News & Events


Professor Martel Passes Away


Hardy C. Martel, Professor of Electrical Engineering, emeritus, passed away on March 29 at his home in Altadena. He was 85. "He was one of the first at Caltech to do research on information science and communications technology," says Roy Gould, the Simon Ramo Professor of Engineering, Emeritus, a lifelong friend and colleague of Martel. "His strength was in his basic, intuitive grasp of ideas and how things worked." [Caltech Feature] [E&S Article in pdf]

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Professor Brennen Elected to Fellow of ASME


Christopher E. Brennen, Richard L. and Dorothy M. Hayman Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Emeritus, has been elected to the grade of Fellow at ASME. The Fellow grade recognizes significant engineering achievements and contributions to the engineering profession. Professor Brennen is one of only 3068 Fellows out of 121,087 ASME members.

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Weak Electrical Fields in the Brain Help Neurons Fire Together


Costas Anastassiou, a postdoctoral scholar working with Professor Christof Koch, and colleagues have found that coordinated behavior occurs in the brain whether or not neurons are actually connected via synapses.  To tease out the effects, Anastassiou and his colleagues, focused on strong but slowly oscillating fields, called local field potentials (LFP), that arise from neural circuits composed of just a few rat brain cells.  Measuring those fields and their effects required positioning a cluster of tiny electrodes within a volume equivalent to that of a single cell body—and at distances of less than 50 millionths of a meter from one another. [Caltech Press Release]

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EAS Remembers Thad Vreeland Jr.


Thad Vreeland Jr., Professor of Materials Science, Emeritus, passed away on August 9th, 2010. "Thad was a great scientist and he interacted well with various researchers and engineers across campus," says Ares Rosakis, the Theodore von Kármán Professor of Aeronautics, professor of mechanical engineering, and chair of the Division of Engineering and Applied Science, "particularly with the solid mechanics group associated both with aeronautics and mechanical engineering." [Caltech Press Release]

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EAS Remembers Professor Jerrold Marsden


Jerrold Marsden, Carl F Braun Professor of Engineering, Control and Dynamical Systems, and Applied and Computational Mathematics, passed away on Tuesday September 21, 2010. "Jerry was an amazing intellectual, a gifted professor and one of the finest colleagues that I have met. He was a great mentor to many of our Caltech students and our younger colleagues. We will miss him greatly and remember him always." said Ares Rosakis, Chair of the Division of Engineering and Applied Science. [Caltech Press Release]

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Kristjan Gudmundsson Receives 2010 Richard B. Chapman Memorial Award


Kristjan Gudmundsson, a graduate student working with Tim Colonius, is the recipient of the 2010 Richard B. Chapman Memorial Award. The award is given to an EAS graduate student in hydrodynamics who has distinguished himself or herself in research.

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Christof Koch and Pietro Perona Found that Human Decisions are Influenced by Both Value and Saliency


Christof Koch, Lois and Victor Troendle Professor of Cognitive and Behavioral Biology and Professor of Computation and Neural Systems, Pietro Perona, Allen E. Puckett Professor of Electrical Engineering, and colleagues' research on decision making and visual saliency has found that human decisions are influenced by both value and saliency in a way that is consistent with the ideal Bayesian observer. [Abstract]

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ME19 Ends With a Big Splash!


Christopher E. Brennen, Richard L. and Dorothy M. Hayman Professor of Mechanical Engineering, ends his ME19 class with a big splash! He has been a Caltech faculty member for more than 40 years and has published numerous papers and books in a wide variety of topics involving fluid mechanics. Professor Brennen will be retiring on April 1st, 2010.

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EAS Remembers David Barish


Aeronautics alumni David Barish, who among other accomplishments was the developer the paraglider, passed away on December 15, 2009. [New York Times Article]

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EAS Remembers Tsien Hsue-Shen


Qian Xuesen (also known as Tsien Hsue-Shen) (Aeronautics PhD '39), passed away on October 31, 2009. He was a student of Professor Theodore von Kármán and one of the founders of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "Dr. Tsien Hsue-Shen was one of the great scientist-engineers of the past century. He played an important role in the history of Caltech and the development of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. We are also very proud of his many accomplishments in China." said President Chameau. [Caltech Archives]

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