Pedram Hassanzadeh
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool
R. P. Feynman


My research interest is climate dynamics, atmospheric sciences, and geophysical fluid dynamics. I am particularly interested in using high-resolution simulations and mathematical models to understand complex atmospheric and oceanic flows. Currently, I am studying 3D vortices in rotating stratified shearing flows to understand their physics in the oceans, planetary atmospheres, and protoplanetary disks. This work is motivated by questions like what has maintained the Great Red Spot for 400 years, what is the impact of oceanic eddies on climate, and how do the stars form in accretion disks. I am also working on the optimal transport problem using numerical and analytical methods. In the past, I developed new algorithms to compute radiation heat transfer in gases.

Starting Fall 2013, I will be an Environmental Fellow at the Harvard University Center for the Environment and a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University. Joining the Atmosphere, Ocean and Climate Dynamics group, I am going to study climate change and global warming.

Email: phz [at]


  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of California at Berkeley, USA (Summer 2013)
    Supervisor: Professor Phil Marcus

  • Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering, University of California at Berkeley, USA (2008-2013)
    Advisor: Professor Phil Marcus
    Dissertation: Baroclinic Vortices in Rotating Stratified Shearing Flows: Cyclones, Anticyclones, and Zombie Vortices (PDF)

  • M.A., Mathematics, University of California at Berkeley, USA (2011-2012)
    Advisors: Professors Charlie Doering and Jon Wilkening
    Thesis: Optimal Transport from Wall to Wall (PDF)

  • Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Fellow, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, USA (Summer 2012)
    Supervisors: Professors Charlie Doering and Greg Chini
    Research: Optimal Transport from Wall to Wall (link)

  • Research Associate, University of Waterloo, Canada (2007-2008)
    Supervisor: Professor George Raithby
    Research: Experimental Study of Downward Two-Phase Flows in Large-Diameter Pipes

  • MASc., Mechanical Engineering, University of Waterloo, Canada (2005-2007)
    Advisor: Professor George Raithby
    Thesis: An Efficient Computational Method for Thermal Radiation in Participating Media (link)

  • BSc., Mechanical Engineering, University of Tehran, Iran (2001-2005)

    Honors and Awards:

  • Environmental Fellow, Center for the Environment, Harvard University, 2013-2015
  • Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Fellow, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2012
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Postgraduate Scholarship (NSERC PGS-D), 2009-2011
  • Outstanding Preliminary Examination Award, UC Berkeley, 2009
  • Jonathan Laitone Memorial Scholarship, UC Berkeley, 2009
  • Eiffel Scholarship, French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, 2005 (Declined)
  • International Graduate Student Award, University of Waterloo, 2005-2007

    movie on the left: Jupiter observed by the Cassini spacecraft in 2000 (credit: NASA). The features of Jupiter have changed a lot since then, just google it!
    picture in the middle: me, in the Muir beach overlook, CA
    movie on the right: evolution of a random vorticity field into a few strong coherent vortices in a strongly rotating stratified inviscid flow. This is due to the inverse cascade (3D simulation: resolution 256^3, 4 days using 256 CPUs).