New Faculty Lecture Series
Maiken H. Mikkelsen, PhD Assistant Professor, Departments of Electrical & Computer Engineering and Physics
Michael Zavlanos, Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science
Guglielmo Scovazzi Associate Professor, Departments of Civil & Environmental Engineering and Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science
Dr. Scovazzi’s research interests include finite element and advanced numerical methods for computational fluid and solid mechanics. His research emphasizes accurate computational methods aimed at reducing the overall design/analysis costs in multiphase porous media flows, highly transient compressible and incompressible flows, turbulent flows, and complex geometry systems in solid mechanics.
His current and recent research work was funded by DOE Office of Science, DOE Advanced Scientific Computing Research, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company (Houston, TX).
He is a member of the Editorial Board of the International Journal on Numerical Methods in Fluids, and a Member of SIAM and the US Association of Computational Mechanics (USACM).
Guillermo Sapiro, Professor, Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Sapiro was awarded the Gutwirth Scholarship for Special Excellence in Graduate Studies in 1991, the Ollendorff Fellowship for Excellence in Vision and Image Understanding Work in 1992, the Rothschild Fellowship for Post-Doctoral Studies in 1993, the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award in 1998, the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientist and Engineers (PECASE) in 1998, the National Science Foundation Career Award in 1999, and the National Security Science and Engineering Faculty Fellowship in 2010.
Sapiro is a member of IEEE and SIAM, and is the founding Editor-in-Chief of the SIAM Journal on Imaging Sciences, currently ranked second in impact factor in all applied math.
Jennifer L. West, Fitzpatrick Family University Professor of Engineering
Jennifer West recently joined the faculty at Duke, after having been the department chair and Cameron Professor of Bioengineering Rice University. Professor West was one of the founding members of Rice’s Department of Bioengineering, building it to a top ten program over the past sixteen years.
Professor West’s research focuses on the development of novel biofunctional materials. Part of her program has developed nanoparticle-based approaches to biophotonics therapeutics and diagnostics. An example of this work is the application of near-infrared absorbing nanoparticles for photothermal tumor ablation. In animal studies, this therapeutic strategy has demonstrated very high efficacy with minimal side effects or damage to surrounding normal tissues. In 2000, Professor West founded Nanospectra Biosciences, Inc. to commercialize the nanoparticle-assisted photothermal ablation technology, now called AuroLase. Nanospectra Biosciences, Inc., located in Houston, TX, is the recipient of a NIST ATP Award and a grant from the Texas Emerging Technology Fund. Professor West is a director of the company. The company has built GMP manufacturing facilities, and AuroLase cancer therapy is now in three FDA-approved human clinical trials.
Professor West has received numerous accolades for her work. In 2010 she was named Texas Inventor of the Year and also Admiral of the Texas Navy (highest honor the governor of Texas can bestow on a civilian). In 2008, The Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas honored her with the O’Donnell Prize in Engineering as the top engineer in the state. In 2006, she was named one of 20 Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professors, recognizing integration of world class research and teaching. She has been listed by MIT Technology Review as one of the 100 most innovative young scientists and engineers worldwide. Other recognitions include the Christopher Columbus Foundation Frank Annunzio Award for scientific innovation, Nanotechnology Now’s Best Discovery of 2003, Small Times Magazine’s Researchers of the Year in 2004, and the Society for Biomaterials Outstanding Young Investigator Award.
Professor West has authored more than 140 research articles. She also holds 14 patents that have been licensed to eight different companies. She has lectured at numerous institutions, including Harvard, Harvard Medical School, MIT, FDA, and NCI. She was an invited speaker at the 2006 Nobel Symposium.
Professor West has served as a member of the Bioengineering, Technology, and Surgical Sciences study section at NIH, and has served on numerous other review boards for NIH and NSF. She has also been a member of the Defense Sciences Study Group, a member of the NRC panel on management of university intellectual property, and a member of the AAMC panel on research. Her laboratory receives funding from NIH, NSF, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and DOD.
Wilkins Aquino, Associate Professor, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Wilkins Aquino holds a BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Purdue University and, MS and PhD also in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He worked as a consulting engineer in the Engineering Mechanics and Infrastructure Division of SGH, Inc. in Waltham, MA for one year before joining the faculty at Cornell University in 2003. He spent eight years at Cornell University as an assistant and associate professor, before joining Duke in January 2012. He was member of the fields of Applied Mathematics, Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, and Computational Science and Engineering at Cornell University. His research interests encompass computational mechanics (in general), inverse problems and their applications in engineering and biomedicine, coupled chemomechanical problems, and scientific computing, among others. To learn more about Wilkins, please visit his faculty webpage.
Brenton Hoffman, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Biomedical Engineering
Desiree Plata, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Omar Knio, Professor, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science
Omar Knio received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering in 1990 from MIT. He held a postdoctoral associate position at MIT, before joining the Mechanical Engineering Faculty at Johns Hopkins University in 1991. In 2011, he joined the MEMS Department at Duke, where he also serves as Director of the Pratt School of Engineering Decisions Under Uncertainty Thrust. Knio held a visiting professor position at the Ecole Centrale de Lyon in 1993, 1994, 1995, and 2001, and at the Université du Havre in 1997. He was visiting lecturer at the Institut für Technische Mechanik in Aachen, Germany, in 1994, and also held visiting scientist positions at Sandia National Laboratories from 1996-2001, and at the Free University in Berlin in 1999 and 2000. Knio co-founded Reactive NanoTechnologies Inc., in 2001, and has served as its Senior Vice President from 2001-2008. He is the recipient of an Associated Western Universities Faculty Fellowship Award in 1996, a Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Award in 2003, and an R&D100 Award in 2005. He currently serves on the Editorial Board of Theoretical and Computational Fluid Dynamics and of ISRN Applied Mathematics. He has co-authored over 80 archival journal papers, two books, and is an inventor on 11 patents. Knio's research interests include uncertainty quantification, computational fluid mechanics, energetic materials, oceanic and atmospheric flows, physical acoustics, chemically-reacting flow, and asymptotic and stochastic techniques. To learn more about Omar, visit his faculty webpage.
Benjamin Lee, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Benjamin Lee’s research focuses on scalable technologies, power-efficient architectures, and high-performance applications. He is also interested in the economics and public policy of computation. He has held visiting research positions at Microsoft Research, Intel Labs, and Lawrence Livermore National Lab. Lee received his B.S. at the University of California at Berkeley, S.M./Ph.D. at Harvard University, and post-doctorate at Stanford University. His research has been honored as a Top Pick by IEEE Micro Magazine (2010), twice as a Research Highlight by Communications of the ACM (2010, 2011), and by an NSF Computing Innovation Fellowship (2009-10). To learn more about Ben, visit his webpage.