Jacob Anderson

Jacob Anderson is an alumnus of the University of Oklahoma. In fact, Jacob is a three-time alumnus. He graduated from OU and the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering with a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering in the spring of 2007, followed by his Masters of Science also in mechanical engineering in the summer of 2009. Lastly, Jacob graduated with his Doctor of Philosophy in mechanical engineering in the fall of 2013. Since then, he has worked with M. Cengiz Altan, AME Professor and Director, as a postdoctoral researcher.

Jacob recently accepted a job with PPG Industries working at the Fiber Glass Science and Technology Center. He will hold the title of Senior Researcher and Development Engineer in North Carolina. His job duties include identification, development and testing of textile composite materials for commercial development, work with customers to develop new applications, oversee production trials to evaluate material performance and more. Jacob believed working hard in both the classroom and the laboratory were key in landing his new job.

What do you enjoy most about your job/working in your field?

Composite materials are very exciting to work with because they allow materials to be developed that are optimized for a specific application or use. As such, the combinations/challenges are endless.

How did your education at AME help you to be successful in your career?

AME gave me the opportunity to pursue and overcome challenges both in and out of the classroom. As such, I have had many experiences and opportunities that have helped me grow as both a professional and a person. I feel very prepared for my career.

Why did you choose OU to pursue your degree?

The research being conducted by several members of the faculty aligned with my own interests.

What advice would you give to a current AME student?

I would tell the students:

  1. Your time at AME is what you make of it.
  2. Work hard, keep your eyes on your goal and keep pushing forward to achieve the goal, whether the distance traveled is measured in kilometers, meters or millimeters.

Who was your favorite faculty member and why?

Dr. M.C. Altan: He has the ability to present material from many different directions. As a result, he makes even the most complicated material approachable. In addition, his mentorship over the years has been invaluable and greatly appreciated.

AME would like to wish Jacob great success as he begins his new job!

KumarAME Seminar Series and Southwest Mechanics Lecture Series invites you to Dr. Vijay Kumar’s seminar presentation, “Aerial Robot Swarms.” Kumar will begin the seminar at 10:30am in the Hitachi Conference Room located in 214 Felgar Hall on Thursday, February 26, 2015. Kumar is a UPS Foundation Professor for the School of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, School of Computer and Information Science and the School of Electrical and Systems Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania.

Abstract: Autonomous micro aerial robots can operate in three-dimensional, indoor and outdoor environments and  have applications to search and rescue first response and precision farming. I will describe the challenges in developing small, agile robots and the algorithmic challenges in the areas of (a) control and planning, (b) state estimation and mapping and (c) coordinating large teams of robots.

Bio: Dr. Vijay Kumar is the UPS Foundation Professor in the Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, Computer and Information Science and Electrical and Systems Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania. Kumar received his B.Tech. from the Indian Institute of Technology and his Ph.D. from Ohio State University in 1987. He has been on the Faculty in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics with a secondary appointment in the Department of Computer and Information Science at the University of Pennsylvania since 1987. Kumar has served in various leadership positions including the Deputy Dean for Research in the School of Engineering and Applied Science, Chairman of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics and then served as the Deputy Dean for Education in the School of Engineering and Applied Science from 2008-2012. He also served as the assistant director of robotics and cyber physical systems at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Kumar’s research interests are in robotics, specifically multi-robot systems, and micro aerial vehicles. He has served on the editorial boards of the IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation, IEEE Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering, ASME Journal of Mechanical Design, the ASME Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics and the Springer Tract in Advanced Robotics (STAR). Kumar is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, a Fellow of the Institution of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and a member of the National Academy of Engineering.

This seminar presentation is sponsored by ConocoPhillips. Refreshments provided.

For more information, please click here.

For accommodations on the basis of disability, please contact Danielle Geier (405) 325-1715 or dgeier@ou.edu.

KalidindiAME Seminar Series welcomes Dr. Surya R. Kalidindi for the first seminar of the new year. Kalidindi is a Professor at the School of Computational Science and Engineering as well as the School of Materials Science and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Kalidindi will begin his seminar presentation at 10:30am in the Hitachi Conference Room located in 214 Felgar Hall. His presentation is titled, “Data Science Approaches for Mining Structure-Property-Processing Linkages from Large Datasets.”

Abstract: Materials with enhanced performance characteristics have served as critical enablers for the successful development of advanced technologies throughout human history and have contributed immensely to the prosperity and well-being of various nations. Although the core connections between the material’s internal structure, its evolution through various manufacturing processes and its macroscale properties in service are widely acknowledged to exist, establishing this fundamental knowledge base has proven effort-intensive, slow and very expensive for a number of candidate material systems being explored for advanced technology applications. It is anticipated that the multi-functional performance characteristics of a material are likely to be controlled by a relatively small number of salient features in its microstructure. However, cost-effective validated protocols do not yet exist for fast identification of these salient features and establishment of the desired core knowledge needed for the accelerated design, manufacture and deployment of new materials in advanced technologies. The main impediment arises from lack of a broadly accepted framework for a rigorous quantification of the material’s internal structure and objective identification of the salient features in the microstructure that control the properties of interest. Materials Informatics focuses on the development of data science algorithms and computationally efficient protocols capable of mining the essential linkages in large multiscale materials datasets (both experimental and modeling) and building robust knowledge systems that can be readily accessed, searched and shared by the broader community. Given the nature of the challenges faced in the design and manufacture of new advanced materials, this new emerging interdisciplinary field is ideally positioned to produce a major transformation in the current practices. The novel data science tools produced by this emerging field promise to significantly accelerate the design and development of new advanced materials through their increased efficacy in gleaning and blending the disparate knowledge and insights hidden in “big data” gathered from multiple sources. Our ongoing research has outlined a specific strategy for data science enabled development of new/improved materials and key components of the proposed overall framework are illustrated with examples.

Bio: Surya R. Kalidindi earned a B.Tech. in Civil Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, an M.S. in Civil Engineering from Case Western Reserve University and a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After his graduation from MIT in 1992, Surya joined the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Drexel University as an Assistant Professor, where he served as the Department Head during 2000-2008. Under his leadership, the department experienced tremendous growth and was ranked 10th nationally among Materials Science and Engineering programs by Academic Analysts in 2006. In 2013, Surya accepted a new position as a Professor of Mechanical Engineering in the George W. Woodruff School at Georgia Institute of Technology, with joint appointments in the School of Computational Science and Engineering and in the School of Materials Science and Engineering. Surya’s research efforts over the past two decades have made seminal contributions to the fields of crystal plasticity, microstructure design, spherical nanoindentation and materials informatics. His work has produced about 200 journal articles, four book chapters and a new book on Microstructure Sensitive Design. His work is well cited by peer researchers as reflected by an h-index of 48 and current citation rate of about 1000 citations/year. He has recently been awarded the Alexander von Humboldt award in recognition of his lifetime achievements in research.

This seminar presentation is sponsored by ExxonMobil. Refreshments provided.

For more information, please click here.

For accommodations on the basis of disability, please contact Danielle Geier (405) 325-1715 or dgeier@ou.edu.

Charles BertThe AME family lost one of its valuable members, Dr. Charles W. Bert, on February 3, 2015. Bert began his journey at the University of Oklahoma in 1963, where he served the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering as a Professor for 41 years before retiring in 2004. During this time, Bert served as Director from 1972-1978 and again in 1990-1995. He also held the Benjamin H. Perkinson Chair during his time at AME. In 1981, he was the recipient of the highest recognition for research at the University of Oklahoma—the George Lynn Cross Research Professorship. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame in 2011.

“I am deeply saddened to lose one of our best. Charlie was a giant in the broad field of mechanics and composite materials,” said M. Cengiz Altan, AME Director. “He has been such a positive influence on me since I started my career at OU. He has always been supportive and provided encouragement to many AME faculty, as well as to countless undergraduate and graduate students. I will miss him greatly as a mentor and a friend.”

Charles Bert

Bert’s work in composite materials earned him an international reputation in the field; he authored and co-authored 205 papers in refereed journals, published one monograph, edited three books, produced 13 book chapters and 158 other papers. In connection with his research, he mentored 26 doctoral students and over 40 master’s students. He was a registered Professional Engineer, and consulted on numerous projects including the design of the propulsion clutch for the USS Nautilus (first nuclear submarine), first annular air-oil shock absorber, steel-belted radial tires and NASA Space Shuttle payload-bay doors. Charlie was elected as Fellow to seven technical organizations, including the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the American Society for Composites.

“Dr. Bert was a great mentor and guided me well throughout my career. His reputation and research accomplishments were spread worldwide. In international or national meetings I attended, there were always people who enquired about him when they saw my name tag mentioning OU,” said Subramanyam R. Gollahalli, AME Professor. “Above all, he was a great person. We miss him very much.”

The AME family would like to send its deepest condolences to the Bert family. Charlie’s kind heart, his encouraging words and supportive attitude along with his teaching, excellent research contributions and his friendship will be dearly missed by all.

Bert Family


Charles Wesley Bert, III was born November 11, 1929 in Chambersburg, PA to Charles W. and Gladys R. Bert. He passed away surrounded by his loving family on February 3, 2015 in Norman, OK. Charlie was a quiet gentleman who truly cared for others. He will be greatly missed by his family and many friends. He is now with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, in Heaven. Charlie grew up in Greencastle, PA and graduated from Greencastle High School in 1947. He received two mechanical engineering degrees: a Bachelor of Science degree in 1951 and a Master of Science degree in 1956 from Pennsylvania State University. He was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Air Force Reserve, proudly served on active duty during the Korean War from 1952-54 and retired as a Captain in 1963. Charlie worked at Fairchild Aircraft in Hagerstown, MD where he met his wife, Charlotte. They were married in 1957 and moved to Columbus, OH to pursue a Ph.D. in Engineering Mechanics at Ohio State University, graduating in 1961.

They moved to Norman in 1963 where Charlie served for 41 years as a Professor in the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering at the University of Oklahoma, retiring in 2004. He served as Director of the School from 1972-78 and 1990-95. He was named a George Lynn Cross Research Professor in 1981 and held the Benjamin H. Perkinson Chair.

Charlie’s work in composite materials earned him an international reputation in the field; he authored or co-authored 205 papers in refereed journals, published one monograph, edited three books, produced 13 book chapters and 158 other papers. In connection with his research, he mentored 26 doctoral students and over 40 master’s students. He was a registered Professional Engineer, and consulted on numerous projects including the design of the propulsion clutch for the USS Nautilus (first nuclear submarine), first annular air-oil shock absorber, steel-belted radial tires and NASA Space Shuttle payload-bay doors. Charlie was elected as Fellow to seven technical organizations, including the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the American Society for Composites. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame in 2011. He was a longtime member of McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church and the Norman Club of Rotary International. Charlie was a huge Sooner football and basketball fan for over 50 years.

He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Charlotte Bert, Norman; a sister, Grace Cannon of Walnut Creek, CA; two sons, Charlie Bert and his wife Pam Bert of Oklahoma City, and David Bert and his wife Susan Bert of Edmond; granddaughters Bailey, Brianna and Alyssa Bert; grandson Michael Maples, US Navy and his wife Miranda Maples; and a great granddaughter, Mia Maples.

Funeral services will be held Thursday, February 12 at 2 p.m. at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church, 419 S. University Blvd. in Norman, OK. Services are under the direction of Primrose Funeral Service, Norman, OK. In lieu of flowers, please consider memorial contributions to The Parkinson Foundation of Oklahoma, 720 W. Wilshire Blvd., Suite 109, Oklahoma City, OK 73116 or The University of Oklahoma Foundation (Bert Family Scholarship in Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering), 100 Timberdell Road, Norman, OK 73019.

Diana Bairaktarova, Assistant Professor of Engineering Practice, utilizes technology in the classroom in more ways than one. In the spring of 2014, she recorded her thermodynamics lectures using an Apple iPad. Bairaktarova would then upload the lectures to D2L for the students to view along with their reading before they would meet to cover the material in class. This allowed class time to not be solely lecture-based. As time went on with the iPad being one of her biggest teaching tools, she knew the idea of students using the same technology would be very beneficial. After receiving financial support from the OU Center of Teaching Excellence, the use of iPads for her students became a reality. In the fall of 2014, the students in her thermodynamics section each had an iPad. With the help of a few apps, students used the iPads for everything for the course. At the beginning of each class period, Bairaktarova asked students questions, which they then answered using iClickers. Another bonus of using the iPads was that students were able to have all of their material and learning resources in one place from notes to lectures to homework. If they solved problems in class, it was available on their iPad for future reference. Students turned in homework using their iPads, which Bairaktarova would grade from the iPad and would even record her voice offering assistance to solve problems that may have been missed. While students worked on their end-of-semester creative group projects, they were able to virtually meet each other using the technology and working together when they could not meet.


“By using the newest technology and teaching students in interactive ways, I’m meeting them where they are in their current lives,” Bairaktarova said. “I am finding my students more engaged and providing more feedback in class.”


At the end of the semester, students were given a survey to identify what they enjoyed most about their thermodynamics class; the consensus was the use of the iPads and the creative group project. It is safe to say Bairaktarova’s use of technology and creativity was a fun and innovative way for engineering students to learn, even in a difficult subject like thermodynamics.

3Bairaktarova continues to use iPads in the spring 2015 semester in the design and manufacturing processes class. The above photos feature students from this course using their iPads.

Kuang-Hua ChangKuang-Hua Chang, AME and David Ross Boyd Professor, recently finished and published his fourth book in a four-book series. Chang was approached by Academic Press, a leading publisher of scientific books, in 2005 to write a textbook focused on computer aided engineering design. He began writing The Computer Aided Engineering Design Series in 2009 while on sabbatical leave, publishing two books in 2013 followed by the final two in 2014.

“I have been interested in writing such a book for a long time,” said Chang. “These books are very unique as many engineering design books discuss conventional design principles. This series focuses on modern e-Design paradigm, computer design tools, current technology and different perspectives.”

The textbooks target mechanical, aerospace and industrial engineers studying design as well as engineers interested in learning computer design tools such as Pro/ENGINEER® and SolidWorks® in the context of the e-Design paradigm. Chang also uses his textbooks to teach four courses at AME as electives for seniors and graduate students. These courses include Intro to CAD, Concurrent Design and Manufacturing, Computer-Integrated Manufacturing and Design Theory and Methods.

For more information on each textbook, please click the corresponding title:

“These books benefit the students while learning design,” said Chang. “It sets them up to learn the methods and tools used in the industry while allowing the students to be competitive in the field.”

Next on Chang’s to do list is combining all four books ranging from 418 pages to 549 pages into one single book, e-Design: Computer-Aided Engineering Design, to be published by Academic Press in 2015.


Yingtao LiuAME Assistant Professor Yingtao Liu received a $15,000 research grant from the OU Research Council Faculty Investment Program to develop novel polymers with self-healing capability. Once complete, this exploratory project will be a solid foundation for the design, fabrication and development of multifunctional polymers and composites for aerospace, mechanical and civil engineering applications.

“We will focus on the synthesis and characterization of self-healing polymers in this project,” said Liu. “The self-healing process of the proposed polymers will mimic the biological systems that can autonomously repair the physical damage and recover the load ability after damage.”

Liu’s long term career goal is to develop an adaptive structural health management system for multi-physics damage diagnosis and prognosis by combining multifunctional materials, intelligent and multi-scale sensing, nondestructive evaluation, multi-scale and probabilistic modeling into a general framework. The successful development of intelligent materials and structural systems will be a game changing improvement of damage diagnosis, structural maintenance and risk management for various engineering applications. This project, which focuses on the self-healing capability, is one of the key elements in Liu’s long term research plan.


Greetings from the OU School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering. It’s been a busy year with exciting developments in research, renovation, student success and faculty accomplishments. I would now like to share with you our annual e-newsletter for 2014.
Happy Holidays from all of us at AME!
Best regards,
Altan medium black copy



Click Here to Read




The students of the course User-Centered Design along with their professors Dr. Diana Bairaktarova and Dr. Zahed Siddique explored design-thinking, innovation, creativity, prototyping, empathic and verification design throughout the semester. The focus of the course was learning and experiencing design as a space rather than a step by step process with a toy prototype as a course project.

The students individually applied their knowledge from the course on a toy design project. They created blueprints for the design, a prototype of the toy and an informational poster about the toy. Students hosted a Toy Fair for others to view their toys and meet the designers. The toys along with their posters and the designers’ biographies are now on display for the months of December and January in the main lobby of the Bizzell Library.















To view more photos of the Toy Fair, please click here.

Recently the Mechanical Engineering Capstone students were given a task. The task was to design, build and test a SHARK system capable of moving over land a distance of eight feet, and then enter a harbor. The SHARK must cover the eight feet as rapidly as possible. Upon entering the ‘harbor’ the SHARK must retrieve as much Klepp as possible within set time limits.

The design and construction of the SHARK were subject to the restrictions and conditions.


  • The design must start and operate with one switch
  • The design must be completely autonomous
  • The design must be self-contained
  • The total system weight (dry) should not exceed 5lbs
  • The system at rest should fit in an imaginary cube
    • 1 ft. X 1 ft. X 1 ft.

Performance Tests

The performance of SHARK was tested in two areas:

  • Land speed – this event measured the speed of the SHARK over a distance of eight feet. The course began at a start line eight feet away from the ‘harbor’ and finished in the ‘harbor.’ Timing began when the foremost part of the SHARK crossed the start line and ended when the SHARK entered the pool.
  • Retrieval rate – this was a measure of how much Klepp the SHARK could retrieve. Upon entering the water, the SHARK had two minutes to retrieve as much Klepp as possible. In the test, Klepp was represented by Styrofoam packing ‘peanuts.’ The number of peanuts collected or retrieved by the SHARK in two minutes was counted and expressed as a rate: Klepp retrieval per minute.

Each group was allowed to put their SHARK through the test twice. Groups were allowed two minutes to set up for a test and one minute to remove their device from the testing area.

Scoring was completed for points of land speed and points for retrieval rate. The total points for a test was the sum of the land speed and retrieval rate minus deductions due to penalties, i.e. The final score for a group was the highest from the two tests. Lastly, the group with the most points was announced as winners of the competition. The winning team consisted of Jacob Pickle, Scott Maxwell, Brooke Hitt, Lars Glasemann, and Jackson Autrey. Congratulations!

Winning Team

The winning team with their SHARK.



The team overlooks the judge as he counts the ‘Klepp.’


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