I hold a B.Sc. degree in Hydrology from Vietnam National University, Hanoi (2005), M.Eng. degree in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Sejong University, South Korea (2010) and Ph.D. degree in Hydrogeophysics from Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium (2014). After completing my Ph.D., I obtained a post-doctoral fellowship to work with Dr. Susan Hubbard at the Earth and Environmental Sciences Area of Berkeley Lab, Berkeley, US.
My Ph.D. research was an integrated field of geophysics and hydrogeology. I combined multiple methods, namely, electromagnetic modeling, advanced ground-penetrating radar (GPR), soil hydrodynamic modeling, petrophysics, model inversion and data assimilation in a mechanistic data fusion framework to observe and analyze spatiotemporal dynamics of multi-scale hydrogeological systems. Particularly, I developed (1) a new approach to directly estimate soil moisture by coupling GPR full-wave inversion with soil dielectric models, (2) a novel maximum likelihood ensemble filter approach for reconstructing continuous soil moisture profiles and estimating soil hydraulic properties and associated uncertainty from ultra-wideband radar data, and (3) numerical, laboratory and field validations of our advanced radar modeling approaches for near-field electromagnetic conditions, accounting in particular for complex antenna-medium coupling.
At Berkeley Lab, my postdoc work concentrated on the development and testing of inversion schemes for quantification of surface-subsurface properties and processes, including evapotranspiration and fluxes across bedrock-soil-land surface-vegetation compartments. To accomplish this, I focused on four new aspects that I consider to be extremely important for advancing predictive understanding of the critical zone: (1) coupling of subsurface and land surface models as part of a hydrogeophysical inversion; (2) quantitative consideration of hydrological-thermal and biogeochemical interactions; (3) stochastic inversion methodologies; and (4) assimilation approaches that can take advantage of the increasingly common autonomous data streaming from the field. I have successfully applied these methods in Rifle, Colorado (Berkeley Lab SFA) and Barrow, Alaska (NGEE-Arctic).