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Thomas Sterling among three IU faculty named fellows of AAAS

CREST associate director recognized for advances in in extreme scale computing

Three faculty members from Indiana University have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a distinction that recognizes outstanding contributions to the progress of science and research.

The 2014 fellows are Edward J. Berbari, Chancellor's Professor and chair of the biomedical engineering department at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis; Thomas Sterling, professor of computer science in the School of Informatics and Computing at Indiana University Bloomington; and P. Sarita Soni, professor emerita in the School of Optometry at IU Bloomington.

Their election brings the number of AAAS fellows affiliated with Indiana University to 89.

"These three outstanding scholars have advanced science through important and original work in fields ranging from high-resolution electrocardiography to correction of vision problems to extreme-scale computing," IU President Michael A. McRobbie said. "They are highly deserving of this tremendous honor, which also brings great credit to Indiana University."

The fellows will be formally announced in the AAAS News and Notes section of the Nov. 28 issue of the journal Science. Election as a fellow is an honor bestowed upon association members by their peers. The AAAS citations of merit for the IU fellows read as follows:

  • Berbari -- For distinguished contributions to the field of cardiac electrophysiology and in particular sudden cardiac death and to bioengineering education.
  • Soni -- For distinguished contributions to vision science and for strongly and effectively promoting the advancement of scientific research as an academic administrator.
  • Sterling -- For distinguished contributions to parallel computing, especially for the development of cluster computing and for vision and leadership in extreme scale computing.

Berbari chairs the biomedical engineering department in the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI. He has conducted research in cardiac electrophysiology for over 40 years, with special interests in high-resolution electrocardiography, cardiac mapping and biophysical modeling. He served on the Whitaker Foundation Fellowship Award Committee for six years and the National Institutes of Health Surgery and Bioengineering Study Section for five years.

Sterling is chief scientist and executive associate director of the Center for Research in Extreme Scale Technologies at IU Bloomington. He has conducted research in parallel computing system structures, semantics, and operation in industry, government labs and academics. Sterling is best known as the "father of Beowulf" for his research in commodity/Linux cluster computing. He is currently engaged in research on the innovative ParalleX execution model for extreme-scale computing to establish principles guiding the development of future-generation Exascale computing systems.

Soni has conducted research on the cornea and development and correction of refractive errors, resulting in over 70 publications. She has served as vice provost for research at IU Bloomington and associate vice president for research at Indiana University, with responsibility for coordinating and developing research across disciplines and for 20 campus research centers and institutes. She also was interim dean of the School of Optometry. She helped establish the Borish Center for Ophthalmic Research at IU in 1995 and was its co-director until 2006.

Berbari, Sterling and Soni are among 401 AAAS members who were awarded the honor because of their efforts to advance science or its applications. New fellows will be recognized Feb. 14 during the 2015 AAAS Annual Meeting in San Jose, Calif.

The tradition of AAAS fellows began in 1874. Members may be nominated for the honor by the steering groups of the association's 24 sections, by any three fellows who are current AAAS members or by the AAAS chief executive officer.

Source: IU News