The James R. Welty Professorship in Thermal-Fluid Sciences

James R. Welty arrived at Oregon State University as a freshman in mechanical engineering in 1950 and has been associated with OSU ever since. He earned his B.S. in 1954, and began teaching at OSU in 1958, receiving his Ph.D. in 1962 and becoming a full professor in 1967. He served as head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering from 1970 to 1985, at which time he returned to full-time teaching until his retirement in 1996.

Over the course of his long and productive career, Professor Welty received numerous teaching and research awards, including the American Society of Mechanical Engineers' Centennial Medallion and Dedicated Service Award. He is recognized worldwide for his contributions to thermal fluids, the area of mechanical engineering concerned with heat transfer, fluid mechanics, and thermodynamics.

Upon his retirement, Professor Welty and his wife Sharon Hastings-Welty, a 1975 OSU graduate in home economics, pledged a large gift to the College of Engineering toward establishing the Welty Professorship. This donation, in combination with gifts from various other donors honoring Professor Welty on his retirement, helped the position reach full endowment by 1997.

The Welty Professorship is intended to keep Oregon State University at the forefront of critical technologies such as ink-jet printing, microscale energy conversion processes, electronic equipment cooling, and property measurements related to electronic equipment design. In addition, it helps ensure OSU's continued excellence in mechanical engineering education.

 

James A. Liburdy

In 1998, Dr. James A. Liburdy was selected as the inaugural James R. Welty Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. With this appointment, he joined the faculty at OSU to pursue an active program of undergraduate and graduate education, to carry out research in the areas of fluid mechanics and heat transfer, and to interact with the growing technology-based industry in the state of Oregon.

Dr. Liburdy came to OSU after 19 years as a faculty member at Clemson University, where he also served as Director of the School of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering. He received a bachelor's degree from Cornell University, a master's degree from Stanford University, and a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Pennsylvania State University.

Over the course of his career, Dr. Liburdy has been involved in a wide variety of research activities, with a primary emphasis on the fundamental aspects of technology development and technology transfer to industry. The focus of his efforts has been in improving thermal management systems in electronics, resulting in two patents. His work has been supported by a range of industries and federal agencies, including AT&T, Intel, duPont, Westinghouse, General Electric, the National Science Foundation, and NASA. He also serves on several national committees of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and received the Outstanding Researcher Award at Clemson University from the research society Sigma Xi.

Dr. Liburdy brings his expertise in thermal-fluid sciences to OSU with the goal of further expanding research into the realm of micro-based energy conversion systems. In order to meet the needs of regional industries, he has established a thermal fluids diagnostics laboratory which provides the means study high-technology problems with innovative measurement methods.

 

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