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Remembering Dr. Igor Sevostianov


The College of Engineering recently lost a highly valued faculty member with the untimely death of Igor Sevostianov. A memorial was held Sept. 3.

Igor Sevostianov joined the faculty of the Mechanical Engineering Department at New Mexico State University in 2001. Over the course of his career he has become internationally recognized for his research in micromechanics, and as a respected professor and valued colleague. 

Sevostianov earned bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in solid mechanics from St. Petersburg State University, Russia. He went on to work in various capacities at the Max-Planck Institute, Germany; University of Natal, South Africa; Suffolk University and Tufts University in Massachusetts before coming to New Mexico State University. 

Sevostianov's research interests are in the quantitative characterization of microstructures of non-homogeneous materials, microstructure-properties relationships, and connections between different physical properties. His research has important implications in additive manufacturing, radiation damage control, development of new materials for bone implants, etc. 

Sevostianov received a 2021-2022 Fulbright Faculty Fellowship award funded by the U.S. Department of State. He planned to spend the spring 2022 semester in Sofia, Bulgaria, working with colleagues from the Institute of Mechanics at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences to conduct research on micromechanics of defects in materials and methods of the identification of these defects. 

A rare and exceptional occurrence, this was Sevostianov’s second Fulbright award. He spent the spring 2013 semester at the Vienna University of Technology in Austria developing new analytical models and conduct research on the structure of bone under his first Fulbright Award. 

While there, he gave research presentations in the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany and Poland and as a result developed a strong international research team which won a large European grant in the framework of Marie Curie Actions-International Research Staff Exchange Scheme. It allowed nine European graduate students and postdoctoral researchers to visit NMSU. 

Sevostianov was currently serving as director of NMSU Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (RISE) to the Post-doctorate Program funded by the National Institutes of Health for $3.3 million (2018-2022). He was also principal investigator on four grants funded by NASA, National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture with a total amount of more than $1.5 million of extramural funding and co-principal investigator in several other projects.

In another recently awarded project, Sevostianov received $750,000 in funding from NASA EPSCoR Research CAN for a three-year project on the development of a methodology for quality control and optimization of processing parameters for additive manufacturing.

A prolific writer, Sevostianov recently earned the distinction of being among the top 2% of scientists worldwide as measured by the impact of their research publications as identified in a worldwide database of top scientists. Created by Stanford University, the study ranked publications in specific research fields over the author’s career through 2019.

Sevostianov received the Elsevier award for authorship of the most cited paper in the International Journal of Solids and Structures during 2005-2008. The Web of Science Core Collection database of scientific journals shows Sevostianov as author of 246 with 3,386 citations.

With co-author Mark Kachanov, Sevostianov wrote two text books: Micromechanics of Materials, with Applications; and Effective Properties of Heterogeneous Materials published by Springer Books.

He was awarded the inaugural MAE Academy Endowed Professorship as an “exemplary member of the faculty.” In 2014 he was named the Dwight and Aubrey Graham Chapman Distinguished Professor recognizing his excellence in teaching, research and service.”

In 2006, he received an NMSU University Research Council Award for Exceptional Achievement in Creative Scholarly Activity. He has served the university as a member of the Faculty Senate, Research Council and the Strategic Initiative Advisory Board.