Ken Goodson is a member of the Mechanical Engineering faculty and holds a courtesy appointment in Materials Science as well as the Davies Family Provostial Professorship. As ME Chair and Vice Chair in the period 2008-2019, he led two strategic plans and launched hiring actions for 15 faculty who transformed the department's scholarship and diversity. He now serves as Senior Associate Dean for Faculty & Academic Affairs in the School of Engineering.
Goodson is a heat transfer researcher specializing in electronics cooling. His lab pioneered phonon free path measurements using silicon nanolayers and has highly-cited papers on conduction physics, novel heat conducting materials, and microfluidic heat sinks. Current "hot" projects address hybrid vehicles, smartphones, and thermally-powered wireless sensors. Nearly half of Goodson's 40 PhD alumni are professors at MIT, UC Berkeley, Stanford, and other schools. Goodson is a Fellow with ASME, IEEE, APS, AAAS, and the National Academy of Inventors (NAI). Recognition includes the Kern Award (AIChE), the Kraus Medal (ASME), the inaugural Richard Chu Award (IEEE), the InterPACK Achievement Award (ASME & IEEE), the THERMI Award (IEEE), the SRC Technical Excellence Award, the Heat Transfer Memorial Award (ASME), the Richards Award (Pi Tau Sigma), the Rohsenow Lectureship (MIT), the Hawkins Lectureship (Purdue), and the Aisinjioro-Soo Lectureship (UIUC). Goodson co-founded Cooligy, which developed heat sinks for the Apple G5 and was acquired by Emerson in 2006.
Goodson appears as a baritone oratorio soloist with Stanford ensembles including the Symphonic Chorus and the University Singers, as well as with the San Francisco Choral Society and Masterworks Chorale. Goodson held voice fellowships at Tanglewood and studied for a year in Berlin with legendary baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. Goodson’s wife, Laura Dahl, is a member of the Stanford piano faculty.