Gazzola wins Grainger Engineering Dean's Award

3/6/2023 Julia Park

Professor Mattia Gazzola was selected for his outstanding record of achievements during the 2021-22 academic year.

Written by Julia Park

Mattia GazzolaMechSE professor Mattia Gazzola was named one of this year’s recipients of The Grainger College of Engineering Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research. He won in the assistant professor category.

The award honors faculty who have demonstrated an outstanding record of research achievements and publications during academic year 2021-2022.

Gazzola was one of two from MechSE in the assistant professor category, a first for the department. Professor Katie Matlack was also a recipient this year.

Gazzola’s research program lies at the intersection of computing, numerical methods, biophysics, mechanics, robotics, and control. In the early stages of his career, he focused on the theoretical, computational, and experimental characterization of bio-locomotion across different environments, with the goal of extracting general physical principles to aid the design of man-made devices. In time this research has expanded to encompass control, robotics, and bio-hybrid robotics, where biological and synthetic components come together in living machines with prescribed functionalities.

He is a leader in the exciting field of bio-inspired and biological robotics and computing. His distinctive blend of modeling, simulations and experiments applied to robotics has already led to several breakthroughs, including novel numerical and control approaches, the design of the first bio-hybrid phototactic ray, followed by the largest and fastest walking biological robot to date, and the first swimming bot driven by an on-board processing unit made of neurons.

Gazzola will be formally recognized at the college’s Faculty Awards Ceremony on April 24.

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This story was published March 6, 2023.