office: SE 312
labs: SE 353, 377
I am in the process of setting up my new laboratory at UC Merced, and am currently hiring students and postdocs who are interested in doing research in any of the areas mentioned below.
This site is still under construction. More content is on the way.
My group does experimental research on the physics of fluid dynamics and soft condensed matter. We want to understand the mechanics of complex systems in the natural world. Systems of recent interest include turbulent flows such as Rayleigh-Benard convection, non-Newtonian fluids such as shear thickening in suspensions of cornstarch and water, and jammed granular material with applications to robotic gripping. While these systems consist of relatively simple classical materials with simple fundamental interactions, they can seem complicated because there are many particles and degrees of freedom which can interact to produce non-linear effects. The goal is to describe these systems with relatively simple models.
Areas of current research include:
- Modeling large-scale structures in turbulent flows, i.e. wind, with applications to geophysical flows.
- Non-Newtonian fluids, in particular shear thickening in concentrated suspensions such as cornstarch and water.
- Granular materials, in particular the role of entanglement in strain-stiffening of polymer materials using a model system of randomly packed granular chains.
- Magnetic dynamos generated by a turbulent flow of a conducting fluid. Our approach is to design a liquid metal based suspension with the necessary material properties to achieve a dynamo.
For details, follow the research link on the left.