Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Home > Highlights > Introducing Our 2016 Endowed Faculty Appointees

Introducing Our 2016 Endowed Faculty Appointees

AUTHOR: Nina Welding

PUBLISHED: August 17, 2016

Peter Kilpatrick, the Matthew H. McCloskey Dean of Engineering at the University of Notre Dame, is pleased to introduce our new endowed faculty appointees.

Frank M. Freimann Professor of Computer Science and Engineering
Nitesh V. Chawla serves as the director of the Interdisciplinary Center for Network Science  and Applications, a University Research Center organized around network and data science with multidisciplinary applications, as well as director of the Data Inference Analytics and Learning Lab in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.

A faculty member since 2007, Chawla’s research spans data science, machine learning, and network science. His work lies at the frontier of interdisciplinary applications with innovative and translational efforts in healthcare analytics, climate, and environmental sciences, learning analytics, and national security. He is passionate about translating research innovation for solving society’s biggest challenges — data science for the common good.

Chawla is a PI or co-PI on more than $18.5M in external research grants from various federal agencies, foundations, and industry sponsors and has published over 180 papers with more than 10,000 citations and an h-index of 37. In addition, he serves on the editorial boards of IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, Nature Scientific Reports, Knowledge and Information Systems, and IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems.

Affiliations and Honors
IEEE Computational Intelligence Society 
Outstanding Early Career Award, 2015
University of Notre Dame Rodney F. Ganey Community Based Research Award, 2014
IBM Big Data Award, 2013
Michiana 40 under 40, 2013
IBM Watson Faculty Award, 2012
Outstanding Undergraduate Teacher Award, 2011 and 2008
National Academy of Engineering New Faculty Fellowship, 2005

Frank M. Freimann Professor of Electrical Engineering
Frank M. Freimann Professor of Electrical Engineering

A Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and author of the first textbook covering spatial modeling and analysis of wireless networks, Martin Haenggi directs the Emerging Wireless Architectures Laboratory. His interests include wireless communications and networking, with an emphasis on cellular, ad hoc, vehicular, cognitive, and sensor networks. He is a leader in the application of stochastic geometry to the modeling, analysis, and design of wireless networks.

Haenggi, a faculty member since 2001, has devised several new mathematical methods for the interference characterization and performance analysis of wireless systems that are now in wide-spread use. In particular, he is well known for his work on general (non-Poisson) network models, the analysis of the impact of secrecy constraints in wireless networks, and the interpretation of interference as a correlated random field in space and time.

He has authored or coauthored three books and more than 220 papers, and has served on the editorial boards of the Elsevier Journal of Ad Hoc Networks, the IEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing, the IEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications, the IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology, and the Association for Computing Machinery Transactions on Sensor Networks. He will begin his service as editor-in-chief of  IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications in January 2017

Affiliations and Honors
Fellow, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Senior Member, Association for Computing Machinery
Editor-in-Chief, IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications, 2017-18
Distinguished Speaker, IEEE Communications Society, 2016
Best Tutorial Paper Award, IEEE Communications Society, 2010
Distinguished Lecturer, IEEE Circuits and Systems Society, 2005-06
Early Career Development  Award, National Science Foundation, 2005

H. Clifford and Evelyn A. Brosey Professor of Engineering
William F. Schneider is a global leader in the development of molecular-scale computational models and predictions of chemical reactivity. A pioneer in the application of quantum mechanical density functional theory methods to heterogeneous catalytic reactions, his work in this area has led to a deeper understanding of chemical bonding patterns and reactions at solid surfaces and in liquids, to predictions of catalytic reaction mechanisms, and to precise, quantitative representations of catalytic reaction rates, all of which lead to the design of efficient catalytic systems. He is particularly well known
for his work on catalytic materials and approaches for the destruction of nitrogen oxides, environmental pollutants produced during combustion, and for materials designed for reversible capture of carbon dioxide.

Schneider has been a faculty member since 2009. He has published more than 140 peer-reviewed articles, which have received more than 4,500 total citations and continue to garner more than 500 new citations each year. He is highly active in the professional community and has given over 120 invited lectures in the United States and abroad.  

In addition to his research, he is an accomplished and dedicated educator of undergraduate and graduate students and serves his professional community as a senior editor of the Journal of Physical Chemistry, the premier journal of his field.

Affiliations and Honors
Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
Senior Editor, Journal of Physical Chemistry, 2014-present
BP Foundation Outstanding Teacher Award, College of Engineering, University of Notre Dame, 2009
Technical Achievement Award, Ford Motor Company, 2000
Henry Ford Technology Award, Ford Motor Company, 1996

Viola D. Hank Professor of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering
Most recently, Nicholas J. Zabaras served as founding director of the Warwick Centre for Predictive Modeling and as the Hans Fisher Senior Fellow with the Institute for Advanced Study at the Technical University of Munich in Germany.

A new addition to the Notre Dame faculty, his research addresses data-driven approaches toward predictive computational modeling and uncertainty quantification in engineering and the sciences. His is a highly interdisciplinary approach in the interface of computational mathematics and statistics, scientific computing, and physical sciences and engineering.

Zabaras’ devotion to teaching is as strong as is his dedication to research as “both are essential for advancing mankind ... improving living conditions for all.” In addition to having his students master knowledge in a specific area, he works to reinforce the ability of students to think clearly and effectively as they develop the foundations for lifelong learning and leadership.

Affiliations and Honors
Fellow, American Association of Mechanical Engineers
Hans Fisher Senior Fellow, Institute for Advanced Study, Technical University of Munich, 2014
Wolfson Research Merit Award, Royal Society, 2014
Michael Tien ’72  Excellence in Teaching Prize, Cornell University, 2009

Frank M. Freimann Collegiate Chair in Hydrology
Diogo Bolster examines the impact man has on the earth and its resources, specifically targeting environmental fluid flows and contaminant transport across a wide range of scales from groundwater flows in porous media to more confined flows in enclosed spaces such as buildings.

A faculty member since 2010, Bolster’s research expertise spans contaminant transport in coastal aquifers, multiphase flow and reactive contaminant transport in heterogeneous porous media, contaminant transport in streams and rivers, probabilistic risk assessment applied to contamination problems, intrusive gravity currents, natural and low-energy ventilation flows, indoor air quality, and vortex rings. The projects he has undertaken seek to shed further insight into the physical phenomena taking place in hopes of providing useful and useable tools for practitioners and policy makers in regards to stewardship of the environment. To date, he has published more than 85 articles in peer reviewed scientific journals.

In addition to his research, Bolster is a dedicated instructor, teaching courses covering fluid mechanics, groundwater, probabilistic methods for engineers and scientists, and fate and transport of contaminants in environmental flows.

Affiliations and Honors
Associate Editor, Hydrologic Processes
AGU Editor’s Citation for “Excellence in Reviewing” for Geophysical Research Letters, 2015
National Science Foundation Early Career Development Award, 2014

Dorini Family Collegiate Chair in Energy Studies
Tengfei Luo directs the Molecular-level Energy and Mass Transport Laboratory, where he and his team explore fundamental energy and mass transfer on the molecular scale. They then use that knowledge to engineer novel materials for applications such as heat transfer, renewable energy, water treatment, and cancer therapeutics.

Luo joined the University in 2012. An active researcher, he  is the author and co-author of more than 40 journal papers and one book.

In conjunction with the Center for Sustainable Energy at Notre Dame and the University’s Center for Nano Science and Technology, Luo has predicted that polymer nanofibers can be engineered into devices that regulate heat flow, which will help realize applications ranging from electronic thermal management to phononic computing. He and his team have also demonstrated novel strategies to enhance thermal transport across hard-soft interfaces, an area of interest for its benefit to solar heating-enabled water treatment and chemical fractionation.

Affiliations and Honors
DARPA Young Faculty Award, 2015
Summer Faculty Fellowship, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Materials & Manufacturing Directorate, 2015
Best Paper Award, Society-wide Micro and Nanotechnology Forum, ASME IMECE, 2015
Special Recognition in GE/Aramco Desalination Challenge, 2014

Frank M. Freimann Collegiate Chair in Structural Engineering
As director of the High-Performance System Analysis and Design Laboratory, Alexandros A. Taflanidis focuses on the design of sustainable civil infrastructure in response to the nation’s aging infrastructure crisis, while meeting the demands of evolving urban zones characterized by rapid population migration, escalating complexity, and elevated hazard exposure.

Through the development and implementation of advanced computational methodologies for natural hazard risk assessment and mitigation using multi-criteria risk informed design, Taflanidis is helping to reduce the loss of life and property in future disasters. His work also surveys the broader topic of engineering systems design under uncertainty. He joined the University in 2008.

Taflanidis, a co-founder of Engineering2Empower (E2E), also works on empowering community resilience in developing nations like Haiti and Ecuador. With activities ranging from scalable disaster risk assessment to risk reduction through sustainable residential reconstruction,
E2E is helping to train students to be global citizens, while building a world where communities discover and cultivate their unique potential for resilience.

Affiliations and Honors
NCEEES Award for Best Undergraduate Project Linking to Professional Practice, 2014
Rev. Edmund P. Joyce, C.S.C, Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, University of Notre Dame, 2014
Integrated European Industrial Risk Reduction System Prize of Excellence, 2012
Best Young Researcher Paper Award, 1st International Conference on Soft Computing Technology in Civil, Structural, and Environmental Engineering, 2009