Missouri S&T welcomes new faculty

Posted by
On September 16, 2021

Missouri University of Science and Technology welcomed 12 new faculty members to campus as classes resumed for the fall semester. Their areas of expertise include the risk of insecticides to monarch butterflies, high-performance machine learning, and smart and intelligent sensing systems. 

This year’s new faculty are: 

  • Dr. Yezad Anklesaria, assistant teaching professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. He earned a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering from Missouri S&T IN 2020 and served S&T as a graduate research assistant in aerospace engineering before joining the S&T faculty. He also holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the field from S&T. Anklesaria’s research interests include piezoelectric actuators and sensors, piezoceramics, mechanical vibrations and vibration testing.
  • Dr. David Bayless, who joined Missouri S&T in January 2021 as chair of mechanical and aerospace engineering. He came to S&T from Ohio University, where he was the Gerald Loehr Professor of Mechanical Engineering, director of the Ohio Coal Research Center, director of the Robe Leadership Institute and graduate chair for mechanical engineering. He earned a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois, a master’s degree in engineering management from the University of Central Florida, and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from S&T. His research focuses on the intersection of energy, water and waste.
  • Dr. Karen Head, professor of English and technical communication, who comes to Rolla from Georgia Institute of Technology, where she served as executive director of The Communication Center and associate professor and associate chair in the School of Literature, Media and Communication. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a master’s degree from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, a bachelor’s degree from Oglethorpe University and an associate’s degree from DeKalb College, all in English. An accomplished poet, she is editor of the international poetry journal “Atlanta Review” and is the Poet Laureate of Waffle House, which refers to an outreach program that brings arts awareness to rural high schools in Georgia with support of the Waffle House Foundation. She is also S&T’s arts and innovation director and will work to elevate arts education and programming, and promote collaborations among artists, scientists, and technologists.
  • Dr. Niranjana Krishnan, assistant research professor in biological sciences. Krishnan earned a Ph.D. in toxicology from Iowa State University, a master’s degree in biomedical genetics from Vellore Institute of Technology in India, and a bachelor’s degree in microbiology and biotechnology from Mumbai University in India. She came to Missouri S&T from Iowa State, where she studied the risks of insecticides to monarch butterflies. Her research is helping the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service determine whether to list the monarch butterfly as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. 
  • Dr. Liujin Li, associate research professor in civil, architectural and environmental engineering. Li earned a Ph.D. in mechatronics engineering and a master’s degree in materials science and engineering, both from Central South University in China. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in agricultural mechanization from Hunan Agricultural University in China. Before joining the S&T faculty, Li was director of engineering at Hitron Technologies Inc. and primary investigator on a Department of Defense field robotics project. His research includes high-resolution studies of the spectroscopic detection and characterization of free radicals and molecules in excited electronic states. The research will lead to a detailed understanding of molecular structures and dynamics and the nature of chemical bonding.
  • Dr. Xin Liang, assistant professor of computer science, who was a research intern in the Extreme Scale Resilience Group at Argonne National Laboratory before joining Missouri S&T. He earned a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of California, Riverside, and a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Peking University in China. His research interests include high-performance computing; parallel, distributed and heterogeneous systems; and high-performance machine learning algorithms and applications.
  • Dr. Phillip Mulligan, assistant teaching professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, who transferred from S&T’s geosciences and geological and petroleum engineering department, where he served as an assistant research professor. Mulligan earned a bachelor’s degree in mining engineering, and master’s and Ph.D. degrees in explosives engineering from Missouri S&T. His research focuses on explosives engineering, force protection, virtual reality and weapon design.
  • Dr. Ernesto Quintas Sanchez, assistant research professor in chemistry, who served Missouri S&T as a postdoctoral research fellow before joining the faculty. His research interests include photodissociation processes on van der Waals complexes, molecular dynamic simulations, molecular recombination on gas-surface interfaces, quasiclassical methodology, and automated construction of potential energy surfaces.
  • Dr. Ran Sui, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, who joined Missouri S&T from Princeton University, where he served as a postdoctoral researcher. He earned a Ph.D. in mechanical and process engineering from ETH in Zurich, Switzerland, a master’s in computer science from Technical University of Munich, Germany, and bachelor of engineering and bachelor of art degrees from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China. His most recent research focused on catalytic microreactors for power generation and hetero- and homogenous combustion of hydrogen or air over platinum.
  • Dr. Ardhendu Tripathy, assistant professor of computer science, came to S&T from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he served as a postdoctoral research associate. He earned a Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Iowa State University and a bachelor of technology degree in electrical engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. His research interests are in the fields of information and coding theory, machine learning, and signal processing.
  • Dr. Dawei Wang, assistant professor of business and information technology. Wang holds a Ph.D. in management information systems from the University of Oklahoma, a master of business administration degree from the University of Delaware, and a bachelor of engineering degree in automation from the Beijing Institute of Technology. Before joining the Missouri S&T faculty, he was an assistant professor of information systems management at the University of Michigan. His research focuses on IT innovation diffusion, business analytics, blockchain and information security.
  • Dr. Chen Zhu, assistant research professor in electrical and computer engineering. Zhu was a graduate research assistant at Missouri S&T while working toward his Ph.D. in electrical engineering. He also holds a master’s degree in optical engineering and a bachelor of engineering degree in optoelectronics information engineering, both from Huazhong University of Science and Technology in China. His research focus is microwave coaxial cable sensors, fiber-optic sensors, smart sensing systems and intelligent sensing systems.

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On September 16, 2021.

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