Dr. Nayak is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Ocean and Mechanical Engineering and Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute (HBOI) at Florida Atlantic University. Prior to this, he completed a postdoctoral stint at HBOI from 2015-2018. He received his M.S.E and PhD degrees in 2010 and 2015 respectively, from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and his bachelor’s degree from the National Institute of Technology Karnataka, Surathkal (India) in 2007, all in Mechanical Engineering. His research interests to date have led him to explore a diverse range of subjects at the interface of experimental fluid dynamics and oceanography, including biophysical interactions, marine particle characterization, coastal processes, harmful algal blooms, and small-scale turbulence, all in the context of designing instrumentation for in situ field measurements in diverse aquatic environments. He is currently a Guest Associate Editor with the journal Frontiers in Marine Science. He is also deeply passionate about mentoring and outreach and has been associated with the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography Multicultural Program (ASLOMP) as a mentor since 2017.
Dr. Lisa Nyman
Dr. Nyman is a Postdoctoral Fellow in Biophysical Oceanography at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute at Florida Atlantic University. She received her PhD in Applied Marine Physics from University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science in 2019, where she specialized in the analysis of nautical marine radar imagery. She received her bachelor’s degree in Mathematics with a minor in Oceanography from Palm Beach Atlantic University in 2014. Her professional expertise lies in remote sensing, specifically image processing and algorithm development which she is now applying to plankton detection and classification in holographic imagery. Her current research interests lie in harmful algal bloom detection and monitoring, image processing techniques, biophysical interactions, and computational marine biology.
Ranjoy Barua is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Ocean and Mechanical Engineering at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute at Florida Atlantic University. He received his masters degree in Mechanical Engineering from University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth in 2018 and his bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Rajshahi University of Engineering & Technology in Bangladesh. His current research is focused on using digital holography to study the orientation and growth rate of diatoms (a group of phytoplankton) in response to the local flow. His goal is to perform controlled lab experiments to replicate oceanic conditions and observe the growth rate and orientation of different species of diatoms in a circular Couette flow apparatus under laminar and turbulent flow regimes.
Mr. Christopher Strait has been interested in the application and design of underwater optical instrumentation for over a decade. He started his scientific career at UFI (Upstate Freshwater Institute), a small upstate New York research organization, conducting optical and water quality measurements in inland waters including the Great Lakes. He currently works as a research technician at the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, where his interest centers around development of LiDAR systems through modeling of the effect of instrumentation geometry on inversion of inherent optical properties. Chris received his B.S. from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in 2015 and is currently working on his M.S. in Oceanography at Florida Atlantic University.
Summer Interns 2020
Sean Goughan is a a third-year undergraduate student working toward his Bachelor of Science in the Mechanical Engineering department. He was introduced to Dr. Nayak via email to help with building a database of microorganisms from holographic imagery. He has been working on expanding the plankton imagery database since December 2019. Sean is looking forward to continuing his role in expanding the classification database as well as contributing what he has learned to this research. Sean’s career goals are to have an interesting, fruitful job path in a field that he loves. He has an ultimate interest in the aerospace industry. He enjoy’s working with microcontrollers and he deeply appreciates the beauty and complexity of computer languages.
Paige Trenchard is an undergraduate student studying marine biology at Florida Atlantic University’s Wilkes Honors College. She received an Associate’s degree in biology from Indian River State College in December of 2019. Paige is currently working on expanding the plankton imagery database. Her research interests include anything to do with marine or terrestrial life. In the future, she is unsure of what career path she wishes to pursue, but she thinks it will consist of either animal husbandry or conservation.