Gill Receives Five-Year, $2.2M grant from the National Institutes of Health
Dr. Harvinder Singh Gill, an assistant professor of chemical engineering, was recently awarded a five-year, $2.2M grant from the National Institutes of Health for his proposal, "Pollen Grains as Trojan Horses for Oral Vaccination."
The grant, known as the NIH Director's New Innovator Award, is given to support exceptionally creative new investigators who propose highly innovative projects that have the potential for unusually high impact. Gill's research will develop pollen grains as a novel system for oral vaccination, which could lead to improved, painless, and edible vaccines in the future. Gill is one of fifty-one researchers who are receiving New Innovator awards to pursue visionary science that exhibits the potential to transform scientific fields and speed the translation of research into improved health, under the High Risk High Reward program supported by the National Institutes of Health Common Fund.
Oral vaccination is painless, can be self-administered, and can induce both systemic and mucosal immune responses. It offers an attractive alternative to the painful needle-based vaccine injections. However, oral vaccination remains challenging due to vaccine degradation in the stomach and poor uptake across the intestinal lining. Gill proposes to develop a new oral vaccination system based on pollen grains that can overcome these challenges. Pollen grains naturally possess tough outer shells. By first cleaning the native plant biomolecules and filling the interior of the resulting clean pollen with vaccines, he intends to develop a 'Trojan horse'-like system that can safely ferry vaccines across the harsh environment of the stomach into the intestines for improved uptake into the body. Overall, if successful, this research could lead to development of oral vaccines against a host of infectious diseases.
Petroleum Engineering Groundbreaking
A groundbreaking ceremony for the new Petroleum Engineering Building will be held on October 5, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. on the Engineering Key. The new Petroleum Engineering Building will be a $20,000,000 facility with approximately 40,000 square feet of modern classroom and research space. For more information on the building, visit www.depts.ttu.edu/pe/building/.
Castilaw Receives AIChE Freshman Recognition Award
Josh Castilaw, a freshman chemical engineering major, has been named the recipient of an AIChE Freshman Recognition Award. This award is given to the freshman from each chapter that becomes the most involved with AIChE. Castilaw will receive a stipend to attend the AIChE Annual Student Conference on October 26-29, 2012 in Pittsburgh, Penn.
"I feel honored to be awarded for just being a part of AIChE. I have made many friends from this organization and love being a part of a group," said Castilaw. "I would tell anyone hesitant about joining to join, you get to network, meet a lot of amazing people and help out whenever you can. I know that as a freshman you can feel a little overwhelmed, but get involved in something, make friends, and have fun."
He was highly involved in AIChE during his freshman year. He was a member of the activities committee and helped plan several events. Castilaw also represented Texas Tech at the national conference in Minneapolis and the regional conference in Houston.
Lie's Group Wins Best Paper Award at IEEE VLSI-DAT12
Ruili Wu, an electrical and computer engineering graduate student; Dr. Yan Li, a 2012 graduate with a Doctor of Philosophy in electrical and computer engineering; Jerry Lopez, a senior research associate in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering; and Donald Y. C. Lie, Keh-Shew Lu Regents Chair and professor of electrical and computer engineering, won the Best Paper Award at the 2012 IEEE International Symposium on VLSI Design, Automation and Test conference (IEEE VLSI-DAT12).
The paper was titled, "A Monolithic 1.85GHz 2-stage SiGe Power Amplifier with Envelope Tracking for Improved Linear Power and Efficiency."
Wei's Paper Published in Journal of Transportation Research
Dali Wei, a graduate student in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has written a paper that has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Transportation Research Part B: Methodological.
The paper is titled "Analysis of Asymmetric Car-following Behavior Using a Self-learning Approach" The paper was co-authored with Dr. Hongchao Liu, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering.
ChE Sophomore Serving as Congressional Intern
Texas Tech University has named 18 students to serve as congressional interns during the fall semester. Aaron Carver, a sophomore chemical engineering major from Mansfield, works in the office of U.S. Rep. Joe Barton.
Students participating in the program observe government functions from an inside point-of-view and play an important role in the offices of various senators and representatives. The Office of the President at Texas Tech coordinates the internship program and provides scholarships for the students.
Watson Receives SPE Teaching Fellow Award
Dr. Marshall Watson, assistant professor of petroleum engineering, has been named the recipient of a Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) Teaching Fellow Award for 2012. The Teaching Fellow Award recognizes petroleum engineering faculty who have demonstrated innovative teaching techniques. This award not only recognizes excellence, but encourages and equips others in academia to use similar techniques.
In this pilot program, SPE is recognizing petroleum engineering faculty who have developed innovative techniques to teach petroleum engineering students. The techniques you have demonstrated different teaching methodologies in class, innovative ways of interacting with the industry, presentation material which combines the fundamental knowledge students require, the technological advances the industry has made, and better methodologies to interact with the students.
Morse Named Integrated Scholar
Dr. Audra N. Morse, associate dean for undergraduate studies and associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, has been named an Integrated Faculty Scholar by Texas Tech Provost Bob Smith. This recognition is given to academicians who are not only outstanding in teaching, research, and outreach or service, but also are able to generate synergy among the three functions.
Inspired by the teachings of her own civil engineering professor, Morse also strives to ignite her students' interests in the classroom and the laboratory. Morse says Texas Tech Professor Heyward Ramsey triggered her fascination with the field of environmental engineering, and she hopes to have a similar influence as a professor and an administrator by integrating her teaching, research, and service activities.
Three Engineering Staff Members Receive Top Techsan Awards
Three staff members from the Whitacre College of Engineering have been named recipients of Top Techsan Awards from the Texas Tech Alumni Association.
Margaret "Margie" Ceja, academic adviser in the Department of Construction Engineering; Dr. Beccy Hambright, program manager in the T-STEM Center; and Shannon Hutchison, unit manager in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Texas Tech Center for Multidisciplinary Research in Transportation, are recipients of the 2012 award. The award recognizes extraordinary work proficiency and an attitude of team spirit within the Texas Tech family.
Recent Corporate Gifts to the Whitacre College of Engineering
August 17, 2012 – September 17, 2012
- Dr. Micah J. Green was awarded $259,300 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "Conformation and Alignment Control in Scalable Graphene Film Processing."
- Dr. Raghunathan Rengasamy was awarded $100,000 by the U.S. Dept of Energy. The title of the proposal was "Model-based Sensor Placement for Component Condition Monitoring and Fault Diagnosis in Fossil Energy Systems."
- Drs. Karlene A. Hoo, Muhammad N. Karim, and Raghunathan Rengasamy were awarded $13,939 by Various Sponsors - Industrial. The title of the proposal was "Process Control Consortium."
- Dr. Brandon L. Weeks was awarded $40,000 by the U.S. Dept of Homeland Security/Northeastern Univ. The title of the proposal was "REU: SUPPLEMENT: ALERT: Awareness and Localization of Explosives-Related Threats."
- Dr. Sunho Lim was awarded $29,996 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "An Innovative Approach to Cybersecurity Education Professional Enhancement in a Virtual SmartGrid."
Center for Multidisciplinary Research in Transportation
- Phillip T. Nash was awarded $10,000 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-1755 Research Technical Assistance Panels."
- Dr. Moon-Cheol Won was awarded $133,205 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6274: Project Level Performance Database for Rigid Pavements in Texas, Phase II."
- Drs. Theodore G. Cleveland, and Audra N. Morse were awarded $26,343 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6638 Preparing for EPA Effluent Limitation Guidelines."
- Drs. Sang Wook Bae, Derrick E. Tate, and Delong Zuo were awarded $96,834 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6639 Testing of Alternative Support Materials for Portable Roll-up Signs used in Maintenance Work Zones."
- Drs. Xinzhong Chen, and Delong Zuo were awarded $128,892 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6649 Development of Design Guidelines and Mitigation Strategies for Wind-induced Traffic Signal Structure Vibrations." Zuo is the PI.
- Dr. Theodore G. Cleveland was awarded $46,131 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6654 Empirical Flow Parameters-A Tool for Hydraulic Model Validity Assessment."
- Drs. Tewodros Ghebrab, and Moon-Cheol Won were awarded $104,775 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6687 Minimize Premature Distresses in Continuously Reinforced Concrete Pavement." Won is the PI.
- Drs. Sang Wook Bae, and Sangwook Lee were awarded $61,657 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6731 Repair Systems for Deteriorated Bridge Piles."
- Drs. William D. Lawson, and Sanjaya P. Senadheera were awarded $71,850 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6747 Seal Coat Quality: Does Low Cost Mean Low Quality?."
- Drs. William D. Lawson, Daan Liang, Kenneth A. Rainwater, and Sanjaya P. Senadheera were awarded $83,302.20 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6793 TxDOT Snow and Ice."
- Dr. Moon-Cheol Won was awarded $20,000 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "5-5482 Pilot Implementation of Whitetopping."
- Drs. Priyantha W. Jayawickrama, William D. Lawson, Stephen M. Morse, and Timothy A. Wood were awarded $34,312 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "5-5849-01 Software Development to Implement the TXDOT Culvert Rating Guide."
- Drs. Priyantha W. Jayawickrama, William D. Lawson, Stephen M. Morse, and Timothy A. Wood were awarded $101,407 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "5-5849-03 Load Rating TxDOT Culvert Design Standards."
- Micah J. Beierle, Phillip T. Nash, and Dr. Sanjaya P. Senadheera were awarded $58,070 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "6735 Best Practices for TxDOT on Handling Wildfires." Senadheera is the PI.
- Dr. Kim Harris was awarded $122,046 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "TxDOT 0-9911-13 Coordination of Services in Support of TxDOT's Research Program."
Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics
- Drs. James C. Dickens, John T. Krile, and Andreas A. Neuber were awarded $33,000 by the U.S. Army/ARC Technology. The title of the proposal was "Electrically Generated Haptic Feedback to Simulate Virtual Explosions." Neuber is the PI.
- Dr. Andreas A. Neuber was awarded $12,500 by the Ntl Physical Science Consortium. The title of the proposal was "NPSC Fellowships for Jacob Stephens and Andrew Fierro."
Electrical and Computer Engineering
- Drs. Mary C. Baker, Brian S. Nutter, and Vittal S. Rao were awarded $74,991.50 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "An Innovative Approach to Cybersecurity Education Professional Enhancement in a Virtual SmartGrid."
- Drs. Sunanda Mitra and Brian S. Nutter were awarded $74,709 by Chirp, Inc. The title of the proposal was "FPGA Implementation of BCWT." Nutter is the PI.
- Drs. Joseph E. Urban and Susan D. Urban were awarded $59,993.20 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "An Innovative Approach to Cybersecurity Education Professional Enhancement in a Virtual SmartGrid."
- Drs. Jordan M. Berg and Qing Hui were awarded $59,993.20 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "An Innovative Approach to Cybersecurity Education Professional Enhancement in a Virtual SmartGrid."
- Dr. Chang Dong Yeo was awarded $84,857 by Seagate Technology. The title of the proposal was "Microwear Mechanism of Head/Disk Carbon Film in Hard Disk Drive."
- Dr. Michelle L Pantoya was awarded $19,999 by Sandia Ntl Laboratories. The title of the proposal was "Synthesis and Characterization of Reactive Materials for Energy Storage Systems."
Nano Tech Center
- Dr. Zhaoyang Fan was awarded $6,000 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU SUPPLEMENT: Electrically Controlled Metal-insulator Transition and its Terahertz Applications."
Water Resources Center
- Drs. William A. Jackson, Audra N. Morse, and Weile Yan were awarded $55,534.80 by the TX Dept of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "0-6793 TxDOT Snow and Ice."
- Drs. William A. Jackson and Kenneth A. Rainwater were awarded $70,000 by DOE/BWXT Pantex, LLC. The title of the proposal was "High Plains Aquifer Chromium Investigation." Rainwater is the PI.
See a full listing of the college's events on the Engineering Master Calendar.
Follow the College on Facebook and Twitter
Keep up with news and events within the Whitacre College of Engineering by following the college on Facebook or Twitter. Updates are posted regularly.