Marina Kisley

PhD Student

Office: GS 725

Interests: Machine learning, computer vision, and astronomical applications 



Marina Kisley is a Ph.D. student studying machine learning applications in astronomy at the University of Arizona, advised by Professor Kobus Barnard. Before joining Arizona, Marina worked as a software consultant for two years, designing software systems for financial and governmental clients. She earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Computer Science from Virginia Tech in 2016.

​​​​​Research Interests

I am interested in machine learning applications in astronomical and planetary sciences. My current research projects involve classifying astronomical transients using host-galaxy data, and predicting the mineralogy of Mars in anticipation of the Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover mission.

What long-term project do you want to work on?

I would like to continue working on projects that address large-scale astronomical challenges, like the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) and missions to Mars.

What do you enjoy most about your work?

I enjoy working with researchers from a variety of backgrounds and learning more about my own field and others.

What are your career goals?

I would like to work in a lab where I can continue working on challenging interdisciplinary problems at the intersection of astronomy and computer science.

​​​​Tell us something interesting about yourself!

I like to spend time doing something creative like cooking, painting, drawing, writing, you name it! I love taking advantage of the amazing mountains and weather of Tucson by hiking, and just getting outdoors everyday with my pet dog, Kitty.