Individual websites:
Ben Holtzman

Research Professor

Heather Savage

Research Professor

Christine McCarthy

Postdoctoral Fellow


Sarah Lambart

Postdoctoral Fellow


 Nicholas van der Elst

Postdoctoral Fellow


 Hannah Rabinowitz

Graduate Student


 Ted Koczynski

Research Engineer


Current Researchers

Lamont researcher Ben Holtzman offers his expertise on all things melt and microstructure related. His research resides at the intersection of rock physics, seismology, and geodynamics.

Lamont researcher Heather Savage combines rock friction experiments and field studies to investigate multiple aspects of earthquake and fault mechanics. Her current topics of interest include fault strength during earthquakes and earthquake triggering/induced seismicity.

Lamont postdoc Christine McCarthy studies how material behavior (flow, fracture, friction) at various spacial and temporal scales influence microstructure, and vice versa. She is currently building a custom ice friction rig to measure effects of tidal forcing on both glacier flow rates and frictional heating of icy satellites.

Lamont Postdoc Sarah Lambart splits her time between rock mechanics and geochemistry to study reaction-driven cracking and permeability changes during carbonation of peridotite.

NSF-EAR Postdoc fellow Nicholas van der Elst uses observational seismology and laboratory friction experiments to learn about earthquakes and fault mechanics.

Third year graduate student Hannah Rabinowitz studies coseismic shear heating as a way of understanding the energy release of earthquakes and she studies the frictional behavior of sediments as a control on seismic character of subduction zones. She is currently developing an alkenone proxy for fault heating to understand the seismic history of the Japan Trench as recorded in an ocean drill core recovered after the 2011 M9.1 Tohoku-oki earthquake.

Longtime lab technician, Ted Koczynski keeps everything running smoothly in the rock mechanics lab and is spearheading the rehabilitation of old machinery and the electronic and hydraulic design of the new ice rig.


Research Alumni

Columbia undergrad (2013) and research assistant Caitlin Dieck conducted a research project on induced seismicity in the regions around wastewater injection locations.

Columbia undergrad (2013) and research assistant Rachel Sheppard examined shear heating on faults by extracting organic molecules from sedimentary fault rock and analyzing it in a mass spectrometer.

German University of Bochum Postdoc Mandy Duda visited the lab to run cyclic loading experiments under confining pressure using the triaxial apparatus.