Sacco Named Dean of Engineering
Dr. Albert Sacco Jr. will become the next dean of the Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering effective Jan. 1, 2011.
“Dr. Sacco’s background should be uniquely supportive of his new role and contributions at Texas Tech University,” Provost Bob Smith said. “We will benefit enormously from his dedication, creativity, and extraordinary experiences, including service as a U.S. astronaut.”
“We are so fortunate to welcome this outstanding leader as Texas Tech takes another step in its journey to Tier One,” said Guy Bailey, president of Texas Tech. “Sacco is an outstanding teacher and researcher. His enthusiasm will further discovery within the Whitacre College of Engineering.”
“I am thrilled to join the Texas Tech academic team of outstanding researchers and educators,” Sacco said. “And I look forward to supporting the Whitacre College of Engineering’s desire to become one of the nation’s top-rated engineering colleges.”
Sacco is currently the George A. Snell Distinguished Professor of Engineering and the director of the Center for Advanced Microgravity Materials Processing at Northeastern University. He flew as the payload specialist on the Space Shuttle Columbia on shuttle mission STS-73 in 1995. The 16-day mission aboard Columbia focused on materials science, biotechnology, combustion science and fluid mechanics contained within the pressurized Spacelab module.
Texas Tech Industrial Engineering Professors Save More than $250,000 Each Year for Odessa's Medical Center Hospital
Two Texas Tech University industrial engineering professors have collaborated with administrators and nursing staff at Odessa's Medical Center Hospital (MCH) to develop a plan, when fully implemented, which is projected to save the hospital more than $250,000 dollars each year. Through this work, they have been able to introduce efficiencies that make discharge from the hospital easier and will enable most patients to go home sooner.
Dr. Jennifer Farris, assistant professor of industrial engineering, and Dr. Tim Matis, associate professor of industrial engineering, were asked by MCH chief nursing officer Marlene McAllister to help the hospital improve patient flow, and thereby reduce a backlog that regularly built up in MCH's emergency room.
Farris and Matis responded with a three-phase approach for solving the backlog problem, saving the hospital money, and saving time for patients.
This system involves an intricate network of scheduling and workflows that matches patient needs with staffing availability for the benefit of both patients and the hospital.
Green Wins Young Investigator Research Award
Dr. Micah J. Green, assistant professor of chemical engineering, was awarded a grant through Air Force Office of Scientific Research's Young Investigator Research Program. In his research, he will examine interfacial engineering for low-density graphene nanocomposites and fluids. Look for more information on this research in the next issue of Engineering Our Future Magazine and envision Snapshots.
Center for Nanophotonics Researchers Make Significant Progress in LED and Solar Cells
Drs. Hongxing Jiang, Edward E. Whitacre Jr. Chair and professor of electrical and computer engineering, and Jingyu Lin, Linda F. Whitacre Chair and professor of electrical and computer engineering, were recently featured in Semiconductor Today for two significant research breakthroughs.
Jiang, Lin, and their research group have developed an indium gallium nitride (InGaN) solar cell with characteristics higher than similar devices. Additionally, the researchers have made significant advances in infrared LEDs.
Pantoya's Children's Book Wins National Recognition
"Engineering Elephants," coauthored by Dr. Michelle Pantoya, a professor of mechanical engineering at Texas Tech University, and Dr. Emily Hunt, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at West Texas A&M University, seeks to educate very young children about who engineers are and what they do.
The book was recently recognized as a "Best Books 2010" Award finalist by USABookNews.com, the premiere online magazine and review website for mainstream and independent publishing houses.
"Children know doctors and teachers and police and firemen and soldiers, but not engineers," Pantoya said. "This is a way of introducing young children to engineering. Our goal is to inspire some of these young people to think about an engineer as something they want to be when they grow up."
A complete list of the winners and finalists of the USABookNews.com National "Best Books 2010" Awards are available online at USABookNews.com.
Dallas and MEMS Team are Featured in Research Texas Magazine
Dr. Tim Dallas, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, and the Texas Tech MEMS team's microscopic chess set that was designed for the Sandia National Laboratories University Alliance Competition was featured in a recent issue of Research Texas magazine. The team won the Sandia competition in May 2010.
Krile Receives Outstanding Young Researcher Award
Dr. John Krile, a senior research associate in the Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics, was awarded the Outstanding Young Researcher Award at the 3rd Euro-Asian Pulsed Power Conference / 18th International Conference on High-Power Particle Beams in South Korea in October. The award is for young researchers under the age of 35 who have authored papers of the highest academic quality. Krile's research is entitled "Improved Methods for Calculation of High Power Microwave System Efficiencies".
Grants and Contracts
10-18-2010 - 11-16-2010
Civil and Environmental Engineering
Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics
Electrical and Computer Engineering
Water Resources Center
Whitacre College of Engineering Dean's Office
Laity Receives 2010 IEEE DEIS Graduate Fellowship
George Laity, a graduate student in the Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics, was awarded a $5,000 fellowship from the IEEE Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation Society. This fellowship is awarded to Ph.D. students who are IEEE DEIS members and are pursuing research topics in the area of insulating materials, breakdown, charge transport, electrostatic phenomena, high voltage effects, or related subjects. His research concerns the emission of high energetic light (vacuum ultraviolet) during the initial nanoseconds of dielectric window breakdown, and the impact of this light on the processes which contribute to pulsed DC and HPM flashover in the atmosphere. Five Ph.D. students were awarded this graduate fellowship worldwide and a portion of the funds are provided for student travel to an international IEEE conference.
Dr. Dan Cooke
Dr. Daniel Earl Cooke, Paul Whitfield Horn Professor and professor of computer science, passed away on Oct. 30, 2010 at his home in Lubbock, Texas. He was born in Oak Park, Illinois on March 23, 1955, to Earl C. Cooke and Gloria J. Cooke, and grew up in Houston, Texas. He received a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Texas at Arlington. Cooke taught at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas, and went on to become chair of the Department of Computer Science at the University of Texas at El Paso. In 1999 he joined the faculty at Texas Tech University where he served as chair of the Department of Computer Science for 8 years.
During his tenure at Texas Tech, Cooke was awarded the prestigious Paul Whitfield Horn Professorship, the highest academic honor given to professors who demonstrate extraordinary standards of teaching and research excellence. He also served as director for the Center for Advanced Intelligent Systems at Texas Tech, and was program manager for the National Strategic Initiative for Intelligent Systems at the NASA Ames Research Center. Cooke was published extensively in numerous computer science journals and publications and received several academic awards and honors, including the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal in recognition of his extraordinary service and dedication.
Donations may be made in Cooke's name to the Texas Tech Computer Science Scholarship Fund.
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