Auburn Alumnus and COSAM's Associate Dean Participates on Committee for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine's Decadal Assessment
Ed Thomas, Jr., earned his doctorate degree at Auburn University and has spent more than two decades immersed in teaching, conducting research and engaging communities throughout the nation in outreach programs.
Thomas was selected to serve as a committee member for the Decadal Assessment of Plasma Science report, Plasma Science: Enabling Technology, Sustainability, Security and Exploration. One of just 18 members in this prestigious group, Thomas will be able to increase awareness about plasma science including funding, workforce diversity and development, and guiding research principles.
The work by this committee directly impacts federal agencies, policymakers and academic institutions. The team gave a virtual report briefing on May 28, 2020 that was viewed by over 500 attendees.
Key findings and recommendations were presented in four major areas:
- Stewardship - Advancing interdisciplinary research
- Education, Workforce and Diversity
- Research enterprise and international competitiveness
- Better serving the plasma science and engineering community
Thomas is the Charles W. Barkley Endowed Professor and Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies in the College of Sciences and Mathematics (COSAM), and the director of the unique Magnetized Plasma Research Laboratory, which studies the physics of dusty plasmas. He was also selected as a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2015.
Thomas has dedicated his career at Auburn to help shape the university’s plasma program—gaining international recognition. Now, he is helping to impact the field of plasma science for future generations.
To learn more about this report, visit nas.edu/plasma.
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