The Board of Directors of the Society of Engineering Science (SES) has named Brown Engineering professor Pradeep Guduru the 2020 James R. Rice Medalist. The prize is in the form of a medal and an award of $1,500. This award is bestowed upon a mid-career researcher in the field of engineering sciences who has had a substantial impact in his/her field. At the time of the nomination, eligible candidates must be within 10-20 years of earning their Ph.D. or equivalent degree.
Guduru was awarded for “foundational contributions to understanding the interaction between mechanics and chemistry in energy-storage materials and heterogeneous catalysis; wavy-surface adhesion and friction; and new experimental techniques and scientific instrumentation that reveal physical mechanisms in multi-physics problems.”
Guduru received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Sri Venkateswara University, India, and master’s degree in aerospace engineering from the Indian Institute of Science. He then went on to earn his Ph.D. in aeronautics (minoring in materials science) from the California Institute of Technology in 2001. Following graduation, Guduru joined Brown University as a postdoctoral research associate, subsequently joining the solid mechanics faculty as an Assistant Professor of Engineering in 2002. He served as Associate Professor of Engineering from 2008-14 and was named Professor of Engineering in 2014. He held the James R. Rice chair in engineering at Brown during 2008-16. Guduru has held visiting professor appointments in mechanical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley (2008-09) and Stanford University (2015-16).
Guduru earned a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers in 2007, and a National Science Foundation CAREER award in 2006.
He is the current vice-chair of the Executive Committee of the Applied Mechanics Division (AMD) of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). Guduru serves on the Editorial Advisory Boards of the Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids and Acta Mechanica Sinica, and served as the Chair of the Mechanics of Solids, Structures and Fluids Track at the 2019 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition. He was the co-Chair of both the 50th Annual Technical Meeting of the Society of Engineering Science (which was also the joint Annual Summer Conference of ASME-AMD) in 2013 and the Symposium on Mechanics of Materials across Nano to Geological Time and Length Scales in 2016.
The James R. Rice Medal was created by the SES in 2015 to recognize mid-career researchers. The award, named after Professor James R. Rice, who taught at Brown from 1964-81 before accepting a position at Harvard University, celebrates Rice’s pioneering contributions to the field of engineering sciences and the fact that he serves as a source of inspiration to scientists across multiple disciplines.