Points of Pride

Recent Faculty and Staff Awards

Jessica Van Winkle Recognized as an Exemplary Peer Mentor Supervisor

Jessica Van Winkle, academic adviser in mechanical engineering, was chosen as an exemplary peer mentor supervisor for the 2013-2014 academic term. As learning community supervisor for the largest department on campus, Van Winkle is responsible for peer mentors across 10 different learning communities. One of Van Winkle’s nominators was Ryan Jennings, senior in mechanical engineering. “Jessica does an exceptional job of allowing peer mentors to plan and lead their learning communities independently while still having a level of standardization and decorum. This has allowed me to become a better leader by learning on the job the best way to lead the different groups of students I have had,” Jennings said.

Brown and Team Awarded Patent Key to BEI Research

A team headed by Robert Brown, BEI director, has been awarded a patent for bio-oil fractionation. “We have built much of our research around this technology,” Brown said. The patent, number US 8,476,480, was awarded in July 2013 to Brown; Samuel Jones, a former scientist with BEI’s Center for Sustainable Environmental Research; and Anthony Pollard, a former graduate student of Brown’s. The invention was developed with funding from the U.S. Dept. of Energy and the USDA. Full Story

Sundararajan Named College of Engineering Equity Advisor

On Nov. 1, 2013 Sriram Sundararajan began serving as the next College of Engineering equity advisor. In this role, he will help expand the diversity among the college’s faculty and implement ISU ADVANCE goals. He will also lead continued efforts to create an inclusive culture for women and underrepresented minorities within the college. Sundararajan says he is looking forward to learning about best practices on enhancing diversity and faculty mentoring across the university and beyond, and helping adapt these practices for the college. Full Story

ME Faculty Receive Presidential Initiative for Interdisciplinary Research Awards

Daniel Attinger, associate professor of mechanical engineering, and Reza Montazami, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, both received awards from the Presidential Initiative for Interdisciplinary Research program created by President Steven Leath. Attinger received a proof-of-concept award of up to $100,000 for one year. He is the principal investigator of a project titled “Computationally Engineered Plant Institute.” The project focused on the future of food security entails collaboration between engineers and plant scientists. Montazami is part of a project called “Integrated, Interdisciplinary Vaccine Research Against Antigenically Diverse Viruses” that received a pursuit funding award for up to $1.5 million over three years. The purpose of the project, which is led by principal investigator Michael Cho from biomedical sciences, is to develop novel strategies with a long-term goal of producing efficacious and cost-effective vaccines against viruses such as HIV-1 and influenza virus. Full Story

CoE Faculty Members Receive Presidential Initiative Awards

Balaji Narasimhan, associate dean for research, and Daniel Attinger, associate professor of mechanical engineering, both received awards from the Presidential Initiative for Interdisciplinary Research program created by President Steven Leath. Narasimhan is the principal investigator of a project called “Systems Design of Nanovaccines,” which is seeking to revolutionize disease prevention and treatment using nanovaccines. His project was granted a funding award of up to $4.5 million over three years to pursue competitive grants for further research. Attinger received a proof-of-concept award of up to $100,000 for one year, which is for projects that are more limited in scope. He is the principal investigator of a project titled “Computationally Engineered Plant Institute.” The project focused on the future of food security entails collaboration between engineers and plant scientists. Full Story

Caroline Hayes Named ASME Fellow

Caroline Hayes, chair of the mechanical engineering department and Lynn Gleason Professor of Interdisciplinary Engineering, recently became an ASME Fellow. The American Society of Mechanical Engineers recognizes members who have had 10 or more years of practice in the field and an active membership with ASME. Throughout her time as a member, Hayes has been involved in a variety of ASME committees, doing everything from gathering and preparing technical papers to organizing conferences. The amount of work she puts into each position varies from year to year. She says she enjoys attending the annual conferences, spending time with friends she has met throughout her career, and gathering with fellow female engineers from around the world. ASME Fellows are nominated by their peers for outstanding achievements in engineering. Hayes says her nomination came as “a pleasant surprise.” Full Story

Xinwei Wang Named First Viskanta Fellow for Innovative Research

Xinwei Wang, professor of mechanical engineering, received the inaugural Viskanta Fellowship honor from Purdue University for his advanced research in the field of thermal science. As a Viskanta Fellow, Wang will spend one week at the Purdue campus in West Lafayette, Indiana. During his visit, he will meet with faculty, post-doctoral scholars, and graduate students, as well as present a one-hour lecture. Full Story

Biofuels Digest Honors Brown Twice in 2012

For the third consecutive year, Anson Marston Distinguished Professor in Engineering Robert Brown was ranked in the Top 100 People in Bioenergy by Biofuels Digest. This year, he rose to #47, after his rankings at #59 and #61, in 2012 and 2011, respectively. The list is voted on by Biofuels Digest readers and the newsletter’s editorial board. Brown is the Gary and Donna Hoover Chair in Mechanical Engineering, Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Professor of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, Director of the Bioeconomy Institute, and Director of the Center for Sustainable Environmental Technologies. Full Story

Ted Heindel Named ASME Fellow

The American Society of Mechanical Engineers has named ME Interim Department Chair Ted Heindel as a 2011 Fellow. The ASME Board of Governors bestows the fellowship grade to worthy candidates to recognize their outstanding engineering achievements. Ted is receiving this honor for “his accomplishments in advancing the field of complex multiphase flow systems, particularly with respect to novel x-ray imaging methods and applications to biorenewable technologies, and in serving the profession in leadership roles.” Full Story

Abhijit Chandra Receives D. R. Boylan Eminent Faculty Research Award

The Boylan Award recognizes engineering faculty of national and international acclaim for their dedication to academic excellence through research and exemplary contributions to understanding in their field of specialization. Abhijit is recognized for his research activity and scholarship in the area of the mechanics of manufacturing processes. He is a professor in the ME department.

Amy Carver Receives Dean’s Staff Excellence Award

Amy received the College of Engineering Dean’s Staff Excellence Award for her outstanding work as graduate programs assistant in the ME Department. ME Director of Graduate Education Pranav Shrotriya said, “Amy Carver has demonstrated an extremely high level of enthusiasm, professional responsibility and ambassadorship for the Mechanical Engineering Department and the College of Engineering. Over the past 3 years, she has been instrumental in: developing new recruitment initiatives; deployment of professional master’s degree and enhancing the graduate student experience through development of orientation programs, social activities, and improved systematic communications.”

Scott Bowman Receives Professional Achievement Citation in Engineering Award

This award recognizes the outstanding achievement by an alumnus of the College in the professional practice of engineering. Scott is known in the profession for his creativity at KJWW Engineering Consultants, where he has risen through the firm to be one of eight principals, as well as for his commitment to the engineering profession through sustainability efforts and supporting women in engineering. Scott is a member of the ME Industry Advisory Council, and he received his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from ISU in 1982.

Jessica Van Winkle Elected to Professional & Scientific Council

Jessica Van Winkle, ME academic advisor, was elected to the ISU Professional & Scientific Council as an Academic & Research representative. The P&S Council is a representative body elected by, and responsible to, Professional & Scientific employees at Iowa State. The council studies issues affecting the P&S employee base, presents proposals to the ISU Administration, arranges open forums, and coordinates the P&S awards. The ME department will be well represented by Jessica.

25 Year Club Honorees

The 25 Year Club honors the loyal service of ISU faculty and staff. Greg Maxwell, associate professor, and Jim Dautremont, lab mechanical technologist, became members in 2011 after serving the university for 25 years.

Emmanuel Agba provided notable leadership in design and manufacturing course improvements and delivery. He led effort in upgrading manufacturing laboratory equipment for both teaching and research.

Robert Brown was named one the “Top 100 People in Bioenergy” in 2010 by Biofuels Digest. He chaired the first Symposium on Thermal and Catalytic Sciences for Biofuels and Biobased Products this past fall, which attracted almost 300 biofuels researchers from around the world to ISU.

In 2010 Mark Bryden and his research team won an R&D 100 award for his work in developing the software package OSG – Bullet. This is the third R&D 100 award received by Professor Bryden and his research in the past five years. The goal of this research is to enable the creation of integrated computational environments that support interactive real-time engineering decision making and design.Referred to as the “Oscars of Invention” the R&D 100 awards recognize the 100 most technologically significant products introduced into the marketplace over the past year.

Abhijit Chandra’s research focused on multi-physics modeling of Chemical Mechanical Planarization. It was also applied to biomedical research such as life prediction of orthopedic implants.

Baskar Ganapathysubramanian developed a mathematical framework for interrogating and designing photovoltaic devices and SETDiR (Scalable Extensible Toolkit for Dimensionality Reduction), a computational framework for non-linear dimensionality and model reduction, which is funded by aprestigious NSF grant.

Ted Heindel was a PI on a grant to create energy education initiatives for the college of engineering. He also mentored undergraduate student Tim Morgan who won the ASME Fluids Engineering Division 2010Young Engineering Paper Contest, beating out graduate students from Purdue and Virginia Tech.

The ME Capstone Design Program under the direction of Jim Heise arranged for 23 projects for senior design courses. Sponsorship 17 industrial projects were acquired for ME415 and ENGR466 students. Of those projects, 16 were co-sponsored by ISU Extension CIRAS and one was sponsored by a national corporation; the CIRAS sponsored projects provide service outreach to Iowa industry. 4 additional projects were sponsored by student club organizations allowing students to obtain class credit for design activities that typically go unaccounted on their academic records. An additional project was worked by a team of ME seniors as a service outreach project for an extended care patient in northeast Iowa. Two ME senior designs were submitted for patent disclosure by the sponsoring company.

Atul Kelkar is working with an Ames, Iowa startup company on the development of new processes
and equipment which can be used to recover energy from waste streams such as waste plastics, used oil, and used tires in the form of useful fuels. Dr. Kelkar is also a member of a NASA team engaged indeveloping methods and tools for early-stage control-relevant design of next generation of Hypersonicvehicles. His entrepreneurial efforts are engaging ISU faculty from other engineering departments in new research projects through STTR grant.

Gap-Yong Kim received a grant from National Science Foundation titled, “Novel Manufacturing of Bio-inspired Metal Matrix Composites by Semisolid Forming-Joining”. His research group will establish a novel metal composite manufacturing process that can create a hierarchical structure, bio-inspired by an abalone seashell.

Song-Charng Kong performed innovative research in exploring alternative engine fuels such as ammonia, mixtures of biodiesel and waste plastics, and mixtures of bio-oil and ethanol. His research also included the combustion of synthesis gas produced from biomass gasification. He was named William and Virginia Binger Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering in recognition of his excellence in research and education.

Greg Luecke recently began research and development for mobile satellite TV antenna and two-wayInternet antenna that involves the use of a six-degree-of-freedom vehicle simulation motion base.

The Nuclear Engineering Minor continued to grow under the leadership of Greg Maxwell. This year had seen the development of two new nuclear engineering courses – NUC E 441 (Probabilistic Risk Assessment) taught by Dr. Heising (IMSE) and NUC E 461 (Radiation Detection, Measurement and Simulation) taught by Dr. Maxwell (ME). The nuclear engineering minor is attracting students from EE, AeroE, MatE, ChemE as well as ME.

Jim Oliver continued to lead ISU’s Virtual Reality Applications Center and its graduate program in Human Computer Interaction. His research, teaching, and economic development activities focus on human computer interaction technologies, encompassing computer graphics, geometric modeling, virtual reality, and collaborative networks for applications in product development and complex system operation. His research is supported by a variety of industry partners and federal agencies, and theVRAC supports a broad interdisciplinary constituency that spans the entire university.

Michael Olsen’s archival journal papers were cited 143 times in 2010 according to Web of Science.

Pranav Shrotriya served as Technical Program Chair for Bioengineering Materials, Mechanics and Structures and Student Symposia track at 47th Annual Technical Meeting of Society of Engineering Science at Ames, Iowa October 2010. In collaboration with Prof. Sundararajan, he has established a NSF REUsite on microscale sensing, imaging and actuation (MoSAIc) in the department. He is currently serving as theDirector of Graduate Education (DOGE) and Associate Chair for Graduate Studies and Research.

Gloria Starns studied how linguists, psychologists, physicists and engineers are working together to better understand how students go through the process of setting up and solving problems; the ultimate objective of this work is to develop systems that will help students successfully complete complex problems.

Shankar Subramaniam conducted research at the University of Florida, Gainesville as part of his FPDA (sabbatical) to develop a new mathematical formulation for multiphase flows that relaxes the assumption of separation of scales by accounting for fluctuations in the number and associated volumefraction of particles. He delivered lectures on this topic at the National Energy Technology Laboratoryin Morgantown, WV to developers of the popular MFIX code for multiphase flow simulation. Results were presented at the 2010 International Conference on Multiphase Flow at Tampa, FL, and Professor Subramaniam’s paper was selected from 400 other papers for the Best Paper Award. He is the recipient of a National Science Foundation award in collaboration with Professor M. G. Olsen (ME, ISU) to develop better multiphase models for CO2 cleanup through studying heat and mass Transfer in fluid-particle suspensions through direct numerical simulation and laser-based measurements.

Sriram Sundararajan, together with Prof. Shrotriya established an NSF-sponsored summer research program on Microscale Sensing, Actuation and Imaging (MoSAIc) to engage undergraduate studentsfrom across the nation in the department’s research programs. Dr. Sundararajan, in working with the Undergraduate Education Committee, has developed a sustainable assessment model to support the department’s continuous improvement and accreditation efforts. He was appointed as Assistant Editor to the Wear Special Issue with articles from the 2011 International Conference on Wear of Materials.

Judy Vance has been appointed the Joseph C. and Elizabeth A. Anderlik Professor of Engineering. Her research involves international collaborations with universities in The Netherlands and France on the use of virtual reality for product design and manufacturing. Research focuses on methods to support human interaction with CAD models in an immersive virtual environment.

In 2010, Xinwei Wang had 7 journal papers published or accepted for publication in highly visible technical journals, like Journal of Physical Chemistry, Carbon, and Acta Materialia. He gave 5 invited talks at conferences or universities, and two other normal conference presentations. Two new grants were awarded from National Science Foundation and Army Research Office.

Research in Eliot Winer’s lab focusing on allowing enhanced exploration of digital medical data has been transitioned into a commercial product. It is currently being used at a major US hospital for planning radiation oncology treatments and organ transplant procedures. Dr. Winer was on research teams that attracted more than $1.5M in new funding to ISU.