Stefano Brizzolara, associate professor of aerospace and ocean engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, has been named the Crofton Faculty Fellow in Engineering by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The Kevin Crofton Professorial Endowment in Aerospace and Ocean Engineering was established with a generous gift from alumnus Kevin Crofton. The endowment supports the work of outstanding professors within the Kevin T. Crofton Department of Aerospace and Ocean Engineering, including support for tenured professors, faculty fellowships, and assistance in retention of top-performing faculty members. 

Brizzolara will serve as the Crofton Faculty Fellow for a five-year term.

A member of the Virginia Tech faculty since 2016, Brizzolara’s scholarship spans from ocean and coastal hydrodynamics, to propeller hydrodynamics, to innovative high-performance hull forms and efficient wave energy conversion devices. He has secured $3.8 million in research funding from federal agencies, other research institutes, as well as large and small companies. 

His research has transitioned to operational commercial systems, and his novel concepts are exceptionally rare in a mature field like naval architecture. Ideas developed by Brizzolara and his students offer new designs for high-speed small crafts to be used for manned and unmanned operations.

As a trained naval architect, Brizzolara plays an important role in Virginia Tech’s ocean engineering program. He serves as assistant department head for the graduate program, where his research expertise, leadership role in the Center for Marine Autonomy and Robotics, and advising of a large team of graduate students brings a unique perspective to the management and operation of the graduate program in the department.

Brizzolara received a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in naval architecture and marine engineering from the University of Genoa (Italy) and a Ph.D. in naval architecture from University Federico II (Italy).

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