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Meet Juliane Mueller, 2014 Alvarez Fellow

August 1, 2014


Juliane Mueller

As the 2014 Luis Alvarez Postdoctoral Fellow, Juliane Mueller joins Berkeley Lab’s Center for Computational Sciences and Engineering (CCSE) where she will be developing optimization algorithms for computationally expensive black-box problems. These are problems where the objective function evaluation requires time-consuming computer simulations and derivatives are not available.

“This work is important for a wide range of application problems,” says Mueller. “There are environmental applications, such as the cleaning up of contaminated groundwater at minimal cost; alternative energy applications, like generating the maximal amount of energy from hydropower dams or kites; or calibration of climate models, which involves finding better model parameters to make predictions agree better with actual observational data.”

These examples represent some of Mueller’s previous work, which she will talk about in a Computing Sciences seminar on Friday, August 29 at 1pm in Room 50F-1647.  

A native of Germany, Mueller’s interest in optimization began while she was an undergraduate at TU Bergakademie Freiberg, or Freiberg University of Mining and Technology. “My minor was industrial engineering and there were some problems where a good knowledge of optimization came in handy,” says Mueller.

In fact, she developed an optimization algorithm to solve the vehicle routing problem for her diploma thesis. This work helps companies identify cost-effective and time-efficient delivery routes for their fleet of vehicles.

Juliane Mueller rock climbing.

“I was very excited about applying my knowledge to a real problem,” says Mueller. “There are so many applications that I got to work on in the past. I believe that at Berkeley Lab I will get the opportunity work on a much larger range of optimization problems because the research areas here are so vast.”

After Germany, Mueller began her graduate studies at Tampere University of Technology in Finland, and then moved to Ithaca, NY to complete her PhD at Cornell University in applied mathematics. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time outdoors. Her hobbies include bouldering and rock climbing, cycling, running, and she hopes to pick up surfing.

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) Computing Sciences organization provides the computing and networking resources and expertise critical to advancing the Department of Energy's research missions: developing new energy sources, improving energy efficiency, developing new materials and increasing our understanding of ourselves, our world and our universe.

ESnet, the Energy Sciences Network, provides the high-bandwidth, reliable connections that link scientists at 40 DOE research sites to each other and to experimental facilities and supercomputing centers around the country. The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) powers the discoveries of 6,000 scientists at national laboratories and universities, including those at Berkeley Lab's Computational Research Division (CRD). CRD conducts research and development in mathematical modeling and simulation, algorithm design, data storage, management and analysis, computer system architecture and high-performance software implementation. NERSC and ESnet are DOE Office of Science User Facilities.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the DOE’s Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.