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2022 Sandra L. Bouckley Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineers

These 22 Sandra Bouckley Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineers, age 35 or younger, are being recognized for their exceptional contributions and accomplishments in the manufacturing industry. Each year, the award is named in honor of a specific individual who has made lifelong contributions to manufacturing and SME. The 2022 award namesake is 2017 SME President Sandra L. Bouckley, FSME, P.Eng., former SME CEO and a previous vice president of manufacturing systems, supply chain management and lean at GKN Driveline Americas. 

Bruno Azeredo, PhD
Fulton Development Assistant Professor of Manufacturing Engineering
Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering
Arizona State University
Tempe, Arizona

Azeredo is the Fulton Development assistant professor of manufacturing engineering in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University. Prior to ASU, he earned his bachelor's degree (2010), master's degree (2014) and doctorate (2016), all in the Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. At ASU, his research blends electrochemistry, materials science, solid mechanics and machine design toward the pursuit of applications in infrared meta-surface-based optics, scalable nanomanufacturing, 3D-printing, microelectronics and energy harvesting. He has co-authored 25 journal articles and patents and serves on various roles at ASME’s Manufacturing Engineering Division, SME’s NAMRC Scientific Committee and the Materials Research Society. Among other awards, he is recipient of the 2018 Bisgrove Scholars Award from the Science Foundation Arizona, the 2020 National Science Foundation CAREER Award and the 2022 SME Sandra L. Bouckley Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award. SME Member Since 2021

Wen Chen, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Amherst, Massachusetts

Chen is an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Chen completed his doctorate in mechanical engineering and materials science at Yale University in 2016. His doctorate thesis focused on understanding processing-structure-property relationships in metallic glasses by artificial microstructures approach. After Chen’s doctorate, he worked as a postdoctoral research scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, studying a variety of additive manufacturing techniques such as stereolithography, direct ink writing and laser powder-bed fusion. Chen's current research interests lie in additive manufacturing, material design, architected materials and mechanical behavior of compositionally complex alloys. He is the recipient of many academic awards including the Yale Pierre W. Hoge Fellowship Award and the Acta Best Paper Award. SME Member Since 2022

Xu Chen, PhD
Bryan T. McMinn Endowed Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering
University of Washington

Chen is the Bryan T. McMinn endowed associate professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Washington. He obtained his doctorate and bachelor’s degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of California, Berkeley and Tsinghua University (China), respectively. Chen’s research focuses on dynamic systems, controls and information processing to better understand and engineer smart manufacturing (e.g., with lasers and robots) that can positively impact our lives. His work has led to multiple best paper awards, servo algorithms in mass production in the information storage industry and top-tier adaptive control methods in international benchmark evaluations. Chen is a recipient of the National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the Young Investigator Award from ISCIE / ASME International Symposium on Flexible Automation and the inaugural UTC Institute for Advanced Systems Engineering Breakthrough Award. SME Member Since 2015

Nancy Diaz-Elsayed, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of South Florida
Hillsborough County, Florida

Diaz-Elsayed is an assistant professor at the University of South Florida in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. She leads the Smart and Sustainable Systems Laboratory where her research group applies data-driven methods and develops IoT applications to enable the design of sustainable systems. Diaz-Elsayed’s projects have spanned discrete and continuous processes, including tool condition monitoring for CNC machining, the characterization of health monitoring capabilities for production equipment, the sustainable design of integrated wastewater management systems and the development of a digital twin for remote energy monitoring. She leads the Women in Advanced Manufacturing Forum organizing committee of ASME’s Manufacturing Engineering Division and is a recipient of the 2021 William R. Jones Outstanding Mentor Award from the Florida Education Fund. Diaz-Elsayed holds a master’s degree and doctorate in mechanical engineering from UC Berkeley and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from MIT. SME Member Since 2020

Amy Elliott, PhD
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Oak Ridge, Tennessee

Elliott is a scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory where she researches advanced manufacturing technologies, including metal and ceramic 3D-printing. Elliott has received two R&D100 awards, holds several patents and has contributed to several books on the topic of advanced manufacturing. She received her bachelor’s degree and doctorate in mechanical engineering at Tennessee Technological University, Virginia Polytechnic and State University, respectively. Elliott has numerous media achievements, including placing second in an engineering reality show competition titled “The Big Brain Theory,” which aired on The Discovery Channel in 2013, and serving as an on-camera science personality for six seasons of The Science Channel’s “Outrageous Acts of Science.” In 2019, she was selected by the American Association for the Advancement of Science as an IF/Then Ambassador, a program with the slogan “IF she can see it, THEN she can be it.” As a result, Elliott has a life-size statue of herself at the Smithsonian’s IF/THEN Exhibit. SME Member Since 2017

Thomas Feldhausen, PhD
Research Staff Member & Technical Lead for Hybrid Manufacturing
Manufacturing Automation & Controls Group
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Knoxville, Tennessee

Feldhausen is a research staff member and technical lead for hybrid manufacturing with the Manufacturing Automation & Controls Group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. His research at ORNL's Manufacturing Demonstration Facility utilizes hybrid manufacturing, a combination of additive and subtractive (machining) manufacturing, to provide industrial solutions for component repair, tooling and tooling repair, advanced energy systems, aerospace and automotive applications. Before joining ORNL, Feldhausen worked at Honeywell Federal Manufacturing in Kansas City, Missouri, where he focused on multiaxis additive techniques for direct ink-write technologies. Feldhausen received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from Kansas State University and doctorate in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. SME Member Since 2020

Kelvin Fu, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Delaware
Newark, Delaware

Fu is an assistant professor in mechanical engineering at the University of Delaware and an affiliated professor in the UD Center for Composite Materials. He also directs the Composites & Additive Manufacturing Laboratory at UD. Fu is an elected member of ASME’s Aerospace Division Structures and Materials Technical Committee and a member of the editorial board for the journal of “Composites Part B: Engineering.” His research is focused on materials and manufacturing innovation in multiscale composite design, manufacturing and applications. In addition, Fu is the co-founder of CarbonForm Inc. His world-first fiber/thermoset composite 3D-printing technology has received Awards for Composites Excellence in Manufacturing: Equipment and the Tooling Innovation Award by the American Composites Manufacturers Association. He is the recipient of 2021 MIT Technology Review Innovator Under 35 China; 2021 ACS Polymeric Materials: Science and Engineering Young Investigator by the American Chemical Society; ASC Young Composites Researcher Award by the American Society for Composites; and the SAMPE Young Professionals Emerging Leadership Award. Fu has published more than 120 peer-reviewed articles with citations over 12,000 times. SME Member Since 2020

Michael Gomez, PhD
Senior Innovation R&D Engineer
MSC Industrial Supply Co.
Knoxville, Tennessee

Gomez is performing metal-cutting research and development for industrial applications. He has made distinguished contributions in the intersections of manufacturing science, machining dynamics, milling process modeling and metrology. This includes developing an innovative low-cost cutting-force dynamometer for high-bandwidth milling-force measurement, digital-force modeling using structured light scanning metrology for nonstandard geometry endmill applications and mechanistic-force modeling for additively manufactured metal alloys. Gomez is a key member of the metalworking innovations team at MSC Industrial Supply Co., which is focused on bringing novel technologies to the U.S. manufacturing marketplace aimed at improving workforce development, manufacturing productivity and operational efficiency. He holds a doctorate in mechanical engineering from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. SME Member Since 2021

Jinah Jang, PhD
Associate Professor
Convergence IT Engineering, Mechanical Engineering
School of Interdisciplinary Bioscience and Bioengineering
Pohang University of Science and Technology
Pohang, South Korea

Jang received her doctorate at Pohang University of Science and Technology in Korea, and trained as a postdoctoral fellow at POSTECH and the Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine at the University of Washington. She joined POSTECH in 2017 and is now an associate professor in the Convergence IT Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and School of Interdisciplinary Bioscience and Bioengineering. Jang has published more than 95 peer-reviewed articles in prestigious journals in the area of bioprinting and tissue engineering. Her h-index and citations are 38 and more than 6,260, respectively (by Google Scholar). Jang currently serves as the associate editor of the “Bio-Design and Manufacturing” journal and as a board member for the International Society for Biofabrication. She has also received numerous awards including the ISBF Young Scientist Award (2014) and the Medipost New Scientist Award from the Korea Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Society (2021). Jang’s research interest lies in engineering the functional human tissues using high-performance stem cells and printable biomaterials-based 3D-bioprinting technology. SME Member Since 2022

Bo Jin, PhD
Research Scientist/Professor
University of Southern California
Los Angeles

Jin is a research scientist at the University of Southern California. He teaches graduate and undergraduate courses at USC’s Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering as well as conducts research at USC’s M.C. Gill Composites Center. Jin specializes in composites design, composites manufacturing and characterization methods, computational mechanics and finite-element analysis. He was an assistant research scientist at the Spanish National Lab IMDEA Materials and a composites FEA engineer at MSC NASTRAN. Jin is the recipient of several awards, including an ACM-ICPC Gold Medal, a SAMPE National Leadership Award, first place in NASTRAN’s Simulating Reality Contest and several best paper awards in major composites conferences including CAMX/SAMPE. He serves on the editorial board of the “Journal of Composites Science” and as the conference chair and technical committee member at SAMPE/CAMX. Jin has published ~50 peer-reviewed journal and conference papers including a few featured articles in top journals in the composites field. SME Member Since 2021

Venkata Charan Kantumuchu
Global Quality Director
Electrex Inc.
Edmond, Oklahoma

Kantumuchu is the global quality director at Electrex Inc. and has over a decade of experience in manufacturing industry. He has been a member of ASQ and SME for the last 10 years. Kantumuchu has reviewed several journal papers on manufacturing, quality and materials. He served as a keynote speaker at an international conference (ICAMS) and as a guest speaker at other conferences. Kantumuchu chaired a session at the 3rd International Conference on Smart and Sustainable Developments in Materials, Manufacturing, and Energy Engineering, and he has been a judge at ITEA (International Team Excellence Awards) for the American Society for Quality for more than six years. Kantumuchu has published various papers on fabrication and 3D-printing and has written two book chapters on additive manufacturing and Industrial applications of lasers. He currently serves on the leadership team for ASQ and SME’s Oklahoma City chapter. Kantumuchu has a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering, a master’s degree in manufacturing engineering and an MBA in organizational leadership. SME Member Since 2012

Geoff Karpa
Applications Engineer Staff
Manufacturing Technology
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co.
Fort Worth, Texas

Karpa is a team lead in the manufacturing technology organization at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics’ Fort Worth facility, overseeing several drilling and dispensing automation-related projects. Karpa specializes in task-level automation using robotic end-effectors that perform vision, drilling, metrology and fastener installation operations. He recently integrated a large capital system that uses robots to countersink mate panels on the F-35, replacing hand countersinking and reducing production costs. Additionally, Karpa is integrating a complex multifunction robot system on the F-35 wing line to automate the setup hole drilling and fastening processes. It utilizes an all-in-one end-effector with machine vision that removes a Cleco fastener, reams the hole, measures the hole and installs a fastener in a single cycle. He also supports other automation projects across the enterprise. Karpa received his master’s degree in systems engineering from Southern Methodist University and bachelor’s degree in construction science from Texas A&M University. SME Member Since 2020

Vipin Kumar, PhD
R&D Associate Staff Member
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Knoxville, Tennessee

Kumar's current research area includes developing new composite manufacturing techniques using large-scale polymer additive manufacturing and traditional and advanced manufacturing processes. He received his doctorate from the University of Tokyo, Japan (Department of Aeronautics & Astronautics) in September 2016. Kumar received a prestigious Japanese Government scholarship (MEXT) during his complete doctorate course. He also has expertise in the CFRP composites' response under the direct lightning strike and is engaged in designing novel materials for lightning strike protection. Kumar has published more than 60 papers in reputed journals and peer-reviewed conferences. He is SAMPE 2021 Young Professionals Emerging Leadership Award winner. Kumar won two best conference paper awards and also published one front-cover-page article. He was also a winner of the Awards for Composites Excellence competition at CAMX 2021 and a finalist in CAMX 2019 and CAMX 2020 two years in a row. SME Member Since 2019

Megan McGovern, PhD, PE
Senior Researcher
Manufacturing Systems Research Lab
General Motors Global Research & Development

McGovern is a senior researcher in the Manufacturing Systems Research Lab at General Motors Global Research & Development. McGovern joined GM in 2016, where she uses her nondestructive evaluation skillset to provide manufacturing solutions to internal customers. McGovern leads research projects to develop manufacturing inspection systems that are crucial for first-time quality, especially in low-volume applications where launches are quick and highly customized. She received her bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees in systems and entrepreneurial engineering from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Her research interests include inline and post-manufacturing inspection solutions, nondestructive evaluation, and digital signal and image processing. McGovern is the chair of the Detroit Section American Society for Nondestructive Testing. She is active in various professional societies and is a licensed professional engineer (Michigan). McGovern has five patents and 25 peer-reviewed journal articles, one of which, in 2015, received the ASNT Outstanding Paper Award published in “Materials Evaluation.” SME Member Since 2017

Laura Pahren
Machine Learning Software Engineer
Procter & Gamble Co.
Mason, Ohio

Pahren is a machine learning software engineer at Procter & Gamble Co. while she is completing her work as a doctoral candidate in mechanical engineering at the University of Cincinnati’s IMS Center. Pahren’s primary responsibilities at P&G include standardizing AI workflows and developing software for training and inference at the edge for both traditional and deep learning-based machine vision applications to enable new artwork/processes and ensure quality products from manufacturing. She received her bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from The Ohio State University and a master's degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Cincinnati. Pahren’s doctoral work aims to optimize some of these workflows in manufacturing with a focus on small, imbalanced datasets as well as reapplications in other areas such as the medical field for traumatic brain injury patients. SME Member Since 2022

Kyle Saleeby, PhD
R&D Staff Member
Manufacturing Automation & Controls Group
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Knoxville, Tennessee

Saleeby is an R&D staff member in the Manufacturing Automation & Controls Group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Saleeby’s research involves connecting machines and manufacturing processes with secure Industry 4.0 and IoT technologies. His current focus centers on applications of data analytics for in-situ process monitoring and closed-loop-control hybrid manufacturing processes. Saleeby received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from MIT in 2017, and his master’s degree and doctorate in mechanical engineering from Georgia Tech in 2019 and 2021, respectively. SME Member Since 2019

Ryan Sekol, PhD
Staff Researcher ‒ Battery Cell Manufacturing Lead
Manufacturing Systems Research Lab
General Motors Research & Development
Warren, Michigan

Sekol is a staff researcher in the Manufacturing Systems Research Laboratory at General Motors Research & Development. He is the battery cell manufacturing lead within R&D and is responsible for setting strategy and development of the project portfolio for new battery cell manufacturing research areas. Sekol is the technical lead of projects pertaining to lithium-metal-anode manufacturing methods, manufacturing process development and quality assessment of the battery cells. He was recognized in 2015 as an honoree on SME’s 30 Under 30 list. Sekol has received his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Michigan in 2008, and master’s degree and doctorate in chemical engineering from Yale University in 2013. His graduate research was on the use of surface tunable bulk metallic glasses for use as electrocatalysts. SME Member Since 2021

Xuan Song, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
Iowa Technology Institute
University of Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa

Song is currently an assistant professor in the department of industrial and systems engineering at the University of Iowa. His current research interest focuses on additive manufacturing of advanced materials for extreme environments, such as ultra-high-temperature ceramics, high-strain-rate piezoelectric ceramics and energetic composites. Song holds several U.S. patents in the field of manufacturing and developed several additive manufacturing technologies that have been featured in top-rated journals and reported by media outlets. He led multiple projects funded by different external agencies, including NSF, DoD, DOE and others in the private sector. At UIowa, Song has taught courses in manufacturing processes, mechatronics and design of experiments. He received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Wuhan University, master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Zhejiang University and doctorate in industrial engineering from the University of Southern California. SME Member Since 2020

Peng "Edward" Wang, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Endowed Robley D. Evans Faculty Fellow
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Kentucky
Lexington, Kentucky

Wang received his doctorate degree from Case Western Reserve University in 2017 and joined the University of Kentucky as an assistant professor in 2019. His research focuses on stochastic modeling and augmented artificial intelligence for machine-condition monitoring and predictive maintenance, manufacturing process modeling and optimization, and human-robot collaboration toward smart, data-science-enhanced manufacturing. Wang is the recipient of the Outstanding Technical Paper Award from SME’s North American Manufacturing Research Conference in 2017, 2020 and 2021; Best Student Paper Award from the IEEE Conference on Automation Science and Engineering in 2015; and Best Paper Award from CIRP’s Conference on Manufacturing Systems in 2020. He also received the first prize in the Digital Manufacturing Commons Hackathon organized by DMDII in 2016. Wang’s research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, and his publications have received more than 3,000 citations according to Google Scholar data. SME Member Since 2021

Sarah Wolff, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
Texas A&M University
College Station, Texas

Wolff is an assistant professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Texas A&M University. She completed her doctorate in mechanical engineering at Northwestern University in 2018 with her thesis work on the laser-matter interactions in the directed energy deposition additive manufacturing process. Following her doctorate, Wolff was an Enrico Fermi fellow at Argonne National Laboratory where she spent half her time with the Applied Materials Division and the other half with the X-ray Science Division. Wolff’s work focuses on using in-situ monitoring, notably X-ray techniques, to reveal the fundamentals of melting and solidification during additive manufacturing processes. SME Member Since 2021

Yang Yang, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering
San Diego State University
San Diego

Yang joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at San Diego State University as an assistant professor in January 2020. Prior to this position, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Southern California. Yang completed the joint doctorate at Wuhan University and the University of California, Los Angeles in 2015. His research focuses on bioinspired 3D-printing, multifunctional composites, surface/interface multiscale structures, smart materials and structures, wearable sensor and energy harvesting devices. Yang’s research has been published in multiple high-impact journals, including “Science Advances,” “Advanced Materials,” “Advanced Functional Materials,” “Research” and “Energy & Environmental Science.” SME Member Since 2020

Xiaowei Yue, PhD
Assistant Professor
Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Virginia

Yue is an assistant professor at the Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Virginia Tech. He received his doctorate degree in industrial engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. His research interests focus on engineering-driven data analytics for quality control in advanced manufacturing. Yue has published 27 papers in top-tier journals. His research obtained multiple recognitions, including 12 best paper awards/finalists and two best doctorate dissertation awards. Yue is a recipient of FTC Early Career Award from ASQ and the ICTAS Junior Faculty Award at Virginia Tech. The methods he and his collaborators developed have been applied to nanomanufacturing, aerospace manufacturing, automotive manufacturing, materials science and more. Yue serves as an associate editor for the “IISE Transactions” and the “Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing”; he also serves as a DoD MEEP faculty fellow. In addition, Yue has obtained a few teaching awards. SME Member Since 2018