# People

**Principal Investigator**

## Marco Bernardi - CV

Marco Bernardi is a Professor of Applied Physics, Physics and Materials Science at Caltech. He received his Ph.D. in Materials Science from MIT, where he worked with Jeff Grossman on novel materials and physical processes for energy conversion. He was a postdoc in the Physics Department at UC Berkeley, where working with Steven Louie and Jeffrey Neaton he developed new quantitative approaches to study the dynamics of excited electrons in materials. Marco's group at Caltech develops quantum mechanical calculations to understand electron interactions and dynamics in condensed matter, with application to (opto)electronics, energy, ultrafast science and quantum technology. Among other recognitions, Marco received the Franco Strazzabosco Award in 2020, the NSF CAREER Award in 2018, the AFOSR Young Investigator Award in 2017, the Psi-K Volker Heine Young Investigator Award for electronic structure theory in 2015, and the Intel Ph.D. Fellowship in 2013. His work favors quantitative analysis and accurate computational approaches to understand the physics and potential applications of novel materials, charting new directions in materials theory.

**Email:** bmarco at caltech.edu

**Phone:** (626) 395-2515

**Address:** Caltech, 1200 E California Blvd. MC 107-81, Pasadena CA, 91125

**Postdocs**

## Shiyu Peng

Shi-Yu obtained his BS degree in Physics from Liyun college at Beijing Normal University, and then received his Ph.D. from the Institute of Physics in Beijing in January 2023 with a thesis titled “LDA+Gutzwiller method and its applications in strongly correlated electronic systems”. Shi-Yu joined our group in July 2023. His current research focuses on the development of new efficient methods to explore electron-phonon coupling in correlated electron systems, as well as using state-of-art numerical tools to study novel phenomena including phase transition, transport and magnetism in quantum materials.

**Email:** sypeng23 at caltech.edu

**Students**

## Benjamin K. Chang

Benjamin received B.S. in Interdisciplinary Sciences from National Tsing Hua University, and M.S. in Physics from National Taiwan University under the supervision of Prof. Mei-Yin Chou. Before Caltech, He was a research assistant at the Institute of Atomic and Molecular Sciences at Academia Sinica where he continued his master's study on high-perfomance thermoelectric materials. Benjamin joined Caltech Applied Physics in 2018. His current research involves the development and application of computational methods for systems with strong correlation and electron-phonon interactions.

**Email:** bkchang at caltech.edu

## Dhruv Desai

Dhruv received his BS in Engineering Physics from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2019. His undergraduate research was focused on image reconstruction of high density materials using Muon tomography. He also interned at Fermilab for a summer, working on computational studies of beam diffusion measurements using beam echoes. Dhruv joined the Caltech Applied Physics program in 2019, and his current research involves first principles calculation of magneto-transport phenomena in semiconductors and topological semimetals.

**Email:** ddesai at caltech.edu

## Kelly Yao

Kelly received her BS in Physics from Rice University in 2019. In her undergraduate research she did theoretical investigations on the collisional properties of ultracold nonreactive molecules. For a summer she also worked on modeling charge distributions of twisted bilayer graphene at Cornell University. Kelly joined the Caltech Physics program in 2019, and her current research interest focuses on first-principle calculation of electron-phonon dynamics.

**Email:** jyyao at caltech.edu

## Khoa Le

Khoa obtained his BS in Mathematics and Chemistry at University of Houston in 2020. In his undergraduate research, he studied Förster resonance energy transfer in fluorescent protein, and singlet fission dynamics for a pair of molecules. In Summer 2019, Khoa also worked at NIST Boulder to study atomic flux circuits for the manufacture of chip-scale atomic devices. Khoa joined Caltech Chemistry program in 2020 and he is currently focusing on the study of magnon and phonon interaction in magnetic materials.

**Email:** kle at caltech.edu

## Yao Luo

Yao obtained his BS degree in Physics at Nanjing University (NJU). His undergraduate research was focused on phase transitions in strongly correlated systems using quantum many-body techniques and functional renormalization (fRG) under the surpervision of Prof. Qianghua Wang. Yao entered the graduate program in Caltech Applied Physics in 2021. His current research interests include developing many-body first-principles methods for polarons.

**Email:** yluo7 at caltech.edu

## David Abramovitch

David received his BA in physics from the University of California Berkeley in 2021. He performed undergraduate research in the group of Liang Tan at LBNL which focused on the interplay of anharmonic lattice dynamics and electronic structure in halide perovskites using tight binding models. David entered the Caltech graduate program in applied physics in 2021. His research interests include combining dynamical mean field theory and ab initio electron phonon methods to treat strongly correlated materials.

**Email:** dabramovitch at caltech.edu

## Shaelyn Iyer

Shaelyn received her BS degree in Chemical Engineering with a minor in Physics from Northwestern University. Her undergraduate research involved combining high throughput density functional theory and machine learning to predict the properties of materials such as metal-organic frameworks and catalysts. For a summer she computationally studied defects in nanodiamonds for quantum sensing applications. Shaelyn joined the Caltech Applied Physics program in 2021. Her current research involves first principles calculations of spin transport phenomena in semiconductors.

**Email:** smiyer at caltech.edu

## Ina M. Sorensen

Ina received her MEng in Materials Science at the University of Oxford in 2015. In her undergraduate research she worked on simulating scanning transmission electron microscopes and the interplay between strain and interband transitions. In 2016 she received an MSc in Computer Animation and Visual Effects from Bournemouth University and went on to work with Oliver James at the visual effects studio DNeg. She spent several years in industry working as a R&D Software Developer before entering the Caltech graduate programme in physics in 2019. Her current research interests include electron-electron scattering and hydrodynamics.

**Email:** isorense at caltech.edu

## Sergei Kliavinek

Sergei received his BS degree in Applied Mathematics and Physics from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology. His undergraduate research focused on the molecular dynamic study of the glass transition process in metals. In 2022, Sergei received his MSc in Computational Science and Engineering at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, where he did research on the implementation and application of machine learning methods for materials property modeling. In January 2023, Sergei started his PhD program at Caltech. His research focuses on the use of deep learning methods for modeling electronic transport in materials

**Email:** skliavin at caltech.edu

**Former Group Members**

** Postdocs **

**Ivan Maliyov (2020-2023)** – Postdoctoral Researcher at CNRS Aix-Marseille University, France.

**Sergio Pineda-Flores (2021-2022)** – Finance

**Shiyuan Gao (2019-2022)** – Research Scientist at Johns Hopkins University

**Jin-Jian Zhou (2016-2020)** – Assistant Professor of Physics at Beijing Institute of Technology

**Luis Agapito (2015-2018)** – Software Engineer at Synopsis, Inc.

**Raffaello Bianco (2018-2019)** – Research Scientist at University of Modena, Italy

** Graduate Students **

**Vatsal Jhalani (2014-2019)** – Postdoctoral Researcher at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)

**Nien-En Lee (2015-2020)** – Engineer at MediaTek, Inc.

**I-Te Lu (2014-2020)** – Postdoctoral Fellow at Max Planck Institute for the Structure of Matter, Hamburg

**Hsiao-Yi Chen (2016-2021)** – Postdoctoral Fellow at RIKEN, Japan

**Xiao Tong (2017-2022)** –

**Jinsoo Park (2017-2022)** – Postdoctoral Fellow at University of Chicago

### ** Undergraduate **

**Kyle Frohna (2016) ** – Graduate Student at Cambridge University

**Bahdan Zviazhynski (2019)** – Graduate Student at Cambridge University

**Shreshth Malik (2019)** – Graduate Student at University College London