grid of new faculty headshots and research icons

Meet Pratt's New Faculty for 2017-2018

Duke Engineering is an ambitious community where the best and brightest minds are invited to devise creative solutions to the world’s greatest challenges. With 15 outstanding tenured/tenure track faculty joining us in 2017-2018, we continue to add depth and breadth to our research focus areas, while enhancing teaching and mentorship for our students. Learn more about the exciting work of our newest faculty members in the profiles below.

data iconData Science, Advanced Computing & Intelligent Systems

Leila Bridgeman

Leila Bridgeman: Controlling Tomorrow's Smart Networks and Machines

Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science (January 2018)

Leila Bridgeman’s research builds on George Zames’s foundational work, exploring how the theory of conic sectors can be used to design controllers that guarantee closed-loop input-output stability when more conventional methods fail to apply. Her work has considered applications in robotic, process control, and time-delay systems. With collaborators, Dr. Bridgeman is working on novel applications of model predictive control in networked systems, vehicle control, heating, and ventilation.

Kenneth Brown

Kenneth Brown: Connecting Quantum Systems to Computers and the Cosmos

Associate Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering (January 2018)

Kenneth Brown joins a growing effort at Duke to build a reliable, scalable quantum computer using ion traps—while also applying the technology to other fields from astrophysics to biomedical engineering.

David Carlson

David Carlson: Generating Scientific Understanding from Machine Learning

Assistant Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering (July 2017)

David Carlson is a data scientist who tailors machine-learning algorithms to a wide variety of projects in population and environmental health who will connect researchers campus-wide. He works to design transparent algorithms that reveal their inner workings as well as their predictive results. With this information, researchers can then design new experiments to dial in on scientific knowledge.

Roarke Horstmeyer

Roarke Horstmeyer: Innovating the Future of Microscopy

Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering (July 2018)

Roarke Horstmeyer is interested in exploring new ways to capture and process biomedical images. He develops microscopes, cameras and computer algorithms for a wide range of applications, from forming 3D reconstructions of organisms to detecting neurons deep within tissue. His work lies at the intersection of optics, biology, signal processing and optimization.

Iman Marvian

Iman Marvian: Maximizing the Impact of Quantum Computing

Assistant Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering and Physics (January 2018)

Iman Marvian’s research focuses on quantum information and computation theory. He has worked on a wide range of topics in this field, including quantum algorithms, quantum error suppression, open quantum systems, quantum resource theories and quantum thermodynamics. He also works to find applications for ideas and techniques developed in quantum information theory in the rest of the physics realm, particularly in many-body systems and quantum gravity.

Michael Rubinstein

Michael Rubinstein: A Collaborative Approach to Soft-Matter Engineering and Science

Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science, Biomedical Engineering, Chemistry and Physics (January 2018)

Dr. Rubinstein uses analytical theory, computer simulations and experiments to develop molecular-level understanding of the properties of polymeric systems from DNA and proteins to plastics and rubber, and to design new systems with even more interesting and useful properties.

Vahid Tarokh

Vahid Tarokh: Turning Patterns in Data into Products and Predictions

Rhodes Family Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering (January 2018)

Vahid Tarokh’s work in communications and signal processing includes helping invent the space-time codes now used in most cellular phones, and developing foundational approaches to cognitive radios and distributed communication techniques for sharing valuable spectral resources. Dr. Tarokh’s research has since evolved to pursuing new formulations and approaches to getting the most out of datasets. Current projects focus on representation, modeling, inference and prediction from data, such as determining how different people will respond to exposure to certain viruses, predicting rare events from small amounts of data, formulation and calculation of limits of learning from observations, and privacy and security for the Internet of Things.

systems iconResilient Systems & Sustainability

Johann Guilleminot

Johann Guilleminot: Accounting for Variabilities That Matter

Assistant Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering (July 2017)

Johann Guilleminot’s research focuses on topics at the interface of uncertainty quantification, computational mechanics and materials science. He develops methods to improve the robustness and predictive capabilities of simulations under various types of uncertainties, with applications in design optimization and biomechanics for instance. Recently, he pioneered the construction of information-theoretic probabilistic models in nonlinear mechanics; these novel representations were shown to faithfully reproduce the patient-to-patient variability observed in living tissues, such as the brain and liver.

Manolis Veveakis

Manolis Veveakis: Theoretical and Applied Geomechanics

Assistant Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering (July 2018)

Manolis Veveakis’s research interests include geomechanics, theoretical and applied mechanics, and thermodynamics, with emphasis in multiphysical modeling of plasticity of solids, solid-fluid interactions, friction laws and rheology of geomaterials.

materials iconMaterials Development & Discovery

Gaurav Arya

Gaurav Arya: Modeling Soft Matter with Hard Calculations

Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science (July 2017)

Dr. Arya models the motion and interactions of atoms and molecules. He seeks to predict macroscopic properties of soft matter (such as rubber, skin cells, DNA, plastics and gels) for applications ranging from solar energy to sensing to cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Catherine Brinson

Catherine Brinson: Finding Hard Answers to Soft Matter

Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science (September 2017)

Dr. Brinson combines computational models, data science and physical experiments to lay the groundwork for developing new soft matter materials for applications ranging from cell phones to airplanes to biomedical devices.

Christine Payne

Christine Payne: Investigating Interactions between Cells and Engineered Materials

Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science (January 2018)

Dr. Payne studies the complex ways cells interact with engineered materials to understand how nanoparticles affect human health and to design flexible, electrically active polymers for biomedical applications.

Michael Rubinstein

Michael Rubinstein: A Collaborative Approach to Soft-Matter Engineering and Science

Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science, Biomedical Engineering, Chemistry and Physics (January 2018)

Dr. Rubinstein uses analytical theory, computer simulations and experiments to develop molecular-level understanding of the properties of polymeric systems from DNA and proteins to plastics and rubber, and to design new systems with even more interesting and useful properties.

Tatiana Segura

Tatiana Segura: Promoting Healing and Healthy Tissue

Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Dermatology and Neurology (March 2018)
MEDx Investigator

Dr. Segura engineers soft matter hydrogel biomaterials that support and promote cell growth to unlock the body’s innate ability to repair damaged or diseased tissue.

Shyni Varghese

Shyni Varghese: Making Miniature Models of Muscles, Bones and Tumors

Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science, and Orthopaedic Surgery (July 2017)
MEDx Investigator

Shyni Varghese is a leader in the field of biomaterials and stem cells. As Duke's first MEDx Investigator, she will demonstrate just how powerful collaboration between doctors and engineers can become. At Duke, she will continue to develop her research in three major areas—musculoskeletal tissue repair, disease biophysics, and organoids and organ-on-a-chip technology.

health iconPersonal, Environmental & Population Health Design

Roarke Horstmeyer

Roarke Horstmeyer: Innovating the Future of Microscopy

Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering (July 2018)

Roarke Horstmeyer is interested in exploring new ways to capture and process biomedical images. He develops microscopes, cameras and computer algorithms for a wide range of applications, from forming 3D reconstructions of organisms to detecting neurons deep within tissue. His work lies at the intersection of optics, biology, signal processing and optimization.

Michael Rubinstein

Michael Rubinstein: A Collaborative Approach to Soft-Matter Engineering and Science

Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science, Biomedical Engineering, Chemistry and Physics (January 2018)

Dr. Rubinstein uses computer simulations to better understand the properties of polymeric systems that comprise materials from DNA and proteins to plastics and rubber, and to design new systems with even more interesting and useful properties.

Tatiana Segura

Tatiana Segura: Promoting Healing and Healthy Tissue

Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Dermatology and Neurology (March 2018)
MEDx Investigator

Dr. Segura engineers soft matter hydrogel biomaterials that support and promote cell growth to unlock the body’s innate ability to repair damaged or diseased tissue.

Michael Tadross

Michael Tadross: Targeting Neuropharmacology with Molecular GPS Technologies

Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering (July 2017)

Michael Tadross’s research focuses on understanding neural circuits and their dysfunction, while recognizing the difficulties inherent in brain research given the complexity of synaptic and neuromodulatory communication between brain cells. His work at Duke will strive to transform the study of microcircuits by operating at the interface of tool development and deployment—creating novel methods to target molecularly specific drugs to defined cells and synapses.

Shyni Varghese

Shyni Varghese: Making Miniature Models of Muscles, Bones and Tumors

Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science, and Orthopaedic Surgery (July 2017)
MEDx Investigator

Shyni Varghese is a leader in the field of biomaterials and stem cells. As Duke's first MEDx Investigator, she will demonstrate just how powerful collaboration between doctors and engineers can become. At Duke, she will continue to develop her research in three major areas—musculoskeletal tissue repair, disease biophysics, and organoids and organ-on-a-chip technology.

New Faculty by Department

Biomedical Engineering

Civil & Environmental Engineering



Electrical & Computer Engineering

Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science

New Faculty Members from 2016-2017

New Faculty Members from 2015-2016

New Faculty Members from 2014-2015