Michael P. Brenner named Simons Investigator
July 24, 2012
Inaugural program offers SEAS faculty member five-year appointment with $100,000 of research support per year
The Simons Foundation has appointed Michael P. Brenner, Glover Professor of Applied Mathematics and Applied Physics at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), a Simons Investigator.
The program, in its inaugural year, offers an appointment of five years with a grant of $100,000 for research support per year (with the possibly of renewal for five additional years). A distinguished panel of scientists in physics chose Brenner for the award after a careful nomination and vetting process.
As a Simons Investigator, he will attend the foundation's annual meetings, where he will present his research and interact with other investigators.
Brenner received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Chicago in 1994 and came to Harvard in 2001 after six years as a faculty member in applied mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Over the past 10 years, Brenner’s research has focused primarily on theoretical modeling in physical sciences and engineering. Problems he has tackled include the breaking of fluid droplets, sonoluminescence (the production of light from very high-pressure gas bubbles in liquid), the sedimentation of small particles, and electrospinning (a materials technique for producing small fibers).
Recently, Brenner has branched into an even broader spectrum of fields, from atmospheric chemistry (developing algorithms to accelerate simulations of global pollution) to materials science (understanding the limitations of self assembly and pattern formation) and physiology (exploring voltage-gated ion channels and hemoglobin).
Brenner, who was a Fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study during 2011-12, also serves as the Area Dean for Applied Mathematics at SEAS. Along with colleague David Weitz, Mallinckrodt Professor of Physics and of Applied Physics, he is a co-creator of the famed "Science and Cooking" General Education Course.
In addition to his appointment at SEAS, Brenner is a Kavli Scholar at the Kavli Institute for Bionano Science & Technology at Harvard University, a Faculty Associate at the Harvard University Center for the Environment, and a participant in the Materials Research Science and Engineering Center at Harvard.
Brenner's past honors and awards include a Harvard College Professorship; the George Ledlie Prize (given by the President and Fellows of Harvard College); and the McDonald Award for Excellence in Mentoring and Advising.
About the Simons Foundation
The Simons Foundation is a private foundation based in New York City, incorporated in 1994 by Jim and Marilyn Simons.
The Simons Foundation’s mission is to advance the frontiers of research in mathematics and the basic sciences. It sponsors a range of programs that aim to promote a deeper understanding of our world.