Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation
Main content start
Clarence J. and Patricia R. Woodard Professor of Mechanical Engineering

Ronald Hanson

Clarence J. and Patricia R. Woodard Professor of Mechanical Engineering
Professor Hanson has been an international leader in the development of laser-based diagnostic methods for combustion and propulsion, and in the development of modern shock tube methods for accurate determination of chemical reaction rate parameters needed for modeling combustion and propulsion systems. He and his students have made several pioneering contributions that have impacted the pace of propulsion research and development worldwide. During his career at Stanford, Professor Hanson has successfully managed over 100 research contracts and grants, with a total value well over $50 million. He and his students have authored over 1300 publications.

Professor Hanson is a fellow of American Society of Mechanical Engineers, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and the Optical Society of America. He has received the Egerton Gold Medal and is an Inaugural Fellow of the Combustion Institute, and has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering. He is also an Inaugural Distinguished Fellow of the International Shock Wave Institute and the winner of the R. Soloukhin Medal from the Institute for Dynamics of Explosions and Reactive Systems. He is, perhaps, most happy about the recognition that his students have received for their publications, including Best Paper Awards from the AIAA Ground Test Conference, AIAA Propellant and Combustion Section, and the Combustion Institute Silver Medal.

Professor Hanson has graduated over 115 Ph.D. candidates and supervised over 20 postdoctoral scholars and research associates. Thirty-four of his students have gone on to become professors including: Varghese (University of Texas at Austin), Louge (Cornell University), Kirby (Cornell University), Wooldridge (University of Michigan), Mertens (Trinity College), Song (Yonsei University), Rossmann (Lafayette College), Sanders (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Ben-Yakar (University of Texas at Austin), Webber (University of Texas at Austin), Oehlschlaeger (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute), Ma (University of Virginia), Koch (Trine University), Lee (University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign), Rothamer (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Petersen (Texas A&M), Seitzman (Georgia Tech), Linne (University of Edinburgh), Yoo (SUNY Buffalo), Porter (Colorado School of Mines), Liu (University of Washington), Vasu (University of Central Florida), Ren (Chinese University of Hong Kong), Rieker (University of Colorado Boulder), Farooq (KAUST), Goldenstein (Purdue University), Spearrin (University of California at Los Angeles), Sun (Tongji University), Chao (Tsinghua University), Wang (Peking University), and Shao (Beijing Institute of Technology). He is currently supervising approximately 20 M.S. and Ph.D. graduate students.


M.Sc., Arizona State University, Mechanical Engineering (1965)
B.S., Oregon State University, Mechanical Engineering (1961)
Ph.D., Stanford University, Aeronautics and Astronautics (1968)