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Dr. J. Parker Lamb Endowed Presidential Fellowship in Mechanical Engineering

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Dr. J. Parker Lamb
Dr. J. Parker Lamb

The Dr. J. Parker Lamb Endowed Presidential Fellowship in Mechanical Engineering was established by the Board of Regents of the University of Texas System on May 20, 2010, to benefit the Cockrell School of Engineering. The endowment honors J. Parker Lamb Jr., PhD. Gift funds were provided by J. Michael Walker, Ph.D.

J. Parker Lamb, Jr. was assistant professor of aerospace engineering and engineering mechanics at The University of Texas at Austin from 1962 to 1963, after which he transferred to the Mechanical Engineering Department and served as an assistant professor until 1967. Dr. Lamb then served as an associate professor from 1967 to 1970, at which time he became the chair of the department.

During his first term as chair (1970-1976), Dr. Lamb succeeded in raising graduate enrollment from 100 to 150, and in doubling the size of the faculty from 20 to 40. He was considered an important catalyst for change: he revitalized the Mechanical Engineering Department’s curricula, directing inquiry into new areas of research, including advanced energy technology and electronics.

In 1976, Dr. Lamb stepped down as chair to become associate dean of engineering for academic affairs in the College of Engineering. As associate dean, Dr. Lamb worked to solidify the standing of the Equal Opportunity in Engineering program for minority students, as well as other student organizations. He subsequently chaired the Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics Department and served another term as the mechanical engineering chair (1996-2001). Dr. Lamb was awarded with the title of Professor Emeritus in 2001.

Dr. J. Parker Lamb received his BS in mechanical engineering in 1954 from Auburn University and his PhD in 1961 from the University of Illinois. He then spent two years as an air force officer at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Dr. Lamb’s research interests are in fluid mechanics and heat transfer.

During his academic career, he made numerous research contributions to the area of fluid flow and convective heat transfer in recirculating flow fields, ranging from low speed flow past surfaces with discrete roughness to hypersonic flows of tandem projectiles. While at the University, he was also associated, as consultant or temporary employee, with a number of aerospace organizations including Arnold Engineering Development Center, Ling-Temco-Vought Aerospace (LTV), National Aeronautics and Space Administration Marshall Space Flight Center, and Sandia National Laboratories. He is a prominent railroad historian and author of several books about railroads. He writes for Railroad History and has several bylines in Trains magazine.

Dr. Lamb won the Engineering Foundation Faculty Award from the Cockrell School of Engineering in 1996. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He also held offices in a number of professional groups and received numerous awards for his professional accomplishments and contributions.

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