Curriculum Vitae

About A.J.

My goal as a mechanical engineer has always been to find the simplest solution for a problem. My philosophy–the simpler it is, the more reliable it will be. As a problem solver I’m excited by the unique challenges involved with designing reliable engineering systems to push the limits of discovery and exploration.

I have a strong background in numerical methods for engineering applications. My PhD research focused on developing a new numerical algorithms to facilitate fast, high-fidelity simulations of reacting flows with detailed transport and chemistry. Using this new algorithm, I investigated the coupled chemical and transport processes present in turbulent reacting flows to assess the impact of mass diffusion on the premixed combustion of transportation relevant fuels.

I can build an experiment from scratch. I lead a team of students at Oregon State University to design and build a fully premixed, piloted turbulent Bunsen burner to investigate the global consumption speeds of vaporized liquid jet fuels. This work helped develop my strong physical understanding of turbulent flames and was used by the Federal Aviation Administration and engineering manufacturers to influence aviation policy and aircraft design.

I actively search for collaboration. The only way we will overcome modern engineering challenges is through collaboration. In that vein, I have completed visiting research positions at Caltech and Georgia Tech. My main goal as a visiting researcher was first and foremost to learn and understand my hosts’ research philosophies so I could integrate their approaches into my own and grow as an engineer.

I am a firm believer that strong communication is the cornerstone of engineering. Throughout my career I have worked to hone my communication skills both in technical literature and through public science outreach. As part of this effort I was embedded as a science journalist and subject matter expert at the PBS show NOVA as an AAAS Mass Media Fellow. In addition, I’ve produced public-facing science communication content in partnership with Oregon State University, the Cambridge University Press, and other web-based science communication outlets.

As an engineer and communicator, I am fluent in the language of science–but also keenly aware of its pit falls. An engineering team is only as strong as its communication skills and only as successful as it’s weakest member. It took a team of hundreds to take one small step on the moon, I want to be part of the team that takes the next giant leap for mankind.