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Waitz to lead Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

Ian Waitz
Ian Waitz
Photo / William Litant

Ian Waitz, the Jerome C. Hunsaker Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics, has been named the next head of the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, effective Feb. 16.

"Ian is an outstanding teacher and internationally known scholar whose principal fields of interest include propulsion, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, reacting flows and aeroacoustics, particularly with respect to the environmental issues associated with aircraft design and operation," said School of Engineering Dean Subra Suresh, who announced the new appointment.

Since 2004, Waitz has served as director of the Partnership for AiR Transportation Noise and Emissions Reduction (PARTNER), an FAA/NASA/Transport Canada-sponsored Center of Excellence.

Waitz served as deputy head of the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics from 2002 to 2005 and led the development of the department's 2007 strategic report. Waitz holds degrees from the California Institute of Technology, George Washington University and the Pennsylvania State University. He is a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and was recently honored with the FAA 2007 Excellence in Aviation Research Award. In 2002, he received the MIT Class of 1960 Innovation in Education Award, and was appointed as an MIT MacVicar Faculty Fellow in 2003.

"I am honored to have the opportunity to lead the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and to contribute to the tradition of excellence in the department and the Institute," Waitz said. "Our faculty, students and staff are making significant contributions in important and challenging areas of aerospace research and education. They enjoy what they are doing, they enjoy working with each other and they enjoy working with colleagues across the Institute and the world. This collaborative problem-solving approach allows us to tackle more challenging, multidisciplinary problems, and it amplifies our capabilities and our impact. Moreover, it makes it a fun and rewarding place to work. I'm looking forward to it."

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on January 16, 2008 (download PDF).

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