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Professor Gharib Named Vice Provost

07-29-10

Morteza Gharib, Hans W. Liepmann Professor of Aeronautics and Professor of Bio-Inspired Engineering, is the new Vice Provost with a special focus on research. Professor Gharib has made contributions to a wide array of research topics ranging from the fundamental analysis of biological flows, to the development of bio-inspired medical devices, to advanced flow visualization techniques. One of his more unusual studies was his work with a SURF student several years ago where they raised a 30000-pound obelisk into place using a single kite and speculated that the ancient Egyptians may have moved the massive stones from which the pyramids were built and raised obelisks by flying them into place! His breadth, technical strength, and enthusiasm will serve him and Caltech well as he takes on the role of Vice Provost. [Caltech Today Article]

Tags: research highlights GALCIT MedE Morteza Gharib

2010 World Cup Jubalani Soccer Ball Tested in Wind Tunnel

06-25-10

Beverley McKeon, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics, and her team test the 2010 World Cup Jubalani soccer ball in the Lucas Adaptive Wall Wind Tunnel. Their results may explain the seemingly unpredictable nature of the ball. [Caltech Press Release and Video]

Tags: research highlights GALCIT Beverley McKeon

Avatar Director James Cameron Met With Caltech Faculty and Students

05-18-10

Avatar Director James Cameron met with Caltech faculty and students on May 4, 2010 to discuss a variety of topics including space structure systems, interdisciplinary materials and device research, and cognitive neuroscience. All present were impressed by Mr. Cameron's level of interest and engagement. Ares Rosakis, Division Chair and Theodore von Karman Professor of Aeronautics and Professor of Mechanical Engineering, said "if Mr. Cameron was not such an accomplished director I bet he would have made a wonderful engineer."

Tags: research highlights GALCIT MCE Ares Rosakis James Cameron

Establishing the Caltech Field Laboratory for Optimized Wind Energy (FLOWE)

05-17-10

John O. Dabiri, Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, has purchased two acres of land north of Los Angeles, where he is establishing the Caltech Field Laboratory for Optimized Wind Energy (FLOWE). The goal is "to extract significantly more wind energy from a given parcel of land than is currently possible... [by taking] advantage of constructive aerodynamic interference between closely spaced vertical-axis wind turbines." says Dabiri whose inspiration for this project came from observation of schooling fish. [Caltech Press Release]

Tags: research highlights GALCIT John Dabiri

Ares Rosakis Receives 2010 Robert Henry Thurston Lecture Award

05-06-10

Ares J. Rosakis, Theodore von Kármán Professor of Aeronautics and Professor of Mechanical Engineering, has been selected to receive the 2010 Robert Henry Thurston Lecture Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers "for pioneering contributions to the field of fracture and failure mechanics of microelectronic, engineering and geological materials and structures, spanning a wide range of length scales; and for visionary leadership in promoting interdisciplinary research and education in mechanical engineering."

Tags: honors research highlights GALCIT MCE Ares Rosakis

Professor Knauss Receives the 2010 Timoshenko Medal

05-04-10

Wolfgang G. Knauss, Theodore von Kármán Professor of Aeronautics and Applied Mechanics, Emeritus, has been selected to receive the 2010 Timoshenko Medal from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers "for fundamental contributions to the mechanics of fracture, covering mixed-mode fracture, dynamic fracture, and interface and adhesive fracture; and the characterization of material response and failure at the microscale, with an emphasis on experimental mechanics." The Timoshenko Medal was established in 1957 and is conferred in recognition of distinguished contributions to the field of applied mechanics.

Tags: honors research highlights GALCIT Wolfgang Knauss

Caltech Researchers Create "Sound Bullets"

04-22-10

Alessandro Spadoni, Postdoctoral Scholar, and Chiara Daraio, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics and Applied Physics, have built a nonlinear acoustic lens that produces highly focused, high-amplitude acoustic signals dubbed "sound bullets." The combination of the acoustic lens and sound bullets have "the potential to revolutionize applications from medical imaging and therapy to the nondestructive evaluation of materials and engineering systems," says Professor Daraio. [Caltech Press Release]

Tags: APhMS research highlights Chiara Daraio GALCIT health Alessandro Spadoni postdocs

Beverely McKeon Shares Her Perspectives on Controlling Turbulence in Science Magazine

03-26-10

Beverley McKeon, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics, shares her perspectives on controlling turbulence in the March 2010 issue of Science. Professor McKeon states, "more than 100 years after Osborne Reynolds's seminal experiments on the transition of flow through a pipe from a laminar to a turbulent state, the exact physical mechanism that drives this phenomenon still vexes the fluid mechanics community." [Science Magazine Article]

Tags: research highlights GALCIT Beverley McKeon

Anthony Leonard and Richard Flagan Elected Members of the 2010 Class of the NAE

02-18-10

Anthony Leonard, Theodore von Kármán Professor of Aeronautics, Emeritus, and Richard C. Flagan, Irma and Ross McCollum-William H. Corcoran Professor of Chemical Engineering and Professor of Environmental Science & Engineering; Executive Officer of Chemical Engineering, have been elected members of the 2010 class of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE). NAE membership honors those who have made important contributions to engineering theory and practice, and those who have demonstrated unusual accomplishments in the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology. Election to the NAE is one the highest professional distinctions an engineer can receive. Professor Flagan was elected to the NAE "for leadership in invention, measurement, production, and technology of aerosols" and Professor Leonard was elected "for contributions to simulation of turbulence, new vortex methods of flow simulation, and understanding of flow-induced vibration." [Caltech Today Article]

Tags: honors GALCIT ESE Anthony Leonard Richard Flagan National Academy of Engineering

Sergio Pellegrino Receives NASA Robert H. Goddard Exceptional Achievement Award

11-04-09

Sergio Pellegrino, Professor of Aeronautics and Civil Engineering and Jet Propulsion Laboratory Senior Research Scientist, has received the NASA Robert H. Goddard Exceptional Achievement Award as a member of the superpressure balloon team. The award is for sound engineering and operational development, outstanding teamwork, and perseverance in building a new scientific balloon capability for NASA.

Tags: honors research highlights GALCIT MCE Sergio Pellegrino