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Fuhrmann Named 2011 Distinguished Engineering Student

Fuhrmann
Fuhrmann

Joelle Fuhrmann has been named the recipient of the McAuley Distinguished Engineering Student Award for 2011.

This award, provided by members of the Whitacre College of Engineering Dean's Council, is named in memory of James A. McAuley, an active member of the Dean's Council, and a Texas Tech Distinguished Engineer.

Fuhrmann, of Muenster, competed for this honor and was selected because of her outstanding academic achievements, honors, activities, interests and aspirations. Academically, she has been on the Texas Tech President's List or the Engineering Dean's List each semester that she has been at the university. She graduated in May 2011 with master's and bachelor's degrees in environmental engineering with honors.

After graduation, she will be commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Air Force working in the 60th Civil Engineering Squadron at Travis Air Force Base, specializing in environmental engineering. She hopes to help bring clean, safe drinking water to communities around the world.

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VorTECH Helps Researchers Better Understand Tornadoes

VorTECH Simulator
VorTECH Simulator

Dr. Darryl James, a professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and his team have spent more than a year and a half building a device known as "VorTECH" at Reese Center.

"VorTECH was designed to simulate tornadic winds in the mid-EF3 range or less," James said. "Approximately 92 percent of all tornadoes have maximum wind speeds of about 150 miles per hour or less."

The simulator uses eight large fans to suck up approximately 160,000 cubic feet of air each minute, while 64 strategically placed vanes surround the simulator to create rotation.

The force of the wind is measured by dozens of pressure sensors applied to structural models. The data collected will contribute to understanding vulnerability.

"If we can understand how the tornadoes interacts and damages a structure, then maybe we can develop building codes to improve the safety of homes," James said.

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Schlumberger Gives $45.1M Software Gift to Herd Department of Petroleum Engineering

Petrel Software
Petrel Software

The Bob L. Herd Department of Petroleum Engineering has received a $45.1 million gift from Schlumberger.

The gift, approved by the Texas Tech University System Board of Regents during a meeting on May 12, will provide students and faculty in the Herd Department of Petroleum Engineering with access to state-of-the-art visualization software. Included in the gift are new software modules that add functionality to 100 licenses of Schlumberger’s ECLIPSE software currently used by the department.

Their ECLIPSE family of reservoir simulation software, which includes the Petrel Reservoir Engineering Environment, allows students and researchers to create 3-D models of oil and gas reservoirs and use numerical simulation to model their behavior. Such tools are used by the petroleum engineering department to analyze the efficiency of different oil and gas recovery techniques.

"The ECLIPSE software provided by Schlumberger will allow our students to learn and gain experience with the industry’s leading reservoir simulation tool," said Al Sacco Jr., dean of the Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering. "Our faculty will also benefit through the enhancement of their research activities.

"This valuable teaching and research tool will make a significant impact within the Bob L. Herd Department of Petroleum Engineering."

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Karp and Lawson Elected to Texas Tech Teaching Academy

Karp   Lawson
Karp   Lawson

Drs. Tanja Karp, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, and William Lawson, assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering, have been elected to the Texas Tech Teaching Academy. The Teaching Academy was formally inaugurated in 1997 to demonstrate, support, promote, and recognize teaching excellence at Texas Tech University.



Texas Tech Teaching Academy Members from the
Whitacre College of Engineering

Name Department
Ed Anderson Mechanical Engineering
Mario Beruvides Industrial Engineering
Stephen Ekwaro-Osire Mechanical Engineering
Atila Ertas Mechanical Engineering
Michael Giesselmann Electrical and Computer Engineering
Tanja Karp* Electrical and Computer Engineering
John Kobza Industrial Engineering
William Lawson* Civil and Environmental Engineering
Audra Morse Civil and Environmental Engineering
Scott Norville Civil and Environmental Engineering
Brian Nutter Electrical and Computer Engineering
Ken Rainwater Civil and Environmental Engineering
Heyward Ramsey Civil and Environmental Engineering
Mohammad Saed Electrical and Computer Engineering
Douglas Smith Civil and Environmental Engineering
James L. Smith Industrial Engineering
Milton Smith Industrial Engineering

*New Member

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Autumn's Dawn NICE Lab Featured in Autism Awareness Broadcast

Autism Awareness
KTXT-TV
Autism Awareness

Dr. Mary Baker, professor of electrical and computer engineering, and the NeuroImaging, Cognition, and Engineering (NICE) Laboratory, were featured on "KEEPING IT LOCAL with Keith Kohanek" on KTXT-TV Channel 5 in Lubbock. The program aired during Autism Awareness Month and helped to raise awareness and funds for autism research.

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Faculty Recognitions

Berg Elected ASME Fellow

Berg
Berg

Dr. Jordan Berg, a professor of mechanical engineering, has been elected as a Fellow in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). Approximately 2 percent of ASME members reach this distinction.

Berg received a bachelor of science and a master of science from Princeton University and a master of science and a doctor of philosophy from Drexel University. He has been at Texas Tech since 1996.

He conducts research on modeling, design, control, and fabrication of microsystems; control of nonlinear systems; microsensors; bifurcations, unfoldings, and singularities of control systems.


Student Accomplishments

Pruitt Receives SMART Scholarship

Pruitt
Pruitt

Lindsey Pruitt, an industrial engineering major, has been named a recipient of a 2011 scholarship offer from the Department of Defense Science, Mathematics, And Research for Transformation (SMART) program.

The SMART Scholarship for Service Program is an opportunity for students pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics disciplines to receive a full scholarship and be gainfully employed upon degree completion.

She will work with the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) Analysis Center in White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, to perform cost and quality evaluations of the army's upcoming warfare tactics, machines, and training programs.


Laity Wins IEEE DEIS Student Essay Contest

Laity
Laity

George Laity, a doctoral student in the Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics, wrote an essay that was selected as the winning submission by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation Society (DEIS) Society during their first annual student essay contest.

The essay will be published in an IEEE magazine for engineers worldwide to read and was titled "Relating Physics of Electret Charging Using Vacuum UV Photo-Ionization to Seed Electron Production during High Altitude Plasma Breakdown."


Foster Receives Arthur H. Guenther Pulsed Power Student Award

Foster
Foster

Jonathan Foster, a doctoral student in the Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics, has been named the recipient of the outstanding Pulsed Power student award, the Arthur H. Guenther Pulsed Power Student Award.

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Nuclear and Plasma Sciences Society (NPSS) Pulsed Power Science and Technology Committee's Outstanding Pulsed Power Student Award was established in 1997. In 2007 this award was renamed the Arthur H. Guenther Pulsed Power Student Award following the passing of the former Peter Haas award recipient. It is offered annually, but presented biennially at the Pulsed Power Conference.

This award is designed to encourage student contributions and participation as principal or sole authors of papers and to recognize outstanding student contributions in pulsed power engineering, science, or technology.


Hinojosa and Kumar win First Place in CCET/IEEE Paper Contest

Hinojosa   Kumar
Hinojosa   Kumar

Miguel Hinojosa and Rajnish Kumar, graduate students in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, won first prize in the graduate division at the Third Annual Center for the Commercialization of Electric Technologies (CCET) Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Region 5 Student Paper Contest.

The paper was titled "Automatic Phase Identification System Design," and was presented in Baton Rouge at the Region 5 IEEE meeting.

Bilbao
Bilbao

Argenis Bilbao won second place in the Region 5 IEEE student paper competition with his paper "Remote Structural Health Monitoring System."

Bilbao's work is a collaboration between the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, in which he and his senior lab partner worked with Drs. Jennifer Rice and Jamie Chapman for the paper and research.




Kubista Places in ASCE Student Technical Paper Competition

Kyle Kubista, a senior civil engineering major, placed third in the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Texas Mexico Section Student Technical Paper Competition. His advisors are Drs. Andrew Jackson and Audra Morse. The paper was titled "Design and Construction of a TRL-5 Reactor for Pretreatment of Space Based Waste Streams."

Grants and Contracts

4-18-2011 – 5-23-2011

Chemical Engineering

  • Dr. Siva A. Vanapalli was awarded $88,447 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "Microfluidics to Probe Partial Coalescence in Emulsions Containing Interfacial Crystals."
  • Dr. Muhammad N. Karim was awarded $14,600 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU SUPPLEMENTAL: EAGER: Peptide Affinity Membranes for Binding Influenza Viruses: H1N1 and H5H1."
  • Dr. Gregory B. McKenna was awarded $6,875 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU Supplement: Ultrathin Polymer Films: Viscoelasticity, Physical Aging, and Failure."
  • Drs. Gregory B. McKenna and Brandon L. Weeks were awarded $120,000 by the Office of Naval Research. The title of the proposal was "Resolving the Complexity of Hot Spots Caused by Weak Energy Concentration and Coupling in Composite Energetic Materials."
  • Dr. Sindee L. Simon was awarded $120,000 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "Tg Changes, Surface Effects, and Dynamics in Nanoconfined Polymers."

Computer Science

  • Dr. Mohan Sridharan was awarded $89,631 by the Office of Naval Research/UT Austin. The title of the proposal was "Active Learning for Sequential Sensing and Efficient Human Interaction in Collaborative Human-Robot Teams."
  • Drs. Michael Gelfond and Richard G. Watson were awarded $56,029 by NASA/Kestrel Technology, LLC. The title of the proposal was "Agent Architecture for Continuous Systems." Watson is the PI.
  • Drs. Michael Gelfond and Yuanlin Zhang were awarded $7,995 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU SUPPLEMENT: RI: Small: Integrating Logic Based Declarative Programming Paradigms."

Construction Engineering and Engineering Technology

  • Bobby L. Green was awarded $6,598.35 by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. The title of the proposal was "Science It's a Girl Thing, Electrical and Computer Engineering Focus."

Center for Multidisciplinary Research in Transportation

  • Dr. Moon-Cheol Won was awarded $5,000 by the Texas Department of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "Technical Support for Rigid Pavement and Concrete Materials Branch 46-IMTIA018."

Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics

  • Dr. James C. Dickens was awarded $252,765 by the Office of Naval Research. The title of the proposal was "Enabling Technology for Compact Directed Energy Systems Addressing Asymmetric Explosive Threats."

Electrical and Computer Engineering

  • Dr. Yu-Chun D Lie was awarded $75,000 by the Texas Instruments Foundation. The title of the proposal was "Analog Design Research for TI."
  • Dr. Mary C. Baker was awarded $137,607.75 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "GK-12: Building Bridges: Integrating Mathematics, Science, and Engineering Education on the South Plains."
  • Drs. Richard O. Gale and Michael T. Helm were awarded $13,396.65 by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. The title of the proposal was "Science It's a Girl Thing, Electrical and Computer Engineering Focus."

Mechanical Engineering

  • Dr. Alan A. Barhorst was awarded $7,400 by FIRST in Texas. The title of the proposal was "FIRST Tech Challenge Robotics Outreach."
  • Dr. Michelle L. Pantoya was awarded $60,000 by the Office of Naval Research. The title of the proposal was "Resolving the Complexity of Hot Spots Caused by Weak Energy Concentration and Coupling in Composite Energetic Materials."

Water Resources Center

  • Dr. William A. Jackson was awarded $3,749 by the University of Washington. The title of the proposal was "Perchlorate Analysis in Support of 'Perchlorate, Water, and Life: The Geomicrobiology of Mars Analog Soils.'"

Events of Interest

May 30   Memorial Day Holiday
May 31   Summer I Faculty on Duty
June 1   Summer I Classes Begin

See more events on the college's online calendar.

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Jul 11, 2014