James (Jim) L. Beck
George W. Housner Professor of Engineering and Applied Science
Degrees and Appointments
B.Sc., University of Auckland, 1969; M.Sc., 1970; Ph.D., Caltech, 1979. Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering, 1981-87; Associate Professor, 1987-96; Professor, 1996-2011; Housner Professor, 2012-; Executive Officer for Applied Mechanics and Civil Engineering, 1993-98.
Professor Beck focuses on the development of theory and algorithms for stochastic system modeling, uncertainty propagation and Bayesian updating of dynamic systems, treating both modeling and excitation uncertainty. The primary computational tools are advanced stochastic simulation algorithms based on Markov chain Monte Carlo concepts. Some applications of current interest are the stochastic prediction of performance of structural systems under earthquakes, fast automated decision making for mitigation actions based on earthquake early warning systems, earthquake source inversions from seismic sensor networks, damage detection and assessment from structural sensor monitoring networks, and a stochastic mechanics approach to quantum mechanics.
List of Research Areas
probability logic, computational Bayesian statistics, computational stochastic dynamics, quantum stochastic mechanics, system reliability theory, Bayesian system identification, stochastic structural dynamics, stochastically robust structural control
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