Seven University of Texas at Austin researchers are confronting what the scientific community has defined as this century's grand challenges in drug design, environmental sustainability and improved oil recovery using Moncrief Grand Challenge Faculty awards for 2011-12.

Professors Tom Hughes and Mark Mear of the department are among those selected.

The awards, funded by the private donations of oilman and philanthropist W. A. "Tex" Moncrief of Fort Worth and an anonymous donor, enable scientists and engineers to work at the Institute for Computational and Engineering Sciences (ICES) on challenges that affect the competitiveness and international standing of the United States.

Hughes' research project is on modeling the behavior of nanoparticles in blood vessels to design drug delivery systems.

Mear's research project is on modeling the behavior of soil and rocks to improve recovery of natural resources such as groundwater and oil.

Grand challenges are problems that must be addressed to achieve a sustainable, economically robust and politically stable future. These involve using computational methods to study such topics as cardiovascular engineering, water sustainability and weather. Other vitally important areas include carbon sequestration, drug design and delivery, advanced materials, rising seas modeling, national security, nano-science and engineering, and computational medicine and biomedicine.

Over the past three years the Moncrief Grand Challenge Awards Program has provided more than $1 million in funding for university faculty to pursue research in computational science and engineering.


hydraulic inverse simulation

Faculty Research

Using Inverse Problem Solving for Oil and Gas Exploration

Tan Bui-Thanh is using inverse problem solving to develop computer models for oil and gas exploration.

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Teaching Recognition

Gregory Rodin Receives LUNAR Council Teaching Award

Professor Gregory Rodin was named the recipient of the 2016 ASE/EM LUNAR Council Teaching Award.

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Faculty Positions

Join Our Faculty

We are currently searching for two full-time faculty positions with a start date of September 2017.

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Department News

October 24, 2016

Thomas Hughes Gives Plenary Lecture at USACM Thematic Conference

Professor Thomas J.R. Hughes Hughes gave the opening plenary lecture at the U.S. Association for Computational Thematic Conference this year.

September 20, 2016

Alumnus Stavros Gaitanaros Wins Bureau Prize

Stavros Gaitanaros was selected to receive the Bureau Prize based on a paper and presentation to the 2016 Congress of the International Union of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics.

Upcoming Seminar

November 02, 2016

NASA's Journey to Mars and Beyond

Dr. Dava Newman

Location: Avaya Auditorium (Peter O'Donnell Building 2.302)
Time: 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

At UT Aerospace, the Sky is Not the Limit!

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The UT Aerospace Engineering program offers a wide variety of real-world, hands-on opportunities to our students beginning with the first day they set foot on campus. Watch this video to learn more from our students about their educational experience at UT ASE/EM, where the sky is no longer the limit!



7th Aerospace Engineering Graduate Program

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8th Aerospace Engineering Undergraduate Program

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4th Most Influential Research Institution in Aerospace

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69k Median Salary for Undergraduates

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