Interdisciplinary approach earns NCSA fellowship
Fereshteh Sabet has had a bit of a system upgrade. She has moved from doing simulations on a PC to running them on the Blue Waters supercomputer at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications on campus.
Sabet was named an NCSA Materials and Manufacturing Graduate Student Fellow. Her current PhD work, with MechSE Professor Iwona Jasiuk, focuses on modeling of biological and engineering materials. These involve the fields of biomechanics, solid mechanics, and computational resources.
“I think engineering, medicine, and biology are really perfect matches for interdisciplinary research,” Sabet said. “Both sides can benefit from each other.”
Sabet said her modeling will have a clinical impact and the materials will create predictable tools.
“With modeling, we build predictable tools and compare with experiments; the models will be much more cost-effective, and you have a lot more freedom to explore different types of scenarios that may happen,” Sabet said. “And it also gives us ideas for the design of new materials. So I will learn from both nature and biology, and I will also apply engineering techniques to the field of medicine.”
So far, Sabet has worked with a number of NCSA experts and programs and has benefited from their different experiences and expertise, and she has enjoyed the interdisciplinary approach to medical research. “I find this really challenging—and I like to challenge myself—so that’s something I like about this field,” Sabet said.
NCSA’s Fellowship program provides opportunities for faculty and researchers at Illinois to catalyze and develop long-term research collaborations between Illinois departments, research units, and NCSA. The competitive program provides seed funding for demonstration or start-up projects, workshops, and other activities with the potential to lead to longer-term collaborations around research, development, and education, with particular interest in projects that can lead to stimulating demos of extreme-scale cyberinfrastructure.
Fellows are provided a zero-percent NCSA appointment and are responsible for contributing to the center’s academic core, play a significant role in advising on center strategy, contribute to and take part in large collaborative funding efforts, and act as liaisons with their home departments.
Materials and Manufacturing is one of NCSA’s six thematic areas of interdisciplinary research.