Worcester Polytechnic Institute Professor Honored by the Sons of the American Revolution

Col. William Henshaw Chapter to Bestow Award

Contact: WPI Media Relations, 508-831-5616

Worcester, MA - April 15, 2002 - Jonathan Barnett, Professor of Fire Protection Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has been chosen to receive the Sons of the American Revolution Fire Safety Commendation Medal by the organizations Col. William Henshaw Chapter.

The Fire Safety Commendation Medal is presented by the National or state Society or a chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution, to an individual for accomplishments and outstanding contributions in the area of fire safety and service. It is presented to recognize a variety of fire safety and service that has evolved into a highly technical and skilled profession with constant study, development and involvement by numerous dedicated citizens with a single goal - to protect human life and property by preventing injuries or casualties due to fire and chemicals.

"We selected Professor Barnett to receive this award because of his accomplishments and outstanding contributions in the area of fire safety and service," said Duane T. Sargisson, National Trustee of the Massachusetts Society, Sons of the American Revolution and Secretary-Treasurer of the Col. Henshaw chapter based in Worcester.

Prof. Barnett will receive his award at a luncheon on April 20. His work and research in fire protection engineering is extensive, including most recently his participation in a core team of investigators organized by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the American Society of Civil Engineers to investigate the collapse of the World Trade Center Towers after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

Barnett has written and published extensively on fire protection engineering, and has insight, opinions and research have been included in recent broadcasts by the BBC, Discovery Channel, the Learning Channel and NOVA, a production of the Public Broadcasting Service. Dr. Barnett has also been cited recently in articles in the New York Times and The Boston Globe on ongoing research to determine how and why the World Trade Center towers collapsed, and how building and construction rules may change in the wake of those studies.

Jonathan Barnett received his undergraduate, masters and doctorate from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. He is a fellow of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers and a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the National Fire Protection Association, the ASTM Committee E-5 safety standards, and the International Association of Fire Safety Science.

His current research centers on the mathematical modeling and computer simulation of fires in buildings, ships and transit systems with an emphasis on heat transfer in structures and the use of computers in fire investigation and fire reconstruction.

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WPI is a pioneer in technological higher education, and is recognized as one of the leading outcomes-oriented undergraduate programs preparing people for success in our technological world. Since its founding in 1865, WPI has broadened and perfected an influential curriculum that balances theory and practice.

This innovative and unique combination of educational methods, learning environment and a worldwide network of project centers is located in Worcester, Massachusetts, WPI supports the academic and research pursuits of over 2,500 students and 200 faculty pursuing opportunities to blend technological research and practice with societal needs, delivering meaningful real-world benefits.

For over a century, WPI has awarded advanced degrees in the sciences and engineering disciplines, as well as the management of technology and business. Our alumni include Robert Goddard, the father of modern rocketry; Harold Black, inventor of the principle of negative-feedback; Carl Clark, inventor of the first practical airbag safety system; Dean Kamen, inventor of the first wearable drug infusion pump; and many others who contribute to the transformation of our technological world.