September 2021 Outing to Zermatt

Head of Laboratory

Dr. Kolinski studied Applied Mathematics (Sc.M.) and Applied Physics (Ph.D.) at Harvard University, completing a PhD under the supervision of L. Mahadevan and Shmuel Rubinstein on the role of air in droplet impact. John did his post-doc at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel supported by the Fulbright post-doctoral fellowship. At HUJI, he worked on interfacial instabilities in soft matter in the labs of Eran Sharon and Jay Fineberg. 
John continues his research into interfacial mechanics at EPFL in EMSI, the laboratory for the study of Engineering Mechanics of Soft Interfaces.

Email: john.kolinski[at]

Telephone: +41 (0) 21 693 0270

Administrative staff

Evelyn Rovero provides essential administrative support for EMSI.

Email: evelyn.rovero[at]

Telephone: +41 (0) 21 693 3810

PhD students

Chenzhuo Li (李陈卓) is a Ph.D. candidate at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Flying Vehicle Propulsion Engineering in 2018 from Beihang University, Beijing. After 2 years of research in digital image correlation with Prof. Pan, he joined Prof. Kolinski’s group (Engineering Mechanics of Soft Interfaces) at EPFL, studying fracture mechanics of hydrogels.

web: Academic (


Lebo Molefe earned undergraduate degrees in Physics and Mathematics from the University of Chicago. She is currently studying the physics of coating flows over rough surfaces, as well as the deformation of soft material in the Engineering Mechanics of Soft Interfaces (EMSI) lab at EPFL.

Email: lebo.molefe[at]

Telephone: +41 (0) 21 693 8472

Xinyue Wei earned her undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering at Shanghai Jiao Tong University. She went on to complete a master’s degree at the University of Pennsylvania working with Prof. Celia Reina. She is currently investigating the fracture of brittle hydrogels.

Email: xinyue.wei[at]

Research staff and students

Albert Taureg earned his MS degree at EPFL, completing his thesis in EMSI. He then worked as an engineer for a number of years, and continues with EMSI as a technician supporting our work on fracture mechanics.

Email: albert.taureg[at]