Jake Socha

Associate Professor

Area(s) of Interest: Biomechanics, Cardiovascular Engineering
Phone: (540) 231-6188
Email: jjsocha@vt.edu
Socha Lab

Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics (MC 0219)
Norris Hall, Room 332, Virginia Tech
495 Old Turner Street
Blacksburg, VA 24061


Dr. Socha is an organismal biomechanist studying the relationship between form and function in animals, with a broad range of projects involving locomotion, breathing and feeding. Current work focuses on gliding flight in snakes, mechanics of convection in compressible tracheal structures in insects, and dynamics of pumping in liquid feeders such as butterflies and ants. Other interests include 3D morphology using microtomography and synchrotron imaging of small animals.


  • 1994: B.S., Physics and Biology, Duke University
  • 2002: Ph.D., University of Chicago, 2002

Honors and Awards

  • 2014: NSF CAREER Award
  • 2012: Virginia Tech Scholar of the Week, for the week of September 24, 2012
  • 2011: Invited symposium participant, 2011 National Academy of Engineering Frontiers of Engineering Education
  • 2010: Liviu Librescu Faculty Prize, Virginia Tech


Volunteer Research Opportunity

VStudents from the department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics along with Dr. Nicole Abaid are conducting a Senior Design Project titled "Controlling Crowds Through Human-Robot Interactions." The goal of this project is to study how we can use a human-robot interaction to influence the movement of a group of people. To test our study, we will be performing an interactive experiment using a mobile robot and human participants in The Cube Lab at Moss Arts Center.

We are looking for student volunteers! Students will have an opportunity to participate in university research, and gain exposure to robotics, dynamics, and motion capture analysis in a state of the art lab.