Timothy Wei assumed the deanship of the UNL College of Engineering in June 2011. Previously he was a professor and head of the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Nuclear Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y.
His research interests are in coupling fundamental fluid dynamics experiments with critical technologies of socio-technological importance. He earned his bachelor's degree from Cornell, his master's from Lehigh University, both in mechanical engineering; and his Ph.D. in aerospace engineering from the University of Michigan.
Before joining Rensselaer in 2006, Wei worked at Rutgers University as professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. There, he oversaw the formation of multidisciplinary, university-industry research teams that focus on the fundamental issues behind key technological problems. The teams have developed joint proposals on such wide-ranging topics as advanced materials manufacturing research, clean-burning coal, and arterial disease.
Wei has pursued experimental fluid dynamics in a vast range of applications, from the effect of flow on endothelial cells to the use of polymer additives to reduce drag. His research has attracted millions in grant funding from such agencies as the Office of Naval Research, NASA, the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.
He has advised a number of student airplane and car teams participating in national competitions, and with USA Swimming, he employed state-of-the-art flow measurement techniques to improve the performance of swimmers in the 2008 Olympic Games.
Wei is a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineering, the American Physical Society and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.