About Work

As a geoscientist with tons of experience working with cross-functional teams, I thrive while tackling challenging problems that require leveraging diverse skills, teams and datasets. I am always curious, learning and open to discuss ideas or opportunities where I can contribute. Feel free to message even if it is just for more information or clarifications.

Understanding the inner workings of the Earth presents several opportunities to sharpen analytical and computational skills. Experiences range from writing or modifying millions of lines of code and writing exhaustive manuscripts to delivering invited talks and teaching the next generation with tech-assisted pedagogy.

On the research side, I have worked on planetary-scale geophysical problems using new techniques that reconcile and fit concurrently a wide variety of seismological observations. The doctoral work resulted in the next-generation three-dimensional images of the Earth’s interior, similar to a CT-scan for the human body. Recent progress includes evaluating the extent of radial anisotropy with implications for large-scale mantle flow, detecting seismological signatures of chemical heterogeneity from scaling relationships between the elastic parameters and density, as well as radial models that represent accurately Earth's average properties. I have also worked with several collaborators to infer the modeled properties in terms of the dynamics and evolution of the Earth's interior.


  • Princeton University Graphic

    Associate Research Scholar & Lecturer

    Princeton University

    - 20232 years

    • Researched & wrote on the use of Machine Learning concepts for assimilating multiscale models (ATLAS3D Project Website (external link)).
    • Formulated algorithms for 1D radial Earth models and incorporation of geodetic data (e.g. gravity, GPS).
    • Taught the course Fundamentals of Solid Earth Science, incorporating Jupyter Notebooks and High-Performance Computing (Course Website (external link), Checkout testimonials (external link)).
    • Developed computer software called Analysis and Visualization toolkit for plaNetary Inferences (AVNI (external link)).
    • Coordinate with collaborators to publish manuscripts on the 3D Reference Earth Model and associated tools through the Computational Infrastructure for Geodynamics (CIG) organization (REM3D Project Website (external link)).
  • University of Maryland Graphic

    Postdoctoral Researcher

    University of Maryland

    - 5 years

    College Park

    • Coordinate the analysis of data, establishment and functioning of advisory community working groups.
    • Oversee communication with domain experts in allied fields such as geodesy, mineral physics and instrumentation.
    • Publish peer-reviewed articles with international partners e.g. manuscript in Geophysical Journal International as lead author of a team of 18 scientists from 16 elite institutions in 7 countries.
    • Promote the project through invited presentations, media interviews and panel discussions worldwide e.g. American Geophysical Union, Japan Geoscience Union, Vaibhav Summit India, Eos magazine.
    • Technical lead for the development of new and improved algorithms to assimilate, archive, reconcile and model big (>200 million measurements) and diverse geophysical datasets for global subsurface structure.
  • Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University Graphic

    Faculty Fellow/Teaching Fellow

    Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University

    - 7 years

    Palisades, NY

    Raj's doctoral work represented the first study to globally image the density, shear attenuation & anisotropic velocity in the Earth’s mantle using observations of free oscillations, travel times, full waveforms and surface waves – multiple types of seismic data generated by earthquakes that span a very wide band of frequencies (0.3 to 50 mHz).

    Research responsibilities included:
    • Mathematical algorithms for 3-D imaging of the Earth’s mantle using multiple types of seismic data
    • Signal processing techniques for analyzing the free oscillations in the Earth after large earthquakes.
    • Interpretation of the Earth’s density, velocity and seismic attenuation with a rheological framework.

    Teaching responsibilities included preparing and presenting sections and course reviews, evaluating assignments and examinations, and providing student mentoring for the following courses (Checkout testimonials):
    • V2200-Earth’s Environmental Systems: Solid Earth (Fall, 2011).
    • V1201-Environmental Risks and Disasters (Spring, 2010).
  • Chevron Graphic

    Research Intern, Energy Technology Company


    - 3 months

    • Assimilate constraints from well logs, advanced wave propagation codes and rock physics literature.
    • Communicate with the internal business unit and research division, and external academic groups towards fulfilling the research objectives for Chevron.
    • Develop workflows that model the effects of energy absorption in full waveforms within oil and gas reservoirs.
    • Formulated algorithms for the criticality of attenuation while modeling seismic data, tested on data acquired by the business unit.
  • University of Western Ontario, Dept. of Earth Sciences Graphic

    Research Associate

    University of Western Ontario, Dept. of Earth Sciences

    - 11 months

    • Quantifying the accuracy of a forecasting model of earthquakes in California.
    • Statistical modeling of the aftershocks from large earthquakes using clustering algorithms and Fuzzy Logic.

  • Indian Institute of Science Graphic

    Summer Research Fellow

    Indian Institute of Science

    - 3 months

    • Non-linear time series analysis and application of Chaos theory in modeling the Indian monsoon.

  • Research Intern

    National Centre for Antarctic & Ocean Research

    - 3 months

    • Analyzing and inverting well-log data for lithology off Prydz Bay, Antarctica using Artificial Neural Networks.




    Probing the interior structure of terrestrial planets is one of the most computationally intensive, big-data problems in the physical sciences. Multiscale models characterize geodynamic processes (e.g. mantle mixing) & underlying causes of heterogeneity (e.g. sinking slabs, volcanism). We analyze, learn & assimilate consistent features in the upper mantle to create an evolving multiscale suite with uncertainties (ATLAS3D).

    See project
  • AVNI

    AVNI (Analysis and Visualization toolkit for plaNetary Inferences) is a software ecosystem for analyzing and interpreting planetary models and data sets that were initially designed for the three-dimensional reference Earth model project REM3D. The codes are primarily written in Python with interfaces to legacy routines in C and Fortran.

    See project
  • REM3D

    The three-dimensional reference Earth model Project creates the canonical physical description of our planet's interior.

    See project

Honors & Awards#

  • Kenneth & Linda Ciriacks Fellowship in Earth & Environmental Sciences

    Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Columbia University

    "Named fellows represent those who are making exciting new contributions to the intellectual landscape and whose work will benefit academic discourse."

  • Faculty Fellowship

    Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Columbia University

  • Exchange Scholarship

    Govt. of Ontario, Canada

  • Microsoft Travel Grant


  • CSIR and DST Travel Grants

    Govt. of India

  • Letter of support

    GeoCongress ’08

    Certifying being the only undergraduate in the world to speak at the conference.

  • Summer Research Fellow at Indian Institute of Science

    Indian Academy of Sciences


  • Primary Convener & Chair at the AGU Fall meetings

    Primary Convener & Chair at the AGU Fall meetings

    American Geophysical Union

    Science and Technology

    Various Sessions on Heterogeneity in the Earth’s Mantle: Perspectives from Imaging, Modeling, Geochemistry, and Experiments

  • Reviewing Activities for Agencies and Foundations

    Reviewing Activities for Agencies and Foundations

    National Science Foundation (NSF)

    Science and Technology

    Geophysics Program, EarthScope Program, Major Research Instrumentation Program

  • Reviewing Activities for Journals and Presses

    Multiple Journals and Presses

    Science and Technology

    Science Advances, Nature Publishing Group, Geophysical Journal International, Geophysical Research Letters, Journal of Geophysical Research, Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, Seismological Research Letters, Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems.

  • Public Speaker

    Multiple Universities and Organizations

    Science and Technology

    Selected invited seminars below. This list excludes the ones contributed at conferences: Click here


  • The 3-D Reference Earth Model Project

    Technical Lead

    - Present
  • Lamont Student Field Trip to Washington State

    Organizing Committee

  • Graduate Student Advisory Council

    Communications Chair & Steering Committee Member

  • Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership

    Project Leader (Sparks)


    CEL (http://celbits.org.in) is a top 5 center of entrepreneurship amongst Indian universities and founders of the National Entrepreneurship Network.

  • Civil Engineering Association


  • Phyzok Learning Solutions LLP

    Partner and Co-founder