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Texas A&M Engineering's Ochoa receives award from American Society for Composites

October 31, 2005

COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Dr. Ozden Ochoa, a professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and associate dean of graduate studies at Texas A&M University, has received the Award in Composites from the American Society for Composites. Ochoa, who will start her two-year term as president of the society in January, is the 10th recipient of the award, which recognizes a "distinguished member of the composites community who has made a significant impact on the development of composite materials through applied research, practice, education, service, advocacy or leadership." Ochoa received the award at the society's 20th Annual Technical Meeting in Philadelphia in September. Ochoa is currently serving as the director of Aerospace Sciences and Materials Directorate at U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research in Arlington, Va. Prior to moving to AFOSR, Ochoa was actively conducting research and establishing focus areas in composites as senior technologist at the Materials and Manufacturing Technical Directorate at Wright Patterson AFB in Ohio from 2003 to 2005. Ochoa came to Texas A&M in 1980 as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering. Her contributions in the past two decades are in a broad range of mechanics of composite materials and structures with applications in the aerospace, offshore, automotive and construction industries. Her research focus is on integrating computational and experimental mechanics to address material and structural characterization of fiber-reinforced polymer and ceramic matrix composites and, more recently, with high-temperature carbon foams. Ochoa led the Mechanics of Materials Program of the U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research from 1997 to 1999. She is a consultant for the NATO Science for Peace Project, advising and enabling a team of scientists from Belarus, Canada, Russia and the Ukraine in successfully conducting and disseminating their research efforts on high-temperature ceramics. As the leading principal investigator on a National Institute of Standards and Technology -- Advanced Technology Program grant for the Texas Engineering Experiment Station's Offshore Technology Research Center, she is credited with seeing through the development of the first composite drilling riser. Ochoa is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the American Society for Composites, and is a member of the Pi Tau Sigma, Sigma Xi and Phi Kappa Phi. She is a member of the U.S. National Committee on Theoretical and Applied Mechanics and serves on the executive committee of the International Conference for Composite Materials. Among her many honors are the ASME Dedicated Service Award, two consecutive Conoco CEA Awards, the Texas A&M University International Excellence Award and the Texas A&M University Honors Program Teacher/Scholar Award. In 1997, Ochoa was named to the Texas A&M Mechanical Engineering Academy of Distinguished Graduates, and in 2003, she received the Dean W.R. Woolrich "Engineer of the Year" Award from the South Texas section of ASME. Ochoa was recognized in 2003 as a Texas A&M Dwight Look College of Engineering Fellow. Ochoa holds a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Bogazici University (Robert College) in Turkey, and a master's degree in nuclear engineering and a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering, both from Texas A&M.

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