Stanford University
Taylor Dalhlke

(Photo courtesy of Taylor Dahlke)

Searching for treasure

Taylor DahlkePhD '19Geophysics


For Taylor Dahlke, PhD ’19, exploration geophysics is all about searching for underground treasure. “Geophysics can show us things that otherwise can’t be perceived by the naked eye. The field looks very different than it did 50, 30, or even 10 years ago. Today geophysics really is like modern-day treasure hunting.” What’s the treasure Dahlke is looking for? “Often, it’s oil, gas, or groundwater. But ultimately, it’s about getting new insights about the physical world. For me, the heart of it is that I’m enlivened by creating accurate models that tell us more about hidden features of the world we live in.”

Dahlke is getting ready to take what he learned at Stanford out into the world. Following graduation, he will begin a position at Hivemapper, a Millbrae, Calif. company that provides mapping, visualization and analytical software tools that uncover changes humans can’t see. Dahlke is looking forward to applying his knowledge of mathematical inversion to the context of 3D reconstruction in computer vision, which is the building of artificial systems that obtain information from images or multi-dimensional data. “I’ve been working on geophysical problems the last few years, but my new role will allow me to expand into geospatial problems as well.

Dahlke looks forward to seeing where new technologies will bring him next. “I’m excited to continue the chase,” he said. “Right now, computer vision is bringing a lot of new capabilities by creating eyes that far exceed human capacity. I’d like to continue to be a force multiplier for humanity’s ability to process information about the physical world.”

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