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TULLAHOMA, Tenn. — A professor of mechanical engineering at Penn State University, Dr. Charles Merkle, has accepted appointment to a Chair of Excellence at the University of Tennessee Space Institute.

 UTSI Vice President Dwayne McCay said Merkle will fill the Arnold Chair of Excellence in Computational Mechanics. All UT Chairs of Excellence are each funded by $500,000 in private gifts and matching funds from the state of Tennessee.

 “With Chuck’s help and leadership, I think UTSI and the Arnold Engineering and Development Center can be number one in computational fluid dynamics in just a few years,” McCay said.

 In computational mechanics, computers are used to simulate the motion and behaviors of fluids and solids. Researchers can use it to test aircraft or engine designs faster and less expensively than building and testing actual models.

 McCay said Merkle, who has been at Penn State 18 years, is scheduled to be on the job in September.

 Merkle’s responsibilities will include teaching and shaping the graduate curriculum, advising AEDC leadership, and conducting research and development in areas of interest to AEDC.


 Contact: Cindy Calhoun (615-393-7520)