Panayiotis "Panos" Diplas has been named the new head of Lehigh University's Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
Diplas comes to Lehigh after nearly 15 years at Virginia Tech, where he was a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. He joins Lehigh as P.C. Rossin Professor effective August 15, 2013.
Diplas was the Founding Director of Virginia Tech's K. S. Baker Environmental Hydraulics Laboratory, which studies the dynamics of water, sediment and contaminant transport through waterways, floodplains and wetlands, focusing on its interaction with structures, vegetation and biota.
His principal fields of research interest are in Environmental, Fluvial & Infrastructure Hydraulics. Diplas is also interested and active in Hydrokinetic Energy Generation, Sustainable Development and was a core faculty member at the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology in the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science at Virginia Tech.
Diplas' research has seen support from a host of U.S. Federal Agencies, including the National Science Foundation (NSF), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Federal Highway Administration (FHA) as well as other private companies and non-profit organizations.
Diplas has earned numerous accolades for his work in the field of civil and environmental engineering, most recently in 2012 as the recipient of both ASCE's H.A. Einstein Award for his significant contributions in the understanding of river mechanics, erosional processes and sediment transport, as well as the K.E. Hilgard Hydraulic Award for the paper, "Turbulent Flow through Idealized Emergent Vegetation."
Diplas, who earned his M.S. and Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Minnesota, has over 75 publications in refereed journals, 74 refereed conference papers, 11 book contributions and numerous invited lectures, keynote addresses and presentations.He succeeds Professor Sibel Pamukcu, who served as CEE interim department chair for the past two years. Pamucku is a professor of Geotechnical Engineering and co-director of Lehigh Advance.