Rothmayer named Vance and Arlene Coffman Endowed Department Chair

Alric Rothmayer
Alric Rothmayer

Alric Rothmayer has been named Vance and Arlene Coffman Endowed Department Chair of the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Iowa State University. His appointment begins March 1, 2020.

“Alric has done an outstanding job in the role of interim chair, and we are pleased he will continue as department chair,” said W. Samuel Easterling, James L. and Katherine S. Melsa Dean of Engineering. “He has developed a deep understanding of the department and the profession as a result of his many years at Iowa State University.  Alric has experienced first-hand the growth of the department and its faculty, and knows well the needs and new directions to plan for in the years ahead.  I have tremendous confidence in his leadership ability and am excited to be working with him to support the future directions of the department.”

“I’m honored to continue to lead this department into the future,” said Rothmayer. “We have reached many goals, but are striving to reach many more. Aerospace engineering is a dynamic industry, and I will continue to help Iowa State become a world leader in education and research in this field.”

Rothmayer has been a faculty member in Iowa State’s Department of Aerospace Engineering since 1985, and he is a nationally-recognized aerospace engineering researcher and educator. An expert in boundary layer theory as well as multiphase flows applied to aircraft icing, he has contributed to numerous national technical committees and conferences, and was part of the team that developed physical models and software modifications for a NASA ice accretion program (LEWICE), leading to NASA recognitions for achievement. He is an associate fellow in the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. His research and educational specialties include viscous flow aerodynamics, boundary layer theory, and computational fluid dynamics for Navier-Stokes equations and boundary layer equations. He has researched multi-phase flows applied to aircraft icing, and has taught low and high speed aerodynamics and aerospace propulsion.

Rothmayer is a co-author of the 7th edition of the textbook Fundamentals of Fluid Mechanics and has more than 100 referenced journal and conference articles and book chapters. He has studied the development, implementation and evaluation of an effective curriculum for students to learn computational fluid dynamics, and has won multiple awards for his teaching and research excellence.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in applied mechanics and a master’s and Ph.D. in aerospace engineering, all from the University of Cincinnati. He also has a courtesy appointment in Iowa State’s Department of Mathematics.

The Department of Aerospace Engineering has more than 40 faculty members, 16 staff, more than 900 total students and many unique research ventures.


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