NCCR PlanetS Postdoc
 at Universit├Ąt Bern

Brett is currently a first-year postdoc working with Professors Kevin Heng and Brice-Olivier Demory in beautiful Bern, Switzerland. Brett's research interests include exoplanet characterization and stellar activity.


PhD (Astronomy, Astrobiology): University of Washington, 2019

Postbacc (Research Associate): NASA Goddard, 2013

BSci (Physics, Astronomy): University of Maryland, 2012


In 2020-2021 I've been an active collaborator on the ESA CHEOPS mission.

Starspots and age

I recently found a simple relationship between stellar age and starspot coverage.

Starspots: HAT-P-11

I extract information about stellar magnetic activity encoded in planetary transits, as shown in these starspot occultations detected by Kepler on HAT-P-11.

ESO/N. Bartmann/
TRAPPIST-1 transit

Ground-based Photometry

I've been privileged to work on various ground-based photometric projects, predominantly using the ARC 3.5 m Telescope at Apache Point Observatory.


As a dual-title PhD in astronomy and astrobiology, I was privileged to work with interdisciplinary scientists. For my astrobiology research rotation, I developed a comprehensive data reduction and analysis pipeline with Professor Jody Deming (UW) on the Submersible Holographic Astrobiology Microscope with Ultraresolution.


I was co-founder and co-organizer of the fantastic series of public talks, Astronomy on Tap Seattle. Watch some of my talks here.


I'm a frequent contributor to open source software for astronomy. Here's some open source software I work on:

More code is available on GitHub!