Post-Doctoral Fellowship Award Recipients

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 15 September 2005

Arctic Region Supercomputing Center Announces Post-Doctoral Fellowship Award Recipients

The Arctic Region Supercomputing Center is proud to announce the first awards of the center's new Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. The Program aims to increase computational science expertise at the Center and the University of Alaska Fairbanks by supporting talented scientists in the early stage of their careers and providing an intellectual environment in which they can pursue a research agenda of their own choosing. For each fellow, ARSC will make available a variety of mentoring opportunities, including interactions with senior faculty and with distinguished visitors. Each fellow will receive a three-year term appointment and access to ARSC's state-of-the-art computational resources.

The 2005/2006 ARSC Fellows are:

Jessie Ellen Cherry , Columbia University/Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory Arctic Hydroclimatological Change Mentor: Vladimir Alexeev Cherry will investigate changes in arctic precipitation, evaporation and the cycling of water. Snowfall reconstructions from historic gauge-based measurements will be analyzed and the NASA Seasonal to Interannual Prediction Project (NSIPP) land surface model will be updated for use in the Arctic.

Peter Webley , NERC Environmental Systems Science Center at the University of Reading Evaluation of a Volcanic Ash Tracking Model Mentor: Ken Dean Starting with the Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO) "Puff" toolfor modeling volcanic ash clouds, this project will look at new techniquesfor modeling based on ensemble techniques. Calibration will be performedvia satellite data. Webley will use a combination of models and computationaland visualization approaches. Prior to joining ARSC, Webleywas with the Kings College of London Department of Geography.

Martin King , University of Bath, United Kingdom Barotropically Excited Energy Trapped Over Rough Topography in High-Latitude Oceans Mentor: Harper Simmons King will be studying what happens to the energy of tidal flow over rough topographies in high-latitude oceans. He is interested in differences in energy propagation and mixing at high-latitudes versus lower latitudes and what impacts these factors have on the climate at large.

Anton Kulchitsky , Moscow State University Development of the Polar Eularian Ionospheric Model Mentor: Sergei Maurits and Brenton Watkins Kulchitsky will be working on expansion of the current Polar Eulerian Ionospheric Model, which is a component of an operational forecast distributed by ARSC. This will include the Eulerian co-rotating frame as a computational alternative to traditional approaches. Additional research will examine the electromagnetic ion drift, ionospheric tomography, and electron temperature heating rates.

John Chappelow , University of Alaska Fairbanks How Cyclical Variations in Orbital Elements Induce Climactic Change, with an Emphasis on the Study of Mars Mentor: Buck Sharpton Chappelow will be studying the impact of the varying axial tilt of the planet Mars on its climate. He will also look at the relationship between the formational dynamics and final shapes of impact craters, as they relate to the momentum and energies of impacting objects.

Michael Thorne , Arizona State University Investigating Earth's Structure Through 3D Modeling of Seismic Wave Propagation Mentor: Michael West Thorne's research models the propagation of seismic waves through 3D Earth structures to unravel the complex signal recorded in seismograms. By comparing modeled seismic data to actual earthquake recordings, these techniques help map out features of the Earth from the deep mantle to the near-surface structures of volcanoes.

John Bailey , University of Hawaii Developing Automated Alarms of Volcanic Eruption Activity from Remote Sensing Data Mentor: Jon Dehn Bailey will be performing image analysis of remote sensing data to identify anomalies in thermal flux indicating volcanic activity, such as ash plumes and lava outflow. Thermal anomalies also frequently occur as precursors to eruptive activity. Current monitoring methods employ manual analysis of remote sensing images to identify thermal anomalies. An automated system is expected to provide significant improvements to the required manpower hours, processing time and alert accuracy. The automated alarms will use data acquired from AVHRR, ASTER, SAR and other sensors. Analysis algorithms will be refined through testing against the Geophysical Institute's 15-year archive of images. Bailey's work will address issues of data resolution and accuracy, and the benefits of integrating different datasets. Wider studies into the heat flux budget of active volcanoes will also be explored.

Daniel Pringle , University of Wellington, New Zealand Modeling Sea Ice Transport Properties Mentor: Hajo Eicken Pringle will be developing computationally-intensive 3D numerical simulations of fluid flow through microscopic porous media with reconstructed explicit geometries. This project will help researchers understand the micro-structural control of the fluid permeability of sea ice and other porous materials (such as volcanic rocks) close to the melting point.

For more information, contact Jenn Wagaman, ARSC Public Affairs, wagaman@arsc.edu or 907-450-8662.

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