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August 2013 - New Employees

August 27, 2013

Contact: Linda Vu, +1 510 495 2402, [email protected]

Christopher Daley, NERSC

Christopher Daley

As the newest member of NERSC's Advanced Technologies Group (ATG), Christopher Daley will be assessing new technologies, characterizing application workload, and evaluating the performance of key applications on current supercomputers and energy-efficient testbed systems.

Before coming to NERSC, Daley was a scientific programmer at the University of Chicago’s FLASH Center for Computational Science. In this role, he added new capabilities to the FLASH community code and worked in many aspects of HPC, including optimization, improving parallel I/O performance, debugging at large-scale and adding hybrid MPI+OpenMP support to a large code. Daley also prepared FLASH for the IBM Blue Gene/Q architecture during a joint appointment with Argonne National Laboratory (ANL).

"I feel that the HPC knowledge and experience gained at the Flash Center and ANL is great preparation for my work at ATG," says Daley. “I have been interested in computing for a long time, but my interest in HPC came when I was completing courses in computational physics during my undergraduate degree at the University of Surrey.” 

This interest inspired him to pursue a Masters of Science degree in HPC at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. Originally from Essex, England, Daley enjoys watching UK Premier League and US Major League Soccer in his spare time. He also likes to go to music concerts/ festivals and watch stand-up comedy.


Pieter Ghysels, CRD

Pieter Ghysels

As a new postdoctoral researcher in the Berkeley Lab’s Future Technologies Group (FTG), Pieter Ghysels will be working on communication-avoiding and communication-hiding sparse linear solvers, and sparse direct linear solvers using hierarchically semi-separable matrices.

Before coming to Berkeley Lab, Ghysels was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Antwerp, Belgium, where he helped create highly scalable linear solvers for future exascale supercomputers, as part of Intel’s Exascience Lab Flanders—collaboration between Intel, Imec and 5 Flemmish Universities. 

“I have always been interested in computers, and specifically in computer simulations of all possible physical phenomena,” says Ghysels. “The first time I was really impressed by a computer program was men my father showed me his program to draw the Mandelbrot fractal.” 

A native of Lier, Belgium, Ghysels graduated from the Catholic University of Leuven (KU Leuven) in 2006 with a degree in computer science. Afterward he continued on at the University, working toward a PhD in applied math and computer science. For this thesis, Ghysels collaborated with researchers in the bio-engineering department to develop multi-scale methods for modeling plant tissue.  In his spare time, he enjoys cycling and reading books by Michel Chabon, Neal Stephenson and John Irving.


John Bachan, CRD

John Bachan

This month, John Bachan joins Berkeley Lab’s Futures Technologies Group as a PGAS Systems Engineer. He will be supporting the exploratory research of execution models and application abstractions for exascale computing.

A lifelong computer science hobbyist, Bachan began his professional computer science career when he joined the University of Chicago’s FLASH Center for Computational Science two-years ago—a position he held before coming to Berkeley Lab.

“From a young age, I was interested in playing video games. This interest led to wanting to make video games, which led to appreciating math and computers science,” says Bachan. “Ultimately this journey led to the epiphany that I never want to make video games.”

A native of Michigan, Bachan earned a Bachelors degree in computer science and math at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, before moving to Chicago eight years ago. In his spare time, Bachan can be found looting the dungeons of Skyrim, grilling like a carnivore, hunting for the best pull of espresso in the Bay Area and riffing on his guitar. If anybody knows of “good metal shows,” please give him a call.

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

High performance computing plays a critical role in scientific discovery, and researchers increasingly rely on advances in computer science, mathematics, computational science, data science, and large-scale computing and networking to increase our understanding of ourselves, our planet, and our universe. Berkeley Lab’s Computing Sciences Area researches, develops, and deploys new foundations, tools, and technologies to meet these needs and to advance research across a broad range of scientific disciplines.

Founded in 1931 on the belief that the biggest scientific challenges are best addressed by teams, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and its scientists have been recognized with 13 Nobel Prizes. Today, Berkeley Lab researchers develop sustainable energy and environmental solutions, create useful new materials, advance the frontiers of computing, and probe the mysteries of life, matter, and the universe. Scientists from around the world rely on the Lab’s facilities for their own discovery science. Berkeley Lab is a multiprogram national laboratory, managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy’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 energy.gov/science.