College of Engineering alumna Tuba Okutucu, PhD’05, recently won the Young Investigator Award from the Turkish Scientific Foundation. Her research studies support the Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) production of micro-channel heat sinks with nano-fluids as the working fluid, and their application in microchip cooling. The project is funded by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey and is sponsored by the National Young Researchers Career Development Programme.

The National Young Researchers Career Development Programme encourages young scientists with PhD degrees at the beginning of their scientific careers by supplying project funds for their studies. Other goals of the programme involve helping young scientists who are going to be the academic leaders of the 21st century to maintain their careers as researchers and lecturers in the best possible way, improving the national scientific level and increasing the role of science in national development.

Dr. Okutucu is currently an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at the Middle East Technical University in Ankara, Turkey, where she earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering. She received her PhD in mechanical engineering from Northeastern in 2005.

During her time at Northeastern, Dr. Okutucu was a graduate research assistant at the university’s Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center for High-Rate Nanomanufacturing and the Center for Microcontamination Control, both funded by the National Science Foundation. She was also a graduate administration assistant for the College of Engineering. Her dissertation, supervised by Dr. Yaman Yener, focused on analytical and experimental study of transient radiative transfer in participating media with short-pulse laser irradiation.

Dr. Okutucu lives in Ankara with her husband Ercüment and son Ozan Mert. She is an avid hiker and bicyclist, with a passion for classical Turkish music.