Mahesh, Porté-Agel named McKnight Presidential Fellows

Krishnan Mahesh PhotoAssociate professors Krishnan Mahesh (aerospace engineering and mechanics) and Fernando Porté-Agel (civil engineering) have been named 2005 McKnight Presidential Fellows. The award honors the accomplishments of the most promising faculty who have been newly granted tenure and promotion to associate professor.

Mahesh's research involves the computation, analysis, and modeling of turbulent flows. He is working with researchers at Stanford University and Pratt & Whitney to simulate the process by which liquid fuel in a commercial gas-turbine combustor breaks into droplets, evaporates, and burns. His work is part of the U.S. Department of Energy's Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative.

Fernando Porte-Agel  PhotoPorté-Agel studies land-atmosphere exchange processes, turbulence, and computational fluid dynamics. Other areas of research are hydrology and water resources engineering. He works closely with the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute, NSF National Center for Earth-surface Dynamics, and St. Anthony Falls Laboratory.

The McKnight Presidential Fellow Program, which provides research funds for three years, complements the McKnight Land-Grant Professorship for new assistant professors and the Distinguished McKnight University Professorship for new full professors. As a whole, the McKnight awards identify and support promising faculty at critical stages of their careers.