Partha P. Sarkar, Ph.D., F.SEI, F.ASCE, a professor of aerospace engineering and civil engineering at Iowa State University, has been named a Fellow by the ASCE Board of Direction.
Sarkar started his academic career in 1992 as an assistant professor of civil engineering at Texas Tech University. He joined the department of aerospace engineering and engineering mechanics at Iowa State University (ISU) as a Wilson and Miller chaired professor at the rank of associate professor in 2000, and is currently a full professor since 2006 and holds a courtesy appointment in civil engineering at ISU. He also serves as AERE associate chair for research and director of the Wind Simulation and Testing Laboratory at ISU. Before joining TTU, he worked as a scientist for two years at the Structural Engineering Research Center, Chennai, India.
Sarkar has been involved in 48 research/education projects that have been sponsored by federal/state agencies and private industries. His research has resulted in more than 200 peer-reviewed publications, including multimedia wind engineering educational software, four U.S. patents and several international/national collaborations.
He is recognized for his many contributions to research, education and outreach in the areas of structural-wind engineering and wind energy. Through his research he has (a) significantly advanced the understanding of near-ground flow field and extreme wind loads on civil structures in hurricanes, tornadoes, microbursts and gusts; (b) pioneered the development of next-generation wind tunnels and wind simulation techniques by building the world’s first translating tornado/microburst simulator and the first boundary-layer wind tunnel with gust generation capability; and (c) significantly advanced the aeroelastic theories to predict loads and response of flexible structures.
He has advised 29 graduate students, including 15 Ph.D.s, and has mentored several postdoctoral fellows, undergraduate student researchers and junior faculty. Six of his former graduate students serve as faculty in U.S. universities and abroad, while many others serve in key positions in the civil and aerospace-related industry.
Sarkar has played a pivotal role in developing a Ph.D. degree program, unique in the nation, on wind energy at ISU; it is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and has produced 22 Ph.D.s.
He has promoted public outreach through ASCE webinars, national/international workshops and TV/News media (e.g., National Geographic, NHK Japan, BBC World News), and presentations. He has actively participated in civil/wind engineering professional societies such as ASCE/SEI for 27 years, having served on several committees, including ExCom of the ASCE Wind Engineering Division (as vice chair) and American Association for Wind Engineering (as president).
He has also been a keynote/invited speaker at several wind engineering conferences/symposia and has served as one of 20 guest professors at the Global Center of Excellence on Wind Engineering at Tokyo Polytechnic University. He serves on three editorial boards of journals on wind/aerospace engineering.
Sarkar holds a B. Tech degree (1985) from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur, an M.S. degree (1986) from Washington State University, and a Ph.D. and postdoc from the Johns Hopkins University (1992).