In mid-December, Mitul Luhar was appointed the inaugural Henry Salvatori Early Career Chair. This appointment recognizes Mitul’s exceptional distinction in aerospace and mechanical engineering.
Luhar joined USC as an Assistant Professor in the USC Viterbi Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering in 2015. Before joining USC, he was a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Graduate Aerospace Laboratories at Caltech. Luhar earned his Ph.D. from MIT in 2012, where he was awarded the Edward H. Linde Presidential Fellowship and the Martin Family Society Fellowship for Sustainability. He earned B.A. and M.Eng. degrees from the University of Cambridge in 2007.
Research in his Fluid-Structure Interactions group focuses on understanding and controlling turbulent flows. This work combines reduced-complexity models with laboratory experiments to address applications in hydrodynamic and aerodynamic design and soft robotics, as well as in environmental science. In recent years, his research has emphasized the development of functional materials and surface treatments that can passively control turbulence. Luhar is the recipient of the 2017 AFOSR Young Investigator Program award and the 2020 NSF CAREER award. His scientific contributions include over 25 journal publications and more than 60 conference presentations and invited talks. Since joining USC, he has advised six Ph.D. students and served as a research mentor for more than 30 M.S. students and undergraduates.