3 UC Berkeley professors elected to National Academy of Engineering

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Three UC Berkeley professors were elected to the National Academy of Engineering, or NAE, one of the highest honors granted to engineers in the United States, on Feb. 6.

Nuclear engineering professor Per Peterson, adjunct professor of environmental science, policy and management Susan Hubbard and civil and environmental engineering professor Paulo Monteiro were among the 87 U.S. members and 18 international members to be inducted into the NAE class of 2020. With this announcement, UC Berkeley Engineering will have 78 engineering faculty members in the NAE, according to a press release. Newly elected members will be officially inducted into the academy in Washington, D.C. on Oct. 4.

“It is a tremendous honor to be elected to the National Academy of Engineering,” Peterson said in an email. “It’s the result of having many opportunities to work with really gifted students and colleagues, along with focusing on a set of problems that really matter for the future of humanity.”

Members of the NAE include those in business and academic management, technical positions, university faculty, government leaders and private engineering organizations.

The NAE honors those who have made outstanding contributions to research, practice or education, according to an NAE press release.

Individuals cannot apply for membership in the NAE. Current NAE members search and nominate potential candidates for the next class of inductees. The NAE takes into consideration the perspectives of the candidates’ associates and colleagues to determine professional integrity.

Elections of new members are a yearlong process. Additionally, the nomination and election process “is subject to strict confidentiality,” according to the NAE website.

Peterson manages the UC Berkeley Thermal Hydraulics Research Laboratory and was cited by the NAE for his research contributions to the design and development of passive safety systems in nuclear reactors.

Hubbard is the associate laboratory director at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and was recognized for her contributions to hydrogeophysics, biogeophysics and the geophysics of permafrost.

Monteiro studies structural engineering, mechanics and materials as the Roy W. Carlson Distinguished Professor at UC Berkeley. The NAE cited Monteiro for achievements in the nanotechnology of concrete for sustainable construction.

Tsu-Jae King Liu, dean of the department of engineering, said she is proud of the campus faculty members’ recent achievements.

“The election of Per, Paulo and Susan to the National Academy of Engineering is a well-deserved recognition of their outstanding career achievements and contributions,” Liu said in an email. “We’re proud to have Per and Paulo on our faculty and also to count Susan among the 11 Berkeley Engineering alumni elected to the NAE this year. This honor reflects the high caliber of faculty and alumni in our ranks.”

Contact Marc Escobar at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter at @mescobar_dc.

A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that UC Berkeley now has 78 engineering faculty members in the National Academy of Engineering. In fact, UC Berkeley Engineering has 78 faculty members in the National Academy of Engineering.