Digital manufacturing focus of inaugural Distinguished Seminar
Cao’s lecture, “Digital Manufacturing,” focused on the future of manufacturing, envisioned to be a mixture of customized manufacturing and concentrated manufacturing. To enable the versatility of manufacturing processes and to fully integrate design and manufacturing for system optimization, at the Advanced Manufacturing Processes Laboratory of Northwestern, research efforts are rooted in discovering new processes and in enhancing the predictability of manufacturing processes using the ICME (integrated computational materials engineering) approach. Her talk provided an overview of those activities and on selective processes and their fundamentals, particularly the dieless double-sided incremental forming process and metal-based powder-blown additive manufacturing.
Cao is the Cardiss Collins Professor, Director of Northwestern Initiative for Manufacturing Science and Innovation, and an Associate Vice President for Research (AVPR) at Northwestern University. She was at the National Science Foundation as a program director for two years. As an AVPR, Cao fosters collaboration between the physical sciences and engineering and other disciplines. She is a Board member of mHUB, Chicago’s first innovation center focused on physical product development and manufacturing.
Cao is an elected Fellow of AAAS, ASME, SME, and the International Academy for Production Engineering (CIRP). Her major awards include Charles Russ Richards Memorial Award (2017) from ASME and Pi Tau Sigma, SME Frederick W. Taylor Research Medal (2016), ASME Blackall Machine Tool and Gage Award (2012, 2018), ASME Young Investigator Award (2006) from ASME Division of Applied Mechanics, and NSF CAREER Award. Cao is the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Materials Processing Technology. She served as President of the SME North America Manufacturing Research Institute, and Chair of ASME Manufacturing Engineering Division. She is a recipient of ASME Dedicated Service Award (2011).
The seminar was sponsored by the NSF nanoMFG node at Illinois.