October 16, 2020
Dr. Ben Xu is a new addition to the Bulldog Family at the Mechanical Engineering Department and has a lot in store for his career at MSU. Xu earned his Bachelor at Wuhan University in Wuhan, China in 2007. From there, he attended the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing, China to earn a Master in 2010. Dr. Xu moved to the U.S. to attend the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ at the Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering Department while getting his Ph.D. After his Ph.D., Dr. Xu did his postdoctoral research at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA. After a year, he then joined the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley as an assistant professor at the Mechanical Engineering Department. With such an extensive background at many schools and types of research, Dr. Ben Xu felt that the best place for him to continue to grow was at Mississippi State University.
Dr. Xu has led and participated in many different areas of research: improvement of energy efficiency in rural areas for the US Department of Agriculture, and high temperature solar thermal storage system using phase change materials for the US Department of Energy, just to name a couple. He is very passionate about solving “real engineering problems” and believes that his previous experiences have given him a lot of chances to think about his research, his teaching, and about the service he can provide to the community and society as well. Dr. Xu has plans to start his own research in laser-assisted bioprinting, which utilizes 3D printing techniques to fabricate biomedical parts that imitate natural tissue characteristics. His focus will be on improving the printing quality using the knowledge of fluid mechanics and heat transfer, but eventually, his work could lead to the printing of an artificial organ or tissue for medical research purpose. This is an exciting development for the university as well as its students who may be able to participate in this interdisciplinary research.
Dr. Xu has expressed his enthusiasm towards seeing his students grow and is always hoping to find promising students to recruit. He is teaching Heat Transfer this semester, which is his favorite subject to teach, and has already recruited two students from his course to aide him in his research projects. He emphasizes that students should do their best to become involved in some type of research. “MSU has a lot of opportunities,” said Dr. Ben Xu, “I really recommend to any students who would like to have research experience… to try their best to get involved with any projects at [our school’s research centers]. That will help them grow quickly. Research is just one side, but the most important thing is for those students to learn a way to appreciate the lifelong learning attitude from those research projects.”
At Mississippi State University, Dr. Ben Xu hopes to be able to teach his students to appreciate learning and is always willing to help his students in their future endeavors. He wants to see his students flourish and has a lot to offer them, just as they have a lot to offer him. He hopes to serve as a bridge to help his students build up connections as they enter the workforce. Dr. Ben Xu is a promising new member to the Bulldog family, and we are excited to see what he does in the future.
By Ciera Garrett