Thomas J.R. Hughes, 2018 ASME Medal

Dec 17, 2018


The ASME Medal was established in 1920 and is awarded for eminently distinguished engineering achievement.

Thomas J.R. Hughes, P.E., Ph.D., professor of aerospace engineering and engineering mechanics, and Peter O’Donnell chair in computational and applied mathematics at The University of Texas at Austin, is honored for the pioneering development of computer-aided engineering and design technologies disseminated in industrial and commercial software used throughout the world, thereby improving engineering product development; and for originating and leading new fields of computational engineering research.

Dr. Hughes’ career spans over five decades. He has been with UT Austin since 2002.

A pioneer in the development of the finite element method, Dr. Hughes is a leading researcher in computer-aided engineering and its integration with computer-aided design. The fruits of his work have been incorporated in computer programs that are used to design and analyze airplanes, automobiles, high-speed trains, consumer products, industrial processes and other applications; and to diagnose disease and guide medical interventions.

Dr. Hughes’ published works have garnered more than 98,000 citations and his h-index is 142. He has delivered numerous lectures at national and international congresses.

An ASME Fellow, Dr. Hughes received the Society’s Melville Medal in 1979, Worcester Reed Warner Medal in 1998 and Timoshenko Medal in 2007. In 2008 the Applied Mechanics Division renamed its Special Achievement Award for Young Investigators the Thomas J.R. Hughes Young Investigator Award.

Among his extensive list of other honors, Dr. Hughes is a member of seven academies and holds six honorary doctorates.

Dr. Hughes received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, N.Y., in 1965 and 1967, respectively. He earned his master’s degree in mathematics and Ph.D. in engineering science from the University of California, Berkeley in 1974. Dr. Hughes is a registered professional engineer in Texas.

Video profile produced and written by Roger Torda and edited by Juan Yepes.

© The copyright of this program is owned by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

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