Contact: Melanie O’Brien or Ellen Sterner 214-768-7650

February 17, 2004


DALLAS (SMU) — Paul S. Krueger, assistant professor of mechanical engineering in the SMU School of Engineering, has been named as a recipient of the National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development CAREER award from the Division of Chemical and Transport Systems of the NSF. Each year, the NSF grants a total of 300-350 CAREER awards to scientists who show strong potential early in their career. Krueger will receive $400,000 over a 5-year period of research.

Krueger’s research will investigate a new pulsing method for the propulsion of very small vehicles through air or water. His innovative propulsion system is similar to that used by aquatic creatures like jellyfish and squid. Krueger’s propulsion research might one day be used to propel centimeter or smaller size vehicles used in microsurgery or in the creation of micro-submarines to explore undersea caverns, or possibly on small aircraft used for military surveillance.

“The potential for Professor Krueger’s research is far-reaching,” said School of Engineering Dean Stephen Szygenda. “His work envelops both biological and mechanical worlds with groundbreaking applications for military uses, medical breakthroughs and undersea exploration.”

According to Geoffrey Orsak, associate dean of engineering, Krueger’s research reflects new trends in engineering. “Increasingly, this type of multipurpose solution to real-world technical challenges requires engineers to combine innate creativity, cutting-edge skills and the ability to meld wide-ranging concepts into useful applications.”

Krueger joined the SMU faculty as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering in 2002 after receiving his Ph.D. in aeronautics from the California Institute of Technology in 2001.

Yildirim Hürmüzlü, chair of mechanical engineering, lauded Krueger’s selection as a CAREER award recipient. “Recognition from the NSF is a great honor. It brings national attention to one of our outstanding engineering professors and to the world class research being conducted at SMU.”

Krueger received the Richard Bruce Chapman Memorial Award for Distinguished Research in Hydrodynamics in 2001 and the Rolf D. Buhler Memorial Award in Aeronautics in 1998.