Colin J. Burke

 Colin Burke

Contact Information

132 Astronomy
1002 W. Green Street
Urbana IL 61801
M/C 221
Graduate Student
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Colin is a second-year graduate student in astronomy at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is currently a graduate fellow at the Center for Astrophysical Surveys at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) and an associate member of the LSST AGN science collaboration.

Research Interests

  • Survey Science
  • Active Galactic Nuclei

Research Description

Colin is currently working with Professor Xin Liu. Our goal is to understand how supermassive black holes formed and came to occupy nearly every massive galaxy in the Universe. Currently, I am using optical surveys, like the Dark Energy Survey, to search for intermediate mass black holes in active galactic nuclei. 

In the near future, we will use the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope to carry out a similar mission with unprecedented scale and sensitivity.


  • B.S. Physics, Purdue University

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Burke, C. J, Y. Shen, Y.-C. Chen, S. Scargini, C. A. Faucher-Giguere, X. Liu, and Q. Yang Optical Variability of the Dwarf AGN NGC 4395 from the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite Submitted 2020.
Guo, H, C. J. Burke, X. Liu, and et. al Dark Energy Survey Identification of A Low-Mass Active Galactic Nucleus at Redshift 0.823 from Optical Variability submitted 2020.
Burke, C. J, P. D. Aleo, Y.-C. Chen, X. Liu, J. R. Peterson, G. H. Sembroski, and J. Y.-Y. Lin Deblending and Classifying Astronomical Sources with Mask R-CNN Deep Learning MNRAS 490 3 2019, p. 3952.
Burke, C. J, J. R. Peterson, E. Egami, J. M. Leisenring, G. H. Sembroski, and M. J. Rieke PhoSim-NIRCam: Photon-by-photon image simulations of the James Webb Space Telescope's Near-Infrared Camera JATIS 5 3 2019.
Peterson, J. R, E. Peng, C. J. Burke, G. H. Sembroski, and J. Cheng Deformation of Optics for Photon Monte Carlo Simulations ApJ 873 2019.