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John Vandiver

Contact Info

room 10-110

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

77 Massachusetts Avenue

Cambridge, Masachusetts 02139


  • 1968


  • 1969


  • 1975



Research Interests

  • Vibration
  • Flow-induced vibration
  • Field experiments
  • High speed photography
  • Schlieren photographyN

Online Data

Honors + Awards

  • Bronze Star (Vietnam War), US Army corps of Engineers:    1971
  • Republic of Vietnam Honor Medal,  US Army         1971
  • Doherty Professor in Ocean Utilization        1976 to 1978
  • ASME A. Lubinski Best Paper Award for the Best Petroleum
  • Mechanical Engineering Paper at the Offshore Technology Conference    1983
  • MIT Graduate Student Council Teaching Award        1987
  • MIT President's Award for Community Service        1998
  • MacVicarprofessorship for excellence in teaching        2001    2011
  • MIT Excellence Award given to the staff of the Edgerton Center    2003
  • Offshore Technology Conference Distinguished Achievement Award for Individuals                                  2005
  • Distinguished Eagle Scout Award         2006
  • ASME A. Lubinski Best Paper Award for the Best Petroleum Mechanical Engineering Paper at the Offshore Technology Conference     2006
  • MIT DUE Infinite Mile Team Award        2010
  • Arthur C Smith Award for Meaningful Contributions and Devotion to Student Life and Learning        2011
  • MIT Gordon Y Billard Award-“for special service of outstanding merit performed for the Institute.          2012

Related Experience

  • 1969:  Rolatape Corp, Project Engineer   
  • 1970-1971:  U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 1st Lieutenant, Post engineer, Nha Trang, Viet Nam
  • 1980 (summer), Visiting professor,  Norwegian Institute of Technology,Trondheim, Norway.
  • 2012:  Visiting Professor, Singapore University for Technology and Design.


  • Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE)
  • Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME)
  • American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
  • American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
  • Fellow of the AAAS

Professional Service

  • 1975-1979, SNAME, member of New England Section Executive Committee
  • 1979-1983, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, member of Executive Committee, Ocean Engineering Division
  • 1983-1986, American Society of Civil Engineers, Chair of OTC Technical Committee   
  • 1983-1987, Offshore Technology Conference Program Committee
  • 1987, Offshore Technology Program Committee, Technical Committee Chairman   
  • 1981-1982 Office of Technology Assessment,National Research Council Panel:  (1) Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion,  (2) U.S. Navy Ocean Engineering    
  • 1987, NSF Ocean Engineering Research Needs
  • 1994 Member, International Organizing Committee for the International Conference on  Hydroelasticity, Trondheim, Norway
  • 2001-2011, Member, International Steering Committee for the NTH Growth Point Center on Hydroelasticity
  • 2012-present, Member--Board of Directors of UTEC(a new engineering university in Lima Peru)

MIT Service

  • 1989-1990, Faculty Nominations Committee, chair
  • 1985-1988, Faculty Policy Committee
  • 1985-1987, 2000-2005, Committee on the Undergraduate Program(CUP)    
  • 1990-1991, Committee on the Undergraduate Program, acting chair, during the terminal illness of Dean Margaret MacVicar
  • 1985-1987, Committee on HASS curriculum, appointed by SHASS Dean Friedlander  
  • 1985-1987, Member, Committee on Graduate School Policy
  • 1987-1988, Chair, ROTC Evaluation Committee, for Dean for Undergraduate Education, Margaret MacVicar(Wrote a history of military training at MIT and identified disenrollment for gay students as a looming problem for MIT)September   
  • 1984-1989, Director of the Experimental Study Group
  • 1990-1991, Elected Chair-elect of the MIT faculty
  • May 1991, Asked by EVP C. Simonides to lead a group to negotiate the departure of 19 students occupying the Presidents Office during the inauguration of President C.M. Vest(with professors Phil Clay, Rosalind Williams, and Jean Jackson)
  • 1991-1993, Chair of the faculty, Academic Council     member
  • 1991-1993, Faculty Policy Committee, chair
  • 1991-1993, Member, CJAC, Corporation Joint Advisory Committee     
  • 1994-1996, Member, MIT Creative Arts Council, School of Engineering rep
  • 1995-1996, Member, Presidential Committee on ROTC
  • 1990-2005, Member, Provost’s Committee on ROTC Discrimination Issues
  • 1994-1996, Office of Minority Education Advisory Committee:
  • 1993-1997, Chair, Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and Financial Aid(CUAFA)
  • 1997, Member, search committee for the Dean of Admissions
  • 1997-1998, Chair, Presidential Committee on MIT Residence and Orientation (brought on by the alcohol poisoning death of freshman Scott Kreuger).
  • 1992-1999, Member, Faculty Advisory Committee to Integrated Studies Program
  • 1996-1998, Member, Presidential Task Force on Student Life and Learning
  • 1998-1999, Member, Education Design Project, which led to the founding of the Terrascope Program in 2000.
  • 1997-1998 Member, search committee: Director of the Experimental Study Group 
  • 1994-2003, Member, Advisory Committee for the Teacher Preparation Program
  • 2000, Member, search committee for a new program director of the MIT Teacher Education Program(recommended Eric Klopfer)
  • 1993-2001, Member, Integrated Studies Program Advisory Committee:  
  • 2002-2005, House Fellow to Random Hall
  • 1992-present, Director(founder), Edgerton Center
  • 1997, 1998, 2000, LeaderShape Faculty Facilitator
  • 1999-present, Dean, Undergraduate Research
  • 2001-2005, Director of the Office of Academic Services    
  • 1994-1995, Workedwith Kay Keyser, Mary Rowe and others in the development of training tapes for    harassment complaint    handlers:      
  • 1993, Chair, OSP Director Search Committee
  • 2003-2005, Member, President's Task Force on the Review of the General Institute Requirements
  • 2005-present,  Director of the office of experiential learning (DUE)


  • 2.04B  Mechanical Vibrations
  • 2.003   Dynamics and Controls I


  • 1.    Vandiver, J.K.,“High Speed Color SchlierenPhotography”,Nature,Vol.252, No. 5482cover photo and article, November 1974.
  • 2.    Vandiver, J. K., “Detection of Structural Failure on Fixed Platforms by Measurement of Dynamic Response”, Journal of Petroleum Technology, Vol. XXIX, March 1977.
  • 3.    Vandiver, J. K., “Statistical Energy Analysis Predictions of the Response of Offshore Structures to Random Wave Excitation”, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol., 65, p. S97, 1979.
  • 4.    Vandiver, J. K. and Mitome, S., “The Effect of Liquid Storage Tanks on the Dynamic Response of Offshore Structures”, Applied Ocean Research, Vol. 1, No. 2, March 1979; also in Journal of Petroleum Technology, Vol. 31, No. 10, pp. 1231-1240, October 1979; and Progress in Engineering Sciences, Vol. 1, pp. 25-32, 1982.
  • 5.    Vandiver, J. K., “Prediction of the Damping-Controlled Response of Offshore Structures to Random Wave Excitation”, Society of Petroleum Engineers Journal, Vol. 20, No. 1, pp. 5-14, February 1980; also in Marine Technology Society Journal, Vol. 15, No. 1, pp. 31-41, Spring 1981.
  • 6.    Campbell, R. B. and Vandiver, J. K., “The Estimation of Natural Frequencies and Damping Ratios of Offshore Structures”, Journal of Dynamic Systems and Control, ASME, 1982.
  • 7.    Vandiver, J. K., “The Significance of Dynamic Response in the Estimation of Fatigue Life”, Journal of Energy Resources Technology, Vol. 104, pp. 369-372, December 1982; also presented at the ASME Winter Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, November 1981.
  • 8.    Vandiver, J. K., “The Sensitivity of Fatigue Life Estimates to Variations in Structural Natural Periods, Modal Damping Ratios, and Directional Spreading of the Seas”, Ocean Science and Engineering, Vol. 7, No. 3, pp. 279-289, 1982.
  • 9.    Vandiver, J. K., Dunwoody, A. B., Campbell, R. B., and Cook, M. F., “A Mathematical Basis for the Random Decrement Vibration Signature Analysis Technique”, Journal of Mechanical Design, 1982.
  • 10.    Lu, Xinsen and Vandiver, J. K., “Least Pth Optimization of Parameter Estimation in Structural Response Spectrum”, Journal of Vibration and Shock, Vol. 1, No. 3, September 1982.
  • 11.    Griffin, O. M., Vandiver, J. K., and Skop, R. A., “The Strumming Vibrations of Marine Cables”, Ocean Science and Engineering, Vol. 7, No. 4, pp. 461-498, 1982.
  • 12.    Vandiver, J. K., “Direct Wave-Force Measurements on a Model Tension Leg Platform”, Ocean Science and Engineering, Vol. 7, No. 4, pp. 499-517, 1983.
  • 13.    Griffin, O. M. and Vandiver, J. K., “Vortex-Induced Strumming Vibrations of Marine Cables with Attached Masses”, Journal of Energy Resources Technology, Vol. 106, pp. 458, December 1984.
  • 14.    Kim, Y.H., Vandiver, J. K. and Holler, R., “Vortex-Induced Vibration and Drag Coefficients of Long Cables Subjected to Sheared Flows”, Journal of Energy Resources Technology, Transactions of the ASME, Vol. 108, No. 1, pp. 77-83, March 1986.
  • 15.    Vandiver, J. K. and Jong, J.-Y., “The Relationship Between In-Line and Cross-Flow Vortex-Induced Vibration of Cylinders, Journal of Fluids and Structures, Vol. 1, No. 4, pp. 381-399, October 1987.
  • 16.    Vandiver, J. K. and Chung, Tae Young, “Hydrodynamic Damping on Flexible Cylinders in Sheared Flow”, Journal of Waterway, Port, Coastal and Ocean Engineering, Vol. 115, No. 2, pp. 154-171, March 1989.
  • 17.    Vandiver, J. K., Nicholson, J. W. and Shyu, R-J, “Case Studies of the Bending Vibration and Whirling Motion of Drill Collars”, Journal of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, Vol. 5, No. 4, pp. 282-290, SPE-18652-PA, 1990.
  • 18.    Vandiver, J. K., “Dimensionless Parameters Important to the Prediction of Vortex-Induced Vibration of Long, Flexible Cylinders in Ocean Currents”, Journal of Fluids and Structures, Vol. 7, No. 5, pp. 423-455, July 1993.
  • 19.    Li, L. and Vandiver, J. K., “Wave Propagation in Strings with Rigid Bodies”, Journal of Vibrations and Acoustics, Vol. 117, No. 4, pp. 493-500, October 1995.
  • 20.    Vandiver, J. K., Allen, D., and Li, L., “The Occurrence of Lock-in Under Highly Sheared Conditions”, Journal of Fluids and Structures, Vol.10, No. 5, pp. 555-561, July 1996.
  • 21.    Rao, R. V. N., Schmidt, H. and Vandiver, J. K., “Wave Field Visualization as an Interpretational Tool in Borehole Geophysics”, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol., 99, p. 2553, 1996.
  • 22.    Rao, R. V. N., Schmidt, H. and Vandiver, J. K., “Spectral Integral Approach to Radiation from Fluid-Filled Boreholes”, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol., 99, p. 2587, 1996.
  • 23.    Hayner, M. A. and Vandiver, J. K., “Wave Propagation on Flexurally Stiff Cables with Rigid Body Attachments”, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol., 100, p. 2685, 1996.
  • 24.    Rao, R. V. N., Morgan, D. F. and Vandiver, J. K., “Inferring the Effects of Curvature of Tubulars from Pulse Propagation Tests”, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol., 100, p. 2822, 1996.
  • 25.    Stamoulis, C. and Vandiver, J. K., “Estimation of Flow-Induced Vibration Parameters of Marine Risers”, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol., 104, p. 1801, 1998.
  • 26.    Rao, R. V. N. and Vandiver, J. K., “Acoustics of Fluid-Filled Boreholes with Pipe: Guided Propagation and Radiation”, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol., 105, p. 3057, 1999.
  • 27.    Vikestad, K., Vandiver, J. K. and Larsen, C. M., “Added Mass and Oscillation Frequency for a Circular Cylinder Subjected to Vortex-Induced Vibrations and External Disturbance”,Journal of Fluids and Structures, Vol. 14, No. 7, pp. 1071-1088, October 2000.
  • 28.    Cheng, Y., Vandiver, J. K. and Moe, G., “The Linear Vibration Analysis of Marine Risers Using the WKB-based Dynamic Stiffness Method”, Journal of Sound and Vibration, Vol. 251, No. 4, pp. 750-760, April 2002.
  • 29.    Lyons, G. J., Vandiver, J. K., Larsen, Ascombe, G. T., “Vortex-induced vibrations measured in service in the Foinaven dynamic umbilical, and lessons from predictions”, Journal of Fluids and Structures, Vol. 17, No. 8, pp. 1079-1094, July 2003.
  • 30.    Vandiver, J.K., Jaiswal, V., Jhingran, V., “Insights on Vortex-Induced, Traveling Waves on Long Risers”, Journal of Fluids and Structures, Vol. 25, No. 4, pp. 641-653, May 2009.
  • 31.    Iranpour, M., Taheri, F. and Vandiver, J. K., “Structural Life Assessment of Oil and Gas Risers Under Vortex-induced Vibration”, Marine Structures, Vol. 21, No. 4, pp. 353-373, October 2008.
  • 32.    Vandiver, J. K. , “Damping Parameters for Flow-Induced Vibration“, Journal of Fluids and Structures, Vol35, pp. 105-119, November 2012.


  • 1.      "Method and Apparatus for Absorbing Dynamic Forces On Structures",     USA Patent No. 4226554, issued October 7, 1980.
  • 2.    "Method and Apparatus For Connecting A Slender Structure To A     Reference Body And For Suppressing The Vibration Of Such Slender Structures", USA Patent No. 5526906, issued June 18, 1996.