Photo of Omar Ahmed

Omar Ahmed

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The Ahmed lab studies behavioral neural circuits and attempts to repair them when they go awry in neuropsychiatric disorders. Working with patients and with transgenic rodent models, we focus on how space, time and speed are encoded by the spatial navigation and memory circuits of the brain. We also focus on how these same circuits go wrong in addiction, epilepsy and traumatic brain injury.

In addition to electrophysiology in rodents and humans, we use imaging and photoactivation techniques to record and alter neuronal activity as rodents navigate custom-designed virtual reality environments. We also work on novel computational techniques to model and analyze our immensely large electrophysiology and imaging datasets to better understand how specific behaviors are encoded by neural circuits.

Dr. Ahmed received both his undergraduate and Ph.D. degrees in Neuroscience from Brown University. He then worked with epilepsy patients at Massachusetts General Hospital during his postdoctoral work, before joining the faculty at the University of Michigan as an Assistant Professor.

Polar plots showing the rhythmic phases of spikes fired by human neurons, revealing systematic variations across space and time.

Brendan Kochunas

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Brendan Kochunas is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Science. Dr. Kochunas work focus on high performance computing methods, especially parallel algorithms for the 3D Boltmann Transport Equation. He is the lead developer and primary author of the MPACT (Michigan Parallel Characterstics based Transport) code. Currently, leading the development of MPACT and its application within CASL ( constitutes his research activities.

Dr. Kochunas is a co-director of the Center for Scientific Software Infrastructure, and the lead instructor of MICDE course Methods and Practice of Scientific Computing. He has created a novel and integrated class curriculum that immerse U-M students in many HPC tools and resources, and teaches them to effectively use these in scientific computing research.

Chris Quintana

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Chris Quintana is an Associate Professor in the School of Education. He is a principal investigator in the Center for Highly Interactive Classrooms, Curricula, and Computing in Education. His research is focused on software-based scaffolding for middle school science students, including the development of scaffolded software tools, scaffolding frameworks for software, and learner-centered design processes. He leads the NSF Zydeco Project to explore how web-based technologies and mobile devices can be integrated to connect science classrooms and museums to expand science learning opportunities.

Profesor Quintana holds a Ph. D. in Computer Science from the University of Michigan, and is a member of MICDE’s Education committee whose goal is to continuously review and develop the institute’s educational programs and campus wide teaching of computational sciences, in and out of the classrooms.

Kenneth Powell

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Prof. Powell’s work focuses on algorithm development for fluid dynamics, aerodynamics and plasmadynamics, and the application of computational methods to problems in aerodynamics, aeroelasticicty, fluid dynamics and space environment/space weather.

Simulation results for interaction of a solar coronal mass ejection with Earth’s magnetosphere.

Simulation results for interaction of a solar coronal mass ejection with Earth’s magnetosphere.

Quentin Stout

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Most of his research and teaching involves parallel computing of some form: design of scalable algorithms and data structures; applications to numerous scientific problems such as a large multidisciplinary team modeling space weather or a small interdisciplinary group doing imputation on datasets of social preferences; and performance analysis, both experimental and analytical.  These projects have used a variety of computer architectures, ranging from tens to hundreds of thousands of cores. He also works on algorithms for abstract fine-grain parallel computer models motivated by concerns such as time/number-of-processors/peak-power tradeoffs and the constraints imposed by the fact that computation is done in 2- or 3-dimensional space. Further, he develops serial algorithms for optimizing adaptive sampling problems such as adaptive clinical trials, algorithms for isotonic regression, and various other computer science problems.

Shravan Veerapaneni

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His research group develops fast and scalable algorithms for solving differential and integral equations on complex moving geometries. Application areas of current interest include large-scale simulations of blood flow through arbitrary confined geometries, electrohydrodynamics of soft particles and heat flow on time-varying domains.

simulation of red blood cells

Snapshot from a hydrodynamic simulation of 40,000 red blood cells with the inset showing the details of a two-body interaction.