My primary research interests lie in the study of galaxy evolution, with a particular focus on the role of galaxy-galaxy interactions and mergers.
My research is funded by a Discovery Grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).
Please click here for a 1-minute video summary of my research on interacting galaxies.
My collaborators and I have published an extensive series of articles on close galaxy pairs and post-merger galaxies in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, beginning with Ellison et al. (2008). As a core member of this collaboration, I have led studies on galaxy colours (Patton et al. 2011), star formation rates (Patton et al. 2013) and asymmetries (Patton et al. 2016). We have also used idealized merger simulations (e.g. Patton et al. 2013, Moreno et al. 2015, Moreno et al. 2021) to better understand the trends we have seen in observations. More recently, we have extended this line of research to cosmological simulations (especially IllustrisTNG), enabling a more direct comparison between observations and simulations of galaxy pairs (Patton et al. 2020) and post-mergers (Hani et al. 2020). Please see my List of Publications for more information about my research.
IllustrisTNG Galaxy Pairs (Patton et al. 2020)