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SBU’s Moutsanidis Receives NSF Grant to Advance Coastal Climate Resilience

February 22, 2024

STONY BROOK, NY – Stony Brook University Assistant Professor Georgios Moutsanidis, PhD, in the Department of Civil Engineering at Stony Brook University, has received a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for pivotal research on increasing the resilience of coastal structures totaling nearly $500,000.

The NSF CAREER grant supports early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization.

Storm surges, tsunamis and other extreme hydrodynamic events are becoming more prevalent as global climate trends shift, rendering shorelines increasingly vulnerable to erosion and putting coastal communities at a greater risk. Existing methods of assessing the climate resilience of coastal structures have been criticized for being outdated. Professor Moutsanidis’ research seeks to remedy this by developing advanced computational models to simulate how coastal structures are affected by extreme hydrodynamic events. The new algorithms and software will be used to inform designers on procedures for fortifying existing structures and improving design standards.

“We are extremely happy that Prof. Moutsanidis’ research has been selected for such a prestigious award, as it reflects the importance of the research problem and his promise as a scholar and an educator,” said Professor Rigoberto Burgueño who is Chair of the Department of Civil Engineering. “Climate change is leading to increased frequency, duration, and intensity of weather events, and along with it increased risk on coastal infrastructure from storm surges. Prof. Moutsanidis’ novel computational approaches will enhance the ability of engineers to determine the effects of extreme loads from waves and coastal surges so that we may better prepare our current and future built infrastructure for the effects of future climate conditions,” he added.

In addition to bolstering coastal climate resilience, Prof. Moutsanidis’ study looks to raise awareness of climate change within the computational science community and potentially impact a variety of fields concerned with fluid-structure interaction. His work also includes education and outreach initiatives designed to enhance climate resilience curriculums at the high school level and beyond.

Prof. Moutsanidis joined Stony Brook’s Department of Civil Engineering in January of 2020 and teaches upper-level undergraduate and graduate courses, as well as holding affiliate faculty status at the university’s Institute for Advanced Computational Science. Prior to joining Stony Brook, he was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the School of Engineering at Brown University and a Visiting Researcher at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He earned a PhD in Structural Engineering and Computational Science, University of California at San Diego; an MS in Civil Engineering, University of Texas at Austin; and a Diploma in Civil Engineering, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

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