About Me



Contact information

Mailing address: SOE2, Baskin School of Engineering, UC Santa Cruz, 1156 High Street, CA-95064 Santa Cruz.

Office: Baskin Engineering room 359C

Telephone: 831-459-1055. Fax: 831-459-4829

Email: pgaraud at soe dot ucsc dot edu



Present occupation

I am a Full Professor in the department of Applied Mathematics at the Baskin Shool of Engineering at UC Santa Cruz. My research focuses on fluid dynamics and magnetohydrodynamics applied to astrophysics and occasionally geophysics. I specialize in understanding and quantifying mixing processes produced by large-scale fluid flows and magnetic fields, as well as small-scale turbulence. My work involves a range of applied mathematical tools from numerical experimentation using high-performance computing to pen-and-paper analytical derivations. I am a member of the Fluid Dynamics Group of UCSC, and of the Theoretical Astrophysics at Santa Cruz (TASC) research unit. I am also on the Faculty of the GFD Summer Program (WHOI), and the founding director of the Kavli Summer Program in Astrophysics. I have recently joined the Editorial Board of Physical Review Fluids. I became a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2019.


My main research interests at the moment are:

  • Large-scale magnetohydrodynamics of the solar interior
  • Modeling large-scale flows in stellar interior
  • Modeling turbulent convection
  • Modeling shear instabilities
  • Understanding the properties of fingering convection, with applications to oceanography and astrophysics
  • Understanding the properties of double-diffusive convection, with applications to astrophysics
  • Modeling the dynamics of dust particles in proto-stellar disks

See my research page for detail.


I teach a number of classes in Applied Mathematics from the introductory undergraduate level to the advanced graduate level. See the "Teaching" section of my web-site. This year (2021-2022), I will be teaching:

  • Fall: Sabbatical
  • Winter: AM 227 (Waves, instabilities and turbulence) and AM 170A (Mathematical modeling 1)
  • Spring: none

In addition, I alternate teaching the graduate seminar class on Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics (AMS 280C) with Nic Brummell and Dongwook Lee.

Graduate students & Postdoctoral Researchers

I am currently working with 2 graduate students and one postdoc:

  • Arstanbek Tulekeyev (1st year AM graduate student) TBD
  • Anuj Kumar (3rd year AM graduate student) on "Turbulent bounds"
  • Adrian Fraser (postdoc) on "Magnetized double-diffusive convection and stratified shear instabilities "

Please see the information for prospective graduate students if you are a propective graduate student interested in working with me. If you are a postdoctoral researcher with your own funding, and interested in working with me PLEASE call anytime!

Graduate students & Postdoc alumni

Here is the list of all the students and postdocs I worked with, and where they are now (as far as I know).

  • Postdocs
    • Toby Wood : Lecturer in Applied Mathematics, Newcastle U. Postdoc 2010-2012
    • Kevin Moore : Senior Data Scientist, Salesforce. Postdoc 2013-2015.
  • PhD students
    • Adrienne Traxler : Associate Professor at Wright State University (Dayton, OH). PhD 2011.
    • Luis Acevedo-Arreguin : Adjunct Faculty, Mathematics, Monterey Peninsula College. PhD 2012.
    • Justin Brown : Postdoc at the Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey. PhD 2016
    • Ryan Moll: Research engineer at Matrix Research, Dayton, OH. PhD 2017
    • Lydia Korre : Hale Fellow at CU Boulder (Fall 2018). PhD 2018
    • Sara Nasab. PhD 2021
  • MS Students
    • Eonho Chang , PhD student at the University of Arizona, SciCAM MS 2019
    • Peter Harrington, HPC/Machine Learning Engineer at LLBL. SciCAM MS 2018
    • Jayashree Sridhar, AM MS 2018
    • Sutirtha Sengupta, AM MS 2017
    • Christina Findley, AM MS 2016
    • JoFawna Reali . Professor of Mathematics, Merced College. AM MS 2015
    • Aya Furutani. AM MS 2015
    • Michael Medrano. Software Engineer, Concept Overdrive. Physics MS 2014
    • Nicole Beyer . Manager, Looker. MS 2014

Current administrative & synergestic positions

  • I am the undergraduate director and 4+1 coordinator for the Applied Mathematics department at UCSC
  • I am the director of the Next Gen. Scholars in Applied Mathematics program, funded by an NSF S-STEM award
  • I am the founding director of the Kavli Summer Program in Astrophysics (formerly ISIMA), a novel multi-disciplinary graduate training and research program, based in Santa Cruz.
  • I am on the faculty of the Woods Hole Summer Program in Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, after which ISIMA was designed.
  • I am on the editorial board of Physical Review Fluid, and an Associate Editor for Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics




I completed my undergraduate studies in Mathematics and Physics at the University Louis Pasteur in Strasbourg, in 1996. I then decided to study abroad for a year and was awarded a Knox Scholarship by Trinity College to take part in the gruelling Part III of the Mathematical Tripos in Cambridge (UK).

I chose to stay in Cambridge for my PhD, and was awarded an Isaac Newton Studentship to study "The dynamics of the solar tachocline" with Prof. D. O. Gough (Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge) and Prof. N. O. Weiss (Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, Cambridge). I completed my PhD in 2001, and stayed in Cambridge for my post-doc for another 4 years, funded by fellowships from New Hall (now Murray-Edwards college) and the Particle Physics and Astrophysics Research Council (PPARC). During my PPARC fellowship I had the opportunity to apply for a position at UCSC, and was delighted to be offered the job.

Since arriving at UCSC in 2004, I was awarded an NSF CAREER grant to study the evolution of magnetized stars. I was tenured in 2010, and became a Full Professor in 2012. See my Publication Page for a list of my papers.




My research is currently funded by two NSF grants:

  • NSF AST-1821988: Quantifying mixing by shear instabilities in stellar interiors: Differential rotation. PI: P. Garaud. Dates: 09/01/18-08/31/21
  • NSF AST-1908338: Magnetized Double-diffusive Convection in Stars. PI: P. Garaud. Dates: 09/01/19-08/31/22