Lihong Wang, Bren Professor of Medical Engineering and Electrical Engineering, has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE). Election to the NAE is considered among the highest professional distinctions in the engineering field.
Wang, who develops novel imaging methods for biomedical applications, joined Caltech's Division of Engineering and Applied Science a year ago as its first full-time medical engineering faculty member.
This year, the NAE inducted 83 new members and 16 foreign members, bringing the total U.S. membership to 2,293 and the number of foreign members to 262. Wang was selected for "inventions in photoacoustic microscopy enabling functional, metabolic, and molecular imaging in vivo," according to the NAE's announcement.
The honor highlights one of Wang's highest profile achievements, the development of an imaging technique that combines sound and light via ultrasound and optical microscopy to create detailed, 3-D color images of tumors that are still inside the body. His imaging techniques have applications for medical screening, diagnosis, disease monitoring, surgical guidance, and more.
Born in China, Wang earned his PhD at Rice University in Houston and held the Gene K. Beare Distinguished Professorship of Biomedical Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis until his move to Caltech in 2017.
Also inducted into the NAE this year are Caltech alumni Ann Karagozian (PhD '82), who is a distinguished professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the UCLA; Clifford Spiro (PhD '81), who is the chief executive officer and founder of CSK Medical in Savannah, Georgia; and Petros Koumoutsakos (PhD '93), who is a professor and chair of computational science at ETH Zürich in Switzerland.
The newly elected class will be formally inducted into the NAE during a ceremony at the academy's annual meeting in Washington, D.C., on September 30.