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Press Release

SME’s North American Manufacturing Research Institution Selects 2020 Awardees

SME’s North American Manufacturing Research Institution has announced the 2020 winners of its S.M. Wu Research Implementation Award. GM inventors Sheri Kurgin, PhD, and Jie Gu, PhD, were recognized for their COMP system and method invention, which was developed to perform global offset compensation in multiaxis machine tools. The patented and commercialized COMP system and method has been integrated in all the new machine tools in production for more than eight years.

The S.M. Wu Research Implementation Award was established in 2006 to honor the late Shien-Ming Wu, PhD, FSME. The award, named for Wu, a University of Michigan professor, highlights outstanding original research presented as a paper at SME’s annual North American Manufacturing Research Conference that shares significant commercial and/or social impact after implementation.

“The S.M. Wu Award is designed to showcase manufacturing research and its evolution from concept to reality,” said Robert Ivester, PhD, FSME, deputy director of the Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership Program, National Institute of Standards and Technology, and international director, SME Board of Directors. “Doctors Kurgin and Gu are joining an impressive group of researchers whose work has taken manufacturing to a whole new level.”

Among the list of previously awarded original research are selective laser sintering, laser-assisted machining, assembly systems, simulation models for machining processes, machine tools and DEFORM, a finite-element modeling package.

In addition to announcing the Wu Award, NAMRI | SME also released its new selection of officers and directors comprising its board of directors.


  • President ― Lihui Wang, PhD, FSME, PE, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm
  • President-Elect ― Brigid Mullany, PhD, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Secretary ― Livan Fratini, PhD, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy
  • Scientific Committee Chair ― Ihab Ragai, PhD, PE, Penn State Behrend, Erie, Pennsylvania
  • Scientific Committee Chair-Elect ― Robert Gao, PhD, FSME, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland
  • Past President ― Albert Shih, PhD, FSME, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • Second Past President ― Hitomi Yamaguchi Greenslet, Dr. Eng., FSME, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida


  • Jeffrey Abell, PhD, FSME, PE, General Motors, Warren, Michigan
  • Joseph Budzinski, DePuy Synthes Joint Reconstruction, Raynham, Massachusetts
  • KC Morris, PhD, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, Maryland
  • Dale Lombardo, GE Aviation, Niskayuna, New York
  • Tony Schmitz, PhD, FSME, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee

For additional award information and background on NAMRI | SME, visit