Hello — tell us a bit about who are you and what do you do.
I am a ground vehicle engineer working mostly in the area of multi-wheel designs with applications to terrain trucks, farm tractors and construction equipment, and military vehicles. I am a Professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), teaching and doing research.
What are you working on now? Can you share some images — photos or data welcome!
Currently, I am working on several research and design projects related to innovative tire damping control, minimizing tire power losses of a mobile robot, and designing driveline systems for terrain trucks, as well as developing the vehicle and robotics engineering thrust in the undergraduate and graduate curricula at UAB.
Do you have a first childhood memory of engineering something?
My first childhood memory of engineering something was when I was six years old. My mom was going on a trip to Sochi and I desperately wanted her to catch a monkey for me so that I could keep it as a pet. To prove to my parents that I would be able to take care of this pet, I designed and built a house out of cardboard for the monkey to live in.
Did you have a specific “aha” moment when you knew that you wanted to focus on engineering?
I knew that I had to become an Automotive Engineer during my undergraduate career when I began working with my Mentor, Dr. Anatoly Lefarov.
Describe your path to becoming a engineer. Have you had any mentors along the way?
My mentor, who was the Head of Research Group on multi-wheel vehicles, Dr. Anatoly Lefarov, was an outstanding automotive engineer, professor, researcher and person. He inspired me to devote my career to terrain vehicle engineering. His constant support and teachings greatly impacted my career and after 17 years of working with him, I became his successor of the group.
What does a typical day look like for you?
On a typical day, I am busy working on my research projects and teaching my students.
Are there things that you want to tackle 5 to 10 years down the road?
In the next 5-10 years, I would like to tackle multi-domain and multi-scale systems in vehicles and robotics.
What are your current best sources of news and information for staying up on your field?
To stay current in the field, I regularly receive information on published journals and books and read the ones that are applicable to my research and future plans; I attend at least 3-4 professional conferences per year. Working with industry also allows me to stay current on the latest and future designs and developments.
If you weren't doing what you're doing now, what might you have gone into?
I really enjoy reading about history. I am very interested in American and European history so if I had not become an engineer, I believe I would have been a historian.
What’s your favorite food? ッ
My favorite food is everything that my wife cooks!