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July 8: Carnegie Mellon's Jeremy J. Michalek Wins Prestigious Mechanical Engineering Award


Chriss Swaney

Carnegie Mellon's Jeremy J. Michalek Wins
Prestigious Mechanical Engineering Award

MichalekPITTSBURGH—Carnegie Mellon University's Jeremy J. Michalek will receive the Design Automation Outstanding Young Investigator Award on Sept. 2 at the 2009 American Society of Mechanical Engineers International Design Engineering Technical Conference in San Diego.

"I am delighted with the award. And I am pleased that my peers have selected me for such a distinguished honor," said Michalek, an assistant professor in the Mechanical Engineering and Engineering and Public Policy Departments.

The award is given to recognize an outstanding young investigator who is making noteworthy contributions in the area of design automation, evaluation and integration, according to Matthew P. Parkinson, award nominator and assistant professor of engineering design and mechanical engineering at The Pennsylvania State University.

Nadine Aubry, head of Carnegie Mellon's Department of Mechanical Engineering, praised Michalek for his innovative work in the research lab and the classroom.

"He brings this wonderful creative spark of curiosity to his research and to his students, and this award is perfect recognition for his outstanding dedication to academic excellence and collaboration so endemic to Carnegie Mellon," said Aubry.

"Professor Michalek's unique strength is to both see the 'big picture' and understand what he can do to make a difference within it. He exhibits this characteristic in his research, teaching and service," said Parkinson. "As one of Michalek's contemporaries, I look to him for inspiration and to see what is possible. After chatting with him, I always leave with new ideas," Parkinson added.

Michalek, 32, works to understand engineering design in its larger socio-economic context.

"Much of my research evolves around understanding the tradeoffs in the capabilities of new technologies, and predicting what consumers are likely to buy and how profit-seeking companies will respond in the regulated marketplace," said Michalek, director of Carnegie Mellon's Design Decisions Laboratory.

Some of his latest research involves a new study suggesting that some plug-in hybrid vehicles could help drives save money while addressing global warming and oil dependency. His work shows that when charged frequently, plug-in hybrid vehicles with small battery packs offer the largest reductions of greenhouse gas emissions, gasoline consumption and lifetime vehicle cost. Such vehicles will likely play an important role in achieving President Obama's target of 1 million plug-in hybrid vehicles on the road by 2015 and as a pathway to adoption and improvement of plug-in vehicle technology.

Michalek received his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Carnegie Mellon in 1999 and a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan in 2005. In 2008, he received the National Science Foundation's most prestigious honor for new faculty members, the Faculty Early Career Development Award.


Pictured above is Jeremy J. Michalek, director of Carnegie Mellon's Design Decisions Laboratory.