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September 26, 2008
BATON ROUGE, La., Sept. 25 -- LSU Provost Astrid Merget and Vice Chancellor of Research & Economic Development Brooks Keel appointed professors Stephen David Beck and Jorge Pullin as interim co-directors for the LSU Center for Computation & Technology, or CCT.
CCT is an interdisciplinary center using advanced computational resources to aid University research and develop solutions benefitting both academia and industry.
Beck currently heads the CCT Laboratory for Creative Arts & Technologies and is Professor of Composition and Computer Music at in the LSU School of Music. Pullin is the Horace Hearne Chair in Theoretical Physics in the LSU Department of Physics & Astronomy, and director of the Horace Hearne Institute for Theoretical Physics. Both men have worked within the CCT since its inception in 2003.
"Professors Beck and Pullin bring a breadth of experience in applying computational technology to diverse and important areas of research," Keel said. "Their leadership at the CCT will boost our efforts to foster a multidisciplinary perspective in the computational sciences."
Beck and Pullin will jointly lead CCT while the University undertakes an international search to replace former director Ed Seidel, who accepted a position as the National Science Foundation's Director of the Office of Cyberinfrastructure starting Sept. 1.
The CCT search committee will be chaired by Kevin Carman, dean of the College of Basic Sciences, and co-chaired by Joel Tohline, professor of physics & astronomy and a senior faculty member at CCT. Both Beck and Pullin will be involved in the search process.
"Jorge and I are honored to lead the center through this transformative period," said Beck. "We look forward to working with faculty across the University, using the CCT's computational resources to advance scientific discovery, creativity, economic development and research opportunities at LSU."
Added Pullin, "We are confident that during this period of change, the CCT will not just maintain, but in fact exceed the momentum built up during the past five years. We will continue pressing forward with new and innovative solutions in all areas of academia."
Stephen David Beck received his Ph.D. in music composition and theory from the University of California Los Angeles in 1988 and has been a professor with the LSU School of Music since that year. He held a Fulbright fellowship in 1985-86 to conduct research at the Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM) in Paris, France.
Beck's specialty is electro-acoustic and computer music, and his current research includes sound diffusion systems, high-performance computing applications for music, and virtual music instruments, which are systems of interactive computer programs that extend and expand the performance capabilities of acoustic instruments.
At CCT, Beck created the Laboratory for Creative Arts & Technologies, which applies high-performance computing applications to emerging areas of the arts and humanities, such as music, animation, digital art and video game development. He also leads a focus area in Cultural Computing and hosts the CCT's Computing the Arts & Humanities lecture series, bringing distinguished researchers from this field to campus.
Beck is a principal investigator for AVATAR: Arts, Visualization, Advanced Technologies and Research, a campuswide multidisciplinary hiring initiative that will bring top faculty to LSU to create new curricula in digital media. The AVATAR hiring initiative, approved in Spring 2008, was an integral part of EA Sports' decision to locate its North American quality control and testing facility at LSU's South Campus.
Jorge Pullin is the Horace Hearne Chair in Theoretical Physics at the Department of Physics & Astronomy and also directs the Horace Hearne Institute for Theoretical Physics. His research interests cover many aspects of gravitational physics, including black hole collisions and quantum gravity.
Pullin attended the University of Buenos Aires to study electrical engineering and obtained his Ph.D. in physics from the Instituto Balseiro, National Commission of Atomic Energy in Bariloche, Argentina, through the University of Cordoba. Prior to arriving at LSU in 2001, he worked at Syracuse University, University of Utah and Penn State University. He accepted a joint faculty appointment with the CCT in 2003, where he works with the numerical relativity research group.
Pullin is a fellow of both the American Physical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He recently has been elected a corresponding member of the Latin American Academy of Sciences, the Mexican Academy of Sciences, and of the National Academy of Sciences of Argentina.
For more information on CCT activities, visit www.cct.lsu.edu or contact CCT Manager of Public Relations Kristen Sunde at 225-578-3469.
Source: Louisiana State University
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