Center for Composite Materials - University of Delaware
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Medal of Excellence

Pioneers and Innovators in the Field of Composite Materials

The Medal of Excellence in Composite Materials recognizes pioneers and innovators in composite materials who have made significant contributions to the composites field through leadership, scholarly and education endeavors, inventions and/or economic enterprises over a sustained period of years.

The Medal of Excellence in Composite Materials has been awarded since 1984. Recipients receive a bronze medal designed by Charles Parks, a sculptor of international reputation.  The medal includes the names and likenesses of the inaugural winners who are world-renowned pioneers in composites:

  • Tsuyoshi Hayashi, National Academy of Engineering, for his outstanding theoretical and experimental studies of aircraft composite materials and structures and pioneering the development of composite science and technology worldwide. He was Founder of the Japan Reinforced Plastics Society in 1954 and Founder of the Japan Society for Composite Materials in 1975. Known in Japan as “The Godfather of Composites”, Professor Hayashi made significant academic contributions to the fields of aircraft structures and composites for more than 60 years.
  • Anthony Kelly, National Academy of Engineering, for his pioneering research in the development of composite materials. Professor Kelly’s book ‘Strong Solids’ (1965) was seminal in the field of material science and as a result of it and his life-long contributions to the science and engineering of composites, he has been referred to as ‘The Father of Composite Materials’. Professor Kelly is a Fellow of the Royal Society, Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and a Founding member of the International Conference on Composite Materials in 1975.
  • Zvi Hashin, National Academy of Engineering for his groundbreaking contributions to the micromechanics of composite materials for the calculation of the electrical, physical, thermal, and mechanical properties of heterogeneous materials. His pioneering theories laid the foundation for practical engineering designs of composite structures for future generations. Professor Hashin was Professor and Founding Chairman of the Department of Mechanics, Materials and Structures at Tel Aviv University, recipient of the Landau prize for his work in “Theory of Fiber Reinforced Materials”, Engineering Science Medal from the Society of Engineering, Israel Prize for Engineering and Benjamin Franklin Medal.
  • Stephen Tsai, National Academy of Engineering, for his leadership and contributions to the theory and design of composite structures. Professor Tsai was Chief Scientist and Director of the Mechanics of Composites Division of the Air Force Materials Laboratory from 1968-1990 and is world-renown for his seminal work on composite failure criteria. Professor Tsai is the Founding Editor of the Journal of Composite Materials and author of numerous books on design composite materials. Professor Tsai’s research led to several formulas and failure criteria in composite materials bearing his name, which have become common practice in composites design and implemented in number of commercial software. These criteria have also become standard textbook material and been referred in most of the research articles in design and analysis of composite structures.

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