Prior to joining ICES, I was very fortunate to work in multiple world-renown research institutes including the national Institute for Fusion Studies (IFS), the Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology (iCMB), as well as the Center for Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering (CPGE) and the Center for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics (CCBB), at The University of Texas at Austin, either during my PhD studies as a graduate research assistant or later on, as research scientist. Before starting my PhD studies at UT Austin, I gained several years of research experience in theoretical and observational High Energy Astrophysics and Cosmology, under the directions of Dr. Robert Nemiroff -- NASA GSFC scientist and professor at Michigan Tech University -- where my research focus was primarily on the theoretical and computational aspects of Gamma Ray Bursts and their possible applications as Cosmological tools. More information on my research interests is available here.


I received my Bachelor’s degree in Physics from Sharif University of Technology -- in Tehran, Persia -- which is considered as the best and the most competitive technological university of Iran and according to some informal rankings, one of the finest universities in the world preparing undergraduates. My B.Sc. thesis was in the area of Particle Astrophysics. To be specific, I investigated the Landau-Pomeranchuk-Migdal (LPM) and the GeoMagnetic Field (GMF) effects on the Muon Content of Extensive Air Showers produced by the Extremely High Energy (EHE) Cosmic Rays.


Prior to undergraduate studies at Sharif University, I had my high school education and diploma in Physics and Mathematics at National Organization for Development of Exceptional Talents (NODET) and Mofid Educational Institution which are nationally regarded as the best and the most prestigious high schools of Persia.



Personal Background

Religion Growing up in a religious but modern society in the city of Tehran, the capital of Persia, I was drawn from an early age to the mystique world of ancient religions and philosophical writings. My passion for philosophical and religious knowledge grew continuously throughout high school and college to the present day. I still read religious and philosophical scripture regularly, although less frequently than I used to in college years, mainly due to time constraints. An incomplete list of books, including religious and philosophical, that I have already read or I am currently reading, can be found on my Goodreads profile or my Google library.

Although I may not be considered religious according to the most common definitions of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, I know half of Quran by heart, and I have read the entire Old Testament and the New Testament on multiple occasions.


ScienceLiving in an academic household specially due to my father's passion for science, I have developed a sense of scientific scepticism that has often led me to question the basic tenets of any non-scientific knowledge. My interest in science -- in particular physics, astronomy and biology -- began with the first two books that my father bought me when I did not even know how to read alphabets: one on the human body factory and the other a book by Isaac Asimov on The Milky Way and Other Galaxies. These books together with other science and science-fiction books by Asimov, and later in high school, the books on the theory of Relativity, in particular Relativity by Albert Einstein, profoundly shaped my world-line and who I am today. Despite my parents' great desire, I derailed the train that my older brother and sister had already taken to Medical School and I applied only to the 6 best Physics undergraduate programs in the country and was subsequently accepted to all of them, including my first and favorite choice at Sharif University of Technology.

I was introduced to the world of information and computer programming by my father and older brother, when I was about 8 years old. By the end of elementary school, I was so impressed with and knew enough about computer software to write a few simple computer games in QBasic programming language on our first family personal computer, IBM 386. I never imagined a day I would use computer programming for scientific purposes; Nevertheless, there has not been almost a single day that I have not used scientific programming for my work and research, ever since I entered graduate school.


PoetryOther than scientific literature and interests, I have great passion for traditional Persian Poetry. Specifically, I am fond of the masterpieces by three great Persian poets: Molana (Rumi), Khayyam , and Saadi. I have read more than twice the entire Golestan and Boostan by Saadi, in addition to the first and second books of Masnavi and much of Divan Shams by Molana, and I regularly read Rubaiyat by Khayyam. Despite seemingly belonging to entirely different schools of thoughts, both Rumi (the symbol of love and Sufism) and Khayyam (the symbol of wisdom and agnosticism) have been highly influential charismatic figures in my personal life and both truly serve as my role models.

I was also introduced to the world of Persian Calligraphy at a very young age by my father and I received the first rank honor in the statewide competition of Persian calligraphy in Tehran while I was in elementary school. Although my parents then prevented me from attending the national contest (due to personal parental concerns about my safety and general health at the time), Persian calligraphy has since remained among my passion and leisure hobby.


MusicDespite still far from being a professional pianist, I have received discrete private trainings on playing piano from elementary to graduate school, with a touch on musical composition by my great pianist, violinist, composer, and poet Mr. Parviz Khamsehpour at Sharif University of Technology. Among my favorite and inspirational musicians, pianists and composers are Vangelis, Chopin, Debussy, and Ravel.


HobbiesEver since I witnessed the comet Hale-Bopp passing by the earth during my childhood, I wanted to be an astronomer and have been since fond of stargazing; still my regular hobby on clear-sky nights. I also used to have great passion for stamp collecting as a kid and I have since garnered a large collection of old Persian stamps. Soccer, badminton, swimming, skiing, and chess used to be and are still my favorite sports. Although I believe there are already too many professional photographers in the world, aside from novices, I do occasionally like photography with my Nikon D7200 camera for capturing unique moments and surrealistic natural sceneries that would normally rarely happen, as well as night-sky photography. Time-lapse photography is in particular my favorite.





I am not an active user of social media, but I can be further reached and contacted on the following social networks:


    Facebook

    Goodreads

    Google Plus

    IMDb

    Instagram

    Linkedin

    Twitter

    Vimeo


Academic / research profiles:


    Bitbucket

    Disqus

    GitHub

    Google Library

    Google Scholar

    MS Academic

    ResearchGate

    StackOverflow