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Jamie GrunlanDr. Jaime Grunlan, the Linda & Ralph Schmidt ’68 Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, has been named a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). An ASME Fellow grade is conferred upon worthy candidates to recognize their outstanding engineering achievements. Fewer than 3 percent of all ASME members are Fellows.

“I'm very honored to be named an ASME Fellow,” Grunlan said. “Achieving the Fellow grade in any major professional society is a significant accomplishment. It serves to legitimize my professional efforts as a professor and scientist.”

Grunlan’s Polymer Nanocomposites Laboratory is focused on the development and understanding of multifunctional thin films. Grunlan recently completed pilot coating trials of food packaging film with one of the world’s largest film converters. Additionally, he has filed a patent in relation to his work with an aircraft materials manufacturer who is interested in using a novel coating developed this past year in Grunlan’s research group.

Grunlan said the lab is working on developing environmentally benign flame-retardant treatments for plastic items such as foam seat cushions, furniture upholstery, clothing fabric, etc. While becoming a Fellow does not alter Grunlan’s research, he said it could open doors in the future.

“We are also interested in gas barrier layers for food and electronics packaging, and thermoelectric energy generation such as converting body heat into electricity using thermoelectric fabric we are developing,” Grunlan said. “Someday I hope a jogger can power their phone from their own body heat.”

Grunlan received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from North Dakota State University and his Ph.D. in materials science and engineering from the University of Minnesota. He joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M in 2004.

“The Department of Mechanical Engineering has been very good to me over the years, so I'm basically an adopted mechanical engineer,” Grunlan said.