November 2, 2021 — Dr. Sidney Chocron of Southwest Research Institute’s Mechanical Engineering Division has been named an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
AIAA Associate Fellows are recognized for overseeing important engineering or scientific work, outstanding contributions to their field or original work of exceptional caliber. Associate Fellows must be recommended by at least three other associate fellows, be a senior member in good standing of the AIAA and have at least 12 years of professional experience. AIAA selects only one Associate Fellow for each 150 members each year.
Chocron is an aeronautical engineer and manager of SwRI’s Computational Mechanics Section. He specializes in the study of the nonlinear response of materials under high strain-rates.
“The AIAA Associate Fellows personify the innovation that drives our industry forward,” said Dan Dumbacher, AIAA executive director. “The members of the Class of 2022 Associate Fellows embody the commitment, dedication and ingenuity that are crucial for devising the best solutions to the complex questions raised across the aerospace community.”
At SwRI, Chocron has primarily worked in unconventional tests and computer modeling of materials, such as his work studying the impact of foam and ice on the Space Shuttle thermal protection system, which protects shuttles during atmospheric reentry.
“This is a great recognition of Dr. Sidney Chocron’s work,” said Dr. James D. Walker, director of SwRI’s Engineering Dynamics Department. “Among his many accomplishments, Dr. Chocron’s development of constitutive and failure models for glass, ceramics, metals and composites has greatly expanded our understanding of how these materials act under the high stresses involved in both aeronautic and astronautic endeavors. He has also volunteered considerable time providing leadership and support for AIAA and other professional societies.”
Chocron has also aided in developing new techniques to study the fundamental properties of fabrics and composites under ballistic impact. He managed a U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center project to study various aspects of military vehicles, including the effects of impacts on glass windows, S-2 glass® fibers and Kevlar® composites.
In 2020, Chocron began a project as part of a $4.5 million U.S. Department of Defense contract to create accurate computer models to show how materials and structures used in military bases, embassies and other structures behave under impacts, blasts and shocks. The study is expected to be completed in 2022.
Chocron has published approximately 50 peer-reviewed papers and presented 100 full papers at national and international symposiums. He has also been very involved in the International Ballistics Society, where he is president since 2017. He received doctorate and master’s degrees in aeronautical engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid and a second master’s of astrophysics from the Complutense University of Madrid.
Chocron will be honored at an induction ceremony for the AIAA Class of 2022 Associate Fellows on January 3, 2022, at the AIAA SciTech Forum in San Diego.