People

Principal Investigator

Hussein Aluie, PhD

Associate Professor & Staff Scientist

Department of Mechanical Engineering & Laboratory for Laser Energetics

Link to CV

Hopeman 406

husseinrochester.edu

office: (585) 276-7170

fax: (585) 275-4072

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Hussein is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering in the Hajim School of Engineering at the University of Rochester (UofR) and Staff Scientist at the DOE Laboratory for Laser Energetics. He is currently serving as chair-elect of the Group on the Physics of Climate (GPC) within the American Physical Society (APS). Prior to UofR, he was at Los Alamos National Laboratory as a Center for Nonlinear Studies postdoc. He earned his PhD from the Johns Hopkins University under the mentorship of Gregory Eyink, Charles Meneveau, Shiyi Chen, and Ethan Vishniac. He was awarded the DOE Early CAREER Award in 2019 and selected in 2022 as one of two Young Observers by USNCTAM, which represents the mechanics community on behalf of the US National Academies. His Complex Flow group is diverse both in the composition of its members and in its research, which has appeared in cross-disciplinary journals, including Nature, Science Advances, Physical Review Letters, as well as in disciplinary journals spanning fluid mechanics, oceanography, plasma physics, applied mathematics, and astrophysics. Hussein enjoys outdoor sports, live music, and swing dancing.

Visiting Scholars

Michele Buzzicotti, PhD

Visiting Scholar

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to CV

Hopeman 410

mbuzzicome.rochester.edu

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Michele is a visiting scholar in MechE at UofR during 2020, working on turbulence and machine learning. He obtained his PhD in theoretical physics in 2017 at the University of Rome Tor Vergata, where he has an appointment as a Researcher. His main research activity is in the study of turbulent flows using numerical simulations. Working from both Eulerian and Lagrangian points of view, he is interested in the development of non-linear, out of equilibrium models, such as Large-Eddy-Simulation closures for the small-scale dynamics of high Reynolds or magnetohydrodynamic flows. He is responsible for the development of High-Performance Computing (HPC) codes for state-of-the-art Direct Numerical Simulation (DNS), which are typically run on supercomputers and scale up to tens of thousands of processing cores. He is also involved in the application and development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools to fluid flow problems such as: deep learning for the data analysis of turbulent flows and reinforcement learning/policy gradient methods for the development of smart vehicles which are able to solve optimal navigation tasks in complex environments.

Research Scientists

Fernando Garcia Rubio, PhD

Assistant Scientist

Laboratory for Laser Energetics

Link to CV

250 E River Rd

fgarlle.rochester.edu

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Fernando García Rubio earned his Ph. D. from the Polytechnic University of Madrid (UPM), School of Aerospace Engineering, Spain under the supervision of Professor Francisco Javier Sanz Recio. He then joined the University of Rochester as Postdoctoral Research Associate from 2018 until 2021, when he was promoted to Assistant Scientist at the LLE. During his tenure at UofR, Fernando developed a theory for hydrodynamic instabilities that includes the physics of magnetic fields and heat transport. During his PhD, he focused on understanding of several hydrodynamic processes taking place in magnetized liner inertial fusion (MagLIF) schemes. Fernando is originally from Logroño, Spain. He received a Double Degree in Aerospace Engineering at the UPM and Supaéro-ISAE in Toulouse (France). He received his master in Applied Mathematics at Paul Sabatier University, Toulouse. His research interests lie in the broad spectrum of plasma physics, with focus on magneto-hydrodynamics processes, hydrodynamic instabilities and kinetic theory. During his free time, Fernando enjoys basketball, climbing, skiing, and playing the guitar.

Benjamin Storer, PhD

Research Associate

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to CV

Hopeman 410

benjamin.storerrochester.edu

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Benjamin Storer is a researcher associate at the University of Rochester studying multi-scale physics in oceanographic processes and the mechanisms by which energy is transferred across scales in the world's oceans. He earned a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics at the University of Waterloo, Canada, where he studied geophysical fluid dynamics under Francis Poulin, with a focus on model development and application to stratified quasi-geostrophic systems. He then joined the University of Rochester as Postdoctoral Research Associate from 2019 until 2022, when he was promoted to Research Associate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. His work is primarily in computational fluid dynamics, with a focus on geophysical and oceanographic applications. In his spare time, he likes reading, running, yoga, and is a devout Star Trek fan.

Postdocs

Pejman Sichani, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Associate

Mechanical Engineering Department

Link to CV

Hopeman 410

pejman.sichanirochester.edu

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Pejman Hadi Sichani joined the University of Rochester in July 2022 as a Postdoctoral Associate. He earned his master's and a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Vienna University of Technology, Austria, where he investigated the interaction of thermal and solutal stratification with turbulence in wall-bounded flows using Direct Numerical Simulations (DNS) under Prof. Alfredo Soldati. The main emphasis of his research during his Ph.D. was DNS of thermally-stratified wall-bounded turbulence to investigate the dynamics of internal gravity waves, energetics, and irreversible mixing in stably-stratified turbulence. In addition, he studied the problem of Double Diffusive Convection (DDC) under the effect of shear using fully resolved numerical simulations. His main research interests are computational fluid dynamics, environmental and geophysical fluid dynamics, and high-performance computing. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, swimming, and reading. Pejman's favorite scientist of all time is Carl Friedrich Gauss.

Graduate Students

Nitish Acharya

PhD Student (co-advised w/ Jessica Shang)

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to Website

Hopeman 410

nachary2ur.rochester.edu

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Nitish was born and raised in Kathmandu, Nepal. He is currently a Ph.D. Student in Mechanical University at University of Rochester. He received a B.E. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Tribhuvan University. His research interests are in the areas of experimental and computational fluid dynamics. Outside of work, Nitish enjoys playing or listening to music, soccer, and tennis.

Mehrnoush Kharghani

PhD Student

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to Website

Hopeman 410

mkharghaur.rochester.edu

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Mehrnoush began her PhD studies in Mechanical Engineering student at the University of Rochester in 2022. Prior to joining UofR, Mehrnoush completed her bachelor's and master's degrees in Iran where she conducted research in environmental boundary layer flows, culminating in two first author papers and a third paper as co-author. She is interested in understanding environmental flows using tools from CFD and turbulence. In her leisure time, Mehrnoush likes to do yoga, play tennis with friends, and watch movies.

Kelin Kurzer-Ogul

PhD Student (co-advised w/ Jessica Shang)

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to Website

Hopeman 410

kkurzerour.rochester.edu

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Kelin began studying plasma physics as a Mechanical Engineering PhD student at the University of Rochester in September 2020, following a year of study as a Master's student. He received his B.S. in astrophysics at the University of California Santa Cruz, where he conducted computational research on the gasdynamics of active galactic nuclei. Before graduate school, he worked with children at the elementary school in his home town of Kensington, California for two years. Kelin's current work is in computational HED fluid dynamics, and his research interests inculde astrophysical jets, plasma instabilities in inertial confinement fusion, and laser wakefield acceleration. Outside of academia, Kelin enjoys skiing, history, fantasy/sci-fi, and video games.

Aarne Lees

PhD Student (co-advised w/ Riccardo Betti)

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to Website

Hopeman 410

aleesur.rochester.edu

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Aarne Lees received his BS degree in Engineering Physics at the Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia. He has worked as a Mechanical Engineer in a company specialized in designing and building data centers and worked on numerical simulations of the flow of steel fibre reinforced concrete at the Institute of Cybernetics of the Tallinn University of Technology. His research interests include fluid dynamics, numerical methods and programming. During his free time he enjoys cycling, tennis, and snooker.

Shikhar Rai

PhD Student

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to Website

Hopeman 410

srai6ur.rochester.edu

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I did my undergraduate in Mechanical Engineering from Tribhuvan University, Nepal. I worked for two and a half years in Nepal and Japan with E&T Nepal in Bhaktapur, Nepal, E&T Japan in Utsunomia, Japan and Chiyoda Corporation in Yokohama, Japan as a CFD Engineer. My research interest are fluid mechanics, CFD, and numerical methods. Some of my hobbies are sketching, painting, watching movies and anime.

Afreen Syeda

PhD Student (co-advised w/ Jessica Shang)

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to Website

Hopeman 410

asyeda2ur.rochester.edu

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Afreen is a Mechanical Engineering PhD student at the University of Rochester, starting in the fall of 2019. She was born and raised in Hyderabad, India. She received her bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Engineering from JNTU Hyderabad, India and master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from IIT Kanpur, India. Her research interests are experimental Fluid mechanics. In her leisure time, she likes to read, cook and solve math riddles.

Hao Yin

PhD Student (co-advised w/ Jessica Shang)

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to Website

Hopeman 410

hyin8me.rochester.edu

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Hao is a Mechanical Engineering PhD student at the University of Rochester. He also received his BS degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Rochester. His research interests are in the areas of high energy density flows, hydrodynamic instabilities, and turbulence. He is from Shanghai, China. During his free time, he enjoys jogging, swimming, cooking and watching esports.

Undergraduate Students

Maria Plessia

Senior student

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Link to CV

Hopeman 410

mplessiau.rochester.edu

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Maria is currently an undergraduate at the University of Rochester pursuing a degree in Mechanical Engineering. She is originally from Tripoli, Greece. She has an interest in computational engineering, numerical methods, and programming. During her free time she enjoys playing the piano and cooking.

Yufei Zhao

Junior student

Computer Science

Link to CV

Hopeman 410

yzhao87u.rochester.edu

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Yufei is an undergraduate student at the University of Rochester pursuing a degree in Computer Science and Economics. She was born in China. She likes travelling, cooking, and swimming.

Alumni

Perla Aguilar, General Dynamics, Detroit, MI

Xin Bian, CFD modeling at ArteryFlow

Alexander Boyd, The MITRE Corporation

Theodore Burke, software engineer in Madison, WI

Brendan Knight, Smith & Nephew Endoscopy

Daniel Mangino, General Motors

Jordy Mendez, grad school at NYU

Jonathan McLinn, Lockheed Martin

Philemon Rono

Africa Ruiz-Mora, Northrop Grumman

Mahmoud Sadek, Cairo University

Ifigeneia Stathaki

Huasen Zhang, Institute of Applied Physics and Mathematics

Dongxiao Zhao, Shanghai Jiao Tong University

Collaborators