Committee Members

Rao Rekha 1516 25 yrChair: Rekha Rao

Rekha Rao is a developer of mathematical models and finite element software for computational fluid dynamics and multiphysics applications including non-Newtonian rheological models and free and moving boundary problems with a focus on complex, multiphase fluids. She has worked on a variety of projects during her 26 years at Sandia National Laboratories, including flow-through porous media, viscoelastic flows, coating flows, polymerizing suspensions for encapsulation, and mold filling of slurries. Her current projects involve the development of foam process models and nanoparticle transport in vivo to understand biodistribution. Rekha is one of the founding developers of Goma 6.0 (, a multiphysics software package that was recently licensed as “open source” and received an R&D100 award in 2014. Rekha is a Chemical Engineer with a BS from UC Berkeley and a PhD from the University of Washington.

Pania Newell-Sandia10142016Co-Chair:  Pania Newell

Pania’s research is in computational multi-physics, multi-scale systems. Her main interest is investigating multi-physics, multi-scale phenomena through integrating theoretical, experimental and computational analysis. For instance, solid-fluid interaction within a heterogeneous porous media, the impact of chemical corrosion at the fracture tips, etc. She is an assistant professor at the University of Utah. Prior to joining the U, she was a senior member of the technical staff at Sandia National Laboratories, where she started as a post-doc. She obtained her Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Colorado-Boulder.

SanFran01Former Chair: Hyunsun Alicia Kim

Alicia is Professor of Structural and Material Optimization at the University of California San Diego, USA and the Cardiff University, UK. Alicia’s research is in topology optimization and her currently interests in level set based methods and coupled multiscale and multiphysics problems. She is interested in formulating multiscale topology optimization for simultaneous design of integrated material and structural systems. Alicia received her PhD and Bachelors degrees in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of Sydney, Australia.

Lauren_BeghiniSecretary:  Lauren Beghini

Lauren Beghini is currently a staff member in the Multiphysics Modeling and Simulation Department at Sandia National Laboratories in Livermore, CA, where she has been working since 2013. Her work and expertise span a variety of areas, including manufacturing process modeling (including forging, welding and additive), verification and validation, and optimization. Within her role, she serves as the V&V Credibility lead for the modeling and simulation work for one of the weapon modernization programs and acts as PI on numerous additive and advanced manufacturing projects. Before joining Sandia, she earned her BS, MS and PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering and her BS in Mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Lucy_ZhangTreasurer:  Lucy Zhang

Dr. Lucy Zhang is currently an Associate Professor at the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace & Nuclear Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). She received her Ph.D. from Northwestern University, IL in 2003. Upon graduation, she joined Mechanical Engineering Department at Tulane as an assistant professor in July of 2003. The department was then closed due to Hurricane Katrina. In August 2006, she moved to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Her research interests are building advanced and robust computational tools and software for reliable and efficient multiphysics and multiscale simulations. The engineering applications involve biomechanics, micro and nano-mechanics, medicine, and defense projects involving impacts. She is now developing open-source tools and technology that can conveniently and efficiently couple any existing solvers for multiphysics and multiscale simulations and analysis.


Internet Communications Officer: Maria Pastrama 

Dr. Maria Pastrama received her PhD in 2016 from the Vienna University of Technology. Her research was focused on the experimental determination of the mechanical properties of bone, as well as on the coupling of mathematical modeling and multiscale poromicromechanical modeling for simulation of bone remodeling. She is currently working as a post-doctoral researcher at the Eindhoven University of Technology in The Netherlands, where she is researching the mechanical interactions of a synthetic implant for cartilage defect repair with the native tissue. At the same time, she is interested in the experimental determination of intra-tissue cartilage strains with ultrasound elastography.

SteffiPublicity Officer: Stefanie Egleti

Stefanie Elgeti is Professor for Lightweight Design at the Technical University of Vienna, Austria. Her research focus is numerical design of both mechanical components and manufacturing processes. This research has led to expertise in inverse problems, shape and topology optimization, as well as stabilized and isogeometric finite element methods. Plastics extrusion, injection molding, and chip formation are only a few of the application areas Stefanie has covered. Prior to moving to Vienna, she received a doctor in engineering as well as a habilitation from RWTH Aachen University, Germany. Internationally, she represents her field of research as chairperson of the Young Investigators within the European Community on Computational Methods in Applied Sciences (ECCOMAS).

I-Ling_ChangAwards Officer: I-Ling Chang

I-Ling Chang is a professor in Department of Mechanical Engineering, National Cheng Kung University of Taiwan. Her research area is in nanomaterial/nanostructure characterization, phononic crystal, and acoustic metamaterial. Recently, she is interested in nanoscale heat transfer. I-Ling received her Ph.D. and master degree from Aeronautics and Astronautics Engineering of Purdue University, USA.

Hongling Ye.jpgEvent Coordinator: Hongling Ye

Hongling Ye is Professor of College of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Electronics Technology at Beijing University of Technology, China. Hongling obtained her PhD and Master degrees in Beijing University of Technology. As a visiting scholar, she also worked at the University of Colorado at Boulder States from 2011 to 2012.  Hongling’s research is in topology optimization, structural optimization design method in multiscale and multidisciplinary optimal problems, nonlinear dynamics, material-function-structure combining design technology.

am2018Event Coordinator: Anna Madra

Anna Madra got her Ph.D. in computational mechanics at Université de Technologie Compiègne, France, and in experimental mechanics at École Polytechnique de Montréal, Canada. During her Ph.D. she developed techniques for transforming X-ray microtomographic imagery of composite materials manufactured under controlled conditions into multiscale models, suitable for simulation and subsequent optimization of the manufacturing process. Presently, a Postdoctoral Associate at the MIT Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and a resident researcher at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington D.C., she is continuing her efforts to numerically represent composite materials based on X-ray microtomography, but this time to characterize observed failure mechanisms.

SheidaeiMentoring/Diversity Officer: Azadeh Sheidaei

Azadeh Sheidaei is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, Iowa State University, Ames (ISU). She obtained her M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan State University in 2009 and 2015, respectively. Dr. Sheidaei’s main research area is “multiscale characterization and computational modeling of advanced material systems such as polymer reinforced composites”. During her graduate study at MSU (2009-2015), she worked at Composite Vehicle Research Center (CVRC) where she worked on numerous research and industrial projects. Those span over the areas of structural integrity of composites, development of constitutive models and computational tools to predict the mechanical behavior of novel materials such as nanocomposites, computational modeling of soft tissue and power sources such as lithium-ion battery and fuel cells.

Anjali SandipAwards & Visibility Officer: Anjali Sandip

Anjali is a Senior Lecturer in the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of North Dakota.  Her primary research interest is computational mechanics and its applications, ranging from hydraulic fracturing to stereo lithography.  She is currently developing open-source integrated computational environments for multi-physics/phase/scale modeling, optimization and uncertainty quantification.  Prior to her current position, she was a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Nebraska where she developed patient-specific computational models of the superficial femoral artery/ stent interaction to treat peripheral artery disease.  Anjali earned her Ph.D. degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Kansas.