Faculty Spotlight for February/March 2008
Frederik J. Simons joined the faculty in 2006.
Previously, he was a
Lecturer at University College London, a Princeton Council of Science &
Technology Beck Fellow and Department of Geosciences
Hess post-doctoral researcher. His Ph.D. in Geophysics is from
M. I. T. and his M. Sc. in Geology
from the Katholieke Universiteit
Leuven in Belgium, of which he is a native.
His research encompasses various aspects of solid-earth geophysics.
Most notably, he studies the physical properties of planetary
lithospheres, focusing in particular on the elastic and
properties of the continents by
seismic tomography and the
gravity and topography.
To further these goals, Frederik and his colleagues are developing
mathematical methods for the spectral
analysis of geological processes on the sphere, as well as
signal processing methods for seismology and developing oceanic
instrumentation to close the seismic coverage gap over the Earth's
oceans. (See here
for a Princeton homepage write-up about this project, and see the feature article in The
Economist. Students with an engineering bent are encouraged to
contact Frederik if they are interested in pursuing research with him in
At Princeton, Frederik has taught Introductory Geophysics (GEO320),
Data, Models and Uncertainty in the Natural Sciences (GEO422), and the
Freshman Seminar Earth's Changing Surface and Climate
(FRS149). He currently advises two graduate students, Ms Jessica
Mr Dong Wang.