Dr. Akiko Nakamura
AKIKO M. NAKAMURA is an associate professor in the Center for Planetary Science at Kobe University where she performs laboratory impact experiments to study the velocity distribution of fragments from ejecta and the ejecta from particulate layers. These experiments are designed to provide insights into the collisional evolution of small solar system bodies and regolith formation processes. She was a co-investigator on the camera system on the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s Hayabusa I asteroid sample-return mission. Dr. Nakamura completed her B.S. in 1988, her M.S., and her Ph.D. in 1993, all at Kyoto University.
Mr. Robin Putzar
ROBIN PUTZAR is a senior scientist in the Space Technology Group at the Fraunhofer Institute for High-Speed Dynamics (also known as the Ernst-Mach Institute (EMI)) in Freiburg, Germany. Dr. Putzar has led several large studies investigating the effects of hypervelocity impacts on spacecraft components and geological material, including ballistic limit analyses. His research interests include hypervelocity accelerators, and he has led the design of such accelerators at EMI. He was delegate at the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee and served on the Program Committee of the European Conference on Space Debris. He is currently chairman of the Aeroballistic Range Association. He has a baccalaureate degree in engineering, sciences from Technology University of Berlin. He has not previously served on an Academies committee.
Dr. Kaliat T. Ramesh
KALIAT T. RAMESH is a professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. He is also director of the Center for Advanced Metallic and Ceramic Systems, and director of the Hopkins Extreme Materials Institute. His research interests are in high strain-rate behavior and dynamic failure of materials, nanostructured materials, injury biomechanics and planetary-scale impact problems. He served as a visiting professor at the University of Cambridge. He has published one book, Nanomaterials: Mechanics and Mechanisms; Springer, 2009. After receiving a B.E. from Bangalore University, he continued to Brown University where he completed his M.S. in engineering. He was awarded his Ph.D. and an additional M.S. in applied mathematics from Brown University. Dr. Ramesh completed a postdoctoral fellowship with the Center of Excellence in Advanced Materials at the University of California, San Diego Dr. Ramesh previously served on the NRC Committee on Opportunities in Protection Materials Science and Technology for Future Army Applications.
Dr. Norman H. Sleep
NORMAN H. SLEEP (NAS) is a professor of geophysics in the School of Earth, Energy, and Environmental Sciences at Stanford University. Dr. Sleep’s research interests include studying convection at the base of the lithosphere and the interaction of the lithosphere with mantle plume material. He is also currently investigating the microphysics of friction and applying the results to nonlinear attenuation and ground damage by strong seismic waves. Dr. Sleep is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, the Geological Society of America, and the American Geophysical Union. He has received a number of awards for his work including the James B. Macelwane award, the George P. Woollard Award from the Geological Society of America, and the 2008 Wollaston Medal from the Geological Society of London. Dr. Sleep earned a B.S. in mathematics from Michigan State University and a M.S. and Ph.D. in geophysics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has previously served on the National Academies’ Committee on Astrobiology and Planetary Science, the Committee on Survey of Surveys: Lessons Learned from the Decadal Survey Process, the Committee on Earth Resources, the Committee on Planetary Biology and Chemical Evolution, and currently serves as the NAS Section 15 liaison.
Dr. Megan B. Syal
MEGAN BRUCK SYAL is a physicist in the Design Physics Division at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). Dr. Bruck Syal specializes in experimental and numerical simulation of planetary impacts, including hypervelocity impact experiments (with an emphasis on porous and volatile-rich materials) and modeling of impact events in a variety of shock physics codes. Her published and ongoing research includes: impact delivery of carbon and volatiles to Mercury and the Moon, the excavation of Stickney Crater at Phobos, analysis of impactor- and target-derived vapor plumes using high-speed emission spectroscopy, and giant-impact formation of moons in exoplanetary systems. Additionally, Dr. Bruck Syal is very active in the field of planetary defense, supporting: NASA’s DART mission with simulations of the planned 2022 spacecraft impact at Didymos B, NASA-FEMA Asteroid Impact Tabletop Exercises, and a NASA-NNSA interagency collaboration on hazardous asteroid mitigation case studies. Her planetary defense work focuses on numerical simulation of deflection and disruption techniques, with a particular emphasis on understanding sensitivities to asteroid initial conditions. Previously, Dr. Bruck Syal was a postdoctoral researcher at LLNL (2014-2016), a Ph.D. candidate in the Geosciences Department at Brown University (2009-2014), and a data specialist at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory’s Chandra X-ray Center (2007-2009). She is a recipient of a NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship, a NASA Group Achievement Award (Deep Impact - EPOXI mission Science Team), and a Brown University Graduate Fellowship. Dr. Syal obtained her Ph.D. in planetary geosciences at Brown University. She has not previously served on an Academies’ committee.