Professor WaiChing "Steve" Sun and Colleagues Win MURI Grant

Apr 22 2019

WaiChing "Steve" Sun, an assistant professor in the Department of Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics, is part of a team who recently won a highly competitive Department of Defense (DoD) MURI (Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative) grant to develop computational/data-driven/machine-learning-enhanced mathematical models for energetic materials with an integrated experimental and modeling efforts across university. The team is led by University of Missouri-Columbia, and includes researchers from University of Iowa, UIUC, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Purdue University, and Columbia.  The five-year $7.5 million AFOSR (Air Force Office of Scientific Research) grant was awarded for the DoD’s “MURI Topic #24: Microstructurally-Aware Continuum Models for Energetic Materials;” the project is titled “Integrating Multiscale Modeling and Experiments to Develop a Meso-Informed Predictive Capability for Explosives Safety and Performance” (See press release from Department of Defense here). Since its inception in 1985, the tri-service (ARO, ONR, AFOSR) MURI program has been supporting teams whose members have diverse sets of expertise as well as creative and different approaches to tackling problems. It’s a program that remains a cornerstone of the DOD’s legacy of scientific impact. 

Sun's work focuses on the development of theoretical and computational models and the corresponding computer algorithms for porous media, with applications in geomechanics and computational mechanics, and mechanics for civil infrastructure. This is the first DoD MURI grant obtained by Sunand the seventh Department of Defense grant Sun's research group has obtained since 2014. His work is supported by multiple federal funding agencies, including two highly competitive Young Investigator Program Awards from Army Research Office (ARO) and Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR), an 800K grant from Department of Energy Nuclear University Program (DOE NEUP) on nuclear waste disposal, and recently an NSF CAREER award from the mechanics of materials and structures program of CMMI division in NSF. 

Professor WaiChing "Steve" Sun and Colleagues Win MURI Grant