Dmitry Savransky

2015_1028_023_select.jpgSavransky received his PhD in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University, where he was a member of the High Contrast Imaging Laboratory. After completing his doctorate in 2011, he became a postdoctoral fellow at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where he assisted in the integration and testing of the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) and participated in the planning of the GPI Exoplanet Survey  (GPIES). He currently co-leads the GPIES Observing and Operations team.  Savransky’s research is comprised of a variety of problems related to the detection and characterization of extrasolar planets. These include investigations of advanced control and estimation for active wavefront control systems; computer vision and machine learning applications for automated optical system alignment and astronomical image post-processing; optimal scheduling for autonomous space observatories and ground-based surveys; and statistical analysis of large astronomical surveys.  Full CV.

Office: 451 Upson Hall
Phone:  646-801-9356
Email: ds264 [at]
If you would like to schedule a meeting, please see my public calendar.

Graduate Students

Daniel Garrett

Daniel Garrett received Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Utah State University in 2011. His masters thesis was on anisotropic thermal conductivity of granular beds. After graduation, he worked for Hewlett-Packard in Houston, TX, for two years as a thermal engineer. He came to Cornell University in the fall of 2014 and joined the Space Imaging and Optical Systems Lab. Currently he is working on analytical methods for exoplanet science yield estimation.

Gabriel Soto

Gabriel Soto received his Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering with a dual major in Applied Physics from the University of Miami in May of 2015. In the summer of 2014, he worked at the George Washington University ThermoFluids Lab studying the effects of earthquake vibrations on fluid flowing around a nuclear reactor fuel bundle. His undergraduate senior thesis explored the structural design of a 1U CubeSat capable of atmospheric re-entry. He joined the Space Imaging and Optical Systems Lab in the Fall of 2015 at Cornell University, where he is currently working on optimization of trajectories and plane change maneuvers through gravity assists for small satellites.


Jacob Shapiro

JacobJacob Shapiro received a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Florida in May, 2015. He complemented this degree with minors in Business Administration and Astronomy. He has worked as an intern at Johnson and Johnson: Vision Care (2014), as well as at SpaceX (2015), where he developed parts for the active M1D engine. He began his PhD program at Cornell in Fall of 2015, where he joined the Space Imaging and Optical Systems Lab. He is currently working on methods of Blind Source Separation to eliminate noise from astronomic signals.

Dean Keithly

dean-5-completeDean Keithly earned his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan Technological University in May 2015 with a minor in Aerospace Engineering. By May 2016, he received a Masters of Engineering in Systems Engineering from Cornell University. He  has developed spacecraft models of the Saturn Probe New Horizon class mission (JPL 2016), worked on adaptive attitude control of manned spacecraft (Marshall Space Flight Center 2015), created thermal and attitude control models for Oculus-ASR microsatellite (Michigan Technological University Aerospace Enterprise 2014), developed a robotic falconry system (Human Interactive Robotics Lab 2015). He began his PhD program at Cornell in Fall 2016, where he joined the Space Imaging and Optical Systems Lab. He is currently working on dynamic scheduling of the WFIRST coronagraph.


Duan Li

Duan Li received her Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering with a double major in Physics from Johns Hopkins University in May 2018. During her undergraduate studies, she did research in the Cosmology Large Angular Scale Surveyor lab. In the summers, she interned at Shanghai Astronomical Observatory in China and at Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany. Her senior design project was sponsored by Stanley Black and Decker. Duan joined the Space Imaging and Optical Systems Lab in Fall 2018 with a research interest in astronomical instrumentation.

MEng Students

Aastha Acharya (2014 – 2015; Thesis)
James Lee (2016 – 2017; Thesis)
Willard Andrews and Daniel Wilentz (2016 – 2017; Thesis; Code)
Dane Del Terzo (2017 – 2018; Thesis)
Michael Wang (2017 – 2018; Thesis; Code)

Undergraduate Researchers

James Haber (Summer 2015)
Alexandra Voinea (Summer 2015)
Amlan Sinha (2016 – )
Nikhil Ranganathan (2016 – 2017)
Jeremy Iver (Summer 2017)


Christian Delacroix – Postdoc (2015 – 2017)

Joyce Fang – PhD (2014 – 2018; Thesis)

The SIOSlab logo was designed by Claire Koch at Claire Koch Design.