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College of Arts and Sciences

Physics professor awarded Simons Fellowship

By: Kathy Hovis
A&S Communications
April 20, 2020

Jane Wang, professor of physics, has been awarded a fellowship from the Simons Foundation for 2020.

The fellowships are given to outstanding mathematicians and theoretical physicists to extend academic leaves from one term to a full year, enabling recipients to focus solely on research for the long periods often necessary for significant advances.

Wang’s research focuses on the physics of living organisms, with a focus on understanding insect flight.

She has been seeking fundamental principles for evolution of flight, using physics, mathematical analysis, and experiments. Starting from the Navier-Stokes equations governing flapping flight, she has worked to build a theoretical framework for interpreting and predicting the functions of an insect’s internal machinery for flight. Her group’s recent work is to make connections to the developments in neural science.

The Simons fellowship will support her collaborative work on understanding fly’s reflexes, robotic insects, and computational biology.