Byron W. Jones | Professor Emeritus

The Alan Levin Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering recognizes Byron Jones for his 45 years of service to Kansas State University. Jones was hired in 1978 as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering. He was tenured and promoted to associate professor in 1982 and promoted to professor in 1989. He served as head of the department from 1993 to 1997. He served the College of Engineering as associate dean for research and director of the Engineering Experiment Station from 1997-2012.

Jones was born and raised near Cleburne, Kansas, a small town north of Manhattan that was lost to Tuttle Creek Lake. He graduated from Blue Valley High School in Randolph, Kansas, in 1967. After high school, he attended Kansas State University and received his bachelor’s in mechanical engineering in 1971. He then attended Oklahoma State University for his master’s and doctorate, finishing in 1975. Following graduation, he worked for the Montana Energy and MHD Research and Development Institute, Inc. until joining K-State.

Outside of work, Jones enjoys flying and is a licensed pilot. He also enjoys most any outdoor activity. He is married to Melanie Harrison Jones with whom he celebrated 50 years of marriage this past year.

In addition to the administrative positions noted previously, Jones served as director for two K-State research institutes, the Institute for Environment Research (1986-1993) and the National Gas Machinery Laboratory (2012-2021). He served as the director for the State of Kansas DEPSCoR program, and as technical director for the six-university National FAA Airliner Cabin Environment Research Center of Excellence.

Jones is a life member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and is a fellow and life member of the American Society of Heating Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers. He has published extensively and has received numerous awards for his research and service to the profession, including the OSU Graduate Excellence Award, the K-State College of Engineering Research Excellence Award, and the ASHRAE Distinguished Fellow Award. He also served as a distinguished lecturer for both ASME and ASHRAE making presentations at more than 40 local chapters throughout the U.S. and in several other countries.

As highlighted above, Jones has been a valued leader at K-State throughout his entire tenure. He has led at both the college and department levels, providing insightful guidance to many. His colleagues have appreciated his ability to teach, his technical expertise, his humor, and his ability to mentor younger faculty and graduate students. We want to thank Jones for these many professional and personal contributions to this university.