Y. Charles Lu, H.E. Katterjohn Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Kentucky College of Engineering Extended Campus in Paducah, received the 2017 Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) International Excellence in Engineering Education Award at the SAE World Congress Experience in Detroit on April 10. The award recognizes individuals who have promoted SAE student activities at the international, national or local levels, contributed to the advances of engineering education, supported the SAE Collegiate Design Competitions and/or promoted educational activities at any level.
A member of SAE for almost 20 years, Lu has made significant contributions to the mobility-related engineering practice and education, particularly in design with plastic and composite materials. While working in industry, Lu advocated for the uses of plastic and composite materials for automotive applications and was instrumental in developing innovative composite engine components that earned him numerous achievement awards from Dana Incorporated. He also participated in several advanced composite development programs for the aerospace industry while working as a research scientist at the Air Force Research Laboratory.
Lu is the author of seven edited books and over 150 technical papers in refereed journals, book chapters and conference proceedings. Lu received the 2010 SAE International Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award for his contributions to mobility-related research, teaching and student development, as well as the 2015 SAE International Forest McFarland Award for his services to the SAE. He has also received numerous teaching and research awards from UK.
Lu has served as the faculty advisor to the University of Kentucky Big Blue Baja Car Design Team since arriving at UK Paducah in 2006. The Baja Car team competes at the SAE Collegiate Design Series each year, and also at other events.
Lu received his Ph.D. in engineering sciences from the University of Western Ontario. He also has master’s degrees in mechanical engineering and materials science. He is a senior member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and SAE.