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Kathryn Logan named NASA Langley Professor


BLACKSBURG, Va., July 19, 2004 – Kathryn V. Logan, principal research engineer in the School of Materials Science and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, will accept the appointment of the Virginia Tech NASA Langley Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering in the School of Engineering at Virginia Tech effective Aug. 10.

The Langley Professorship is an outgrowth of the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA), a consortium of universities working with NASA to perform advanced aerospace and atmospheric research, to develop new technologies, and to provide comprehensive graduate education in science and engineering.

Virginia Tech and the University of Virginia are the lead universities in the consortium. The other founding members are Georgia Tech, North Carolina A&T State University, North Carolina State University, and the University of Maryland. Hampton University joined shortly after the consortium was named.

The NIA Langley Professorship provides named professorships at each of the six founding universities. Logan and the other selected professors will interact with each other and six other liaison professors at the NIA site near the NASA Langley Research Center. Langley Professors will work in concert with faculty at each of the universities for the development of an elite research and educational institute.

Graduate students will have the opportunity to take courses taught by NIA instructors at Langley, as well as specialty courses via distance video conferencing originating from the six universities or affiliate schools. The result will be a collaboration of the best and the brightest students joining forces with Langley Professors. The students will receive their degree from the home institution of their adviser without residency requirements.

"We are very excited to attract Dr. Logan to our campus and to the facilities at the NIA," said Hassan Aref, dean of Virginia Tech's College of Engineering. "We believe the NIA will compliment the work of the various associated research programs at our university, leading to world-class research activities and a premier educational offering at the graduate level. Dr. Logan's presence will be an asset for attaining these goals."

Logan, who has spent most of her academic career at Georgia Tech or at its research institute, is a nationally and internationally recognized expert in the field of ceramic engineering. Her career spans 30 years, and includes the development of new materials and structures concepts. She is responsible for more than $4.5 million in contract funding for high performance materials research.

Logan earned all three of her degrees from Georgia Tech and is a licensed professional engineer. She received her bachelor's and master's in ceramic engineering in 1970 and in 1980, respectively. Her Ph.D. is in civil engineering, obtained in 1992. She became a research engineer at the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1970 and worked her way up to laboratory director in the Georgia Tech Research Institute by 1990 while she was pursuing her graduate degrees.

Today, she has emerita status from Georgia Tech where one of her former posts was director of research for its School of Materials Science & Engineering. For the past year, she has served as president of the American Ceramic Society. For the past two years, Logan has served on Virginia Tech's Department of Materials Science and Engineering Advisory Board. She is a fellow of the American Ceramic Society and the National Institute of Ceramic Engineers.

In 1989, she founded Powder Technologies Inc. and remains its president. Powder Technologies transfers ceramic composite technology developed under Army contracts to commercialization.

The College of Engineering at Virginia Tech is internationally recognized for its excellence in 14 engineering disciplines and computer science. The college's 5,600 undergraduates benefit from an innovative curriculum that provides a "hands-on, minds-on" approach to engineering education, complementing classroom instruction with two unique design-and-build facilities and a strong Cooperative Education Program. With more than 50 research centers and numerous laboratories, the college offers its 2,000 graduate students opportunities in advanced fields of study such as biomedical engineering, state-of-the-art microelectronics, and nanotechnology.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech has grown to become among the largest universities in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Today, Virginia Tech's eight colleges are dedicated to putting knowledge to work through teaching, research, and outreach activities and to fulfilling its vision to be among the top 30 research universities in the nation. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 180 academic degree programs.