PICS Faculty

The PICS faculty consists of a cross-section of world class researchers from across the wide range of disciplines represented at the University of Pennsylvania. All PICS faculty members share an interest in the application of state-of-the-art computational tools and platforms to their individual disciplines.


David Srolovitz 

Dave Srolovitz

  • Founding Director of PICS
  • Joseph Bordogna Professor of Engineering and Applied Science Materials Science and Engineering

Research Interests: 

  • Computational and Theoretical Materials Science; Defects; Growth; Evolution; Deformation of materials
Read More about Dave Srolovitz
  • B.S. in Physics, Rutgers University
  • Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering, University of Pennsylvania

Dave conducts research in defects in materials, growth of materials, evolution of the microstructure and morphology of materials, and the mechanical deformation of materials. He does this through the development and application of analytical theory and a wide range of computational modeling techniques, ranging from the quantum mechanical to atomistic to microstructural to continuum.

Office Location:PICS Suite 532
Phone: 215-898-6924

Ravi Radhakrishnan

Ravi Radhakrishnan

  • Interim PICS Director
  • Professor Bioengineering, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Research interests: 

  • Computational biology
  • Molecular systems biology
Read More about Ravi Radhakrishnan
  • PhD 2001 – Cornell University
  • BTech 1995 – Indian Institute of Technology

Ravi’s research interests lie at the interface of chemical physics and molecular biology. His lab’s goal is to provide atomic and molecular level characterization of complex biomolecular systems and formulate quantitatively accurate microscopic models for predicting the interactions of various therapeutic agents with innate biochemical signaling mechanisms. To do so, they employ several computational algorithms ranging from techniques to treat electronic structure, molecular dynamics, Monte Carlo simulations, stochastic kinetic equations, and complex systems analyses in conjunction with the theoretical formalisms of statistical and quantum mechanics, and high performance computing in massively parallel architectures.

Office Location:PICS Suite 522
Phone: 215-898-0487

Steering Committee:

Norm Badler

Norm Badler

  • Rachleff Professor Computer and Information Science
  • Director, Center for Digital Visualization (ViDi)
  • Director and Faculty Advisor: DIGITAL MEDIA DESIGN Undergraduate SEAS BSE Degree
  • Co-Director: Computer Graphics and Game Technology Masters (MSE) Degree

Research Interests:

  • Virtual embodied human agents
  • Fast motion generators
  • Parameterized Action Representation
  • Parameterized Behavior Trees
  • Functional crowd simulation
Read More about Norm Badler
  • Ph.D. in Computer Science, University of Toronto, 1975. Dissertation title:  “Temporal Scene Analysis: Conceptual Descriptions of Object Movements.”
  • MSc. in Mathematics, University of Toronto, 1971.
  • BA (with highest honors) in College of Creative Studies, emphasis in Mathematics; University of California, Santa Barbara, 1966-1970.

Norman I. Badler is the Rachleff Professor of Computer and Information Science at the University of Pennsylvania. He received his BA in Creative Studies Mathematics from the University of California Santa Barbara in 1970, his MSc in Mathematics from the University of Toronto in 1971, and his PhD in Computer Science from the University of Toronto in 1975. He served as the Senior Co-Editor for the Journal Graphical Models for 20 years and presently serves on the Editorial Boards of several other Journals including Presence. His research involves developing software to acquire, simulate, animate and control 3D computer graphics human body, face, gesture, locomotion, and manual task motions, both individually and for heterogeneous groups. He has supervised or co-supervised 62 PhD students, many of whom have become academics or researchers in the movie visual effects and game industries. He is the founding Director of the SIG Center for Computer Graphics, the Center for Human Modeling and Simulation, and the ViDi Center for Digital Visualization at Penn. He has served Penn as Chair of the Computer & Information Science Department (1990-94) and as the Associate Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Science (2001-05).

Office Location: Levine 304
Phone: 215-898-5862

John Bassani

John Bassani

  • Richard H. and S.L. Gabel Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics

Research interests:

  • Biomechanics
  • Computational mechanics
  • Mechanics of materials
Read More about John Bassani
  • PhD Engineering 1978 – Harvard University
  • MS Applied Mechanics 1975 – Lehigh University
  • BS Mechanical Engineering 1973 – Lehigh University

John applies his expertise in atomic-level properties of continuum mechanics in order to model mechanical and mechano-chemical behavior of nano-structured materials. His research group explores concepts to control the formation of patterned nanostructures in the solid state and investigates the interplay between mechanics and adhesion, with applications to MEMS/NEMS devices and living cells. John has developed models for elastic and inelastic behavior, and failure at the nanoscale, including interfaces and other complex defects in crystalline materials and thin films.


Daniel Hammer

Daniel Hammer

  • Alfred G. and Meta A. Ennis Professor Bioengineering, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Research Interests

  • Cellular engineering
  • Bioengineered therapeutics
  • Devices and drug delivery
  • Cell mechanics
  • PhD Chemical Engineering 1987 – University of Pennsylvania
  • MSE Chemical Engineering 1985 – University of Pennsylvania
  • BSE Chemical Engineering 1982 – Princeton University

Dan applies his research in nanometric soft matter to his studies in biology. Working with colleagues, he has forged polymersomes, membranes made of block copolymers, which are soft, vesicle-like nanoparticles for drug delivery and imaging. Dan has also developed a simulation method of adhesion of receptor-coated nanoparticles to surfaces. The method, Brownian Adhesive Dynamics, once applied to viral binding to cell surfaces, is now being used to understand selectivity and targeting in biological applications of nanoparticles. Currently, he is on the Board of Directors of the Energy Coordinating Agency of Philadelphia, having served as President for four years (2014-2017). ECA provides community-based energy efficiency services and assistance to low-income families throughout Philadelphia, the poorest of the ten largest cities in the United States.

Office Location: Towne 374
Phone: 215-573-6761

Howard Hu

Howard Hu

  • Professor and Masters Program Chair Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics (MEAM)

Research Interests:

  • Computational mechanics
  • Fluid mechanics
  • PhD Aerospace Engineering 1992 – University of Minnesota
  • MS Mechanics 1986 – Xian Jiaotong University in China
  • BS Mechanical Engineering 1982 – Zhejiang University in China

Howard’s expertise is in computational fluid dynamics. His research focus is on modeling complex flows involving multiphase and polymeric fluids, particularly flows with solid particles, liquid drops, and gas bubbles. His group has been developing numerical techniques for simulating motions of large numbers of particles in those multiphase systems. They are engaged in understanding and controlling the particulate flows in various microfluidic applications through electrophoresis and dielectrophoresis.

Office Location: Towne 241

Talid Sinno

Tallid Sinno

  • Professor & Director of MSE in Scientific Computing

Research Interests:

  • Molecular simulation
  • Transport process
  • Chemical systems engineering
  • PhD Chemical Engineering 1998 – Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • BSE Chemical Engineering 1991 – University of Pennsylvania
  • BA Chemistry 1991 – University of Pennsylvania

Talid’s research program is broadly aimed at the theoretical and computational study of nano and microstructural evolution, particularly nucleation and growth, in condensed matter. He is currently pursuing microdefect formation in crystalline semiconductors, colloidal crystallization of micron-scale particles with tunable interactions, and platelet aggregation in blood. Talid’s lab has developed an extensive suite of simulation tools for studying these phenomena, including large-scale molecular dynamics, multiscale kinetic Monte Carlo, and continuum models.

Office Location: PICS
Email Talid

Associated Faculty:

Portonovo S. Ayyaswamy

Portonovo Ayyaswamy

Asa Whitney Professor of Dynamical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics

Research Interests:

  • Biomechanics
  • Computational Mechanics
  • Fluid Mechanics

Office Location: Towne 231

Email Portonovo

Danielle S. Bassett

Danielle S. Bassett

Eduardo D. Glandt Faculty Fellow and Associate Professor of Bioengineering (BE) & Electrical and Systems Engineering (ESE)

Research Interests:

  • Complex Systems
  • Network Science
  • Computational Neuroscience
  • Systems Biology
  • Dynamical Systems
  • Soft Materials
  • Behavioral Network Science

Email Danielle

John Crocker

Professor Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

  • Directed Self-assembly
  • Active and Soft Matter Physics
  • Cell Biophysics

Office Location: PICS Space 526

Email John

Chenfanfu Jiang

CIS Assistant Professor, Computer and Information Science

Research Interests: 

  • Physics-based simulation for computer graphics
  • Computational solid and fluid mechanics
  • Scientific computing
Office Location: Levine 303
Professor Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics
Research Interests:
  • Nanoscale thermal, fluid, and mass transport
  • Molecular dynamics simulation
  • Laser-based materials characterization
  • Field-directed patterning for nanofabrication
  • Flow measurement in confined geometries
  • Micro- and nanoscale engineering
Office Location: 247 Towne Building
Phone number: 215-898-3254

Amish Patel

Reliance Industries Term Assistant Professor Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Research Interests:

  • Molecular simulation and thermodynamics
  • Soft matter and complex fluids

Office Location: PICS Suite 529

Phone: 215-898-9682

George Ilhwan Park

Assistant Professor Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics

Research Interests:

  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Computational Mechanics

Office Location: PICS Suite 524
Email George

Pedro Ponte Castañeda

Pedro Ponte Castañeda

Raymond S. Markowitz Faculty Fellow and Professor Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics

Research Interests:

  • Variational Methods
  • Homogenization
  • Asymptotic Analysis
  • Nonlinear Composite Materials
  • Multi-Scale Analysis
  • Smart Materials
  • Microstructure Evolution and Localization in Manufacturing Processes
  • Mechanics of Polycrystalline Deformation and Texture Evolution
  • Phase Transformations; Fracture Mechanics; Thermoplastic Elastomers
  • Elastomeric Foams, Reinforced Rubbers; Semi-Crystalline Polymers
  • Magneto-rheological Elastomers

Office Location: 235 Towne Building

Email Pedro

Paris Perdikaris

Paris Perdikaris

Assistant Professor Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics

Research Interests:

  • Computational Science and Engineering
  • Machine learning and Data-driven Modeling
  • Design under Uncertainty
  • High-performance Computing

Office Location: PICS 527

Email Paris

Jennifer E. Phillips-Cremins
Research Interests:
  • Epigenetics
  • Genomics
  • Systems and Synthetic Bioengineering
  • Experimental Neuroscience
  • Molecular and Cellular Engineering

Email Jennifer

Prashant Purohit

Associate Professor Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics

Research Interests:

  • Mechanics of materials
  • Biomechanics
  • Computational mechanics
Office Location: PICS Suite 528
Phone: 215-898-3870

Celia Reina

William K. Gemmill Term Assistant ProfessorMechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics

Research Interests:

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Micro- and Nanomechanics
Office Location: Towne 275
Email Celia
Phone: 215-898-9258

Rob Riggleman

Assistant Professor Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Research Interests:

  • Molecular modeling
  • Statistical mechanics
  • Polymer glasses
Email Rob
Office: PICS Suite 531
Phone: 215-898-2411

Vivek Shenoy

Vivek Shenoy

Eduardo D. Glandt President’s Distinguished Professor, Materials Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, Bioengineering

Research Interests:
  • Physical properties and growth mechanisms of 2D materials, nanocrystals and nanowires
  • Mechanics of biological systems and materials
  • Materials for energy
  • Contact

Office Location: LRSM 309

Email Vivek

Aleksandra Vojvodic

Skirkanich Assistant Professor of Innovation Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Research Interests:

  • Energy
  • Chemistry of Materials
  • Catalysis
  • Fuel Cells
  • Molecular Modeling
Email Aleks
Office Location: PICS Suite 530

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