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Chen Li
Chen Li
Pal Gill
Pal Gill

College Names Research Award Winners

The Whitacre College of Engineering has named four award winners for college-level research awards. The winners were recognized at the Fall 2014 Faculty and Staff Meeting in November.

  • Dr. Xinzhong Chen, an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, has been named an Ed and Linda Whitacre Faculty Fellow for 2014-2017.
  • Dr. Changzhi Li, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, received a Whitacre Research Award for excellence in research over the past five years.
  • Dr. Ranadip Pal, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, received a Whitacre Research Award for excellence in research over the past five years.
  • Dr. Harvinder Gill, an assistant professor of chemical engineering, received a Whitacre Research Award for evidence of research growth over the last three to five years.
Environmental Literacy and Ethics Workshop
Environmental Literacy and Ethics Workshop

Texas Tech Hosts Environmental Literacy and Ethics Workshop

In June 2014, six undergraduate engineering students participated in a pilot environmental literacy workshop, the Environmental Literacy and Ethics Workshop (ELEW), at the Llano River Field Station on the Texas Tech University Center at Junction campus.

Given their ability to have a profound impact on the environment, it is critically important that engineers are environmentally literate. With this in mind, the Murdough Center for Engineering Professionalism in the Whitacre College of Engineering, the Texas Tech Department of Biology, and Texas Tech University Center at Junction proposed this multi-day environmental literacy workshop for undergraduate students to allow students the opportunity to recognize the importance of environmental literacy, identify connections between the environment, economics, and engineering practice, and develop an appreciation for the necessity of an interdisciplinary approach to environmental issues. The workshop was made possible by funding commitments from the Whitacre College of Engineering, the Texas Tech Ethics Center, the Center for Active Learning and Undergraduate Engagement, and the Office of the Provost.

In addition to time spent in the classroom, students were also given a tour of the Junction campus which included a discussion of native habitats and the impact of invasive plant species on water supplies. Future workshops and courses will feature greater opportunities for students to interact with the natural environment to, in part, provide concrete examples of the importance of environmental literacy and ethics.

Faculty members from diverse backgrounds, including biology, engineering, philosophy, and other areas were able to highlight pressing issues to discuss and present unique perspectives on those issues.

The success of the ELEW has shown that the content and the discussion of environmental literacy is timely, topical and significant, and there is a genuine interest in the issues highlighted, and a multidisciplinary approach to environmental literacy and ethics education enhances the credibility and efficacy of interventions.

Discussions are underway on the expansion of the program and the continuation of environmental literacy and ethics education curriculum for the Texas Tech community and beyond.

For further information on this workshop and future projects, contact Richard Burgess in the Murdough Center for Engineering Professionalism/National Institute for Engineering Ethics.

Student News

Wurmstein Wins First Place in AIChE Undergraduate Student Poster Competition

Michael Wurmstein, an undergraduate student in the Department of Chemical Engineering, won first place in the Computing and Process Control Division at the 2014 Undergraduate Student Poster Competition at the AIChE Annual Student Conference in November in Atlanta, Georgia. The poster was titled "Simulated Annealing Polymerization: A General Algorithm for Preparing Atomistic Model Structures of Amorphous Polymers." Wurmstein is supervised by Dr. Rajesh Khare, an associate professor of chemical engineering.

More than 200 students participate each year, and the session is open for any undergraduate student to present results from projects that they have carried out as undergraduate researchers at their university or during internships/co-ops. The poster session covers all key areas of chemical engineering, including sustainability, catalysis and reaction engineering, computing and process control, environmental aspects of chemical engineering, food, pharmaceutical, bioengineering, fuels, petrochemicals, energy, materials, and separations.

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Kumfer
Kumfer

Kumfer Nominated for National CUTC Student of the Year Award

Wesley Kumfer, a doctoral student in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has been selected as the Student of the Year Award Nominee for the Southern Plains Transportation Center to compete for the Council of University Transportation Centers (CUTC) Student of the Year Award. His advisor is Dr. Hongchao Liu, a professor of civil and environmental engineering. Kumfer, along with other nominees, will have the opportunity to attend the 24th Annual Outstanding Student of the Year Awards ceremony, which is part of the CUTC annual banquet in January 2015 in Washington, D.C.

The Southern Plains Transportation Center is a U.S. Department of Transportation Region 6 Regional University Transportation Center comprised of eight universities, The University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University, Langston University, University of Arkansas, Louisiana Tech University, The University of New Mexico, The University of Texas at El Paso, and Texas Tech University. The center was established in 2013 based on an award from the U.S. Department of Transportation's Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) to conduct a multidisciplinary program of transportation research, education, and technology transfer.

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Faculty News
Reible
Reible

Reible Receives AEHS Lifetime Achievement Award

Dr. Danny Reible, Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair and professor of civil and environmental engineering, has received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association for Environmental Health and Sciences Foundation.

This award is presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the understanding and solution of soil, sediment, and groundwater pollution problems. Specifically, Reible was recognized for outstanding achievements and significant contributions to the field of environmental assessment and restoration. He received the award at the 30th Annual International Conference on Soils, Sediments, Water, and Energy in Amherst, Massachusetts in October 2014.

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Chyu
Chyu

Chyu Publishes New Book: "Advances in Engineering for Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment"

Dr. Ming Chyu, a professor of mechanical engineering, has published a new book, "Advances in Engineering for Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment."

His book showcases a cross section of recent engineering advances in various aspects of cancer management to illustrate how engineering has contributed to cancer diagnosis and treatment. The goals of this book are (a) for healthcare professionals and researchers to learn engineering approaches and methodologies addressing different cancer management issues, (b) for engineers and engineering researchers to learn the immense opportunities in cancer research where they can contribute, and (c) to bridge the gap and to foster broader and deeper collaborations between healthcare and engineering, that eventually benefit cancer patients and the society. The book is published by Multi-Science Publishing Co. and is available on Amazon.

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Grants and Contracts

October 21 – November 17, 2014

Investigator(s) Agency Title Amount
Center for Multidisciplinary Research in Transportation
Dr. Hongchao Liu TX Dept of Transportation Development of an Interactive Animation Tool for Education of Teenage Drivers on Rural Roads $130,498.86
Dr. Moon-Cheol Won TX Dept of Transportation Houston IAC $5,000
Dr. Sang Wook Bae* and
Dr. Sangwook Lee
TX Dept of Transportation Repair Systems for Deteriorated Bridge Piles $74,306
Center for Nanophotonics
Dr. Hongxing Jiang and
Dr. Jingyu Lin
U.S. Army Research Office DURIP: Erbium Doped GaN Lasers by Optical Pumping $64,619
Civil and Environmental Engineering
Dr. Andrew H. Swift NSF/Johns Hopkins University PIRE: USA/Europe Partnership for Integrated Research and Education in Wind Energy Intermittency: From Wind Farm Turbulence to Economic Management (WISE-IND) $45,212.50
Industrial Engineering
Dr. Ismael R. De Farias Office of Naval Research Nonconvex Combinational Nonlinear Optimization: New Methodologies and Critical Applications $25,000
Mechanical Engineering
Dr. Michelle L. Pantoya Office of Naval Research Metal-hydride Based Reactive Material Composites $125,000
Dr. Chang Dong Yeo Seagate Technology Organic Contaminants in HDI: Formation, Growth, and Mechanical Collision $85,000
Dr. Luciano Castillo NSF/Johns Hopkins University PIRE: USA/Europe Partnership for Integrated Research and Education in Wind Energy Intermittency: From Wind Farm Turbulence to Economic Management (WISE-IND) $90,425

* Primary Investigator

Events

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