Iowa State University

Inside Iowa State
August 13, 1999


Elected fellow

Dale Chimenti, professor of aerospace engineering and engineering mechanics and senior scientist for the Center for Nondestructive Evaluation, recently was elected a fellow of the Acoustical Society of America for his contributions to the engineering acoustics field. For the past 15 years, Chimenti has studied the characteristics of acoustic waves in thin plates of complex materials, such as metal composites. The explanation of the physical behavior of these waves, their experimental investigation and their application to inspection methods form the basis of Chimenti's work that was recognized by the society.

Early achievement award

James Oliver, associate professor of mechanical engineering, recently was selected recipient of the 1999 Gustus L. Larson Memorial Award. The award, given jointly by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the honorary society Pi Tau Sigma, honors engineering graduates who have demonstrated outstanding achievements in mechanical engineering within 10 to 20 years following graduation.

Oliver, who is on temporary leave to work at Engineering Animation Inc., has served as associate director of Virtual Reality Applications Center, formerly known as the Iowa Center for Emerging Manufacturing Technology. He specializes in the areas of geometric modeling, computer graphics and synthetic environments and their applications to challenges in engineering design and manufacturing automation.

Elected fellow

The American Society of Mechanical Engineers recently elected Frank Rizzo, professor of aerospace engineering and engineering mechanics, a fellow to the international professional society for his work on a calculation method known as the Boundary Element Method.

The method is based on mathematics that were developed in the 1800s for a different purpose. But more than 30 years ago Rizzo saw that the emerging digital computer could breathe new life into the old math. The boundary method has greatly increased the ease, speed and accuracy of computation for many complicated engineering problems over volume-based methods. Now, with modern computers and point-and-click software, one can do difficult analysis and design with little background in technical computation.

Institute president

The Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) has named Max Porter president of its 17,000-member organization. Porter, a professor in the department of civil and construction engineering, will serve a one-year term beginning in October. The American Society of Civil Engineers created the SEI in 1996 with a mission to advance the profession of structural engineering by enhancing and sharing knowledge, supporting research and improving business and profession practices. Porter is a fellow of ASCE.

Blue ribbon awards

MWPS (MidWest Plan Service) recently received Blue Ribbons for all three of its submissions to the American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE) "Blue Ribbon Awards." The publications receiving honors are Sprinkler Irrigation Systems, a 250-page technical handbook; Hoop Structures for Gestating Swine, a 16-page agricultural engineers digest; and What A Consulting Agricultural Engineer Can Do For You, a 12-page educational brochure. MWPS is a cooperative publishing service of 12 land-grant universities in the North Central United States, headquartered at ISU since 1929.

Staff members who developed the publications are Bill Beach and Tish Wetterhauer, designers; Laura Miller, editor; Bill Koenig, engineer; and Jack Moore, manager. ISU faculty who contributed to the publications are Jay Harmon, agricultural and biosystems engineering; Mark Honeyman, animal science; and James Kliebenstein, agricultural economics.

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