Clayton Daniel Mote Jr. Honored By ASME For Distinguished Engineering Achievement

NEW YORK, Nov. 21, 2011 – Clayton Daniel Mote Jr., Ph.D., a resident of Annapolis, Md., and regents professor and Glenn L. Martin Institute professor of engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park, was honored by ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers).  He was recognized for creating a comprehensive theory of the dynamics of flexible moving structures, such as bands and spinning discs, with extensive engineering applications to circular and band saws; and for his remarkable leadership at two major universities.  He received the Society’s ASME Medal.

The medal, established in 1920, is awarded for eminently distinguished engineering achievement.  It was presented to Dr. Mote during ASME’s 2011 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, held in Denver, Nov. 11 through 17.

As president of the University of Maryland for 12 years (1998-2010), Mote led the institution on an ambitious path to become one of the premier public research universities in the nation. He also served as a member of the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley, for more than 30 years.  There he held a number of positions including chair of the mechanical engineering department (1987-91) and vice chancellor-university relations (1991-98).

Mote serves as an officer of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE), on the National Research Council (NRC) Governing Board and on NRC committees concerned with issues of innovation, national security, and national competitiveness in engineering and science.

His research focuses on dynamic and gyroscopic systems, and on biomechanics. As a result of his world renowned research on saw stability control, the forest products industry has been able to significantly reduce waste due to kerf losses, to improve the quality of the final products and to reduce the noise (and hearing loss) associated with wood cutting.  In the area of bioengineering, he is the recognized world leader in biomechanics related to skiing injuries.  Through his novel experiments, Mote uncovered the mechanisms that cause ski injuries, helped define the industry standards on skiing equipment that now serve to protect skiers, and established the fundamental dynamical models for ski equipment as well as the skier. 

Other areas of application for his research have included vibrations of fluid conveying pipes, cable dynamics, biomechanics of prosthetic devices, bone modeling, hydrodynamic bearings, web mechanics and wrinkling, miniature force and motion sensing devices, and the biomechanics of finger motions including tactile sensing in touch typing. 

Mote has produced more than 300 publications, holds four patents (Norway, U.S., Sweden and Finland) and has advised 58 doctoral students.

An ASME Fellow and Honorary Member, Mote has been serving on the board of directors of the ASME Foundation since 2003 and on the ASME Press Publication Oversight Committee since 1989. 

Mote is an honorary member of the International Society for Skiing Safety; and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Acoustical Society of America.

His honors also include the Founders Award (2005) from NAE, receipt of the Berkeley Citation (1998) from the University of California, selection as a Distinguished Engineering Alumnus by the University of California (2001), the Ralph Coats Roe Award (1997) from the American Society for Engineering Education and the Humboldt Prize (1988) from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany.

Mote earned his three degrees at the University of California, Berkeley:  a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering in 1959 and 1960, respectively; and a Ph.D. in engineering mechanics in 1963.  He holds three honorary doctorates.


About ASME
ASME helps the global engineering community develop solutions to real world challenges. Founded in 1880 as the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, ASME is a not-for-profit professional organization that enables collaboration, knowledge sharing and skill development across all engineering disciplines, while promoting the vital role of the engineer in society. ASME codes and standards, publications, conferences, continuing education and professional development programs provide a foundation for advancing technical knowledge and a safer world.