Sthabile Kolwa

Executive Committee Member

Sthabile Kolwa is a South-African and Zambian Astronomer and Lecturer at the University of Johannesburg. They have expertise in observational astronomy with a special focus on high redshift galaxy evolution, the structure and origin of the circumgalactic medium in galaxies, the characterisation of bias in radio continuum surveys and radio source classification. After completing their BSc at the University of Cape Town and MSc at the University of the Western Cape, Sthabile begun their PhD journey through the International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) of Munich under the guidance of senior scientists at the European Southern Observatory (ESO). Here, they worked on investigating the kinematics and gas content of the extended haloes of distant radio galaxies using data from the Very Large telescope spectrograph MUSE (Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer) and ALMA (Atacama Large Millimetre Array). They earned the title of Dr. rer. Nat. (Doctor of the Natural sciences) in 2019 and, shortly after, awarded a SARAO postdoctoral fellowship in 2020 where they began studying the spectral properties of radio sources detected in MeerKAT and uGMRT (upgraded Giant Metrewave Telescope) surveys. They continue this work as well as studies of high-z galaxy haloes alongside collaborators in Europe, the USA, and South Africa. Sthabile is passionate about using Astronomy as a tool for development in South Africa and the greater continent. As a result, they participate in community development projects such as Astro Molo Mhlaba and Future Leaders in Astronomy and have begun sharpening their sci-comm skills by self-publishing popular science articles online.