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Stefanos Papanikolaou
Statistics & Mechanics of Materials Group

The Statistics&Mechanics of Materials (SMM) group's primary research interest is in the theory and application of statistical methods towards the theoretical and computational modeling of mechanical behavior of materials. Mechanical response of materials requires both a deep physical understanding of deformation processes towards quantitative accuracy, as well as a multi-scale understanding of possible microscopic effects that may lead to macroscopic failure. Statistical methods build upon high-throughput experiments and may involve either the application of statistical mechanics towards minimal, reduced-order models for emergent pattern formations, or/and application of data science approaches to unsupervised clustering and classification. Overall research interests lie in the understanding of pattern formation in highly frustrated or/and kinetically constrained systems and networks.

More generally, the Statistics&Mechanics of Materials (SMM) group has a strong research interest in soft matter and functional materials by design, including theoretical and computational approaches to structure, order and dynamics, especially in the limit where matter may be mechanically jammed. Dr. Papanikolaou's main teaching interests are: crystal plasticity, statistical mechanics, gas dynamics and kinetic theory, numerical methods in engineering, thermodynamics, solid mechanics, mechanics of materials.

Ph.D., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
M.S., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
B.S., National University of Athens

Dr. Papanikolaou acquired his BSc in Physics from the National University of Athens. He received his M. Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from the Department of Physics at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Papanikolaou was a postdoctoral associate in the Department of Physics at Cornell University and then held research scientist and research professor appointments at Yale and Johns Hopkins Universities before joining West Virginia University in 2016.

Dr. Papanikolaou's group research lies at a rather inter-disciplinary interface where mechanics, statistical mechanics and stochastic quenched disorder phenomena meet. For this purpose, novel approaches for generating reduced-order models are pursued. Dr. Papanikolaou has won the VIDI excellence grant (class of 2013) administered by the Netherlands research council for developing the career of highly prolific and productive researchers.  You can learn more about it here: Vidi NWO.

Curriculum Vitae