Xiaochun Li, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at the UCLA Samueli School of Engineering, has received the 2022 William T. Ennor Manufacturing Technology Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Li was recognized for his “significant contributions to solidification processing, scalable manufacturing, and successful commercialization of nanoparticle-reinforced metal matrix composites.” 

Established in 1990 by the society’s production dngineering division (now known as the Manufacturing Engineering Division) in conjunction with the Alcoa Company, the award is given to individuals who have either developed or contributed to “an innovative manufacturing technology, the implementation of which has resulted in substantial economic and/or societal benefits.” 

Li, who holds the Raytheon Endowed Chair in Manufacturing Engineering, also has a joint appointment in the materials science and engineering department at the school of engineering. He leads the SciFacturing Laboratory. His work has resulted in the discovery of how nanoparticles disperse in molten metals and helped explain nanoparticle-metal interactions, the precision control of materials’ microstructures and characterizations of material properties. The lab has also developed scalable processes for commercial production.