Materials Research Science and Engineering Center
Postdoctoral Fellow

Zorana Zeravcic

Zorana Zeravcic is George F. Carrier Fellow in School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard University. She studied theoretical physics at University of Belgrade in Serbia, where she also obtained a M.Sc. degree by studying the shape of our galaxy's halo through analysis of gamma ray spectral data obtained by the INTEGRAL/SPI detector. Since her high school days and through undergraduate studies, she was actively involved in the Petnica Science Center, Serbia, a center for introducing gifted youths to the world of scientific research. Zorana was teaching and mentoring student projects while doing research of her own in the field of astrophysics. From Belgrade she moved to Leiden, The Netherlands, in 2006, where she did her Ph.D. work at the Lorentz Institute for Theoretical Physics under the supervision of Prof. Wim van Saarloos. Her interest in soft condensed matter was growing stronger as she studied granular-like systems. She collaborated with Professors Sidney Nagel (Chicago) and Andrea Liu (UPenn) on studying and extending the jamming scenario beyond the idealized spherical particles, i.e., to ellipsoidal particles. During her Ph.D. she also focused on localization properties of vibrations in granular systems and bubble clouds, enjoying collaborations with Profs. David Nelson and Detlef Lohse (Twente). For her Ph.D. work she received the C.J. Kok Jury prize for the best Ph.D. dissertation of Leiden University in 2010. In September 2010, Zorana joined the group of Prof. Michael Brenner as a postdoctoral fellow, working on self-assembly problems. She is trying to discover and understand design principles of self-assembly and self-replication, both through theoretical work and computer simulations. This research is directly connected to ongoing experiments on colloids in Manoharan Lab. Zorana was also excited to be involved in co-teaching 'math in the kitchen' during Kids' Science and Cooking summer program at Harvard.