Conference Organizers

Meet The Organizers

The ICF15 Conference Leadership is provided by Ashok Saxena (Executive Chair,, Christopher Muhlstein (Program Chair, and Richard Neu (General Secretary,  

Dr. Ashok Saxena is Distinguished Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Dean Emeritus at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, AR. In the past, he has served as the Provost and Vice-Chancellor of Academic Affairs overseeing the University’s 250+ academic programs, the operations of 10 colleges and schools, and all academic and research activities of the university. Prior to that, he served as the Dean of Engineering and the Raymond and Irma Giffels’ Chair at the University of Arkansas.

Dr. Saxena also held the position of Regents’ Professor and Chair of the School of Materials Science and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta and was a Fellow Scientist at the Westinghouse Research and Development Center in Pittsburgh. He also served as the Vice Chancellor of Galgotias University in India for a two-year period between 2012-2014.

Dr. Saxena received his MS and PhD degrees from University of Cincinnati in 1972 and 1974, respectively in Materials Science and Metallurgical Engineering and his B. Tech degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur in 1970 in Mechanical Engineering.

Dr. Saxena’s primary area of research is mechanical behavior of materials focusing on linear and nonlinear fracture mechanics and fracture in materials at high temperatures under the conditions of creep and creep-fatigue. He is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions that include the George Irwin Medal (1992) from the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) for his pioneering contributions to creep fracture mechanics, the ASTM Award of Merit and Fellow (1994), Fellow of ASM International (1996), Fellow of International Congress on Fracture (2009), and Georgia Tech Outstanding Research Author Award (1993). He is also a recipient of the Wohler Fatigue Medal from the European Structural Integrity Society (ESIS) in 2010, the Paul C. Paris Gold Medal from ICF in 2017, Founding Fellow of the Indian Structural Integrity Society (InSIS) in 2018, and is an elected Fellow of the European Academy of Sciences (2016). He is the author/co-author/editor of eight books and over 250 research publications.

Dr. Richard W. Neu is a Professor in The George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering with a courtesy appointment in the School of Materials Science and Engineering at Georgia Tech. He is the Director of the Mechanical Properties Characterization Facility, an Institute for Materials facility that supports education and research programs related to processing-structure-properties relations in structural materials (

He received his Ph.D. in 1991 in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. From 1991 to 1994, he was a Visiting Scientist in the Mechanical Behavior Branch of the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. In 1995, he joined Georgia Tech as an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Neu’s research involves the understanding and prediction of the fatigue behavior of materials and closely related topics in mechanical behavior of materials concerning degradation of structural materials. His work continues to advance the state of the art in understanding the damage generated through both experimental characterization and computational modeling that capture realistic material microstructural effects. Specifically, he has published in areas involving thermomechanical fatigue, high-temperature fatigue, fretting fatigue, rolling contact fatigue, fretting wear, wear at high sliding speeds, creep and environmental effects, viscoplastic deformation and damage development, and related constitutive and finite-element modeling tools used in integrated computational materials design.

Dr. Neu has investigated a broad range of materials including steels, titanium and titanium alloys, nickel-base superalloys, molybdenum alloys, aluminum alloys, metal matrix composites, and solder alloys used in electronic packaging. He has published over 150 research publications. He is Fellow of ASTM (2012) and Fellow of ASME (2017).

Dr. Christopher L. Muhlstein is an Associate Professor in the School of Materials Science and Engineering and Associate Director of the Mechanical Properties Characterization Facility the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Muhlstein received his B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley (1994), a Metallurgy from the Georgia Institute of Technology (1996), and his Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley (2002).

Dr. Muhlstein joined the faculty in the School of Materials Science and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2011 after spending 9 years on the faculty at The Pennsylvania State University (2002-2011). He was also a consulting engineer at Exponent Failure Analysis Associates (1996-1998). Dr. Muhlstein’s research establishes the deformation, degradation and failure mechanisms of materials using both experimental and numerical modeling approaches.

He is a member of Alpha Sigma Mu and Keramos honor societies and an NSF CAREER award recipient (2005). He has co-authored/edited six books, published more than 70 research publications, and been awarded 4 U.S and 1 Canadian patents.

National Steering Committee

  • Ashok Saxena, Executive Chair, University of Arkansas
  • Chris Muhlstein, Program Committee Chair, Georgia Tech
  • Richard Neu, General Secretary, Georgia Tech
  • Robert McMeeking, ICF President, UC Santa Barbara
  • James R. Rice, Harvard University
  • Robert O. Ritchie, UC Berkeley
  • John Hutchinson, Harvard University
  • John D. Landes, University of Tennessee
  • Ravinder Chona, US Air Force, Wright Patterson Air Force Base
  • K. Ravi-Chandar, University of Texas, Austin
  • Robert H. Dodds, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Mimoun El Boujdaini, Blade Energy, Houston
  • Phil Gravett, Siemens Energy
  • Ares Rosakis, California Institute of Technology
  • Huseyin Sehitoglu, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Brad Boyce, Sandia National Laboratory
  • David L. McDowell, Georgia Tech