News - 2015 - 2015

faculty spotlight

Ching-Yao Lai, Assistant Professor of Geosciences and Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (AOS)

Research Summary:  Lai studies fundamental questions in fluid dynamics, climate science, and geophysics by integrating physical and machine-learned models with both experimental and observational data. Her research addresses challenges facing the world, such as advancing our scientific knowledge of ice dynamics under climate change.  Lai uses mathematical models, experiments, simulations, and machine learning tools to study the complex interactions between fluids and elasticity and their interfacial dynamics, such as multiphase flows, flows in deformable structures, and cracks. In particular, her recent work combines deep-learning and physics-based models to predict the disintegration of ice shelves in a warming climate.

Group: Lai Research Group


Yao Lai, Assistant Professor of Geosciences
Assistant Professor Ching-Yao Lai

Biography: Ching-Yao Lai is an Assistant Professor jointly appointed in Geoscience (GEO) and Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (AOS). She is also an Associated Faculty of the High Meadows Environmental Institute (HMEI) and Affiliated Faculty of the Program in Statistics and Machine Learning (SML) at Princeton University. Yao did her undergraduate study (2013) in Physics at National Taiwan University, Ph.D. (2018) in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) at Princeton University, and postdoctoral research in earth science at Lamont Earth Observatory at Columbia University. She grew up in Taiwan.

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More recent articles

Monday, Nov 9, 2015
The Department of Geosciences and Princeton University congratulates Jahnavi N. Punekar on successfully defending her Ph.D. thesis.
Monday, Nov 9, 2015
Last week, NASA scientists published a study in the "Journal of Glaciology" claiming that the continent of Antarctica is gaining ice, rather than losing it, to the tune of 82 gigatons per year from 2003 to 2008. Geoscientist Christopher Harig of Princeton University defends GRACE measurements and the finding that Antarctica is losing mass, and...
Thursday, Nov 5, 2015
A collection of studies examined extreme weather events last year, to look for signs that climate change was a cause or contributor. The papers are part of a broader effort to recognize the effects of climate change as the world warms.
Tuesday, Nov 3, 2015
The interplay of all the different kinds of warming going on in the Pacific at the moment can be difficult to sort out. Geosciences Lect. Gabriel Vecchi likened the challenge to the board game Clue: “There’s all these suspects, and we have them all in the room right now,” he said. “The key is to go and systematically figure out who was where and...
Wednesday, Oct 14, 2015
In 2011, an influx of remote sensing data from satellites scanning the African savannas revealed a mystery: these rolling grasslands, with their heavy rainfalls and spells of drought, were home to significantly fewer trees than researchers had previously expected given the biome’s high annual precipitation. In fact, the 2011 study found that the...