News & Awards: Summer 2018



Departmental and Research News

- Analysis conducted by Associate Professor Tonio Buonassisi in the journal Nature Energy provides a clear way to figure out the best type of solar panel for a given location and type of installation.

- A new model developed by Professor Anette ‘Peko’ Hosoi and published in the journal Physical Review Fluids predicts how hairs on a bat’s tongue draw up nectar.

- A polymer thermal conductor developed by Professor Gang Chen could prevent overheating of laptops, mobile phones, and other electronics. The findings were published in the journal Science Advances.

- Using a design inspired by the paper-folding art kirigami, Professor Xuanhe Zhao designed an adhesive bandage that can stick to difficult places such as moving knees and elbows. The research was published in the journal Soft Matter.

- A new model developed by Professor Evelyn Wang and published in the journal Nanotechnology measures the characteristics of carbon nanotube structures for energy storage and water desalination applications.

- The Tata Center announced it will support a project by Associate Professor Amos Winter who will assess the socioeconomic and technical requirements for village-scale water and sanitation systems.

- In their annual university rankings, US News & World Report has named MIT MechE the number one graduate program in mechanical engineering for 2019.

- QS World University Rankings rated MIT MechE the number one mechanical engineering program in the world for 2018.

Faculty Promotions

- Domitilla del Vecchio was promoted to Full Professor.

- Nicholas Fang was promoted to Full Professor.

- Ken Kamrin was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure.

- Jeehwan Kim was promoted to Associate Professor without tenure.

- Alexie Kolpak was promoted to Associate Professor without tenure.

Faculty Awards

- Professor Lallit Anand, Professor Stephen Graves, and Professor Yang Shao-Horn have been elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

- Professor Gang Chen has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious honorary societies.

- Professor Yang Shao-Horn has been named the first female recipient of the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Faraday Medal in recognition of her outstanding original contributions and innovation in electrochemistry.

- Professor David Wallace received the ASME Ben C. Sparks Medal for outstanding contributions that have transformed the way undergraduates across disciplines and cultures think about and practice mechanical engineering design.

- Professor Roger Kamm has been named the first recipient of ASME’s Robert M. Nerem Education and Mentorship Medal for demonstrating a sustained level of outstanding achievement in education and mentoring of trainees.

- Associate Professor Kripa Varanasi was awarded the Frank E. Perkins Award for Excellence in Graduate Advising for serving as an excellent advisor and mentor for graduate students.

- Associate Professor Cullen Buie, Professor John Lienhard, Professor Warren Seering, Professor David Trumper, Professor Evelyn Wang, and Professor Kamal Youcef-Toumi were all honored with MIT's Committed to Caring Awards for making an impact in the lives of graduate students.

- Associate Professor Rohit Karnik received the School of Engineering’s Ruth and Joel Spira Awards for Excellence in Teaching.

- Professor Ian Hunter has been elected to the National Academy of Inventors.

Student News

- Graduate student Maher Damak won the Lemelson-MIT Student Prize in the graduate "Eat It!" category for his work making pesticides stickier to minimize runoff.

- An interdisciplinary team of five MIT students, including MechE sophomore Claire Traweek, developed a solution to improve medical care for refugees as part of the Vatican’s first-ever hackathon.

-  A robot developed by MechE graduate student Ben Katz and EECS student Jared Di Carlo can solve a Rubik’s Cube in a record-breaking 0.38 seconds.

- Senior Julia Rue received a Laya and Jerome B. Wiesner Student Art Award for outstanding achievement in and contributions to the arts at MIT.