I am a postdoctoral scholar at the University of Chicago, where I hold a Grainger Fellowship in Experimental Physics and a Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics (KICP) Fellowship.  My work focuses on developing instruments and experimental techniques to make precision measurements of faint, diffuse radiation from the early Universe.  I am particularly interested in understanding inflation through the polarization of the cosmic microwave background (CMB), and in the physics of the Epoch of Reionization (EoR) through mapping the large-scale fluctuations of ionized carbon.

With the BICEP/Keck Array series of CMB polarization experiments located at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, I work on understanding how instrumental systematics affect nanoKelvin-precision CMB polarization maps at the degree angular scales where a B-mode signature of inflationary gravitational waves might exist.  I am extending this work to inform the systematics mitigation strategy for the next-generation CMB-S4 experiment.

With the SuperSpec collaboration, I am developing a kinetic inductance detector-based millimeter-wave on-chip spectrometer, which will enable moderate spectral resolution observations without using a bulky grating or Fourier Transform Spectrometer.  In our initial 2019 deployment to the Large Millimeter Telescope we will demonstrate on-sky performance by measuring spectra of high-redshift dusty star-forming galaxies.  Next-generation SuperSpec focal planes will have the sensitivity to detect and characterize the ionized carbon ([CII]) power spectrum during the EoR, and potentially constrain cosmology at redshifts higher than those reached by galaxy surveys.

In 2017 I completed my Ph.D. in the Harvard CMB Lab advised by John Kovac, and before that I was an undergraduate at Caltech.

email: kkarkare{at}kicp.uchicago.edu


At South Pole: The Dark Sector Laboratory (left) hosting BICEP1/2/3 and the South Pole Telescope, and the Martin A. Pomerantz Observatory (right) hosting the Keck Array.