Ten New Faculty Members Join Jacobs School

San Diego, CA, June 14, 2007 -- The Jacobs School of Engineering is adding 10 faculty members who will enhance the school’s strengths in bioengineering, biomaterials, bio-fluid mechanics, security and networks, and systems and controls. The new faculty also will contribute to the new NanoEngineering Department. Nine of the new professors have already started at UCSD and one will begin his appointment in 2008.

Eric Lauga
Five of the new hires are joining the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) Department including Assistant Professor Eric Lauga who most recently served as an Assistant Professor of Applied Mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology after receiving his Ph.D. from Harvard University. Lauga’s research interests include continuum mechanics applied to biological problems: swimming mechanics; fluid mechanics of animal locomotion, biophysical fluid dynamics and control of fluid flows. His work fits well with the department’s thrust to apply engineering to medicine and the life sciences.

 Jorge Cortes
Jorge Cortes
Joining the MAE Department from UC Santa Cruz, Assistant Professor Jorge Cortes brings an extensive research background in systems and control, sensor networks, engineering mathematics, and geometric mechanics. Specifically, he is interested in designing and analyzing motion planning strategies and distributed coordination algorithms for autonomous mobile networks performing spatially-distributed sensing tasks. Application areas include mobile robotics, environmental adaptive sampling, and autonomous deployment of unmanned multi-vehicle networks. His 2002 book, Geometric, control and numerical aspects of nonholonomic systems, has become a standard reference on the geometric theory of nonholonomic mechanical systems.

 Gaurav Arya
Gaurav Arya
Gaurav Arya brings an expertise in molecular simulations, thermodynamics, and statistical mechanics applied to nanoscale transport phenomena, polymer self-assembly, biophysics, and biomolecular design to the MAE Department that will ultimately contribute to the core of the newly approved NanoEngineering Department. His most recent work as a research scientist at New York University and the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences concerns the packing of DNA inside cells to provide new insights into gene regulation at the nanoscale.

 Juan cARLOS
Juan Carlos del Alamo
After completing a Fulbright Postdoctoral Fellowship here at UCSD, Juan Carlos del Alamo will join the MAE Department as an Assistant Professor in 2008. With an M.S. in Aerospace Engineering and Ph.D. in Computational Fluid Dynamics from Polytechnic University of Madrid as well post-doctoral research in Biophysics / Muscle Contraction at Harvard University, del Alamo’s areas of interest include bioengineering, fluid dynamics, cell motility, flow turbulence, numerical methods for physics simulations and massively-parallel computer simulations.

 Karen Christman
 Karen Christman
Karen Christman joins the department with expertise on the regeneration of injured and diseased cardiovascular tissue using polymer chemistry and nanotechnology to develop new biomaterials for tissue implantation and cell delivery. She received her Ph.D. in Bioengineering from UC San Francisco and UC Berkeley.

Shyni Varghese
Shyni Varghese comes to the department following a post-doc at Johns Hopkins University where her work with stem cell differentiation and hydrogel-based biomaterials established a broad foundation for solving practical problems and addressing scientific questions relating to tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. She received her Ph.D. in Polymer Engineering from India’s National Chemical Laboratory.

Kun Zhang
Kun Zhang hang has researched human genetics, synthetic biology, neuroscience, polymerase cloning (ploning), genomics with an emphasis on genomic analysis technologies and applied issues in microbial and stem cell biology. Zhang received his Ph.D. in Human Molecular Genetics from the University of Texas working at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and participated in interdisciplinary collaborations during a post-doc at Harvard Medical School in the lab of Genetics Professor George Church, a co-founder of the Human Genome Project.

Ryan Kastner
In addition, two new faculty members join the Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) Department this fall. Associate Professor Ryan Kastner brings research interests in VLSI computer-aided design, sensor networks, radiolocation, computer architecture, security, and embedded system design, especially as it relates to the use of reconfigurable computing devices for digital signal processing. He has co-authored two books on system optimization techniques. With a Ph.D. in Computer Science from UCLA, Kastner comes to the Jacobs School after five years in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UC Santa Barbara where he was the Director of the Extensible, Programmable, Reconfigurable Embedded Systems (ExPRESS) group.

Hovav Shacham
Hovav Shacham
Hovav Shacham joins the CSE department after a postdoc at the Weizmann Institute of Science, where he was awarded a Koshland Scholars Program fellowship. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University and has research interests in applied cryptography, systems security, and tech policy. Shacham was recently a member of the California Secretary of State's "Top-to-Bottom" voting system review and is one of the pioneers in using pairings – computable bilinear maps – to construct cryptographic systems and other security systems.




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Rex Graham
Jacobs School of Engineering

Daniel Kane
Jacobs School of Engineering

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