The National Academy of Inventors has named Andrei Shkel, UCI professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and Julie Schoenung, professor and chair of materials science and engineering, as fellows for 2021. Debbie Morales / UCI

Julie Schoenung and Andrei Shkel, professors in UCI’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering, have been named 2021 fellows by the National Academy of Inventors. The distinction is awarded to academics who have demonstrated a spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society.

Schoenung, professor and chair of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, leads research into new materials to meet the demands of ballistics, energy and transportation applications. Her group is involved in a green engineering initiative to investigate the impacts of materials manufacturing and use on human health and environmental quality. Schoenung has won numerous awards and distinctions and holds fellowships with Alpha Sigma Mu, the American Ceramic Society, ASM International and the Minerals, Metals & Materials Society.

Shkel, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, heads the Microsystems Laboratory at UCI. He and his fellow researchers specialize in designing micro-electro-mechanical systems including chip-scale gyroscopes and inertial measurement devices. His work has applications in fields as diverse as transportation, space exploration and medicine. Shkel, an IEEE fellow, was awarded the 2013 Office of the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service, the 2009 IEEE Sensors Council Technical Achievement Award, and a National Science Foundation CAREER award in 2005.

Schoenung, Shkel and more than 160 other academic innovators will be formally inducted into the National Academy of Inventors in a ceremony in Phoenix in June. UCI now has 14 NAI fellows.