UC names new head of mechanical and materials engineering department

Ying Sun joins College of Engineering and Applied Science to lead largest engineering department

John Weidner, Ph.D., dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Cincinnati has announced the appointment of Ying Sun, Ph.D., as the head of the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering (MME) and Herman Schneider Professor of Mechanical Engineering, effective August 15, 2022. 

Ying Sun headshot

Sun comes to UC from Drexel University where she has been a mechanical engineering and mechanics faculty member since 2009 and is Hess Family Endowed Chair Professor. She has also served as program director of the National Science Foundation Thermal Transport Processes Program since 2019. In her role at NSF, Sun promotes fundamental and transformative research in clean energy, climate change solutions and emerging technologies. 

Her research interests include multiphase flows and heat/mass transfer; machine learning and data-driven methods; thermal management with phase change; complex fluids and interfacial phenomena; transport phenomena in additive manufacturing; and multi-scale modeling with applications in energy systems and advanced manufacturing.

"I am extremely excited to welcome Dr. Sun to the college as she leads our largest department,” Weidner said. “Her broad experiences at Drexel University, the National Science Foundation and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base — along with national and international university collaborations — provide a wealth of knowledge, networks and leadership. Ying’s teaching and research expertise in the areas of transport phenomena in advanced manufacturing, water-energy nexus, machine learning, and data-driven methods will be a tremendous benefit for our students.”

Sun’s recent projects include the development of dry-cooling methods to eliminate water use in electric power plants and sustainable additive manufacturing routes to reduce energy consumption and waste. 

Sun said she is thrilled to have the opportunity to join UC as the MME department is on its upward trajectory. 

“I am a strong believer of experiential learning and passionate about continuous innovation in how we prepare our students for a rapidly evolving world,” Sun said. “I look forward to building a collective vision, catalyzing partnerships and promoting an inclusive culture in MME.”

Sun is a recipient of the prestigious NSF CAREER Award. She was a Summer Faculty Fellow at the Air Force Research Lab at Wright-Patterson and is a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). She was a visiting professor at Princeton University, Ecole Polytechnique and Tsinghua University during her sabbatical year. Prior to joining Drexel in 2009, Sun was an assistant professor at the State University of New York at Binghamton. She is currently an associate editor for the ASME Journal of Electrochemical Energy Conversion and Storage and has held leadership roles for the Gordon Research Conference on Micro and Nanoscale Phase Change Phenomena.

Sun has Ph.D. and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Iowa and a bachelor’s degree in thermal engineering from Tsinghua University in Beijing.