Brian L. Wardle
Full Professor, MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics

Joint appointment, MIT Mechanical Engineering
Director, necstlab
Founder and Director, Nano-Engineered Composite aerospace STructures (NECST) Consortium
office: 33-408
email:wardle "at"


Professor Wardle is Director of MIT's Nano-Engineered Composite aerospace STructures (NECST) Consortium, and necstlab. He is active in the Materials Processing Center (MPC) ISN, CMSE, and MEMS@MIT (part of the Microsystems Technology Laboratory) communities.

Post Doctoral Associates & Research Staff

Luiz Acauan
Research Scientist (formerly a necstlab Postdoctoral Associate)
lacauan "at"

Dr. Luiz Acauan is a Research Scientist in Material Science and a former Postdoctoral Associate with necstlab. His past projects involved hybrid solar cells composed by photovoltaic polymers, inorganic semiconductors and carbon nanotubes as well as carbon nanotubes/graphene 3D nanostructures for a broad range of applications. His current work focuses on multifunction composites and the synthesis of nanostructures. He has double graduation in Material Science Engineering at the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS-Brazil) and the Institut National Polytechique de Grenoble (INPG-França) and obtained Masters at the INPG and UFRGS as well. Completed his PhD in 2015 at the UFRGS.

Jingyao Dai
Postdoctoral Associate

jydai "at"

Jingyao Dai joined necstlab in Spring 2021 as a postdoctoral associate. He obtained his Master and PhD degrees at the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Penn State University where he studied toughening of ceramic materials with nanoporosity and hierarchical microstructure designs. His current research interests include fracture behaviors of materials, microstructure design and characterization, and advanced manufacturing methods. His research at necstlab will focus on nanoporous networks. Outside of the lab, he enjoys soccer, travelling, and movies.


Carina Xiaochen Li
Postdoctoral Associate

carinali "at"

Dr. Carina Xiaochen Li joined necstlab in 2022 as a postdoctoral researcher. She received her Ph.D. in M. C. Gill Composite Center at University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles, California, where she worked on the manufacturing of high performance aerospace composites. During her Ph.D., she was a visiting research scientist at the IMDEA Materials Institute in Madrid, Spain, and worked on the nano-mechanical testing of high-temperature CFRP composites. Her research interests include nanoengineering of aligned-CNT reinforced aerospace composite structures, multifunctionality nanocomposites, advanced Out-of-Oven composites manufacturing techniques, thermoplastic composites manufacturing, and composite material and structural design.



Graduate Students

Aniruddha Ghosh
Graduate Student
ghoshani "at"

Aniruddha is a Master’s student in MIT's Media Lab. He completed his Bachelor of Technology in  Electronics and Communication Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati, India. He worked as a Research Intern in the DCS Lab at Hanyang University, South Korea during pre-final year of his under graduate study. He is interested in Electrodynamics, Nanoelectronics and Communication Engineering.


Shaan Anand Jagani
Graduate Student
sjagani "at"

Shaan Jagani is a graduate student in the AeroAstro department, who received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and Material Science at the University of California, Berkeley. He served as a research assistant in Berkeley’s material science department and the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab Material Science Division, working to improve the mechanical properties of polymer nanocomposites. His current research involves manufacturing and testing carbon nanotube reinforced ceramic matrix composites. Outside of research, he enjoys fencing, baking, music, and engineering passion projects.



Christopher Kwon
Graduate Student
ckwon23 "at"

Christopher Kwon is a graduate student in Aerospace Engineering. He received his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Virginia. His research interests include the nanoengineering and manufacturing of advanced composite structures. Outside of academics, he enjoys exploring fashion and photography, playing sports, and watching anime.


Yuying Lin
Graduate Student
yuyingl "at"

Yuying is a graduate student in AeroAstro, joining necstlab in Fall 2022. She completed a BSc in chemical engineering at Caltech, where they conducted research in developing ultralight luminescent solar concentrators for the Space Solar Power Project. In necstlab, they will study the bulk nanocomposite laminating process. In her free time she likes to run, do calisthenics workouts, make GarageBand beats, and design jewelry.


Palak Patel
Graduate Student
palak "at"

Palak Patel is a graduate student in Mechanical Engineering. While she was pursuing her undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering at PDPU, India, she interned at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in 2019. She joined NECSTLAB in 2020. Her research project involves the life-cycle enhancement via data-driven nanoengineering of advanced composite structures by developing a fused-multifunctional nano-engineered system. Outside of the academic and research environment, she enjoys playing soccer and basketball, reading fiction books, and drawing.


Steven Serrano
Graduate Student (formerly a necstlab UROP)
serrano5 "at"

Steven is a graduate student in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He joined necstlab in Spring 2021 as a UROP. After receiving his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering at MIT (‘22), he continued in the lab as a graduate student. His research involves the nanoengineering of fiber reinforced polymer composites to improve manufacturing processes and mechanical properties. In his free time, he enjoys playing sports, lifting, running, and exploring Boston on his longboard.


Alisa Webb
Graduate Student
awebb15 "at"

Alisa Webb is a graduate student in the AeroAstro department. She received her B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Rice University, while researching for the Nanoscale Heat Transfer Laboratory. Her current research includes the investigation of nanoporous materials in composites manufacturing.  In her free time, Alisa enjoys playing team sports, exploring new music, and sightseeing.


Undergraduate Students


Hillel Dei
hdei "at"

Hillel Dei is an undergraduate researcher joining necstlab in January 2022.  Hillel Dei is a second-year student studying aerospace engineering in addition to mathematics. He works with MIT's Rocket Team by day whilst indulging in video games by night. When free, he enjoys reading comic books and watching soccer.


Erick Gonzalez
egonza "at"

Erick Gonzalez is a second-year student studying aerospace engineering and is also interested in material science. He is also a member of MIT's Design-Build-Fly team. Outside of school, he enjoys baking, playing sports, and playing video games.

Matt McGillick
mmcgilli "at"

Matt is a second-year undergraduate student studying aerospace engineering as well as materials science and engineering. In addition to his schoolwork, Matt is also an Air Force cadet in Detachment 365 at MIT. In his spare time, he enjoys refining his cooking techniques, exercising, and riding motorcycles.


Daniel Vuong
dcvuong "at"

Daniel is a new UROP with necstlab (joining Fall 2021) and will be working with Sudhir Jain on interesting things!


Visting Scientists & Students

Jae-Moon Jeong
Visiting Ph.D. Candidate
jaemoonj "at"; 
jaemoon.jeong "at"

Jae-Moon Jeong is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at KAIST. Currently, Jae-Moon is conducting research as a visiting scholar in necstlab. His research work revolves around composite materials for energy storage system, composite manufacturing process, and shape memory polymer actuators. He is outgoing and sociable with friends. Outside of the school, Jae-Moon enjoys practicing the piano, boarding, playing soccer, table tennis, and traveling around the world.


Seong Su Kim
Visiting Associate Professor
seongsu "at"

Prof. Seong Su Kim is an Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at KAIST. He has expertise in mechanical design of composite structures and improvement of energy storage systems using functional composite materials. After receiving his Ph.D. degree from KAIST in 2007, he worked for two years at KAIST as a research professor. He moved to the University of Tokyo in Japan in 2009 as a Global Centers of Excellence Program (GCOE) researcher. From 2010 to 2017, he worked as an Assistant Professor and Associate Professor of the Department of Organic Materials and Fiber Engineering at Chonbuk National University in Korea. He joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at KAIST in February, 2017.


Wonvin Kim
Visiting Ph.D. Candidate
wv_kim "at"

Wonvin Kim is a Ph.D. candidate in the Mechanical Design Lab at KAIST. Currently, Wonvin's research interests include: Water lubrication for environmentally friendly system (Pioneer in the lab), Thermoelectric foam for Energy harvesting (Pioneer in the lab), Manufacturing process for the CFRPs.


Richard Li
Visiting Scientist
richli "at"

Richard Li was a S.M. Student in necstlab who started working with Prof. Wardle as a UROP in 2009. He received his S.B. in Aerospace Engineering from MIT in 2010. His research is focused on multifunctional properties characterization and scale-up of carbon nanotube/ carbon fiber hybrid multiscale composites.  Outside of research, Rich was the Co-President of the Graduate Association of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and enjoys bike touring, performing Chinese Yo-Yo to the Greater Boston Area, and windsurfing.


Affiliated Faculty and Researchers

Prof. Hulya Cebeci, Istanbul Technical University, Aerospace Engineering Department Turkey
geyikh "at"


John Kane, MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics
Research Specialist
kane "at"


Dr. Antonio Miravete
Visiting Scientist
miravete "at"


Prof. Desiree Plata
Visiting Professor
dplata "at"


Seunghyun Kim, Brown University
Associate Professor
Seunghyun_Kim "at"


Administrative Staff

Britton "Bryt" Bradley
Administrative Assistant II
bryt "at"