School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences


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  • Lauren Abrahams

    Lauren Abrahams

    Ph.D. Student in Geophysics
    DEI student coordinator, School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe most destructive tsunamis are generated by earthquakes, posing hazard to coastlines around the world. Open questions about these events are, how are they generated, what parameters will cause the most destructive waves, and how do we interpret existing seafloor data to create tsunami and earthquake early warning? To answer these questions, computer simulations (modeling) have been an effective method to study past events and assess a region's potential hazard. Many modelers use an approximate approach for modeling how earthquakes generate tsunamis, but recent events have shown assumptions in these approaches do not hold in all cases. Since these models do not fully describe the physics, they are less effective in predicting future hazards.

    A more rigorous full-physics method has been developed by a previous group member that does not approximate tsunami generation, creating a more realistic model of earth/ocean interactions. This full-physics method has only been developed in 2D; however, a 3D model is needed to allow for comparison to real-world data. In collaboration with the University of Munich, I am currently incorporating the full-physics method into the open-source 3D earthquake software. This software will be the first 3D full-physics model for earthquake tsunamigenesis, providing greater insight into tsunami physics and valuable information for tsunami early warning.

    In addition to my thesis work, I have focused on two other projects to study hazards. I have completed my starter project studying frictional effects on earthquake behavior and completed my second project working with the US Geological Survey on improving ground motion prediction equations used in the earthquake early warning systems.

  • Aakash Ahamed

    Aakash Ahamed

    Ph.D. Student in Geophysics

    BioAakash Ahamed (BS, with honors, Franklin and Marshall College; MSc, Boston College; PhD Candidate, Stanford University) is a hydrologist developing scientific methods for satellite and airborne remote sensing measurements with applications to water resources, natural hazards, and agricultural systems. As a PhD Candidate in the Department of Geophysics, his current doctoral project focuses on modeling, monitoring, and forecasting key hydrologic components of the Central Valley Aquifer System in California using techniques in data assimilation and machine learning. Aakash previously worked as a support scientist in the Hydrological Sciences Lab at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, where he constructed satellite-based models of flood and landslide hazards. He has also developed remote sensing analyses and software at Ceres Imaging, a successful precision agriculture start up based in Silicon Valley, and interned as a GIS analyst at the World Wildlife Fund for Nature in Washington, DC.

  • Jood Al Aswad

    Jood Al Aswad

    Ph.D. Student in Geological Sciences

    BioI am interested in the coevolution of marine invertebrates and their environment, especially in relation to mass extinctions.

    My research background is broadly in the geosciences: I have conducted research in geophysics (geodesy) during my undergraduate career at George Mason University, where I empirically measured the frequencies of diurnal and semi-diurnal Earth tides. During my Master's at Cornell University, I shifted over to stratigraphy and petrophysics by repurposing tools and data commonly used in the oil industry to find permeable sections of rock beneath Cornell for geothermal heat production. It was when I was conducting my research at Cornell that I discovered the fascinating field of 'the coevolution of life and Earth', which includes my favorite topic to research: paleobiology. Currently, my research explores the recovery of organisms after mass extinctions, and attempts to detangle the factors involved in their recovery.

    In my free time, I like to write creatively (particularly fictional fantasy novels), and draw digitally.

  • Sarfaraz Alam

    Sarfaraz Alam

    Postdoctoral Scholar, Geophysics

    BioSarfaraz Alam is a Postdoctoral Scholar at Stanford University, where he is modeling nitrate transport in groundwater and surface water to improve approaches to enforcement. His research integrates hydrologic modeling, contaminant transport, remote sensing, and data science to understand how climate and human-induced changes affect water resources and the environment. Sarfaraz earned his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from UCLA in 2021.

    Sarfaraz received an Outstanding Ph.D. student award, Dissertation Year Fellowship, and Graduate Division Fellowship at UCLA. He authored nine peer-reviewed journal articles and presented his research in over ten international conferences.