Flash Center Members

Faculty and Administration

Petros Tzeferacos (He/Him/His)
Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy, and Senior Scientist at the LLE
Director, Flash Center for Computational Science
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Petros earned his Ph.D. in Physics and Astrophysics from the Physics Department of the University of Turin, Italy, where he worked on accretion disk dynamics, numerical methods for computational astrophysics, and the development of the astrophysics code PLUTO. In 2012 he joined the Flash Center for Computational Science at the Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics of the University of Chicago. Petros became the code group leader of FLASH and associate director of the Flash Center in 2013 and its director in 2018. In 2020, Petros and the Flash Center moved to the University of Rochester. He studies fundamental astrophysical plasma processes with a focus on magnetized turbulence and dynamo.

Adam Reyes (He/Him/His)
Research Scientist
Code Group Leader, Flash Center for Computational Science
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Adam is a research scientist and the code group leader. He received his PhD in physics from the University of California Santa Cruz while doing work for the Flash Center. He is currently working on the Milton project, dealing with airfoils in wind tunnels and lasers. While the science itself is gratifying, he most enjoys working with students, and has received an award for excellence in teaching and mentorship. Adam likes boulder rock climbing and cooking, but only when he isn’t pursuing the perfect of coffee.

Jenni Oliver (She/Her/Hers)
Business Administrator, Flash Center for Computational Science
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Jenni is the business administrator for the Flash Center. She received her Master's Degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Rochester. Jenni maintains the finances for the Flash Center and is the grant administrator for the Physics and Astronomy Department, which includes looking for and applying to grant opportunities that are beneficial to the Flash Center. Jenni enjoys spending time with her family and her constant companion, her Siberian Husky Stormy.

Research Scientists

Fernando Garcia Rubio
Assistant Scientist
Laboratory for Laser Energetics

Fernando Garcia-Rubio received a degree in aerospace engineering through a dual program with Universidad Politécnica Madrid and ISAE-Supaero Toulouse in France. He received his Ph.D. from Universidad Politécnica Madrid. He mostly enjoys working with hydrodynamic instability in HEDP and ICF. He also studied self-similar processes in ICF involving thermal and Nernst waves. He would like to provide simulation support via the FLASH Code to experimental campaigns at UR-LLE and perform simulations of hydrodynamic instabilities. Outside of science, Fernando enjoys the difficult art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, snowboarding, wakeboarding, climbing, occasionally playing guitar, and spending time with his small dog Lea.

Eddie Hansen (He/Him/His)
Research Scientist
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Eddie is a research scientist at the Flash Center working on simulations for alternative fusion concepts. He earned his PhD in physics and astronomy from the University of Rochester, and in the past has worked on projects for a particle accelerator group in Colorado. He works with computational and laboratory astrophysics, and inertial confinement and magneto-inertial fusion. He greatly enjoys math and physics and is enthusiastic about the work he does.

Computational Scientists & Software Engineers

Jonathan Carroll-Nellenback
Assistant Professor of Physics and Astronomy and Computational Scientist with CIRC
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Jonathan Carroll-Nellenback is a computational and research scientist who received his Bachelors in Applied Mathematics with a Physics minor from Asbury University and his PhD in Physics & Astronomy from the University of Rochester. His research interests include star formation, molecular clouds, and the interaction between stellar winds and planetary bodies. He enjoys soccer, ping pong, the piano, and spending time with his three kids.

Rich Sarkis (He/Him/His)
Software Engineer & IT Specialist
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Baowei Liu
Computational Scientist
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Baowei Liu is a Computational Scientist at the University of Rochester. He received his bachelors in material science from Nanjing University and his master and Ph.D in computational physics from the University of South Carolina. He offers technical support to the FLASH Center as well as the Center for Integrated Research Computing(CIRC) where he assists the university research community with various aspects of computation, data analysis, simulation, and software installation and maintenance using CIRC clusters and cloud resources. He serves as the University of Rochester’s XSEDE Campus Champion.

Postdoctoral Scholars

David Michta (He/Him/His)
Postdoctoral Associate
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David is completing his postdoctoral studies with the Flash Center, and is currently running simulations for advanced fusion concepts and adding aspects of quantum mechanics to the FLASH Code. He received his PhD in plasma physics from Princeton University while working at Lawrence Livermore National Lab. David has done work with creating mathematical models in quantum hydrodynamics, and was excited to see results match up with experimental data. Some day he wishes to return to California and conduct his own research and coding. He also plays guitar and has performed with bands.

Yingchao Lu (He/Him/His)
Postdoctoral Associate
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Yingchao Lu is a postdoctoral scholar at the Flash Center for Computational Science. Yingchao received a B.S. in physics from University of Science and Technology of China in 2015, and a PhD in physics from Rice University in 2020. From 2018 to 2020, he was a graduate research assistant at Los Alamos National Laboratory. His PhD thesis was on modeling and analysis for magnetized high-energy-density laser driven plasma flows. In his research, Yingchao performs numerical simulations using FLASH to design and analyze experiments for laboratory astrophysics. He enjoys walking long distances and reading history books.

Graduate Students

Marissa Adams (She/Her/Hers)
Graduate Research Asst.
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Marissa is a soon-to-be-graduating PhD Candidate in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Rochester. She spearheads Solid Liner and Gas Puff Z-pinch developments in the FLASH Code and has contributed to several magnetized plasma experimental campaigns through validated numerical modeling. Community and culture motivate her desire to do research. Her research interests revolve around magnetohydrodynamics, turbulence, and how plasma properties impact the overall dynamics of systems. She has a pet bearded dragon named Aphrodite, enjoys Greek dance, and sustainable crafting projects.

Abigail Armstrong (She/Her/Hers)
Graduate Research Asst., Horton Fellow
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Abbey is a second year PhD student in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Rochester. She works with tdyno and is working to add a Braginskii viscosity to the FLASH Code in order to increase FLASH’s fidelity in HEDP regimes. She enjoys having the ability to approach a problem from multiple different angles and is working to introduce herself to the field. She is interested in laboratory plasma and astrophysics, computational magnetohydrodynamics, and turbulent dynamo. Abbey is also very passionate about teaching and outreach. Outside of her work, she enjoys watching European soccer, rock climbing, guitar, and being outdoors.

Kasper Moczulski (He/Him/His)
Graduate Research Asst., Horton Fellow
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Kasper is a second year PhD student at the University of Rochester from the Department of Mechanical Engineering and is especially interested in plasma physics. He is currently working on proton radiography, implementing an LC circuit model to Z-pinch simulations for MIFTI, and will be assisting with future numerical turbulent dynamo experiments. Kasper is very active and likes to move, having driven cross country several times and participated in many sports. When not working on physics you can find Kasper walking his dog or rock climbing.

Periklis Farmakis (He/Him/His)
Graduate Research Asst., Horton Fellow
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Pericles is a PhD student at the University of Rochester working with the Flash Center from the Department of Mechanical Engineering. He is currently working to improve the FLASH Code to be able to create more accurate HEDP simulations by implementing a new EOS table reader into the FLASH Code. He is also part of the LLE's Theory Division, and his work there will help create valuable tools for designing ICF implosions. He is interested in high energy density and nuclear physics, and astronomy. He enjoys his travels around Europe, especially to Italy.

Ananya Mohapatra (She/Her/Hers)
Graduate Research Asst.,
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Ananya Mohapatra received her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the National Institute for Science Education and Research (NISER) in Bhubaneswar, India. She is working on simulations of high energy density physics and plans to work more with magnetized turbulence. She is proud to have pursued Physics and hopes to contribute to the development of science in her country one day. In her free time she enjoys painting, playing ping pong and badminton, and she loves beaches.

Undergraduate Students

Victor Chang (He/Him/His)
Undergraduate Student Researcher

Victor Chang is a rising senior and REU student for the University of Rochester. He enjoys computational physics and quantum computing and is currently working on eliminating carbuncle instabilities from Riemann solvers and implementing new solvers into the FLASH Code. Outside of work he loves to play ultimate frisbee and this past season, his club team made it to Nationals. He enjoys traveling and has lived in four different countries. He plays lots of video games in his spare time, his current favorite is Inscryption. He has a dog, but admits to preferring cats.

Kyra Ulreich
Undergraduate Student Researcher

Kyra Ulreich is a rising college freshman at the University of Tennessee, and an aspiring astrophysicist and opera singer. She works on creating things to be put on the website and occasionally runs simpler unit tests. She is interested in many fields of physics including astrophysics and nuclear physics, and enjoys learning about the life cycles of stars. She is an enthusiastic vocalist, having been classically trained since she was nine years old, and she participated in the Tennessee All State 2022 Treble Chorus.

Niels Vanderloo (He/Him/His)
Research Experience for Undergraduates

Niels Vanderloo is a rising senior and REU student attending Oberlin College and majoring in math and physics. He is currently working on creating unit tests for extended magnetohydrodynamics and enjoys computational physics, developing code, and running simulations. Outside of the Flash Center he has run micromagnetic simulations of nanoparticle assemblies. He runs cross country for his school and loves every second of it. When not doing physics or running you can often find him playing rhythm games.

Mokin Lee
Undergraduate Student Researcher

Mokin Lee is working as an REU student, and is a rising senior studying mechanical engineering at the University of Rochester. He works on developing analytical methods for opacity models within the Flash Center. He would like to follow his interest in scientific programming by exploring it within the FLASH Code. Outside of his scientific endeavors, Mokin enjoys drawing and spending time with his beloved dog.

Visiting Scientists

Josh Sauppe (He/Him/His)
Visiting Scientist

Josh Sauppe is a research scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory working in the Plasma Theory and Applications group. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, focusing on extended magnetohydrodynamic modeling of the reversed field pinch device. He is currently investigating hydrodynamic instability growth in convergent systems in the high-energy-density physics regime using laser-driven cylindrical implosion experiments. In his free time, he enjoys reading, hiking, and a good cup of coffee.

Past Members

Mary McMullan (She/Her/Hers)
Research Experience for Undergraduates

Mary was an REU student from the College of New Jersey, who is working on an addition to the FLASH Code that she hopes will help to expand the FLASH user base. She enjoys meeting new people and learning from them. Mary enjoys computational physics and is very interested in astrophysics. She hopes to pursue a physics PhD, and potentially become a professor or do further work with research.