Yuan honored with RJ Reynolds Award

Fuh-Gwo Yuan, Samuel P. Langley Distinguished Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at North Carolina State University, received the 2023 R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company Award for Excellence in Teaching, Research and Extension. At an award ceremony held in the McKimmon Center on NC State’s campus, he delivered a lecture titled Digital Twin – Enabling Technology for Future Aircraft Health Monitoring.

Since its inception in 1981, 39 faculty members have received the award, which is supported by the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company through the NC State Engineering Foundation. Recipients receive a $25,000 award paid out over five years and are invited to deliver a lecture to the College based on their research interests and academic career.

Yuan joined the NC State faculty in 1989. He also serves at the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA) in Hampton, Va.

Fuh-Gwo Yuan speaks from beside a lecturn.
Fuh-Gwo Yuan

His research interests include structural health monitoring/management (SHM), nondestructive evaluation (NDE), artificial intelligence or machine learning, multi-functional materials and composite structures design, nano/meso scale sensors, advanced computing tools with smart sensors, damage prognosis and energy harvesting. He has authored or co-authored more than 300 publications and has mentored more than 100 individuals ranging from Ph.D. students to visiting scholars. 

In his NIA position, Yuan has been leading research strengthening ties between NC State and the NASA Langley Research Center and has served tirelessly as an ambassador for the University, resulting in significant NASA funding for College of Engineering faculty members.

Yuan’s transformative innovations in SHM have been recognized through multiple national and international honors and awards. Most recently, he received the 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award in SHM and NDE from the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE). This award recognizes senior researchers who have made significant contributions to the field of NDE and who have been instrumental in their growth. Yuan was also awarded the 2023 SHM Hans-Juergen Schmidt Award at the 14th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring at Stanford University. This award was established to recognize his outstanding leadership at NIA in advancing technologies between academia and industry and government.

In addition to his research accomplishments, Yuan is a gifted educator beloved by all those he has advised over the years and his students have spanned generations. His dedication to training and advising many students who became civil servants at Langley earned him a NASA Mentoring Award in 2018.

Yuan is a Fellow of two professional societies, SPIE and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He serves as managing editor of the International Journal of Sustainable Materials and Structural Systems and serves as an associate editor of two journals and five editorial boards.

Recent recipients of the award include Richard Spontak, Distinguished Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering (CBE); Michael Dickey, Camille and Henry Dreyfus Professor in CBE; Jacob Jones, Kobe Steel Distinguished Professor in MSE; and Jan Genzer, S. Frank and Doris Culberson Distinguished Professor in CBE.

This post was originally published in College of Engineering News.