Esra Buyuktahtakin, an assistant professor of industrial and manufacturing engineering at Wichita State University, has been awarded a $500,000 Career Award from the National Science Foundation.
It is the highest honor granted to junior faculty.
She received the five-year award for a project to create models for public policy decisions to protect ecological systems from invasive species. The research involves mathematical modeling, optimization, game theory and uncertainty management.
This is the third award in three years for WSU’s College of Engineering.
In 2014, assistant professor Pingfeng Wang won a $400,000 award for his research on how to prevent failure of engineering systems and products, such as airplanes and wind turbines, through repairs and upgrades that ensure sustainability.
Also in 2014, assistant professor Animesh Chakravarthy received a $400,000 Career Award for his research on allowing ground and underwater autonomous vehicles (drones) to navigate in swarms without colliding with one another.