Assistant Professor in University of Minnesota (Sept 2020)
At MIT my researched focused on the sediment transport inside a vegetation patch. Vegetation is a basic component of most natural water environments and has been widely used in river restoration, yet few practical models exist to predict the incipient motion and rate of sediment transport in a canopy. Using a LDV, a high-speed camera and a sediment-recirculating flume, I quantitatively connect the sediment motion with the flow characteristics inside vegetation canopies.
Visiting Graduate Student Nanjing Inst. of Geography and Limnology
Now at Liaocheng University
At MIT I studied the effect of submerged vegetation on wave-induced sediment resuspension. Previous studies suggest that the near-bed turbulence level is correlated with sediment resuspension. My experiment measured velocity and sediment concentration simultaneously, to determine the threshold level of turbulence needed for resuspension. In addition, I developed models to predict the level of near-bed turbulence associated with stem-wake turbulence generation.
Mangrove forests are an integral part of coastal ecosystems — they store carbon, provide habitat, and serve as a natural barrier to wave forces. My research quantified the degree to which mangrove forests dissipate tidal energy at varying growth densities and arrangements.
International Visiting Student 2016-2107
At MIT I used numerical experiments to explore how different configurations of floating treatment island impacted pollutant removal in a detention pond.
Visiting Graduate Student (2015-2016)
Current Position: State Key Laboratory of Hydraulics and Mountain River Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China
At MIT I studied the flow and deposition around a model patch of vegetation with different degrees of submergence and different blade lengths. The deposition of fine material, rich in nutrients and organic matter, is considered a precursor to growth, so the ability to predict the regions of fine-particle deposition will allow us to predict the future growth patterns in vegetated landscape.
Now at EPFL
My research uses a combination of numerical simulations (LES), lab experiments, and analytical tools to tackle a wide range of environmental problems, including pollution and sediment dispersion in aquatic vegetations, coastal protection against extreme climatic events, and aerosol transport above the terrestrial vegetations.
Graduate Student (Ph.D. 2016)
Now: Postdoctoral Fellow at Cardiff University, Wales, UK (Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship)
In some situations, vegetation and other porous structures are able to dampen wave energy and slow the progress of floodwaters, providing protection from increased rainfall and storm intensity. I seek to connect the flow and sediment transport through porous obstructions with environmental management and restoration efforts, increasing the efficiency and success of management interventions. At Cardiff University, I am working with Dr. Catherine Wilson to quantify the effect of engineered logjam installations on sediment storage and flow resistance.
Visiting Graduate Student (2015)
Now: Postdoctoral Scholar UCLA
My work uses Large Eddy Simulation (LES) to analyze the interaction between vegetation and environment. At MIT I examined the mass and momentum transfer associated with seagrass meadows and at UCLA I am studying kelp ecosystems.
Visiting Graduate Student (2014-2015)
Now: Hydraulic Engineering at Tsinghua University, Beijing, China
Vegetation patches have a significant impact on bio-ecological and geomorphic processes through momentum and mass exchange that occurs between the vegetation patch and surrounding environment. My research is focused on how suspended sediment is deposited around a vegetation patch. Using an artificial rigid canopy and changing the flow conditions, I will examine the sediment distribution around the canopy.
Visiting Scholar (2017-2019)
Current Position: Associate Professor, Sichuan University, China
At MIT I investigated how the spacing between floating islands (FTIs) deployed in series along a channel impacts the velocity field and mass removal. A large island spacing leads to a higher inflow rate into the root zone, but a smaller number of FTIs per channel length. These competing trends produce an optimum spacing, corresponding to a maximum mass removal per channel length.
For profiles of current lab members, visit the current members page.