About Me

I am an assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Louisiana State University.

I work on understanding the number and properties of exoplanetary systems (exoplanet demographics), by designing and conducting large-scale surveys using the microlensing and transit techniques. I’m particularly interested in understanding if the location of a star in our Galaxy has an effect on the planetary system it forms.

I lead the MISHAPS transit survey and work on the Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) mission, NASA’s next flagship astrophysics mission that is following in the footsteps of the Hubble and James Webb Space Telescopes. I have played a leading role in the K2 Campaign 9 microlensing survey, and the supporting CFHT-K2C9 Multicolor Microlensing survey. I am a member of the KELT search for transiting planets. I also work on designs of microlensing surveys using UKIRT, LSST and the Euclid space mission.


2019-present, Assistant Professor, Louisiana State University
2017-2019, Senior Postdoctoral Researcher, Ohio State University
2014-2017, NASA Sagan Fellow, Ohio State University
2012-2014, Postdoctoral Researcher, Ohio State University


2008-2011 PhD Astronomy & Astrophysics, Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, University of Manchester
2004-2008 MPhys Physics, University of Manchester

Curriculum Vitae

Contact Information

Email: penny1@lsu.edu
Website: www.astronomy.ohio-state.edu/~penny
Mail: 202 Nicholson Hall, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA