Lallit Anand Awarded 2018 William Prager Medal

Last week, the Society of Engineering Science (SES) announced that Lallit Anand, Warren and Towneley Rohsenow Professor of Mechanical Engineering, will receive the 2018 William Prager Medal. One of the most prestigious awards given to researchers in solid mechanics, the William Prager Medal is given to an individual each year for outstanding research contributions in either theoretical or experimental Solid Mechanics or both.

According to the SES, Anand received the William Prager Medal for his “outstanding research contributions to large deformation plasticity theory that are becoming part of the core knowledge of the field and are having a significant impact on its development.”

“It means a lot to me to win the William Prager Medal,” says Anand. “I’m very pleased to be selected, it’s a great honor,”

The award is named after William Prager, a renowned mathematician and mechanician who proposed the Drucker-Prager yield criterion, a model which determines whether or not a material has undergone plastic yielding. Prager served as a professor at Brown University, where Anand received his master’s degree and PhD.

As fate would have it, Anand and Prager were fellow students in a computer language programming course at Brown. “Prager and I actually sat next to each other in class,” adds Anand. “I certainly knew him, but I’m not sure he knew me.”

In addition to the Prager Medal, Anand was awarded the ASME’s Daniel C. Drucker Medal in 2014. Anand also knew the award’s namesake, Daniel C. Drucker, who worked with Prager on the Drucker-Prager yield criterion. “I’m honored to have my name associated with both of those two giants in the field,” adds Anand.

Among the many other awards he has received throughout his career is the Khan International Medal in 2007, which Anand received for outstanding life-long contributions to the field of plasticity. In 1992, he received the Eric Reissner Medal from the International Society for Computational Engineering & Sciences.  In 2017 he received the J. P. Den Hartog Distinguished Educator Award,  which is the highest award conferred for excellence in teaching Mechanical Engineering at MIT.