Christensen to Receive Larson Memorial Award

Author: Nina Welding


Kenneth T. Christensen, the Collegiate Professor of Fluid Mechanics and assistant dean of faculty development in the College of Engineering at the University of Notre Dame, has been selected to receive the 2016 Gustus L. Larson Memorial Award. Sponsored by the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (ASME) and Pi Tau Sigma, the Larson award recognizes individuals for outstanding achievement in mechanical engineering between 10 and 20 years after graduation. Formal presentation will take place Sunday, Nov. 13, during the ASME Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition.  

The award was established in honor of Gustus L. Larson, ASME Fellow and founder of Pi Tau Sigma at the University of Wisconsin. Larson was a leader in heating, ventilating, and air conditioning and a former president of the American Society of Heating and Ventilating Engineers, now part of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-conditioning Engineers.

Christensen’s expertise is in experimental fluid mechanics. With a joint faculty appointment between the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering and the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering & Earth Sciences, his research focuses on turbulence interactions with complex topography encountered in a range of engineering systems, flow interactions and coupling with complex bedforms that form and evolve in both aeolean and subaqueous natural environments, and multi-phase flow within heterogeneous porous media with application to geologic carbon dioxide sequestration.  

He is a fellow of the American Physical Society (APS) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, as well as an associate fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. Christensen also serves as associate editor for the Journal of Visualization and on the editorial boards of Experiments in Fluids and Measurement Science and Technology.

In addition to this most recent award, Christensen has received the 2006 AFOSR Young Investigator Award, a 2007 National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the 2011 Francois Frenkiel Award for Fluid Mechanics from the APS Division of Fluid Dynamics, and the 2012 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research from the College of Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he served as professor, Kritzer Faculty Scholar, and associate head for undergraduate and mechanics programs in the Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering prior to joining the Notre Dame faculty in 2014.

Originally published by Nina Welding at on May 31, 2016.