The recipients of the 32nd François Naftali Frenkiel Award for Fluid Mechanics are Diego Lopez and Eric Lauga for their paper “Dynamics of swimming bacteria at complex interfaces,” which was published in Physics of Fluids26, 071902 (2014). They were presented with this award on November 22, 2015 at the annual meeting of the APS Division of Fluid Dynamics in Boston, MA. They each received a check for $500 plus a scroll bearing the following citation:

For an elegant theoretical model that explains experimental observations of boundary effects in microbial swimming and has general implications for flow behavior near complex interfaces.

The purpose of this Award, which is named after Dr. F. N. Frenkiel, founder and longtime editor of Physics of Fluids, is to recognize significant contributions in fluid mechanics by young investigators. The Award is sponsored by the Division of Fluid Dynamics of the APS and is given annually to a young author of a paper that has been published in Physics of Fluids, during the calendar year preceding the presentation. “Young” will normally be defined as being under 40 years of age. More than one author may be involved, and one author may be a thesis advisor sharing the Award if he/she is also under 40. The winner of this Award is selected by a committee appointed by Chair of the Division of Fluid Dynamics of the APS.

François Naftali Frenkiel, who was born in Warsaw, Poland, on 19th September 1910, received his undergraduate education in Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering at the University of Ghent, Belgium, and his Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Lille in France where he studied under the direction of Kampé de Fériet. He came to the States in 1947 and was associated successively with Cornell University, the U.S. Naval Ordnance Laboratory, the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, and, from 1960 until his retirement, with the David W. Taylor Naval Ship Research and Development Center. In addition to being the founder and longtime editor of Physics of Fluids, he served on a large number of national and international committees, e.g., to name but a few, the International Union of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, the U.S. National Committee on Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, and the Division of Fluid Dynamics of the American Physical Society, of which he was the chairman and secretary on numerous occasions. He published extensively in the field of turbulent flows and pioneered the application of high-speed digital computing methods to the measurement of turbulence and the mathematical modeling of urban pollution. He was elected Fellow of the American Physical Society, the American Geophysical Union, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Dr. Frenkiel retired in 1981 and passed away on 9th July 1986, in Washington, DC.

Diego Lopez is an Assistant Professor at LMFA, INSA Lyon, France. He earned his undergraduate degree in 2008 and his Ph.D. with honors in 2012 in Mechanical Engineering at Ecole Polytechnique (France). During his Ph.D., he worked on flow-plant interactions under the supervision of Professor Emmanuel de Langre. He then continued his research at the University of California San Diego with Professor Eric Lauga and at Aix-Marseille Université with Professor Elisabeth Guazzelli. His research focuses on interactions between solid and deformable bodies under flow, combining analytical models and experiments. He is now conducting his research on particulate flows and collective effects, with applications to sedimentation processes and pollution issues.

Eric Lauga graduated from Ecole Polytechnique (France) in 1998, majoring in Fluid Mechanics and Earth Sciences. He obtained his Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from Harvard University in 2005. His academic career started in the US, first on the faculty at MIT (Department of Mathematics, 2006-2007) and then at the University of California San Diego (Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, 2007-2013). Eric Lauga is now on the faculty in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge (UK) and a Fellow in Mathematics at Trinity College. His research work is theoretical and focuses on fluid mechanics problems arising in biology and soft condensed matter physics. He currently serves as Associate Editor for the journals Physics of Fluids, European Physical Journal E, and the Journal of Fluids and Structures. He is the 2006 recipient of the Andreas Acrivos Dissertation Award in Fluid Dynamics (APS). His teaching at Harvard University and the University of California San Diego was also recognized by two teaching awards.