School of Engineering
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Assistant Professor of Geophysics and, by courtesy, of Civil and Environmental Engineering
BioBefore joining Stanford in January 2014, I held a position as Lecturer in Applied Mathematics and as a Ziff Environmental Fellow at Harvard. I hold a PhD in Geophysics from MIT and a Master in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School. Prior to joining graduate school, I worked as a scientific consultant for different international organizations aiming to reduce the impact of natural and environmental disasters in vulnerable communities.
The goal of my research is to advance our basic understanding and predictive capabilities of complex multi-phase flows that are fundamental to Earth science. I pursue this goal by developing original computational methods customized for the problem at hand. The phenomena I explore range from the microscopic to the planetary scale and space a wide variety of geophysics systems such as volcanoes, glaciers, and magma oceans.
I have taught both undergraduate and graduate courses in scientific, planetary evolution, and natural disasters. Since arriving at Stanford in January 2014, I have co-taught GES 118, Understanding Natural Hazards, Quantifying Risk, Increasing Resilience in Highly Urbanized Regions.
Ph.D. Student in Civil and Environmental Engineering, admitted Autumn 2011
BioYoichi Shiga received his bachelor's degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of California, San Diego and master's in Environmental Engineering from the University of Michigan. He is currently a PhD candidate in Environmental Engineering at Stanford University where his research explores complex environmental systems through the use and development of data driven statistical methods.
His research focuses on improving the current understanding of both the natural and anthropogenic components of the carbon cycle using inverse modeling approaches to provide an atmospheric data constraint on CO2 fluxes.
Yoichi is also an active member in the Stanford student chapter of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE).
Nicholas T. Ouellette
Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe Environmental Complexity Lab studies self-organization in a variety of complex systems, ranging from turbulent fluid flows to granular materials to collective motion in animal groups. In all cases, we aim to characterize the macroscopic behavior, understand its origin in the microscopic dynamics, and ultimately harness it for engineering applications. Most of our projects are experimental, though we also use numerical simulation and mathematical modeling when appropriate. We specialize in high-speed, detailed imaging and statistical analysis.
Our current research includes studies of turbulence in two and three dimensions, with a focus on coherent structures and the geometry of turbulence; the transport of inertial, anisotropic, and active particles in turbulence; the erosion of granular beds by fluid flows and subsequent sediment transport; quantitative measurements of collective behavior in insect swarms and bird flocks; the stability of ocean ecosystems; neural signal processing; and uncovering the natural, self-organized spatiotemporal scales in urban systems.
Masters Student in Civil and Environmental Engineering, admitted Autumn 2016
BioI am master's student in Civil and Environmental Engineering with focus on Environmental Fluid Mechanics and Hydrology. After graduating with a bachelors in civil engineering, I worked for a little less than two years in the oil and gas industry before commencing my graduate studies.
Kasper van der Vaart
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Civil and Environmental Engineering
BioKasper van der Vaart studied physics and astronomy at the University of Amsterdam, where his bachelor thesis, supervised by Tom Gregorkiewicz and Wieteke de Boer, was on the topic of photoluminescence of silicon nano-crystals. Afterwards he went to the University of Utrecht to obtain a M.Sc. in Nano-materials, focussing mostly on nanophotonics and soft matter. Following a project back in Amsterdam on the rheology of colloidal glasses (supervised by Peter Schall) he sought to apply his new found knowledge on rheology to a more everyday material. Thus he ventured in to the field of food technology and performed his master project on chocolate flow behaviour at the laboratory of Food Technology and Engineering at Ghent University, under supervision of Koen Dewettinck. Wanting to visualize the actual particle motion in a soft material, Kasper went to the EPFL in Switzerland. There he investigated particle-size segregation in granular avalanches through both experiments and simulations, in the lab of Christophe Ancey. During this work Kasper collaborated closely with Nico Gray and Anthony Thornton. His current work at Stanford focusses on the collective behavior and emergent properties of midge swarms, in order to determine what constitutes collective behavior, how it can be quantified and how we can compare different collectively behaving organisms.