Thacker at the head of the Mechanical Engineering division of SwRI
SAN ANTONIO – (COMMERCIAL THREAD) – Dr. Ben Thacker, PE, has been appointed vice president of the mechanical engineering division of the Southwest Research Institute. Thacker was previously executive director of the division’s materials and fluids engineering departments.
âI am deeply honored to be entrusted with this responsibility and I am extremely grateful to SwRI and its management team for the many ways they have advanced my career,â said Thacker.
As Vice President, Thacker will oversee a team of over 300 people, working in five research departments: Dynamic Engineering, Fluid Engineering, Machines, Materials Engineering and Structural Engineering.
âThe empowerment afforded to those who take technical risks, collaborate and work hard to keep our customers happy is the most rewarding part of working at SwRI,â said Thacker. “I am extremely proud of SwRI and am grateful that I found this place 33 years ago.”
During his career at SwRI, Thacker has contributed significantly to a wide range of projects providing support to Institute clients such as NASA, the US Air Force Research Laboratory, the Los Alamos, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, and the Naval Air Warfare Center. He was a key contributor to the NASA Probabilistic Structural Analysis Methods for Select Space Propulsion System Components project, which led to the development of the NESSUSÂ® probabilistic analysis software. He is currently working with the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) to develop standards for verification, validation and quantification of uncertainty for large-scale numerical simulations.
Thacker holds a PhD from the University of Texas at Austin, an MA from the University of Connecticut, and a BA from Iowa State University, all in civil engineering. He is a Texas registered professional engineer. In 2017, Thacker was inducted as a fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
In addition to his service at SwRI, Thacker is active in several professional organizations, including the AIAA, ASME, TMS (The Minerals, Metals, and Materials Society) and the National Society of Professional Engineers. Thacker is a member of two honorary engineering societies: Tau Beta Pi and Chi Epsilon. He has served on numerous international and national scientific panels, committees and conferences.
For more information, visit https://www.swri.org/technical-divisions/mechanical-engineering.