Zachary Cordero

Zachary Cordero joined the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics as an assistant professor in July 2020, to pursue research on additive manufacturing of architectured materials for extreme environments, such as those encountered in thermal protection and propulsion systems. He was formerly an assistant professor of Materials Science and NanoEngineering at Rice University where he lead the Additive Lab. He received his B.Sc. in physics and Ph.D. in materials science and engineering from MIT. He then spent one year as a postdoctoral fellow at the Manufacturing Demonstration Facility of Oak Ridge National Laboratory. There, he developed improved process monitoring, quality control, and microstructure design tools for power-bed, metal additive manufacturing technologies. His notable accomplishments as a principal investigator include: developing a hybrid additive manufacturing technique termed PrintCasting for creating architectured composites with precisely controlled thermal and mechanical properties; elucidating the micro-scale deformation mechanisms that control ultrasonic welding and ultrasonic additive manufacturing; and demonstrating a directional solidification technique for growing oligocrystals with tailored 3D grain boundary networks. At MIT, he is using these techniques to tackle key challenges limiting the performance of next-generation aircraft and spacecraft. Professor Cordero’s work has been recognized by several awards including Air Force Young Investigator.

Yufeng (Kevin) Chen joined the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science as an assistant professor in January 2020. He received his Ph.D. in engineering science from Harvard University and his B.S. in applied physics from Cornell. He did postdoctoral research at Harvard University, leading to the development of small robots that are highly agile, multifunctional, and robust. His work has appeared in top journals including Science Robotics, Nature, and Nature Communications, among others. He has been a Forbes 30 Under 30 fellow. He investigates millimeter-scaled biomechanics, distilling the underlying physical principles, and then applies these findings to enable novel functions in microrobots. He is also interested in developing novel soft actuators to enable agile and robust locomotion in microrobots.

Vivishek Sudhir joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering as an assistant professor in July 2020. He received his Ph.D. in Physics from the École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne in 2016. As a postdoctoral associate, he led a team of graduate students that first demonstrated quantum-enhanced force measurement using quantum correlations generated in a room-temperature interferometer. He was the first to achieve the measurement of the position of a macroscopic object with the minimum noise allowed by the principles of quantum mechanics. His current interests, pursued in the LIGO Laboratory at MIT, are to scale-up quantum metrology techniques to gram-scale oscillators, quantum technologies based on mechanically-compliant interferometers, and to develop mechanical systems that allow for probes of basic physics of motion. Vivishek’s work has been recognized by a Best Poster Award at the International Conference on Laser Spectroscopy (2015), an EPFL Best Thesis Prize (Photonics, 2017), and a Swiss National Science Foundation Fellowship (2018).

Mengjia Yan joined the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science as an assistant professor in November 2019. She received a Pd.D. and an M.S. in computer science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a BS in computer science from Zhejiang University in China. Her research interests are in computer architecture, focusing on hardware support for security. Among other honors, she was a selected participant for Rising Stars in EECS at MIT and for Rising Stars in Computer Architecture at the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2018. At UIUC, she was a Mavis Future Faculty Fellow, a distinction awarded to students planning careers as engineering professors, and she received the W.J. Poppelbaum Memorial Award for architecture design creativity. She also served as a research intern for the NVIDIA Architecture Research Group.

Kate E. Galloway joined the Department of Chemical Engineering as an assistant professor in 2019. She received her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from UC Berkeley in 2005, and received her M.S. in Chemical Engineering in 2007, and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering with a Minor in Biology in 2012, each from the California Institute of Technology. She won the NIH Ruth Kirchstein Postdoctoral Research Fellowship and completed her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Southern California with Justin Ichida from 2013. Her research interests include Synthetic Biology, Molecular Systems Biology, Stem Cells, Cellular Reprogramming, 3D Genome Organization & Structure, Single-cell Analytics, Genetic Control Systems, Oncogenesis & Metastasis and Epigenetics. As a chemical engineer specializing in molecular systems biology, her ultimate goal is to leverage synthetic biology principles to transform how we understand cellular transitions and engineer cellular therapies. Her work is focused on designing and constructing integrated synthetic circuits to probe and actuate changes in DNA topology that drive changes in cell fate.

Josephine Carstensen joined the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering as an assistant professor in September 2019. She earned a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, where she worked on topology optimization for improved manufacturability and cellular material design. Carstensen’s research focuses on the new opportunities arising as digitalization of design and manufacturing is transforming the way we create the built environment. Her group develops and evaluates new design methods and tools that use structural mechanics and mathematical optimization to advance the design of structures on length scales ranging from material architectures, over component to large scale structural design. She is a dedicated mentor and teacher, and is actively involved in the Structural Engineering and Design MEng program.

Jonathan Ragan-Kelley joined the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science as an assistant professor in January 2020. He received a Ph.D. and an S.M. in electrical engineering and computer science from MIT, and a B.S. in computer science from Stanford University. His research focuses on computer graphics, compilers, domain-specific languages, and high-performance systems. Among other honors, he has received research highlights in the Communications of the Association for Computing Machinery (CACM) journal, an Intel Foundation Pd.D. Fellowship, an NVIDIA Graduate Fellowship, an NSF Fellowship, and MIT’s William A. Martin Award for Best Master’s Thesis in Computer Science. He is a former assistant professor at the University of California at Berkeley and has taught at Stanford and MIT. He was a postdoc at Stanford, and has been a researcher, intern, or consultant for Google, Adobe, and Intel, among others.

Henry Corrigan-Gibbs joined the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science as an assistant professor in July 2020. He received a Pd.D. and an M.S. in computer science from Stanford University and a BS in computer science from Yale University. His research interests are in computer security, cryptography, systems, and privacy. He has received the Eurocrypt Best Young Researcher Paper Award, the Caspar Bowden Award for Outstanding Research in Privacy-Enhancing Technologies, an IEEE Security and Privacy Distinguished Paper Award, a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship, and an NSF Fellowship. He was also a postdoc at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland. Previously he was an intern at Microsoft Research and the New York Times Interactive News Group, and he has also worked on computer-science projects in Ghana, Nepal, and Uganda.   

Faez Ahmed joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering as an assistant professor in July 2020. He received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park in 2019. His interests are in studying principled methods for representation, learning, and optimization of discrete problems occurring in design. Faez works at the intersection of Machine Learning, Engineering Design, and Human-Computer Interaction to enable globally distributed teams of designers to participate in the design process. Prior to his Ph.D., he worked as a Reliability Engineer for Rio Tinto in Western Australia. He was a Future Faculty Fellow at the University of Maryland and recipient of the Kulkarni Fellowship. He is also the lead organizer of ACM New York and has ongoing collaborations with other non-profits to educate the local community about computing and data science. He is a former Postdoctoral Fellow at the IDEAL Lab at Northwestern University.

Connor Coley joined the Department of Chemical Engineering as an assistant professor in August 2020. He received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology in 2014, his M.S. in Chemical Engineering Practice, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2016, and his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2019, where he was co-advised by Klavs Jensen and William Green. His research is in the area of machine learning and artificial intelligence for molecular and process discovery. He received the distinctions of being selected as a 2018 DARPA Riser and as one of the ACS C&EN’s Talented 12. His work centers around systematizing and accelerating small molecule discovery through new approaches to statistical inference that combine chemical data with domain expertise. The Coley lab focuses on addressing the fundamental challenges that have relegated autonomous discovery to proof-of-concept studies. He is applying AI-driven experimental platforms to the rational design and optimization of novel molecular agents, e.g., as protein binders, chemical sensors, antibiotics, and organocatalysts, in close partnership with researchers in chemical biology and synthetic chemistry.



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