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Postdoctoral Fellows & Associates

Michael Ackerson
Postdoctoral Fellow
E-mail: mackerson@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-559-8061

Michael Ackerson joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral fellow. He is working on using experimental observations to understand the evolution and emplacement of granitic and volcanic rocks. Michael obtained his Ph.D. in geology from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute prior to joining GL. His other interests include experimental geochemistry, igneous/metamorphic petrology and trace element geochemistry.

 

Abhisek Basu
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: abasu@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-8988

Abhisek Basu joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate working with Reinhard Boehler. He is working on developing large volume diamond cells for neutron diffraction and is also interested in high pressure behavior of perovskite oxides using XRD and Raman spectroscopy. Abhisek received his Ph.D. in physical sciences from the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research - Kolkata in 2014.

 

Neil Bennett
Postdoctoral Fellow
E-mail: nbennett@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-4895

Neil Bennett is a postdoctoral fellow at the Geophysical Laboratory, who hails from the University of Toronto. He is working with Yingwei Fei to determine element behavior during planetary core formation. This work utilizes high pressure and temperature experiments in the multi-anvil press and diamond anvil cells, coupled with sample characterization by laser-ablation mass spectrometry and electron beam micro analysis (FIB, SEM, EPMA).

 

Venkata Srinu Bhadram
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: vbhadram@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8938

Venkata (Venkat) Bhadram is a postdoctoral associate working with Tim Strobel and Russell Hemley on EFree projects, mainly in the area of solar energy materials. He is also working on developing novel materials for photocatalytic water splitting. The work involves synthesis with both multi-anvil and diamond cell techniques, as well as characterization using Raman spectroscopy and laboratory and synchrotron x-ray facilities. Previously, Venkat was a visiting investigator at Purdue University, after receiving his Ph.D. from JNCASR, Bangalore, India.

 

Zhixue Du
Postdoctoral Fellow
E-mail: zdu@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-2372

Zhixue Du joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a Carnegie Fellow from Yale University, where he just received his Ph.D. in Geophysics. He is working with Yingwei Fei and the rest of the staff on various projects and is very interested in mineral physics.

 

Megan Duncan
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: mduncan@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-8926

Megan Duncan joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate working with Yingwei Fei. She is working on high pressure-temperature experiments to constrain the origins and formation of the Earth and Mars. Additionally, Megan is interested in mantel and core geochemistry, and petrology of the inner terrestrial planets. Megan received her Ph.D. in Earth Science from Rice University in 2015.

 

Stephen Elardo
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: selardo@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8479

Stephen Elardo is a postdoctoral associate hailing from the Institute of Meteoritics at the University of New Mexico. He is working with Anat Shahar on understanding iron isotope fractionation at high pressure and temperature during planetary differentiation as a way to infer the abundances of light elements in planetary cores. His research interests also include igneous processes in the planetary settings, with an emphasis on the differentiation of the Moon, early crust building processes in the lunar crust, and the thermal and magmatic evolution of the lunar mantle.

 

Charlene Estrada
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: cestrada@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8817

Charlene Estrada is a Postdoctoral Associate from Johns Hopkins University. She is currently working on projects related to diopside powders with Robert Hazen and Dimitri Sverjensky’s surface chemistry group.

 

Zachary Geballe
Postdoctoral Fellow
E-mail: zgeballe@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8945

Zachary (Zack) Geballe is a postdoctoral fellow working with Viktor Struzhkin. His focus is to develop high-frequency calorimetry methods and to use them to measure heat capacities of metals and silicates at high pressures in order to study melting, pre-melting phenomena, and the glass transition. Zack received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley.

 

Michael Guerette
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: mguerette@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-4889

Michael Guerette joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate. Michael is working with Tim Strobel on novel solar energy materials, specifically Si24 synthesis and property investigation. Previously, Michael was a postdoctoral researcher at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he received his Ph.D. in Materials Engineering in 2014.

 

Binyang Hou
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: byhou@carnegiescience.edu

Binyang Hou is a postdoctoral associate working at HPCAT under the supervision of Dr. Changyong Park. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago. His research has been focused on the study of molecular level interfacial structure using various synchrotron x-ray radiation methods as well as electrochemical techniques. His current research focuses on the study of solid-fluid interfaces under ambient as well as high pressure and temperature conditions.

 

Ross Hrubiak
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: rhrubiak@ciw.edu

Ross Hrubiak is a postdoctoral associate at HPCAT working on high-pressure melting studies. Ross received his Ph.D. from Florida International University’s Center for the Study of Matter at Extreme Conditions (CeSMEC).

 

Qingyang Hu
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: qhu@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8933

Qinyang Hu is a graduate student from George Mason University.  He joins the Geophysical Lab as a predoctoral associate working with Dave Mao on the theory part of the FeO project and diamond anvil cell experiments of cerium.

 

Daniel Hummer
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: dhummer@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8908

Daniel Hummer completed his Ph.D. at Penn State University specializing in mineralogy and crystallography. He is interested in the phase stability of minerals at high pressures and temperatures, and the kinetics of nucleation and crystal growth processes. He is currently working with Bob Hazen on topics in mineral evolution/ecology, including tracing the geologic history of minerals with redox sensitive elements, and analyzing Earth’s mineral diversity in order to predict and find new species - especially minerals of carbon. Additionally, Daniel is interested in mineral diversity, crystal chemistry and thermodynamic stability of minerals across a range of pressure-temperature conditions.

 

Colin Jackson
Postdoctoral Fellow
E-mail: cjackson@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-4566

Colin Jackson is a postdoctoral fellow at the Geophysical Laboratory. He is working with Yingwei Fei, and many other members of the staff, on high-pressure and temperature experiments, and solid Earth geochemistry. Colin received his Ph.D. from Brown University.

 

Cheng Ji
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: cji@ciw.edu

Cheng Ji is a postdoctoral associate at HPSynC. He recieved his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Texas Tech University. His research interests include phase transitions of materials under large shear stress at high pressures and high pressure related synchrotron x-ray techniques.

 

Bing Li
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: bli@ciw.edu

Bing Li is a postdoctoral associate at HPSynC. He received his Ph.D. in condensed matter physics from Jilin University in 2011. Bing is working on diamond anvil cell techniques for ultra-high pressure experiment and selected element phase transitions at mega-bar pressures using synchrotron micro-Xray diffraction with Dave Mao and others in the high-pressure team.

 

Yangzheng Lin
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: ylin@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-2374

Yangzheng Lin is a postdoctoral associate from Penn State University, where he worked on molecular dynamics (MD) and kinetic Monte Carlo (KMC) simulations for GaAs surface reconstruction and diffusion. He is now working with Ronald Cohen and Tim Strobel on the equation of state (EOS) and phase transition for MgSiO3, FeSiO3, and CO2+H2O systems from quantum Monte Carlo (QMC) simulations as well as ground state crystal structure prediction for lithium carbide and new carbon structure prediction based on first principle density functional theory (DFT) computations under ambient and high pressures. RG31

 

Chao Liu
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: cliu@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-8909

Chao Liu hails from Yale University and joins as a postdoctoral associate working with Bob Hazen. He is developing new paleo-redox proxies from geochemical signatures of carbonate rocks. His research interests include carbonates, isotope geochemistry, paleo climate and precambrian research.

 

Hanyu Liu
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: haliu@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-2376

Hanyu Liu is a postdoctoral associate working with Russell Hemley. He is carrying out theoretical and computational studies in support of current EFree projects and also contributing to the development of a new project focusing on hydrogen-rich materials. Hanyu is also interested in studying the properties of materials at extreme conditions using molecular dynamics and crystal structure predictions.

 

Shi Liu
Postdoctoral Fellow
E-mail: sliu@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-8915

Shi Liu joins the Geophysical Laboratory from the University of Pennsylvania as a postdoctoral fellow. Shi is working with Ron Cohen on multi scale simulations of dynamical responses of ferroelectric domains, to fundamentally understand various structure-property relationships of ferroelectric domain walls and to discover, develop and demonstrate new material design principles. His research interests focus on materials exploration and design using both advanced quantum chemistry and large-scale molecular dynamics simulations.

 

Ajay Kumar Mishra
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: amishra@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-1090

Ajay Mishra joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate from the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC). He is working with Rus Hemley on the synthesis of hydrogen rich materials under extreme conditions. He will characterize these materials using XRD, Raman and IR measurements. Ajay is also interested in the behavior of materials under extreme conditions and to unravel the basic physics behind it. R-G18

 

Takaki Muramatsu
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: tmuramatsu@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-4595

Takaki's research focuses on strongly correlated electron systems under high pressure and low temperature. He hopes to expand the pressure range of electrical conductivity and magnetic measurements.

 

Andrew Needham
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: aneedham@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8482

Andy specializes in coordinated analyses of the mineralogy, chemistry and isotopic composition of planetary materials. His research at the Geophysical Laboratory, working with Andrew Steele, involves the reaction pathways of carbon in the Martian crust and mantle. Andy also continues research into the formation and evolution of the early solar system through collaborations with NASA-JSC, from where he joins the Geophysical Laboratory.

 

Jocelyn Rodgers
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: jrodgers@carnegiescience.edu

Jocelyn is working with Russell Hemley on using molecular simulations theory to understand the effects of high pressure and other extreme conditions on protein function, such as how multimeric protein assemblies required for life can be stabilized or destabilized under pressure. Jocelyn received a Ph.D. in Chemical Physics from the University of Maryland, College Park and from there completed a three-year fellowship with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, where she explored simulation and technique development for the study of coarse-grained lipid bilayers and proteins. Her research interests include biophysics, thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, molecular simulation, and self organization and assembly of molecules.

 

Corliss Kin I Sio
Postdoctoral Fellow
E-mail: ksio@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-1078

Corliss Kin I Sio joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral fellow from the University of Chicago. She is working with Anat Shahar on olivine growth rates in basaltic melts. Corliss is also interested in isotope geochemistry and experimental petrology. R-233

 

Hiroyuki Takenaka
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: htakenaka@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-2371

Hiroyuki (Hiro) Takenaka joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate working with Ronald Cohen on theoretical investigations on transducers. Hiro is also interested in finding new electro-mechanical transducers with improved properties. Hiro received a Ph.D. of mechanical engineering at the School of Science and Engineering, Meiji University in 2006. Prior to joining the Geophysical Laboratory, Hiro was a postdoctoral fellow for Professor Andrew M. Rappe, University of Pennsylvania. His focus was the origin of anomalous physical properties in relaxor ferroelectrics and bulk photovoltaic effect in oxide, oxy-­‐sulfide, sulfide compounds.

 

Renbiao Tao
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: rtao@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-7970

Renbiao Tao joins the Geophysical Laboratory from Peking University. He is working with Yingwei Fei on the role of volatiles in the deep interior and element partitioning at the deep Earth boundaries. Tao's interests also include deep carbon cycle in subduction zones, redox state, and evolution of subduction zones.

 

Rajasekarakumar Vadapoo
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: rvadapoo@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-7977

Rajasekarakumar Vadapoo joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate from Spintec, CEA/CNRS in Grenoble, France. He is working with Ron Cohen to use first-priciple computations to synthesize, modify, and manipulate piezoelectrics, and then use chemical pressure to design epitaxial heterostructures that stabilize the materials with enhanced properties at ambient conditions. R133

 

Junyue Wang
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: jywang@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8987

Junyue Wang is a postdoctoral associate at HPSynC. He works on synchrotron based nano resolution x-ray microscopy and computerized tomography, and their applications in high pressure research. He received a Ph.D. in 2009 from the Institute of Physics at Academia Sinica in Taiwan, China.

 

Qianqian Wang
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: qwang@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-8934

Qianqian Wang is a postdoctoral associate from Yanshan University working with Tim Strobel. She is working on diamond anvil cells and large-volume synthesis experiments, as well as density functional theory calculations for creating novel carbon-based materials with superlative properties.

 

Matthew Ward
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: mward@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-4897

Matthew Ward joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate working with Tim Strobel on the synthesis of high pressure carbon materials. Matthew is also interested in solid-state synthesis and x-ray crystallography. Prior to joining the Geophysical Laboratory, Matthew was a postdoctoral research assistant at the University of Notre Dame and received his Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from Northwestern University in June 2014.

 

Liuxiang Yang
GL-HPSTAR Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: lyang@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8988

Liuxiang Yang is a postdoctoral associate from the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He works with Reinhard Boehler and others on the melting of transition metals and noble gases.

 

Jianjun Ying
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: jying@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8992

Jianjun Ying is a postdoctoral associate at HPCAT. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Science and Technology of China. He had worked at Carnegie’s Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoc with Viktor Struzhkin. At HPCAT, he will continue working with Viktor on synthesizing superconducting materials and measuring their physical properties.

 

Haidong Zhang
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: hzhang@ciw.edu
Phone: 202-478-8919

Haidong Zhang joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate. He received his PhD from the University of Florida. He works on exploring novel phenomena and materials under extreme conditions such as high pressure and high temperature; synthesis of emergent materials with outstanding properties; investigation of their optical, electrical, magnetic and structural properties.

 

Li Zhu
Postdoctoral Associate
E-mail: lzhu@carnegiescience.edu
Phone: 202-478-8963

Li Zhu joins the Geophysical Laboratory as a postdoctoral associate from the University of Basel. Li is working with Timothy Strobel on the development of a reaction pathway prediction method to be able to apply the method and predict reaction pathways and transition states. He is also interested in crystal structure and transition state predictions under high pressure. R-G31