR developed by Jeremy Bailey and his group in the Astrophysics Department at the UNSW.

Formation and Evolution of the Solar system

I used the observations from the GEMINI telescope to derive the ratio of deuterium to hydrogen (D/H) in methane by measuring the strength of the CH3D bands in the 1.55 and 2 microns windows, which is compared with methane lines. Such measurements help to test the predictions of chemical evolution of the solar system. In particular it has been postulated that Uranus and Neptune formed much closer to the Sun. Our improved modeling will lead to more accurate D/H ratio estimates which in turn will help to constrain the migration history of these two giants.

Characterisation of Extrasolar Planets

I take part in observations of transiting extra solar planets and provide models of  their atmospheres. Many extrasolar systems with ‘hot Jupiters’ can be observed with smaller telescopes by using broadband photometry. The new instrumentation on the large telescopes like the VLT and GEMINI can provide spectra in optical and near IR, which allows more accurate determination of  atmospheric composition of extrasolar planets. I upgraded the VSTAR radiative transfer code to include the models of transmission spectra, which can be applied to any spectral resolution in range from optical to far infrared. I am also interested in developing atmospheric circulation models to understand the atmospheres of planets with strong external radiative forcing, in the regime of parameters occupied by ‘hot Jupiters’.

High sensitivity Optical Polarimetry with application to “hot Jupiters”

This project involves detection and determining polarisation properties of extrasolar planets. In collaboration with Jeremy Bailey, Daniel Cotton, Phil Lucas and James Hough we designed and built a new, highly sensitive polarimeter (HIPPI) that will enable measurement of polarization expected due to Rayleigh scattering for the bright hot Jupiters.

The spectral and angular dependence of polarised light from planetary atmospheres can reveal the presence of spherical particles along with their composition. A detection of primary rainbow feature in the phase dependence of polarised signal will strongly imply liquid nature of such particles. This project also involves the theoretical modelling of polarisation signal for different planets using the recently upgraded VSTAR code, which can derive radiative transfer of all Stokes components. 


Honours, Awards and Memberships: 


    1996 RCfTA Postgraduate Scholarship (University of Sydney)

    1992 UPRA Postgraduate Scholarship (University of Sydney)


    2013 Chair of the School of Physics Colloquia Committee (UNSW)

    2005 Chair of the Astronomy Decadal Plan Working Group 3.3 (Australia) 

    2004 Chair of the School of Physics Colloquia Committee (University of Sydney)

    1999 Member of the International Astronomical Union

    1998 Member of the Polish Astronomical Society 

    1997 Member of the Astronomical Society of Australia   



Selected Publications: 

Cotton, D., Bailey, J., & Kedziora-Chudczer, L. Atmospheric modelling for the removal of telluric features from infrared planetary spectra, 2014, MNRAS, 439, 387

Zhou, G., Kedziora-Chudczer, L., Bayliss, D. & Bailey, J., Examining the Broadband Emission Spectrum of WASP-19b: A New z-band Eclipse Detection, 2013, ApJ, 774, 118

Bailey, J. & Kedziora-Chudczer, L., Modelling the spectra of planets, brown dwarfs and stars using VSTAR2012, MNRAS, 419, 1913

Pursimo, T., Ojha, Roopesh., Jauncey, D. L., Rickett, B. J., Dutka, M. S., Koay, J. Y., Lovell, J. E. J., Bignall, H. E., Kedziora-Chudczer, L. & Macquart, J-P, The Micro-Arcsecond Scintillation-Induced Variability (MASIV) Survey. III. Optical Identifications and New Redshifts 2013, ApJ, 767,14

Koay, J. Y., Macquart, J.-P., Rickett, B. J., Bignall, H. E., Jauncey, D. L., Pursimo, T., Reynolds, C., Lovell, J. E. J., Kedziora-Chudczer, L. & Ojha, R., Why Do Compact Active Galactic Nuclei at High Redshift Scintillate Less? 2012, ApJ, 756, 29

Kedziora-Chudczer, L. & Bailey, J. , Modelling the near-infrared spectra of Jupiter using line-by-line methods, 2011, MNRAS, 414, 1483

Kedziora-Chudczer, L., Long-term monitoring of the intra-day variable quasar PKS 0405-385, 2006, MNRAS, 369, 449

Rickett, B. J., Kedziora-Chudczer, L. & Jauncey, D. L., Interstellar Scintillation of the Polarized Flux Density in Quasar PKS 0405-3852002, ApJ, 581, 103