Dr. Matthew Turk received his undergraduate degree at Northwestern University in 2003 and his PhD in Physics from Stanford in 2009. His research in astrophysics was primarily focused on the way that the first stars and galaxies formed in the Universe, which has led him to develop and implement algorithms for data analysis and visualization. He is interested in understanding how scientists process data, developing methods both descriptive and prescriptive around analysis, visualization, and the propagation of information between data and individuals.
Chris Havlin earned his undergraduate degree in Geophysics and Planetary Sciences from Boston University in 2009, followed by a MSc (2011) and PhD (2015) in Geological Sciences from Brown University. His research in computational geodynamics focused on two-phase flow in the upper mantle to better understand how magma migration influences plate tectonics and how partial melt distributions influence seismic observation. From 2015-2020, Chris continued research in geodynamics and geophysics at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, while also providing freelance data science consulting services. Chris joined the Data Exploration Lab in June, 2020, where he works on developing and leveraging open source computational tools for data visualization and analysis in the geosciences.
Dr Kacper Kowalik received his undergraduate degree at Nicolaus Copernicus University (Torun, Poland) in 2008 and his PhD in Astronomy also from Nicolaus Copernicus University in 2014. His research in astrophysics was primarily focused on early stages of protoplanetary formation and circumstellar disks’ instabilities. He is interested in high performance computations – especially in the domain sciences where they haven’t been widely adopted, developing new ways of sharing and interacting with large computational datasets, applying industrial IT solutions to scientific software.
Dr. Meagan Lang recieved her undergraduate degree at Pennsylvania State University in 2010 and her PhD in Physics from Vanderbilt University in 2015. Her research in astr ophysics has included galaxy evolution, galactic dynamics, large scale structure, and gravitational waves. Through this work, Meagan has developed new tools and techniques for analyzing numerical simulations, modeling noise in gravitational wave detectors, and efficient data access. Meagan is interested in making connections between astronomy and other field s through interdisciplinary research. She is also interested in physics/astronomy education and public outreach in the local Champaign-Urbana community.
Madicken Munk obtained her undergraduate degree from Oregon State University in 2011 and her PhD in Nuclear Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley in 2017. Her dissertation work–completed in residence at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Berkeley Institute for Data Science–focused on hybrid methods for neutron transport. In the nuclear engineering domain she is interested in computational methods for radiation transport, nuclear reactor physics, and reactor multiphysics simulations. Beyond that, she is interested in developing domain-agnostic open-source tools for data analysis and visualization.
Jared Coughlin earned his undergraduate degree in Astrophysics from Villanova University in 2011 and his PhD in Physics from the University of Notre Dame in 2018. His dissertation work – Time-Dependent Dark Energy and the Flux Power Spectrum of the Lymna \alpha Forest – focused on using large-scale cosmological simulations in order to study the effects of time-dependent dark energy on an observable known as the Lyman \alpha forest. The goal of the project was to determine whether or not the Lyman \alpha forest can be used as a viable probe of dark energy. In astrophysics, he is intereseted in dark energy, cosmology, and the formation and evolution of galaxies. Other interests include developing and promoting open-source software for scientific use, data analysis, and data visualization.
Hsi-Yu (Justin) is a postdoc at NCSA. My work focuses on GAMER, a GPU- accelerated adaptive mesh refinement code, and it’s astrophysical applications such as black hole accretion, active galactic nuclei jets, and the wave dark matter model.
Cassidy is a graduate student in the Astronomy Department. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Astrophysics from the University of Oklahoma in 2018 where she used machine learning techniques to analyze spectral and photometric data from active galactic nuclei. Her current research interests include the formation of Population III stars and the role magnetized turbulence plays in these processes, development of the AMR code GAMER, and open source software and reproducibility. She is also interested in astronomy outreach and is the president of The Hacker Within.
Het is a graduate student in the Informatics department. He graduated in Spring 2020 from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a degree in Computer Engineering plus a minor in Informatics and then immediately began Graduate School in Fall 2020 amidst a global pandemic. His research is planned to focus on Augmented/Virtual Reality Data Visualizations and big data analytics on a multitude of topics.
Sunny is currently a graduate student in the Astronomy Department. He is interested in the role of magnetic fields and turbulence in the process of star formation. His current research is currently focused on the development of Dengo, a meta-solver for non-equilibrium chemical network with cooling processes. This is essential to the study of wide range of astrophysical processes. In partiular, I and Matt are interested in the physics that leads to the formation of first stars. With Dengo, we will hopefully push current first stars simulations to unprecedented boundaries and see the first lights of these objects.
Sam Walkow is a PhD student studying data visualization and research software. She received her bachelors in Psychology and Sociology from Purdue University in 2014. Her areas of interest include how software is used across science domains, how different domains approach data analysis and visualization, and what motivates users to re-use and re-purpose software tools. She also has experience in data management and research software in a healthcare setting, and hopes to expand her knowledge across science domains to build and maintain effective software tools.
Yilin Xia is a PhD student in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His research interest is in Human-Centered Data Science, focusing on the application of techniques from Visualization, Data Management, and Human-Computer Interaction to help people better understand and utilize data while ensuring transparency and reproducibility of their work
Wei-Ting is interested in the evolution of the first proto-stellar systems and the dynamo process in the early Universe. She is also a code developer of GAMER.
Colleen Heinemann is a PhD student studying the areas of scientific visualization and high performance computing. She received her bachelors in Computer Science and Animation from Bradley University in 2015 and her Masters in Computer Science from Bradley in 2017. Her areas of interest have always been in the representation of data through scientific visualization and interacting with that data through both virtual and augmented reality. She is currently working on the visualization side of the Crops in Silico project and is involved around campus as an instructor for the Girls Who Code club and as the graduate representative on the CS Outreach Committee.
Nathan’s research focuses on the dynamics of the interstellar medium, and has worked on simulations of the ISM in a Milky-Way like galaxy as well as semianlytic models for the evolution of giant molecular clouds. He is also a member of the yt project, contributes to the Enzo hydrodynamics code, and has contributed to many other open scientific software packages, and is an advocate for open, reproducible research.
Nathanael Claussen is pursuing a bachelor’s degree degree in Statistics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has worked as an intern for The Data Exploration Lab at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications in Urbana, Illinois. His research interests are in data processing, analysis, and visualization in addition to lowering the barrier of entry to these fields of exploration.
Brooke Polak is an undergraduate studying Engineering Physics at UIUC, specializing in compuational physics, and graduating in December 2018. Her work at the Data Exploration Lab involves building widgets and interfaces for visualizing data from cosmological simulations. She is interested in all research involving astrophysical simulation and analysis.
Ting-Wai To is an undergraduate student at UIUC studying mechanical engineering. His hobbies include photography, traveling, and big data. In his free time you can find him 3D printing his favorite video game characters.
Noah is an undergraduate in ECE, working on virtual reality and scientific data.
David Hannasch is a graduate student in mathematics and computer science. He is working on ray tracing through unusual domains, with initial applications to geophysics (spherical domains) and planned applications to astrophysics. BS, UNLV, Mathematical Sciences; BS, UNLV, Computer Science.
Dr. Alex Lindsay did his PhD work at North Carolina State University, graduating in 2016. Dr. Lindsay joins the DXL in collaboration with the ARFC, where he works with Dr. Katy Huff. A nuclear engineer by training, Alex is interested in finite element calculations, reactor design, and running.
Dr. Thompson earned his PhD. from the University of Nevada Las Vegas in 2012. Afterwards spent time as a postdoctoral scholar at Steward Observatory in Tucson, AZ, and the University of Western Cape in Cape Town South Africa. His research is mainly focused on galaxy formation and evolution in numerical simulations. He is also interested in the development of tools that streamline the data analysis pipeline for large simulated datasets.
Chuck Rozhon is an undergraduate in Computer Science, whose interests lie in visualization and scientific computing. He works with DXL on finding better and more interesting ways of looking at data, including GPU volume rendering and applications of distributed computing. His hobbies include running, hiking, and playing guitar.
Allyson is an undergraduate at UIUC who likes Linux, bikes, and dogs, in that order. Getting flavors of Linux to run smoothly on Apple hardware is her (least|most) favorite part of her day.