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Feature: Asian American Innovators

asian heritageIn recognition of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month 2012, ASEE salutes the achievements of these remarkable engineers and engineering educators:

Amar Bose

Electrical engineer and founder of the Bose Corp., he invented a stereo speaker system that set a lasting industry standard. He also taught at MIT.

Kalpana Chawla

An aerospace engineer and the first Indian American in space, she died with other crew members when the space shuttle Columbia burned up on reentry on Feb. 1, 2003. She was 41.

Yuan-Cheng Fung

Considered the father of biomechanics, he founded the buoengineering program at the University of California, San Diego, and became the first bioengineer to receive the President’s National Medal of Science.

Ellison Onizuka

A Hawaiian aerospace engineer of Japanese descent, he became a test pilot and astronaut. He perished aboard the space shuttle Challenger in 1986 at age 39.

Arati Prabhakar

An electrical engineer and first woman to earn a Ph.D. in applied physics from Caltech, she became the youngest person ever, at age 34, to head the National Institute of Standards and Technology in 1993.

Chang-Lin Tien

At age 24, he became the youngest assistant professor ever hired in mechanical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. Named chancellor in 1990, he was the first Asian American to head a major U.S. research university.

An Wang

Electrical engineer, inventor, and founder of Wang Laboratories, he was the first researcher to use magnetic cores to store data, making electronic computing possible.

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