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Researchers Help Generate First Image of Black Hole at the Center of Our Galaxy

05-12-22

A multi-institution collaboration that includes a Caltech-led imaging team has generated the first image of the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way galaxy. This result provides conclusive evidence that the body, known as Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*, pronounced "sadge-ay-star"), is indeed a black hole and yields valuable clues about the workings of such massive objects, which are thought to reside at the center of most galaxies. "We not only recovered an image of Sgr A*, but also characterized the uncertainty of features in the image," says He Sun. "This analysis helped the team deliver scientific results with some guarantees." [Caltech story]

Tags: EE research highlights CMS Katie Bouman He Sun Junhan Kim Aviad Levis

Rapid Adaptation of Deep Learning Teaches Drones to Survive Any Weather

05-05-22

To be truly useful, drones—that is, autonomous flying vehicles—will need to learn to navigate real-world weather and wind conditions. A team of engineers from Caltech has developed Neural-Fly, a deep-learning method that can help drones cope with new and unknown wind conditions in real time just by updating a few key parameters. [Caltech story]

Tags: research highlights GALCIT CMS Yisong Yue Soon-Jo Chung Animashree Anandkumar Xichen Shi Guanya Shi Michael O'Connell Kamyar Azizzadenesheli

Caltech Launches Merkin Center for Pure and Applied Mathematics

05-02-22

Caltech trustee Richard Merkin, MD, founder and chief executive officer of the Heritage Provider Network, has made a generous gift to establish a center for pure and applied mathematics at Caltech. The new Richard N. Merkin Center for Pure and Applied Mathematics will catalyze scientific progress by creating a hub for mathematical research on campus. The center will bridge disciplines, connecting research in disparate areas that center on the development of mathematical ideas and foundations, and amplifying campus activities in fields ranging from pure mathematics to computational biology and quantum sciences. "By forging stronger connections among the Institute's mathematics initiatives, the Merkin Center will provide researchers with new and exciting opportunities to collaborate as they tackle important scientific and technological challenges," says Provost David A. Tirrell. [Caltech story]

Tags: CMS

Konstantin Zuev Receives Humboldt Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers

04-25-22

Konstantin Zuev, Teaching Assistant Professor of Computing and Mathematical Sciences, has been awarded a Humboldt Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers. Zuev is a leading researcher in the areas of rare events analysis, network science and quantitative finance. He will join the Institute for Risk and Reliability, Leibniz Universität Hannover, to collaborate with their team on a novel access to reliability analysis by harnessing recent advances in statistical, information and data sciences.

Tags: honors CMS Konstantin Zuev

The Grid Gets Smart

04-25-22

Adaptive electric vehicle chargers and advanced battery designs are some of the ways Caltech researchers are building a more sustainable electric grid. Steven Low, Frank J. Gilloon Professor of Computing and Mathematical Sciences and Electrical Engineering, invented the Adaptive Charging Network (ACN). But Low and others warn that this grid is unprepared for the challenges of the 21st century. “The current grid will very soon hit a wall where, when we add renewable energy, it sits unused because the demand isn’t there at a time when the solar is running,” says Adam Wierman, Professor of Computing and Mathematical Sciences; Director, Information Science and Technology. That is why Caltech researchers are working on ways to break down that barrier to help empower an energy transformation. Julia R. Greer, Ruben F. and Donna Mettler Professor of Materials Science, Mechanics and Medical Engineering; Fletcher Jones Foundation Director of the Kavli Nanoscience Institute, is pushing the limits of the batteries themselves.  [Caltech story]

Tags: EE research highlights CMS Julia Greer Adam Wierman Steven Low Kimberly See

Laura Lewis Wins Goldwater Scholarship

04-18-22

Undergraduate student Laura Lewis has been awarded a 2022 Goldwater Scholarship. The Scholarship Program honoring Senator Barry Goldwater was designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue research careers in the fields of the natural sciences, engineering, and mathematics. The Goldwater Scholarship is the preeminent under-graduate award of its type in these fields. [2022 Goldwater Scholars]

Tags: honors CMS Laura Lewis

Student Team Receives First Place in Regional Student Paper Competition

04-12-22

The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) announced the winners at the 2022 Region VI Student Conference at UC Merced. A Caltech team received the first place award in the team category for the region VI student conference for their paper entitled "Design of a Lunar Architecture for Tree Traversal in Service of Cabled Exploration (LATTICE)."

Tags: honors GALCIT MCE CMS Soon-Jo Chung Kaila Coimbra Malcom Tisdale Lucas Pabarcius Calle Junker Sravani Boggaram Nathan Ng Parul Singh Tomas Wexler Robert Daigle

Student-Led Lunar Architecture Team Named Finalist in NASA Competition for Second Consecutive Year

04-12-22

Caused by collisions from asteroids, comets, and other astronomical objects, lunar craters give our moon its characteristic pockmarked façade. These craters hold the materials necessary for building sustained human settlements on the moon. Accessing the materials inside lunar craters is no easy task. NASA seeks new ways of getting around the moon that do not rely on wheels. The agency's Breakthrough, Innovative, and Game-changing (BIG) Idea Challenge asks university teams to go beyond wheeled rovers and create new solutions to the problem of traversing lunar craters. A team of more than 30 Caltech undergraduates in the Division of Engineering and Applied Science is among seven 2022 BIG Idea finalists. [Caltech story]

Tags: GALCIT MCE Harry Atwater CMS Soon-Jo Chung Brit Wylie Luis Pabon Rithvik Musuku Kaila Coimbra Polina Verkhovodova Tyler Colenbrander Lucas Pabarcius Calle Junker Sravani Boggaram Matticus Brown Sean Chang Bobby Daigle Nico Jimenez-Lozano Alec Laprevotte Joshua Lee Moya Ly Amrita Mayavaram Robert Menezes Nathan Ng Dilichi Nwankwo Jedi Alindogan Diego Attra Sulekha Kishore Aramis Mendoza Winter Pearson Jules Penot Kemal Pulungan Purvi Sehgal Parul Singh Aiden Swann Malcolm Tisdale Tomas Wexler Brooklyn Williams Benjamin Zeng Isabella Zuniga

Professor Schulman Elected SIAM Fellow

04-01-22

Leonard Schulman, Professor of Computer Science, has been elected as a 2022 SIAM Fellow for seminal contributions to coding theory, quantum computing and matrix analysis, and outstanding service. The SIAM Fellows Program recognizes members of SIAM who have made outstanding contributions to fields served by our community. [Class of 2022]

Tags: honors CMS Leonard Schulman

Professor Owhadi Elected SIAM Fellow

03-31-22

Houman Owhadi, Professor of Applied and Computational Mathematics and Control and Dynamical Systems, has been elected as a 2022 SIAM Fellow for outstanding contributions in statistical numerical approximation, kernel learning, and uncertainty quantification. The SIAM Fellows Program recognizes members of SIAM who have made outstanding contributions to fields served by our community. [Class of 2022]

Tags: honors CMS Houman Owhadi