Four MechSE professors named ASME Fellows
MechSE professors Harley Johnson, Kenneth Christensen, and Joseph Bentsman have all been named Fellows of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the group’s highest membership grade of distinction.
The ASME Board of Governors confers the Fellow grade of membership on worthy candidates to recognize their outstanding engineering achievements. Nominated by their peers, ASME Fellows have had 10 or more years of active practice and at least 10 years of continuous active corporate membership in ASME.
Professor Bentsman completed his PhD in Electrical Engineering at the Illinois Institute of Technology in 1984 after receiving his master’s at the Byelorussian Polytechnic Institute in Minsk, Russia in 1979. He became a MechSE faculty member in 1985 and a departmental affiliate of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 1992. He received the Andersen Consulting Award for Excellence in Advising from the College of Engineering in 1990. Bentsman’s research lies in control theory of nonlinear systems and nonlinear oscillations. He introduced a new class of dynamical systems with active singularities, and is currently developing a modeling framework for them. They "constitute a new class of hybrid systems characterized by impulsively controlled discrete transitions."
Currently in his first year as MechSE's associate head for mechanics programs, Professor Christensen has been a member of ASME since 1999. He received his PhD from Illinois in 2001 in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics. Christensen has been a member of the department ever since, becoming a full professor in 2012. He has received numerous honors, including being named a Kritzer Faculty Scholar in 2011 and receiving the College of Engineering Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research in 2012. Christensen's research focuses on experimental fluid mechanics, including turbulence microfluidics, bio-fluid dynamics, and multiphase flows. He is the director of the Laboratory for Turbulence and Complex Flow (LTCF), a center for the pursuit of fundamental experimental research in a variety of areas of fluid mechanics.
Professor Dankowicz has been a member of the department, and a Cannon Faculty Scholar, since 2005. Before then, he was a faculty member at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, also known as Virginia Tech. He received his master’s in engineering physics from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden in 1991, and his PhD in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics from Cornell University in 1995. He received the Collins Award for Innovative Teaching from the College of Engineering here at Illinois in 2012. He has been a member of ASME since 2002. Since then, he has served on the ASME Technical Committee on Multibody Systems and Nonlinear Dynamics as both Secretary and Vice-Chair, and as an editor for Applied Mechanics Reviews, ASME's international review journal.
Currently in his second year as MechSE's associate head for graduate programs, Professor Johnson has been a member of the society since 1999. Before coming to Illinois, Johnson completed his PhD in Engineering at Brown University in 1999. He was an assistant professor in the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering at Boston University from 1999 to 2001. In 2010 he was named a Kritzer Faculty Scholar. Johnson actively contributes to solid mechanics, applied physics, and materials science research. His research team—known as the Johnson Research Group—studies nano-electro-opto mechanics. He applies his research to solar energy conversion, microelectronics, photonics, sensing, and other new technologies.