A Clemson University graduate who returned to his alma mater as an associate professor and now leads an academic department is winning one of his profession’s high honors.

Kyle Brinkman, chair of Clemson’s Department of Materials Science and Engineering, has been named Fellow of The American Ceramic Society.

Kyle Brinkman, chair of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, was named Fellow of The American Ceramic Society.

Kyle Brinkman, chair of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, was named Fellow of The American Ceramic Society.

The award recognizes outstanding contributions to the ceramic arts or sciences through scholarship, achievement in industry or outstanding service to the society.

Brinkman’s peers said he has made outstanding contributions to ceramic science and technology and have called him an engaged, dedicated member of the society.

“It’s an honor to be recognized by my peers, and being named Fellow is especially meaningful,” Brinkman said. “I thank my nominators and all who have supported me.”

Brinkman’s research focuses on the formation, structure and behavior of ceramic composites. His research is aimed at improving batteries, fuel cells and nuclear waste management.

Over the course of his career, Brinkman has been involved in projects that have received more than $34 million in external funding. He has helped secure more than $21 million in external research funding since he arrived at Clemson, including $3.2 million for his group.

Brinkman has authored or co-authored more than 100 peer-reviewed technical publications and government reports.

He currently serves as vice chair of the society’s Energy Materials and Systems Division, and he is the past vice chair and secretary of the society’s Nuclear and Environmental Technology Division.

Brinkman received a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering in 1998 and a Master of Science in materials science and engineering in 2000, both from Clemson.

He went on to receive his Ph.D. from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, Switzerland in 2004 and then served as a postdoctoral fellow at the National Advanced Industrial Science and Technology Institute in Japan.

Brinkman returned to South Carolina in 2007 to work as principal engineer in the Science and Technology Directorate of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Savannah River National Lab.

He made his way back to Clemson in 2014 as an associate professor of materials science and engineering and rose to department chair in February 2019.

Brinkman’s peers have recognized his work with numerous awards. In addition to his Fellow award, Brinkman has received: the Outstanding Young Alumnus Award and Murray Stokely Award, both from the Clemson University College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences; TMS Young Leaders International Scholar–FEMS Award from The Minerals, Metals, and Materials Society; and the Karl Schwartzwalder-Professional Achievement in Ceramic Engineering (PACE) Award from The American Ceramic Society’s National Institute of Ceramic Engineers (ACerS/NICE).

He was also recently named the 2020 Brimacombe Medalist of The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society and serves as an editor for the Journal of Materials Science by Springer Nature Publishing.

Anand Gramopadhye, dean of the Clemson University College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences, said Brinkman’s recognition as a Fellow will help raise Clemson University’s nationwide profile in the field of advanced materials, one of the University’s innovation clusters.

“The honor is a testament to his exemplary work, his passion and his dedication,” Gramopadhye said. “It is well-deserved, and I offer him my wholehearted congratulations.”