As part of its 2020 Strategic Plan for the Future, West Virginia University funded a number of new tenure track faculty positions for academic year 2012-2013, with many slated for the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) disciplines. As part of this initiative, the Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources has added 12 faculty members, effective fall semester 2012.
“As our College has grown, so have our needs for highly qualified faculty,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College. “I am delighted to welcome these new faculty members to our College. Their teaching and research interests will strengthen the respective programs in which they serve. We have added expertise to support energy and energy-related research and education at the undergraduate and graduate levels to support University efforts to be a leader in energy research.”
Four are well-known faces in the Statler College, having most recently served as research assistant professors in their respective disciplines.
An assistant professor in the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, Thirimachos Bourlai obtained his doctorate at University of Surrey in the United Kingdom. His teaching interests are in pattern recognition and machine learning, ubiquitous computing, biometrics and human-computer interaction.
Yu Gu, also an assistant professor in the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering and Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, teaches in the areas of the modeling and design of robotic systems, instrumentation, automatic controls and mechatronics. He completed his doctorate at WVU in 2004.
After earning his Ph.D. from Virginia Tech, Assistant Professor Andrew Nix worked for the Department of the Navy as a turbine design engineers. He later joined the faculty at WVU’s Center for Alternative Fuels, Engines and Emissions in 2006. Nix, who joins the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, teaches in the areas of fluid mechanics, aircraft propulsion, gas turbines and design projects for hybrid electric vehicle and other transportation systems.
Also joining the MAE staff is Assistant Professor Konstantinos Sierros. A specialist in the design and fabrication of lightweight, low-friction human powered vehicles, Sierros led a team of WVU students in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers International Human Powered Vehicle Challenge, where they finished seventh in their first-ever attempt. He earned his doctorate at the University of Birmingham, England.
Newcomers to the Statler College include:
V’yacheslav (Slava) Akkerman, an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, specializes in fluid dynamics, mechanics, physics, computational methods and combustion theory. Akkerman earned his doctorate at Ume� University in Sweden, after completing his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the Moscow Institute of Physics and technology in Russia.
Associate Professor Debangsu Bhattacharyya completed his doctorate at Clarkson University. A chemical engineer, Bhattacharyya’s teaching interests are in process control, fuel cells and energy systems modeling and analysis.
Fei Dai, an assistant professor in civil and environmental engineering, completed his doctorate at Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 2010. His teaching interests are in construction management, technology and procurement, and quantitative techniques for project planning.
After earning his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Tehran University in Iran, Ebrahim Fathi, an assistant professor in petroleum and natural gas engineering, went on to earn his doctorate at the University of Oklahoma in 2010. His teaching interests include the fluid mechanics of natural gas production, oil recovery improvement, geostatistics and advanced production engineering.
Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering Antarpreet Jutla most recently served as a research scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. His teaching interests lie in the areas of hydrology, remote sensing, time series analysis, water resources engineering and watershed modeling and prediction. He completed his Ph.D. at Tufts University in 2001.
Alfred Edward Lynam joins the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering as an assistant professor, after serving as the Bilsland Dissertation Fellow at Purdue University. His teaching interests are in the optimization in dynamics, spacecraft design and signals and systems.
Upon earning his doctorate at Georgia Tech, David S. Mebane completed an Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education postdoctoral fellowship at the National Energy Technology Laboratory in Morgantown. Mebane will be an assistant professor in mechanical and aerospace engineering, teaching in the areas of parameter estimation, reduced order methods, electroceramics, thermodynamics and kinetics, and statistical mechanics.
Terence D. Musho also joins the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering as an assistant professor. After completing his doctorate at Vanderbilt University, he spent this past spring serving as an adjunct professor at Lipscomb University. His teaching interests include materials science, heat transfer and high performance computing.
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CONTACT: Mary C. Dillon