Jamal Yagoobi, Expert on Electrohydrodynamics, to Lead WPI's Mechanical Engineering Department

Former Chair of the Department of Mechanical, Materials, and Aerospace Engineering at Illinois Institute of Technology, He Will Join WPI in January
December 02, 2011

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Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) announced today that Jamal S. Yagoobi, professor and former two-term chair of the Department of Mechanical, Materials, and Aerospace Engineering at Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT), will join the university in January as the George I. Alden Professor and head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Yagoobi is internationally known for his research on electrohydrodynamics, transport phenomena in porous media, and transport phenomena in the presence of micro-encapsulated phase change materials. His work helps augment heat management for satellites and spacecraft and has improved a wide range of industrial processes here on Earth.

"We are delighted to have Dr. Yagoobi join us to lead our Mechanical Engineering Department," said Selcuk Guceri, the Bernard M. Gordon Dean of Engineering at WPI. "As a successful researcher and experienced academic administrator, he is an excellent fit for our programs. I have every confidence that our largest department will continue to flourish under his leadership and reach new heights of success and recognition."

Yagoobi received a BS in mechanical engineering from Sharif University of Technology in Iran and a MS and a PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He worked briefly as a research engineer for Westvaco Corporation in Virginia before joining the faculty of Texas A&M University, where he rose to the rank of full professor and was named Paul John Faculty Fellow and TEES Senior Fellow. He joined IIT in January 2002.

At Texas A&M, Yagoobi established a pioneering research center and a research laboratory. The Drying Research Center, with industry support, conducted research aimed at improving the performance, and lowering the cost and energy consumption, of industrial drying through the application of advanced heat and mass transfer technologies. The Electrohydrodynamics Laboratory (now the Heat Transfer Enhancement and Two-Phase Flow Laboratory at IIT) has gained international recognition and attracted researchers from around the world.

Electrohydrodynamics is the study of the dynamics of electrically charged fluids. Using a host of specially designed laboratory apparatus and facilities, Yagoobi and his research team use the principles of electrohydrodynamics to study heat transfer and mass transport in applications that range from the macro- to the nano-scale and in the presence and absence of gravity; explore heat transfer using microencapsulated phase-change materials; and study unique combustion nozzles, among other research. One of Yagoobi's current experiments is scheduled to fly on a NASA-sponsored zero-gravity flight in late February 2012.

Yagoobi is the author of more than 90 peer-reviewed journal papers and more than 150 peer-reviewed conference publications. He has delivered nearly 70 invited lectures and keynote presentations at conferences and academic, government, and industry meetings globally, and he is named on eight patents. He has received over $9 million in external awards for his research, from the National Science Foundation, NASA, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, and other government agencies, corporations, and industry groups.

He has been the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Gustus L. Larson Memorial Award from Pi Tau Sigma and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), NASA's Space Act Award, the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellowship, and the French Ministry of Education Fellowship. He has also received numerous teaching awards. A fellow of ASME and a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), he is currently associate editor of IEEE-IAS Transactions and the former associate editor of the ASME Journal of Heat Transfer and the Journal of Drying Technology. He is a member of the advisory board for the Energy Engineering and Systems Analysis Directorate, the largest directorate of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory.