NTB: You also head up a research organization called The Ponce Group. What is the Ponce Group, and what does it do?
Dr. Ponce: I have a joint appointment at Caltech as a visiting faculty member, and my research group – that should really be called the Ponce Research Group to distinguish it from the line organization we have here at JPL – but I have a research group that consists of graduate students and postdocs and undergraduates, and some staff, and that’s basically the Ponce Group. I’m the principal investigator, I work on bringing in the next projects and executing our current projects that we have. We have a number of projects. And then bringing in students and postdocs to work in the lab to get the results that we need to get to move the research forward.
It’s a very multi-disciplinary group. I have graduate students in bioengineering, environmental science and engineering, and chemistry. And postdocs that work in microbiology and molecular biology. So it’s a very multi-disciplinary group. We’re interested in a diverse set of problems, and I think we have a lot of fun doing that.
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