Rob Kunz joins faculty in Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering

September 7, 2017

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Robert Kunz has joined the department as a professor of mechanical engineering. He comes to the department after 19 years as a senior scientist at Penn State’s Applied Research Laboratory (ARL). His principal research interests and activities include computational fluid dynamics, multiphase flows, turbomachinery, nuclear reactor thermal-hydraulics, biomedical fluid dynamics, aerodynamics, and thermal management analysis. He has more than 30 years of experience in computational fluid dynamics development and modeling at ARL, Pratt and Whitney, General Motors and Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory. He received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from SUNY Buffalo, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Penn State. Kunz has taught classes in aerodynamics, aeropropulsion, advanced engineering mathematics and computational fluid dynamics.

We asked Rob a few questions about himself and his plans to make an impact in mechanical and nuclear engineering at Penn State.

What excites you about joining the MNE Department?

PSU MNE is one of the premier institutions in the world in ME and NE. As such it is a great professional honor for me to be a member of this team. Recent investments by Department and College leadership in the Fluid – Thermal Sciences has led to many new colleagues in this broad area, and I am excited about the research collaborations this will engender.

What can students expect from you in the classroom?

Actually, I have a reputation as a pretty tough instructor. Fair – but a lot of work and expectation!

What have you found in Happy Valley that you really like or are looking forward to?

I have lived in Happy Valley for half of my life. I cannot imagine a better to place to have raised my boys. Growing fast but a wonderful place to live!

What unique strength do you hope to bring to the department?

I have a pretty strong background in Computational Modeling of Multiphase Flows. I think that this meshes well with the several Experimental Multiphase Flow researchers in the Department. PSU’s very significant recent investment in High Performance Computing resources are well aligned with my background in large-scale Computational Fluid Dynamics.

What do you like to do outside of work?

Work. Just kidding. Fitness and working on my cars and house are my hobbies.

Where are you from originally?

New York City

What professional goals do you hope to achieve here at Penn State?

I hope to be a productive researcher and educator, to make significant contributions to my field and to the careers of my students.


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Robert Kunz

Robert Kunz

Robert Kunz



The Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering at Penn State is one of the nation’s largest and most successful engineering departments. We serve more than 1,000 undergraduate students and more than 330 graduate students

We offer B.S. degrees in mechanical engineering and nuclear engineering as well as resident (M.S., Ph.D.) and online (M.S., M.Eng.) graduate degrees in nuclear engineering and mechanical engineering. MNE's strength is in offering hands-on experience in highly relevant research areas, such as energy, homeland security, biomedical devices, and transportation systems.

Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering

137 Reber Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-4400

Phone: 814-865-2519