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Creativity, insight, and application are the hallmarks of Dr. Xin Sun’s applied mechanics and computational materials research at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Her advances in lightweight and high-strength materials (including steels) and modeling are vital to energy efficiency and renewable energy and have led to notable weight savings in the U.S. automotive industry. Xin is developing simulation and modeling capabilities for solid oxide fuel cells. Her modeling of physics properties are included as part of the solid oxide fuel cell multiphysics modeling code, or SOFC-MP, a commercial software tool, developed at PNNL, used by fuel cell developers. She also uses the continuum damage mechanics model, developed under DOE-funded programs, to understand fracture mechanisms behind transparent armor for the U.S. Army—work that may enable more resilient battlefield vehicles. A prolific contributor to the scientific community, Xin is on the ISRN Mechanical Engineering editorial board and serves as an associate editor on the ASME Journal of Offshore Mechanics and Arctic Engineering and American Welding Society Welding Journal. She also mentors staff and interns at PNNL and Washington State University, where she is a mechanical and materials engineering professor. Xin earned a naval architecture and ocean engineering undergraduate degree from China’s Shanghai Jiao Tong University. In only five years, she earned a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and a master’s and doctorate in naval architecture and marine engineering, all from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Read her full story at

Posted by U.S. Department of Energy on 2013-04-30 17:53:46

Tagged: , STEM , Women , Energy

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