Rice ECE welcomes four new faculty members
Rice Electrical and Computer Engineering department is excited to welcome four new faculty members to the department, building strengths in diverse areas of nanophotoics, large-scale network algorithms, computer vision and next-generation wireless.
, current Texas Instruments Research Assistant Professor, will start as tenure-track faculty in July 1, 2020. Alabastri started his career with Rice ECE in 2015, first as a Postdoctoral Fellow (2015-2016), then as a NEWT Postdoctoral Leadership Fellow (2016-2018) working on theoretical nanophotonics and solar distillation devices with Peter Nordlander in Physics and Astronomy. For the past two years, he served as a TI Research Assistant Professor focusing on nanophotonics and computational modeling of photo-thermal interactions in complex nanostructures.
His research explores nanoscale photo-thermal phenomena and their applications in real-world macroscale systems, with current focus on light-to-heat conversion, exploring the mechanisms to maximize heat dissipation in nanoparticle based systems. During his time at Rice, he has worked on Nanophotonics Enabled Solar Membrane Distillation modules and collaborated with the European Space Agency to realize predictive models of energy-conversion systems such as Photon Enhanced Thermionic Emission devices.
Cesar Uribe, starting his appointment as tenure-track faculty on January 1, 2021, works on the analysis of algorithms for distributed inference and social learning. He research focuses on the fundamental limits of distributed optimization over networks. As part of the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems (LIDS), Uribe spent the past two years with MIT’s Prof. Ali Jadbabaie. His research goal at Rice is to advance the mathematical foundations of optimization and to develop efficient algorithms to solve huge-scale data processing and analysis problems over networks.
Guha Balakrishnan will start as an assistant professor on July 1, 2021. Balakrishnan’s research focus is on developing algorithms that learn or reason through image synthesis. Working in William T. Freeman’s group at MIT, Balakrishnan has also focused on medical research. His medical-related research includes non-invasive vital signs measurement from videos and fast learning-based registration of medical images.
has started as an assistant research professor, as of January 2020. His research focus is wireless systems and networking and mobile computing. Currently serving as the technical lead for the Rice RENEW
project (Reconfigurable Eco-system for Next-generation End-to-end Wireless), Doost-Mohammady continues to build on his expertise in wireless systems architecture.
“The new faculty demonstrate Rice’s commitment to strong growth in engineering, especially ECE,” said Ashu Sabharwal, Department Chair and Earnest D. Butcher Professor of Engineering. He added “Rice ECE ranks in top five nationally in research funding, citations and awards per faculty. The new faculty will continue the momentum by adding new dimensions to the department.”