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Daniel W. Mattison, Ph.D., P.E.

Senior Managing Engineer

Thermal Sciences

Professional Profile


Dr. Mattison's responsibilities include the investigation of fire cause and origin, explosions, and detonations. Dr. Mattison has experience investigating product failures in the home appliance and automotive industry. Specializing in experimental techniques for laser-diagnostics for combustion, his background includes a strong foundation in combustion, thermodynamics, heat transfer (micro-scale and classical), gas dynamics, chemistry, spectroscopy, optics, environmental chemistry, experimental methods, and data acquisition and processing. Dr. Mattison studies advanced internal combustion engine strategies and modern air-breathing rocket engines.

Prior to joining Exponent, Dr. Mattison was a Research Assistant in the High Temperature Gas Dynamics Laboratory at Stanford University, where his research focused on the development and application of laser-based sensors for harsh combustion environments such as advanced rocket engines and internal combustion engines. As a part of his graduate studies, he collaborated with and conducted experiments at Sandia National Laboratories (Livermore, CA), The Naval Postgraduate School (Monterey, CA), Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (Dayton, OH), and The University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI). Dr. Mattison also served as a Teaching Assistant for a graduate level course. Before joining Stanford, he conducted research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign on solid propellant combustion instabilities and fuel-droplet vaporization in internal-combustion engines.

  • Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, 2006
  • M.S., Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, 2002
  • B.S., Mechanical Engineering, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (with highest honors), 2000
  • National Science Foundation, Graduate Research Fellowship, 2000–2003
  • O.A. Leutwiler Award for Outstanding Senior, UIUC ME Department, 2000
  • Thiokol Award for Outstanding Senior Design Project, UIUC ME Department, 2000

    • Registered Professional Mechanical Engineer, California, #35808
    • Fire Investigation Training (1A—Cause and Origin) State of California, Office of State Fire Marshal; Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Training, 29 CFR 1910.120
    • Confined Space Entry Training