Silvina Cancelos, Ph.D

Silvina Cancelos, Ph.D

Associate Professor

Office: 338 
T: 787-832-4040


  • Ph.D.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY, USA, 2007
  • M.S.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY, USA, 2005
  • M.S.
Instituto Balseiro, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, Argentina, 2000
  • B.S.
Instituto Balseiro, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, Argentina, 2000


  • 2000-2002
Engineer, Repsol-YPF, Buenos Aires, Argentina; Division of Natural Gas and Electricity
  • 2001
Instructor, Universidad Argentina de la Empresa, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Academic and Professional Leadership

  • American Nuclear Society

Conference Publications

  • S. Cancelos, F.J. Moraga, R.T. Lahey Jr. “The design of acoustic chambers for the study of bubble dynamics”. Proceedings of the 7th Int. Symposium on Fluid Control, Measurement, and visualization. Sorrento, Italy, 2003.
  • S. Cancelos, F.J. Moraga, I.S. Akhatov, R.T. Lahey Jr., R. H. Parsons. “The design of acoustic resonant chambers by numerical simulation”. Proceedings of the Second M.I.T. conference on Computational Fluid and Solid Mechanics. 2233-2236, 2003.
  • S. Cancelos, T.R. Nigmatulin, F.J. Bonetto. “Shape of capillary waves on a standing taylor bubble”. Proceedings of the 2nd International Symposium on two-phase flow modeling and experimentations, III-1857, Pisa, Italy, 1999.


Major Peer-Reviewed Journal Publications

  • S. Cancelos, F.J. Moraga, R.T. Lahey, Jr., W. Shain, R. Parsons. “The effect of acoustically-induced cavitation on the permeance of a bullfrog urinary bladder”. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. Vol. 128, No. 5, pp. 2726-2738, 2010.
  • S. Cancelos, F.J. Moraga, R.T. Lahey, Jr., P. Bouchilloux. “The design of acoustic chambers for bubble dynamics research”. Journal of Multiphase Science and Technology. Vol. 17, No. 3, pp. 257-291, 2005.
  • F.J. Moraga, S. Cancelos and R.T. Lahey Jr. “Modeling wall-induced forces on bubbles or inclined walls”. Journal of Multiphase Science and Technology. Vol. 17, No. 4, pp. 483-505, 2005.


  • Balseiro Institute fellowship (1996-2000)
  • Founders Award of Excellence (2005)
  • Named member of the Alpha Nu Sigma Nuclear Engineering Honor Society (2003)

Everybody is familiar with bubbles in one way or another. They are part of our daily lives and look simple, however bubbles are quite complex systems with an intricate physics behind their behavior and even existence. The science of bubbles has developed to a point where they are successfully used for cleaning, cutting, improving contrast in ultrasound imaging and medical treatment for lithotripsy just to cite a few. Additionally, research on their applicability for cancer treatment, drug delivery and to prevent decompression sickness (DCS), among others, is being actively explored. However, there is still serious lack of knowledge on their dynamics that is preventing a wider range of possible applications to develop.

Moreover, very recently the research area has been challenged with the tiniest version of bubbles: nano-bubbles, which do not follow the theories applied for larger ones. Actually, they should not be stable for more than milliseconds, yet they are found stable for months.

Bubble Dynamics Laboratory

At the Bubble Dynamics Laboratory of the University of Puerto Rico – Mayaguez, cutting edge research is being conducted for understanding, producing and characterizing milli- micro- and nano-bubbles through the design of acoustic resonators. We develop experimental systems for validation and/or formulation of theoretical models involving the generation and collapse of bubbles.

Ongoing Projects

Specific research is being carried out for DCS prevention (funded by the Puerto Rico Science Technology and Research Trust and by an NSF SBIR Phase I grant with SIL Technologies LLC grant#1721595), DCS treatment (a project that has just being recommended for funding by NIH SBIR Phase I program), nanoparticles production (funded by ONR grant# N00014-14-1-0836), and basic knowledge on the bubble dynamics.