BiographyDr. Fischer’s research centers on understanding the processes that are involved in the morphology transformation that occurs when massive, gas-rich, disk galaxies collide and merge to form gas-poor elliptical galaxies. How does the system rid itself of its interstellar medium, thereby shutting off the processes of star-formation for lack of fuel? What role does accretion onto the central black hole play in this transformation, particularly during the stage when disruption of the stable disks have led to gaseous infall into the nuclear regions of the system, thereby obscuring the central activity? This research currently primarily utilizes data obtained with the Herschel Space Observatory, a European Space Agency mission with important contributions from NASA, that was operational from between 2009 and 2013, when it expended the cryogens needed to keep it operational. As the Herschel Optical System Scientist and as a member of the Herschel Science Team, Dr. Fischer worked to ensure that the mission was a success. She also utilizes data obtained with the Atacama Large Millimeter Array in Chile to observe very distant mergers of galaxies whose far-infrared spectra are redshifted into the submillimeter spectral range.