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Monica Kohler
  • Research Professor of Mechanical and Civil Engineering

Monica Kohler

Monica Kohler is a Research Professor of Mechanical and Civil Engineering. Her research is focused on characterizing deformation and failure such as fractures due to earthquakes in civil structures through numerical and observational experiments. She has developed and applied methods to detect and locate shaking-induced damage in buildings that take advantage of dense 3D vibration sensor arrays. Monica has also led the analysis of tsunami and global earthquake data from ocean bottom seismometers. She is on the science leadership team of the Community Seismic Network project developed at Caltech, which is on track to become the largest permanent seismic network in the world. She has been associated with Caltech for many years — first as a graduate student in the GPS division where she received her Ph.D. in geophysics, then as a Visiting Associate and Lecturer in EAS, and now in her current position. Monica grew up in Los Angeles and received her B.A. from Harvard University. In her spare time, she plays cello, occasionally performing in recitals with other musicians from Caltech and the San Gabriel Valley.

Aviad Levis
  • Postdoctoral Scholar Research Associate, Computing and Mathematical Sciences

Aviad Levis

I am a postdoc in the CMS Department at Caltech. I arrived in January 2020 just before the pandemic hit! My research focuses on developing new computational tools for imaging the dynamic accreting material around a black hole. My research, designed for future Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) observations, will hopefully shed some light (pun intended) on the dynamic processes within this extreme gravitational environment. Before Caltech, I received my Ph.D. from the Technion in Israel, where in collaboration with JPL, I worked on three-dimensional imaging of clouds with the goal of improving climate models by observations. My favorite activity is spending time outdoors with my wife, two elderly dogs, and baby boy.

Haroula Baliaka
  • Graduate Student, Environmental Science and Engineering

Haroula Baliaka

I am a 2nd year Ph.D. student in Environmental Science and Engineering focusing on the sources of air pollution in the Los Angeles basin. I am from Greece and hold a Dipl. Ing in Chemical Engineering from the University of Patras, Greece. My research concentrates on demystifying the mysteries behind the elevated particulate levels in Los Angeles despite regulations. To do so, I am currently looking at the effect of volatile chemical products on the formation of secondary organic aerosol while simultaneously looking at deciphering the sulfate sources using sulfur isotopes as a tracer. In my free time, I enjoy dancing, cooking Greek dishes, and discovering what it means to be living the American dream.

Gabrielle Weise
  • Administrative Assistant, Electrical Engineering

Gabrielle Weise

Gabrielle Weise joins Caltech as a new administrative assistant in the EAS-EE department. Prior to coming to campus, Gabrielle worked in luxury real estate marketing as well as guest relations at the Natural History Museum. She has also worked as a freelance copywriter and social media manager for small businesses and brands. On the weekends you can find Gabrielle roller skating, solving crosswords, painting, reading, watching anime and walking her dog. She loves to travel and counts Mexico, Morocco, and The Philippines as her favorite destinations so far. Gabrielle graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Sophie Hermans
  • Postdoctoral Scholar, Applied Physics and Materials Science

Sophie Hermans

Hi everyone! My name is Sophie Hermans and I joined the group of Professor Andrei Faraon on the 1st of June. In my time here as a Postdoc, I will work on single Ytterbium atoms doped in a YVO4 host crystal for quantum information and communication purposes. That should allow for some cool experiments! Before I joined Caltech, I completed my PhD at the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands. During my PhD, my colleagues and I realized the first quantum network by using nitrogen-vacancy centers in diamond, and we also teleported quantum information across the network. Outside of research, I enjoy doing outreach. Apart from it being fun, I think it is good to explain our research to all sorts of audiences. I hope I can continue this effort here at Caltech! In my spare time, I like to play basketball and I am a big fan of board games. (Photo credit: Inge Hoogland voor Faces of Science/NEMO Kennislink)

H. Jane Bae
  • Assistant Professor of Aerospace

Jane Bae

Professor Bae's research focuses on the physical understanding and modeling of structures associated with near-wall turbulence. Her main research goal is to develop high-fidelity models that reduce the computational cost to simulate high-Reynolds-number turbulent flows. These models will allow simulations to be utilized in the design cycle of wind farms and aircrafts and in predictions of atmospheric flows, reducing the overall time and effort associated with these processes.