Mechanical engineering Ph.D. student receives Sandia fellowship

Photo of Gregory PayetteGregory Payette, a Ph.D. graduate student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M University, has been awarded the Sandia National Laboratories/Texas A&M University Excellence in Engineering Graduate Research Fellowship.

Payette's research project will focus on the development and implementation of a completely new computational technology based on finite element models that impact how boundary and initial value problems of engineering are solved, especially those involving solid mechanics and fluid dynamics. He is a researcher in the field of applied mechanics with a focus on nonlinear phenomenon, novel materials and structures and computational mechanics.

Dr. J.N. Reddy, Distinguished Professor and Oscar Wyatt Endowed Chair in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, will serve as his research mentor. Payette will also be co-mentored by Dan Turner of the Computational Thermal and Fluid Mechanics Organization at Sandia. As a member of Reddy's research group, Payette earned his M.S. degree in mechanical engineering in 2006 and anticipates completing his Ph.D. in December 2011.

The Sandia Excellence in Engineering Research Program is a sponsored program at major universities across the United States. The program is co-sponsored by Texas A&M's Dwight Look College of Engineering. The goal of the research program is to encourage innovation in science-based multidisciplinary research through support for an outstanding doctoral candidate in science and engineering. In establishing the program, Sandia National Laboratories hopes to strengthen its partnership with Texas A&M Engineering to encourage a new generation of scientists and engineers who can contribute to areas of national interest and critical need.

Sandia National Laboratories is one of the largest federal laboratories in the United States. With major laboratory locations in New Mexico and northern California, Sandia employs more than 8,000 regular employees, post-docs, long-term visitors and contractors. Major programs at Sandia involve basic and applied research in physical sciences, biology, and information science, as well as engineering program in defense, energy and environment. For the past decade Sandia has built a significant portfolio of activities in homeland defense, including intelligence technologies, hardening of buildings and key public assets, cybersecurity, and multispectrum sensor technologies.