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Viterbi Faculty Directory

Joseph J. Wang

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Professor of Astronautics and Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering


  • 1991, PhD, Plasma Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • 1988, Masters, Aeronautics and Astronautics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • 1985, Bachelors, Engineering Mechanics/Thermophysics, Tsinghua University


1991 Ph.D., Plasma Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1988 S.M., Aeronautics and Astronautics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1985 B.Eng., Engineering Mechanics, Tsinghua University

Employment History:
University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
2008-present: Associate Professor, Professor. Department of Astronautical Engineering

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA
2001-2008: Associate Professor. Department of Aerospace and Ocean Engineering
2007-2008: Co-Director. Center for Space Science and Engineering Research
2003-2005: Faculty Fellow. Virginia Bioinformatics Institute

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA
2001-2008: Principal Member Engineering Staff (Faculty Part Time)
1991-2001: Member Technical Staff, Senior Member Engineering Staff, Principal Member Engineering Staff

Visiting Positions:
French National Aerospace Research Laboratory (ONERA), Toulouse, France
2009 (6 months): Senior Visiting Scientist

Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan
2008 (4 months): Visiting Professor

Kyushu Institute of Technolog, Kitakyushu, Japan
2001 (2 months): Visiting Professor

Research Summary

Astronautical Plasma Dynamics and Space Plasma Physics;
Extraterrestrial Environments and Their Interactions with Spacecraft/Astronauts;
Advanced Spacecraft Propulsion (including Electric, Chemical, Beamed Energy);
Computational Physics and Parallel Computing;
Laboratory Simulation of In-Space Operation;
Spacecraft and Instrument Design


  • 2000 Jet Propulsion Laboratory The Lew Allen Award for Excellence for Significant Individual Accomplishments
  • 2004 Natioanal Academy of Engineering Frontiers of Engineering, Invited Participant
  • 2006 Virginia Tech College of Engineering Dean's Award for Excellence in Research
  • 2008 National Academies Keck Futures Initiative, Invited Participant
  • 2009 Natioanal Academy of Engineering German-American Frontiers of Engineering, Invited Participant
  • Astronautical Engineering
  • Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

  • RRB 216
  • Robert Glen Rapp Engineering Research Building
  • 854 Downey Way, Los Angeles, CA 90089
  • USC Mail Code: 1192

Contact Information
  • (213) 740-5370
  • josephjw@usc.edu


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