Cockrell School of Engineering
The University of Texas at Austin


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Graduate Seminar - Dr. Bui-Thanh


Monday, January 25, 2016


03:00pm - 04:00pm


CPE 2.204


Speaker:  Dr. Tan Bui-Thanh, Assistant Professor - Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics, The University of Texas at Austin

Seminar Title: “Towards Large-Scale Computational Science and Engineering with Quantifiable Uncertainty”


We present our recent efforts towards uncertainty quantification for large-scale computational mechanics. The talk has three parts.

In the first part of the talk, we consider the shape inverse problem of electromagnetic scattering. We address this large-scale inverse problems in a Bayesian inference framework. Since exploring the Bayesian posterior is intractable for high dimensional parameter space and/or expensive computational model, we propose a Hessian-informed adaptive Gaussian process response surface to approximate the posterior. The Monte Carlo simulation task, which is impossible using the original posterior, is then carried out on the approximate posterior to predict the shape and its associated uncertainty with negligible cost.

In the second part, we address the problem of solving globally large-scale seismic inversion governed by the linear elasticity equation. We discuss a mesh-independent uncertainty quantification method for full wave form seismic inversion exploiting the compactness of the misfit Hessian and low rank approximation.

In the last part, we present the challenge of big data in large-scale inverse problems and approaches to tackle this challenge.


Dr. Tan Bui-Thanh received his PhD in 2007 in computational fluid dynamics from the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), after receiving master's degree in high performance computation for engineered systems from the Singapore-MIT Alliance (an alliance between the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University and MIT) and Bachelors' of Engineering degree in Aeronautics from Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology, Vietnam.

From June 2007 until he arrived here at UT Austin in June 2008, he worked as a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at MIT. During this period of time, he theoretically and numerically investigated the interaction between air blast wave and structures. In particular, his research focused on devising mitigation strategies to limit injuries due

to shock waves to both human and structures.

Since joining the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences in June 2008 as postdoctoral fellow, and then research associate, and then research scientist, Dr. Bui-Thanh has been conducting interdisciplinary research across different areas of computational science and applied mathematics. In particular, he has made important contributions to computational electromagnetics, computational geosciences, parallel computing, large scale partial-differential-equation-constrained optimization, computational inverse problems, uncertainty quantification, and numerical analysis.

There are two common thrusts in Tan Bui's research that motivate and drive each other. The 

first one is to devise (large-scale) scalable, efficient, and rigorous numerical algorithms to simulate difficult problems in engineering and sciences. The second one, which is the ultimate goal, is to develop scalable methodologies for computer predictions with quantifiable uncertainty.