Three from MIT elected to NAE

Three current and former MIT researchers have been elected to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE). They are Alan H. Epstein, the Richard Cockburn Maclaurin Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics; George Stephanopoulos, the Arthur D. Little Professor of Chemical Engineering; and Wesley A. Clark, an MIT alumnus and principal of Clark, Rockoff and Associates in Brooklyn, NY.

Election to NAE membership honors those who have made "important contributions to engineering theory and practice, including significant contributions to the literature of engineering theory and practice," and those who have demonstrated "unusual accomplishment in the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology."

Professor Epstein was cited for "time-resolved flow and heat transfer measurements in turbo-mechanics, and for conception and development of smart engines and microengines." Currently director of the Gas Turbine Laboratory (GTL), he has been at MIT since 1975, when he started working as a research associate, later holding positions as associate director of the GTL (1978-96), assistant professor (1980), associate professor (1984) and professor (1990). He earned three degrees at MIT: the SB in 1971, the SM in 1972 and the PhD in 1975.

Professor Stephanopoulos was honored "for contributions to the research, industrial practice and education of process systems engineering, and for international intellectual and professional leadership." He joined the MIT faculty in 1984 after holding faculty positions at the University of Minnesota and the National Technical University in Athens.

Professor Stephanopoulos has been director of the Laboratory for Intelligent Systems in Process Engineering (part of the Department of Chemical Engineering) since 1987. He holds a diploma in chemical engineering from the National Technical University, the ME from McMaster University (1971) and the PhD from the University of Florida (1974).

Dr. Clark (EE 1955) was elected to the NAE "for the design of early computers." He did much of that work at Lincoln Laboratory in the 1950s. Among his accomplishments was his 1958 design of the Average Response Computer (ARC-1), a transistorized, special-purpose digital computer with a magnetic core memory now housed at the MIT Museum. It was used by the Research Laboratory of Electronics' Communications Biophysics group to record the averages of evoked electrical responses of the brain to a given stimulus. Its most important aspect was the ability to operate on line, thus enabling experimenters to observe and modify results while the experiment was still in progress.

This year the NAE elected 80 American engineers and eight foreign associates, bringing its total US membership to 1,984 and the number of foreign associates to 154.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on February 24, 1999.

Topics: Awards, honors and fellowships

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