Current Graduate Researchers, Undergraduate Researchers, and Visiting Scientists

Dr. Charles Chemale Yurgel

Postdoctoral Associate

     Dr. Yurgel’s area of research focuses on the evaluation of the hot forging process with steel materials to enable new developments for industry. His work involves assessing the involved material and its processing throughout the forging life cycle: from the raw material, to heating, upsetting, press and hammer, dies, finishing materials, to the final product.

Dr. John Plumeri

Research Scientist

     Dr. Plumeri’s areas of research include numerical modeling of metal alloys and metal forming processes, especially lightweight alloys.

Dr. Nijenthan Rajendran

Postdoctoral Researcher

     Dr. Rajendran’s research area is material forming–mostly specializing in material flow analysis of  forming processes such as extrusion, forging, rolling
and more, studied through numerical process simulation and physical material modeling.

Trevor Verdonik

PhD Candidate, Materials Science & Engineering

     Trevor’s primary research is in metal additive manufacturing with a focus on tooling repair and improvement through AM techniques; his research involves the use of a variety of equipment and analysis tools: heat treatment furnaces, hot wear testing, micro hardness testers, metallography, LOM, and SEM.

Michael Pires

PhD Candidate, Materials Science & Engineering

     Michael’s research focuses mostly on additive manufacturing (or physical metallurgy). His work involves the printing of samples using different alloyed powders and characterizing their microstructure and performance.

Mahsa Navidirad

PhD Candidate, Materials Science & Engineering

     Mahsa’s research focuses on roll bonding of aluminum alloys, specifically, finding optimized conditions for the solid state recycling of aluminum alloys.

Chia-chun Chao

Graduate Researcher, Materials Science & Engineering

     Chia-chun’s research involves micro-additive manufactured 316 stainless steel components produced by binder jet and direct metal laser sintering.

Cole Kuehmann

Undergraduate Researcher, Materials Science & Engineering

     Cole’s research interests are in numerical modeling of precipitation to micro structural development and the modeling of mechanical properties. His previous research has been on cast aluminum alloy development, along with analysis of selective laser melted tungsten heavy alloy utilizing Atomic Force Microscopy.

Kazuki Watanabe

Undergraduate Researcher, Materials Science & Engineering

     Kazuki is currently working on a collaborative research project led by Mahsa,  where they will be conducting compression tests on 3d printed aluminum alloys of 4xxx and 6xxx series, and conducting experiments under varying conditions to understand the properties of the material further. 

Nicholas Rockwell

Visiting Research Scientist

     Nick’s work focuses on statistical analysis of researcher results, web development, and web application development for The Loewy Institute.

Conner Larocque

Undergraduate Researcher

     Conner is an undergraduate researcher with The Loewy Institute; his research interests are in analyzing the deformation, cyclic loading, and other additional properties of metal additive flextures and compliant mechanisms.


Gökalp Çetin

PhD Candidate, Mechanical Engineering

Gökalp is a PhD Candidate in Mechanical Engineering at Lehigh who is conducting research as a member of The Loewy Institute. Previously, Gökalp’s academic work and research focused on mechatronics with an emphasis on Additive Manufacturing (AM); his research interests include powder metallurgy and various manufacturing methods. Currently, Gökalp is researching forging and powder metal 3d printing applied to forging tools.