Juan is an observational cosmologist that designs and builds novel instrumentation to improve the understanding of the origin, composition and evolution of the Universe.
Juan studied Electrical Engineering at Universidad de Antioquia (Colombia) and then he moved to Canada to study Honours Mathematics and Physics at McGill University. He obtained his PhD in Physics from McGill University in 2018, and after that he joined MIT as a Kavli Postdoctoral Fellow.
During his graduate studies he worked at the McGill Cosmology Instrumentation Laboratory on the commissioning of the Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME), a novel radio telescope designed to measure the 21 cm emission from neutral hydrogen in order to study the expansion history of the universe and probe the nature of Dark Energy. CHIME is also an excellent instrument to study the radio transient sky, including pulsar monitoring and detection of Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs).
Juan is part of the team that designed, commissioned, and now operates the digital correlator for the CHIME telescope, a supercomputer that processes 2048 digitizer inputs across 400 MHz of bandwidth and performs more than 840 trillion complex operations per second. He has played a major role on the development of the CHIME analog receiving system and the data analysis pipeline, and he is a key contributor to the development of calibration techniques to characterize the CHIME instrument. Juan currently works on the development of new instrumentation to improve CHIME’s capabilities to localize FRBs using Very-Long-Baseline Interferometry.
At MIT, he has joined the Hydrogen Epoch of Reionization Array (HERA) team to contribute to its development for deployment in South Africa. HERA is a low-frequency radio telescope designed to probe the 21 cm emission from the Cosmic Dawn and Epoch of Reionization (EOR), two of the most important yet poorly constrained periods in the evolution of the universe when the first stars and galaxies formed, generating a transition of the intergalactic medium from a neutral to a highly ionized state.
Research areas and projects
First Stars/Reionization, Cosmic Structure