Born in Turkey, Dr. Kaya received a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and an M.S. in electrical engineering from the University of Minnesota, simultaneously, in 1970.
After serving as lieutenant section chief in the Turkish Army, he obtained his first job at Road and Construction Co., Istanbul. He held positions as a senior systems engineer at Babcock and Wilcox Bailey Controls Co. in Wickliffe, Ohio and Honeywell, Inc., in Minneapolis, Minn., USA. He was also employed at the Turkish State Railways in Ankara, Turkey, where he did experimental work on diesel engines, hydraulic transmissions and automatic control systems.
He was both a NATO and United Nations visiting expert. He served as advisor to TBTAK-Marmara Research Institute in Instanbul and was the principal investigator for funded research supported by the NSF and NATO. He had 21 patents, mostly on energy systems and control.
Dr. Kaya was professor emeritus of mechanical engineering and the director of the Industrial Control and Automation Lab for the College of Engineering at the University of Akron in Akron, Ohio, USA. Kaya was a Fellow of the IEEE.