Outstanding Achievement Award Recipient - Dr. Kaushik Bhattacharya
Dr. Kaushik Bhattacharya, a distinguished graduate of the University of Minnesota, will be honored with the prestigious Outstanding Achievement Award from the University on October 19, 2018. Dr. Bhattacharya received his bachelor’s (B.Tech.) degree from the Indian Institute of Technology in Madras in 1986 and his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota in 1991. The University of Minnesota presents Outstanding Achievement Awards to alumni who have attained unusual distinction and have demonstrated outstanding achievement and leadership in their respective field and community.
Dr. Bhattacharya pioneered an approach to the study of phase transformations in crystalline materials that has shaped an entire community and has led to spectacular new examples of these materials. Within his highly original view of materials science, he has forged a powerful new way of looking at functional materials, and has brought his innovative approach to ferroelectrics, liquid crystals, liquid crystal elastomers and light materials. He has revisited classical areas of solid mechanics – fracture mechanics, plasticity, twinning and adhesion – revitalizing these fields and launching them in exciting new directions.
Regarding Dr. Bhattacharya’s astounding work and nomination, Professor James states, “Bhattacharya has accomplished a lot, in fundamental and applied research, and in service to the engineering science community and to academic administration. He is a remarkable graduate, and has in so many ways improved the stature of UMN, in particular during the time since he graduated.”
Currently, Dr. Bhattacharya is the Howell N. Tyson Sr. Professor of Mechanics, Professor of Materials Science, and Vice Provost for Research at Caltech. He guides one of the most active research groups in solid mechanics in the United States and leads major national multi-investigator research programs. Dr. Bhattacharya has been with Caltech since 1993. Prior this, he was an associate research scientist at Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences.
In addition to his research endeavors, Dr. Bhattacharya served as Executive Officer (Department Chair) for Mechanical and Civil Engineering and was member of the Faculty Board at Caltech. He was editor and senior editorial advisor for the Journal of Mechanics and Physics of Solids and a member of the editorial board of the Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis, Applied Mathematics Research Express, and Communications on Mathematical Sciences for Applications. Dr. Bhattacharya has served tirelessly as a member of visiting committees, including a recent self-study committee for the AEM Department, and as a member of expert panels. He holds seven patents and has authored numerous books and several seminal journal articles. As a dedicated teacher and author, his teachings have contributed tremendously to the study of phase transformations and shape memory materials.
Dr. Bhattcharya is a visionary researcher, and his pioneering contributions have resulted in numerous major awards and recognition within his field. Some of these awards include the 2015 Warner T. Koiter Medal for distinguished contributions to the field of Solid Mechanics, the 2013 Fellow of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, the 2013 Graduate Student Council Teaching and Mentoring Award, the 2013 Spanish Mechanics Lecturer, the 2007–2008 Southwest Mechanics Lecturer, the 2006-2007 Midwest Mechanics Lecturer, the 2004 Special Achievement Award in Applied Mechanics, and the 2004 Society of Engineering Sciences young Investigator Award.
The Department of Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics is proud to celebrate and honor Dr. Kaushik Bhattacharya on October 19, 2018.