Brock Wester is a project manager and assistant group supervisor for the Intelligent Systems Group in the Research and Exploratory Development department of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. He is also the vice chair of the Engineering for Professionals applied biomedical engineering program.

Wester received a BS in computer engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a joint PhD in biomedical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University. He has led research in areas of brain-computer and neural interfaces, prosthetics, connectomics, virtual and augmented reality, traumatic brain injury, and blast injury.

Education History

  • B.S. Computer Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Ph.D Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology

Work Experience

Principal Professional Staff, JHU Applied Physics Laboratory


Osborn, Luke E, Moran, Courtney W, Johannes, Matthew S, Sutton, Erin E, Wormley, Jared M, Dohopolski, Christopher, Nordstrom, Michelle J, Butkus, Josef A, Chi, Albert, Pasquina, Paul F, “Extended home use of an advanced osseointegrated prosthetic arm improves function, performance, and control efficiency”, Journal of Neural Engineering, 2021

Luke Osborn, Breanne Christie, David McMullen, Robert Nickl, Margaret Thompson, Ambarish Pawar, Tessy Thomas, Manuel Anaya, Nathan E. Crone, Brock Wester, Sliman, J Bensmaia, Pablo Celnik, Gabriela Cantarero, Francesco Tenore, Matthew Fifer, “Intracortical microstimulation of somatosensory cortex enables object identification through perceived sensations”, IEEE EMBC 2021

Caitlyn Bishop, Jordan Matelsky, Miller Wilt, Joseph Downs, Patricia Rivlin, Stephen Plaza, Brock Wester, William Gray-Roncal, “CONFIRMS: A Framework for Scalable, Blackbox Connectome Assessment and Investigation”, IEEE EMBC 2021

Jordan Matelsky, Luis Rodriguez, Daniel Xenes, Timothy Gion, Robert Hider Jr, Brock Wester, William Gray-Roncal, “An Integrated Toolkit for Extensible and Reproducible Neuroscience”, IEEE EMBC 2021

Andrew C. Merkle, Morgana M. Trexler, Brock A. Wester, “Pioneering Independent Research and Development Strategy in APL’s Research and Exploratory Development Mission Area: Ensuring our Nation’s Preeminence in the 21st Century,” APL Tech Digest 2021

Jordan K. Matelsky, Elizabeth P. Reilly, Erik C. Johnson, Jennifer Stiso, Danielle S. Bassett, Brock A. Wester, and William Gray-Roncal, “DotMotif: An open-source tool for connectome subgraph isomorphism search and graph queries”, Nature Scientific Reports, 2021

David McMullen, Tessy M Thomas, Matthew S Fifer, Daniel N Candrea, Francesco V Tenore, Robert W Nickl, Eric A Pohlmeyer, Christopher Coogan, Luke Osborn, Adam Schiavi, Teresa Wojtasiewicz, Chad Gordon, Adam B Cohen, Nick F Ramsey, Wouter Schellekens, Sliman Bensmaia, Gabriela L Cantarero, Pablo A Celnik, Brock A Wester, William S Anderson, Nathan E Crone, “Novel intraoperative online functional mapping of somatosensory finger representations for targeted stimulating electrode placement: technical note” has been successfully submitted to the Journal of Neurosurgery”, Journal of Neurosurgery, 2021

Luke E Osborn, Courtney W Moran, Matthew S Johannes, Erin E Sutton, Jared M Wormley, Christopher Dohopolski, Michelle J Nordstrom, Josef A Butkus, Albert Chi, Paul F Pasquina, Adam B Cohen, Brock A Wester, Matthew S Fifer, and Robert S Armiger, “Extended home use of an advanced osseointegrated prosthetic arm improves function, performance, and control efficiency”, JNE 2021, doi: 10.1088/1741-2552/abe20d

Luke Osborn, David McMullen, Breanne Christie, Pawel Kudela, Tessy Thomas, Margaret Thompson, Robert Nickl, Manuel Anaya, Srihari Sahana, Nathan E. Crone, Brock Wester, Pablo Celnik, Gabriela Cantarero, Francesco Tenore, Matthew Fifer “Intracortical microstimulation of somatosensory cortex generates evoked responses in motor cortex”, IEEE NER 2021

Erik C Johnson, Miller Wilt, Luis M Rodriguez, Raphael Norman-Tenazas, Corban Rivera, Nathan Drenkow, Dean Kleissas, Theodore J LaGrow, Hannah P Cowley, Joseph Downs, Jordan K. Matelsky, Marisa J. Hughes, Elizabeth P. Reilly, Brock A. Wester, Eva L. Dyer, Konrad P. Kording, William R. Gray-Roncal “Toward a scalable framework for reproducible processing of volumetric, nanoscale neuroimaging datasets”, Gigascience 2020,

Stephen A. Bailey, Justin R. Renga, Joseph T. Downs, Miller L. Wilt, Brock A. Wester, Jordan K. Matelsky, “Project Minard: A Platform for War-Rooming and Geospatial Analysis in Virtual Space”, APL Tech Digest 2020

David P. McMullen, Matthew S. Fifer, Kapil D. Katyal, Robert Armiger, Guy Hotson, James D. Beaty, Albert Chi, Daniel B. Drachman, and Brock A. Wester, “Design and Preliminary Evaluation of an Augmented Reality Interface Control System for a Robotic Arm”, APL Tech Digest 2020

Brock A. Wester, Andrew R. Badger, Matthew S. Fifer, Elise D. Buckley, Daniel M. Portwood, James D. Beaty, and M. Dwight Carr, “CONVEY: Connecting STEM Outreach Now Using VIE Education for Youth”, APL Tech Digest 2020

Nathan Drenkow, Justin Joyce, Jordan Matelsky, Reem Larabi, Jennifer Heiko, Dean Kleissas, Brock Wester, Erik C Johnson, William R Gray-Roncal, “Leveraging Tools from Autonomous Navigation for Rapid, Robust Neuron Connectivity”, MICCAI 2020

Elizabeth P. Reilly, Erik C. Johnson, Marisa J. Hughes, Devin Ramsden, Laurent Park, Brock Wester, Will Gray-Roncal, “Connecting Neural Reconstruction Integrity (NRI) to Graph Metrics and Biological Priors”, Complex Networks XI, Springer, 2020

Robert W Nickl, Manuel A Anaya, Tessy M Thomas, Matthew S Fifer, David P McMullen, Margaret Thompson, Daniel Candrea, William S Anderson, Brock Wester, Francesco Tenore, Nathan Crone, Pablo Celnik, Gabriela L. Cantarero, “Characteristics and stability of muscle-specific sensorimotor neural activity in a human with tetraplegia”, medRxiv 2020

Tessy M. Thomas, Robert Nickl, Margaret C. Thompson, Daniel N. Candrea, Matthew S. Fifer, David P. McMullen, Luke E. Osborn, Eric A. Pohlmeyer, Manual Anaya, William S. Anderson, Brock A. Wester, Francesco V. Tenore, Gabriela L. Cantarero, Pablo A. Celnik, Nathan E. Crone, “Simultaneous classification of bilateral hand gestures using bilateral microelectrode recordings in a tetraplegic patient”, medRxiv 2020

Matthew S. Fifer, David P. McMullen, Tessy M. Thomas, Luke E. Osborn, Robert Nickl, Daniel N. Candrea, Eric A. Pohlmeyer, Margaret C. Thompson, Manuel Anaya, Wouter Schellekens, Nick F. Ramsey, Sliman J. Bensmaia, William S. Anderson, Brock A. Wester, Nathan E. Crone, Pablo A. Celnik, Gabriela L. Cantarero, Francesco V. Tenore, “Intracortical Microstimulation Elicits Human Fingertip Sensations”, medRxiv 2020

Jordan K. Matelsky, Joseph Downs, Hannah P. Cowley, Brock Wester, and William Gray-Roncal, “A substrate for modular, extensible data-visualization”, Big Data Analytics 2020

Robert Hider Jr., Dean M. Kleissas, Derek Pryor, Timothy Gion, Luis Rodriguez, Jordan Matelsky, William Gray-Roncal, Brock Wester, “The Block Object Storage Service (bossDB): A Cloud-Native Approach for Petascale Neuroscience Discovery”, bioRxiv 2020

JT Vogelstein, E Perlman, B Falk, A Baden, W Gray Roncal, V Chandrashekhar, F Collman, Seshamani, J Patsolic, K Lillaney, M Kazhdan, R Hider, D Pryor, J Matelsky, T Gion, P Manavalan, BA Wester, M Chevillet, ET Trautman, K Khairy, EW Bridgeford, DM Kleissas, DJ Tward, AK Crow, B Hsueh, MA Wright, M Miller, SJ Smith, J Vogelstein, K Deisseroth, RC Burns, “A Community-Developed Open-Source Computational Ecosystem for Big Neuro Data”, Nature Methods, Oct 2018, doi: 10.1038/s41592-018-0181-1

E Reilly, JS Garretson, W Gray Roncal, DM Kleissas, BA Wester, MA Chevillet, MJ Roos, “Neural Reconstruction Integrity: A metric for assessing the connectivity of reconstructed neural networks”, Frontiers in Neuroinformatics, Feb 2018, doi:10.3389/fninf.2018.00074

M Encarnacion, C Bishop, J Downs, N Drenkow, JK Matelsky, PK Rivlin, BA Wester, W Gray Roncal, “CIRCUIT summer program: A computational neuroscience outreach experience for high-achieving undergraduates via sponsored research”, 2018 IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference (ISEC), doi: 10.1109/ISECon.2018.8340503

P Thielen, T Mehoke, J Gleason, A Iwaskiw, J Paulson, A Merkle, B Wester*, and J Dymond*, “Exploration of the Molecular Basis of Blast Injury in a Biofidelic Model of Traumatic Brain Injury”, Shock Waves, J. No. 193; Article No. 769. 2017.

EA Pohlmeyer, M Fifer, M Rich, J Pino, BA Wester, M Johannes, C Dohopolski, J Helder, D D’Angelo, J Beaty, S Bensmaia, M McLoughlin, F Tenore, “Beyond intuitive anthropomorphic control: recent achievements using brain computer interface technologies.” Proc. SPIE 10194, Micro- and Nanotechnology Sensors, Systems, and Applications IX, 101941N (May 18, 2017); doi:10.1117/12.2263886

M Kryger, BA Wester, EA Pohlmeyer, M Rich, B John, J Beaty, M McLoughlin, M Boninger, EC Tyler-Kabara, “Flight Simulation using a Brain-Computer Interface: A Pilot, Pilot Study”, Exp. Neurology. 2016 May.

L Xu, ML Schaefer, R Linville, A Aggarwal, W Mbuguiro, BA Wester, VE Koliatsos, “Neuroinflammation in primary blast neurotrauma: time course and prevention by torso shielding”, Journal of Experimental Neurology. Vol. 277, pp. 268-74. 2016.

G Hotson, RJ Smith, AG Rouse, MH Schieber, NV Thakor, BA Wester, “High Precision Neural Decoding of Complex Movement Trajectories using Recursive Bayesian Estimation with Dynamic Movement Primitives”, ICRA for the IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters. May 2016. Stockholm.

G Hotson, D McMullen, M Fifer, M Johannes, K Katyal, M Para, R Armiger, W Anderson, N Thakor, B Wester, N Crone, “Individual Finger Control of the Modular Prosthetic Limb using High-Density Electrocorticography in a Human Subject”, Journal of Neural Engineering. vol. 13. no. 2. 2016.

O Rodriguez, M Schaefer, B Wester, Y-C Lee, N Boggs, H Conner, A Merkle, S Fricke, C Albanese, V Koliatsos, “Manganese-Enhanced MRI as a diagnostic and dispositional tool after mild-moderate blast TBI” Journal of Neurotrauma. 2015.

A Rajan, J Boback, J Dammann, F Tenore, B Wester, K Otto, R Gaunt, S Bensmaia, “The Effect of Chronic Intracortical microstimulation on neural tissue and fine motor behavior”, Journal of Neuroengineering, JNE-100887.R2. 2015.

KD Katyal, MS Johannes, S Kellis, T Aflalo, C Klaes, TG McGee, MP Para, Y Shi, B Lee, K Pejsa, C Liu, BA Wester, F Tenore, JD Beaty, AD Ravitz, RA Andersen, MP McLoughlin, “A Collaborative BCI Approach to Autonomous Control of a Prosthetic Limb System”, 2014 IEEE SMC Conference Proceedings, 5-8 Oct. 2014. San Diego.

D McMullen*, G Hotson*, KD Katyal, BA Wester, MS Fifer, TG McGee, A Harris, MS Johannes, RJ Vogelstein, WS Anderson, NV Thakor, NE Crone, “Demonstration of a Semi-Autonomous Hybrid Brain-Machine Interface using Human Intracranial EEG, Eye Tracking, and Computer Vision to Control a Robotic Upper Limb Prosthetic”, IEEE Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, vol. PP, no. 99, Dec. 2013.

KD Katyal, MS Johannes, TG McGee, AJ Harris, RS Armiger, AH Firpi, D McMullen, G Hotson, MS Fifer, NE Crone, RJ Vogelstein, and BA Wester, “HARMONIE: A Multimodal Control Framework for Human Assistive Robotics,” 2013 IEEE NER Conf. Proceedings, 5-8 Nov. 2013. San Diego.

BA Wester, MP Para, A Sivakumar, MD Kutzer, KD Katyal, AD Ravitz, JD Beaty, MP McLoughlin, and MS Johannes, “Experimental Validation of Virtual Fixtures for Neural Controlled Human Patient Self-Feeding using the Modular Prosthetic Limb,” Proceedings 2013 IEEE IROS Conf. Oct. 2013. Tokyo.

MS Fifer, G Hotson, BA Wester, Y Wang, MS Johannes, KD Katyal, JB Helder, MP Para, RJ Vogelstein, WS Anderson, NV Thakor, NE Crone, “Simultaneous Neural Control of Simple Reaching and Grasping with the Modular Prosthetic Limb using Intracranial EEG”, IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, vol. PP, no. 99, 2013.

AD Ravitz, MP McLoughlin, JD Beaty, FV Tenore, MS Johannes, SA Swetz, JB Helder, KD Katyal, MP Para, KM Fischer, TC Gion, and BA Wester, “Revolutionizing prosthetics – phase 3,” Johns Hopkins APL Technical Digest, vol. 31, no. 4, pp. 366–376, 2013.

Ott, Kyle, Voo, Liming, Merkle, Andrew, Iwaskiw, Alexander, Wickwire, Alexis, Wester, Brock, Armiger, Robert, “Experimental determination of pressure wave transmission to the brain during head-neck blast tests”, ASME Summer Bioengineering Conference, 2013

CJ Dooley, BA Wester, ID Wing, LM Voo, RS Armiger, AC Merkle, “Response of thoracolumbar vertebral bodies to high rate compressive loading,” Proceedings Rocky Mountain Bioengineering Symposium, April 5-7, 2013. Colorado Spring, CO.

“MS Moses, BA Wester, CY Brown, MD Kutzer, PR Kucher, and KJ Rebello, “”A MEMS Sensor for Low-frequency Vibration
Energy Harvesting,”” IEEE Proceedings Microsystems for Measurement and Instrumentation (MANMA), March 27, 2012. Annapolis.”

SE Kasprzak, BA Wester, T Raj, MG Allen, K Gall, “Photopatterning of Thiol-ene/acrylate Copolymers,” JMEMS, vol.PP, no.00, pp. 1-10, 2012

BA Wester, JD Ross, S Rajaraman, and MG Allen, “Development and characterization of a packaged mechanically actuated microtweezer system,” Sensors and Actuators, March 2011.

S-J Paik, S-H Kim, P-C Wang, BA Wester, and MG Allen, “Dissolvable-tipped, drug-reservoir integrated polymer microneedle array for transdermal drug delivery,” Proceedings 2010 MEMS, Jan. 2010. Hong Kong.

P-C Wang, BA Wester, S Rajaraman, S-J Paik, S-H Kim, and MG Allen, “Hollow polymer microneedle array fabricated by photolithography process combined with micromolding technique,” Proceedings of the 30th Annual International Conference of the IEEE EMBS 2009. Sept. 2009. Minneapolis, MN.

BA Wester, JD Ross, S Rajaraman, and MG Allen, “Packaging and characterization of mechanically actuated microtweezers for biomedical applications,” Proceedings of 30th Annual International Conference of the IEEE EMBS 2009. Sept. 2009. Minneapolis, MN.

BA Wester, RH Lee, and MC LaPlaca. “Development and characterization of in vivo flexible electrodes compatible with large tissue displacements,” Journal of Neural Engineering, Issue 2, Apr. 2009.

Y Choi, JD Ross, BA Wester, and MG Allen. “Mechanically driven microtweezers with integrated microelectrodes,” Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, v 18, n 6, Jun. 2008, p 065004 (9 pp.).

Honors and Awards

  • Georgia Tech Council of Outstanding Young Engineering Alumni (2014)
  • Georgia Tech Impact Scholarship (2010)
  • National Science Foundation STEP Fellow (2007)
  • National Science Foundation IGERT Fellow (2005)

Professional Organizations

Society for Neuroscience