Royal Academy of Engineering elects bumper crop of Imperial engineers as Fellows


3D mockup of the 3D printed bridge

The 'living laboratory' 3D printed bridge

Five Imperial researchers are among 53 top engineers to be elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

Professors Leroy Gardner, Philippa Gardner, Sandro Macchietto, Esther Rodriguez-Villegas and Omar Matar have been formally elected to the Fellowship. 

This bumper crop of new Imperial Fellows is making a real difference in the world through their initiative, innovation, and leadership.  Professor Nigel Brandon Dean, Faculty of Engineering

The new elections take the number of Imperial Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering to 97. 

Becoming a Fellow is one of the highest honours an engineer can receive in the UK and Fellowship is awarded in recognition of outstanding and continuing contributions to the profession.

Professor Nigel Brandon, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, said: “I am delighted to see Leroy, Philippa, Sandro, Esther and Omar recognised by the Royal Academy of Engineering. 

"Whether they are paving the way for sustainable energy systems, monitoring the body for signs of disease, or installing the world’s largest 3D printed metal structure, this bumper crop of new Imperial Fellows is making a real difference in the world through their initiative, innovation, and leadership. 

"On behalf of all my colleagues in the Faculty of Engineering I would like to congratulate them on this outstanding achievement.”

Professor Leroy Gardner 

Photo of Leroy GardnerLeroy Gardner is Professor of Structural Engineering and Director of Research in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Imperial.

His research into steel structures, advanced analysis and design, high performance structural materials and additive manufacturing has underpinned design code developments around the world and verification of the world’s first metal 3D printed bridge

Professor Gardner said: “I’m delighted to have been elected to Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering; it’s a tremendous honour to receive such recognition and an inspiration for my future work.” 

Professor Philippa Gardner 

Professor Philippa GardnerPhilippa Gardner is Professor of Theoretical Computer Science and Director of the Research Institute on Verified Trustworthy Software Systems (VeTSS) in the Department of Computing at Imperial. 

Her research focuses on program specification and verification, exploring ways to describe mathematically what programs will and will not do.

With her group, she has introduced compositional reasoning about complex concurrent programs, developed trusted mechanised specifications of programming languages such as JavaScript and Web Assembly, and built a platform to develop compositional analysis tools for programming languages such as JavaScript and C.

Professor Gardner said: "I am delighted to have been elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. My research uses rigorous mathematical techniques and engineering methodologies to develop scalable reasoning about software systems. I hope my work will serve as a foundation for establishing trust in our modern software infrastructure.”

Professor Sandro Macchietto

Professor Sandro MecchiettoSandro Macchietto is Professor of Process Systems Engineering in the Department of Chemical Engineering and a leader in enterprise and promoting interfaces between academia and industry.

His research focuses on the development of methods for the modelling, simulation, control, optimisation and design of processes using an integrated systems approach, and their practical use in a variety of applications like sustainable energy systems.

Professor Macchietto said: "Excellence in engineering is key to addressing many of the big societal challenges we face, from climate change to energy. I am truly delighted about this honour from The Royal Academy of Engineering, and to join a very distinguished group of engineers. I very much look forward to participating in the exciting activities the Academy supports, particularly the development of young entrepreneurs.”

Professor Esther Rodriguez-Villegas 

Professor Esther Rodriguez-VillegasEsther Rodriguez-Villegas is Professor of Low Power Electronics in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering and leader of the Wearable Technologies Lab at Imperial.

Her research focuses on wearable medical devices and low-power integrated circuits with a focus on healthcare applications like brain, heart and lung conditions. 

Professor Rodriguez-Villegas said: "I am honoured and delighted to be elected as Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and humbled to join the ranks of amazing colleagues who I have looked up to for as long as I can remember. I am grateful to the Academy, and to all the wonderful people I have had the fortune to work with over the years, for this outstanding recognition. And a special thank you to my students and research staff, who keep me grounded and work with me tirelessly to devise technology aimed at making the world a better place.” 

Professor Omar Matar 

Professor Omar MatarOmar Matar is Professor of Fluid Mechanics in the Department of Chemical Engineering, and Vice-Dean (Education) of the Faculty of Engineering at Imperial.

His research focuses on fluid mechanics and data-centric engineering with energy and manufacturing applications. He is working to develop the next-generation of data-driven, physics-constrained, multi-fidelity predictive tools for improving design and decision-making under uncertainty, safety management, and for reducing carbon emissions.

Professor Matar said: “It is a huge honour to be appointed Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. Many thanks to my research group and collaborators, the Department, and the College for their support. I will endeavour to exemplify the Academy's values of progressive leadership, diversity and inclusion, excellence, collaboration, and innovation.”

Sir Jim McDonald FREng FRSE, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, said: “The new Fellows who join us today are among the most talented and successful engineers working in the field today, leaders in areas from transport and our essential data infrastructure to lifesaving developments in medical research.

"We look forward to working with them and benefiting from their ideas and insight as we strive to inform public debate and provide workable solutions to our shared national and global challenges.” 


Main article image: Joris Laarman Lab

Other: Imperial College London

See the press release of this article


Caroline Brogan

Caroline Brogan
Communications Division

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