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From Mechanical Engineering (Physics Minor) to Astronomy

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:06 am
by ganeshg135
I am a senior undergraduate in India (from IIT) doing major in Mechanical Engineering and minor in Physics.
GRE general: Q : 167 W: 4.0 V:152
PGRE: 940
GPA: 8.77/10
I want to get into top Astronomy schools, mainly in the area of Astronomical Instrumentation.
I have also done a course on astrophysics in addition to minor. I have done several courses in Electrical Engg relevant to Radio Astronomy like Antenna Theory, Radar, Digital Signal Processing, Wavelets, Digital electronics (with good grades~8.5/10).
My undergrad thesis is about balloon based instrumentation for Cosmic Ray Flux measurement.
I have done projects like support structure design for Radio Telescope, some astrophysical MHD simulations, Dark energy parameter constraining through Supernova data, etc at leading institutes in India.
1 conference paper and 1 conference poster relating to Radio Astronomy. 2 conference papers relating to (non-astronomical) instrumentation and 1 Journal paper relating to optical telescope testing. (all 1st authored).

Strong recos.
Also got institute's awards for outstanding technical activities, etc.
I want to know my prospects of getting into top astronomy schools like Caltech, MIT, UCB, Cornell.