Newswise — TROY, N.Y. — Suvranu De, the J. Erik Jonsson ’22 Distinguished Professor of Engineering and head of the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering (MANE) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, has been selected to receive the 2022 ASME Edwin F. Church Medal.

De is being honored for “sustained and innovative mechanical engineering academic leadership with an emphasis on industry and academic collaboration, as well as technological innovation leading to entrepreneurship.”

A prolific researcher, De is known internationally for his work on meshfree methods, multiscale modeling, and real-time computing as they are applied to the numerical solution of coupled partial differential equations.

With more than $40 million in external grant funding to date De leads research in virtual surgery, developing computer-generated simulation environments for surgical planning, competency, and patient safety. A major aspect of his research program is developing new touch-sensitive virtual reality tools for training surgeons and simulating experimental surgical techniques. Along with creating accurate computer models of human internal organs, De develops realistic hardware interfaces with real surgical tools that can interact with the computer models in real time.

“Our Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering department is a laboratory for developing and launching exciting new ideas in education and research with the 21st century student in mind,” said Shekhar Garde, dean of the School of Engineering. “Under Suvranu’s leadership, MANE has modernized its curriculum, launched a unique program in innovation and entrepreneurship, and developed stronger ties with industry. I am delighted that ASME has recognized his sustained leadership through the awarding of the prestigious Edwin F. Church Medal.” 

De will be presented with the award at the virtual ASME International Mechanical Engineering Education Leadership Summit March 10-11, 2022.

The Edwin F. Church Medal, established in 1972, is awarded to an individual who has rendered eminent service in increasing the value, importance, and attractiveness of mechanical engineering education.

The Church Medal was established from a bequest of Edwin F. Church Jr. (1879-1964), loyal member of ASME, devoted supporter of ASME student activities, dedicated teacher, and for 32 professor of mechanical engineering and head of the department at the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn. 

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is America’s first technological research university. Rensselaer encompasses five schools, 34 research centers, more than 145 academic programs including 25 new programs, and a dynamic community made up of more than 7,600 students and over 104,000 living alumni. Rensselaer faculty and alumni include more than 145 National Academy members, six members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, six National Medal of Technology winners, five National Medal of Science winners, and a Nobel Prize winner in Physics. With nearly 200 years of experience advancing scientific and technological knowledge, Rensselaer remains focused on addressing global challenges with a spirit of ingenuity and collaboration. To learn more, please visit

Register for reporter access to contact details