Category Archives: Research

Great Lakes Climate Modeling in the News

Pengfei Xue
Pengfei Xue

Pengfei Xue (CEE) and his modeling work through the Great Lakes Research Center, which led to a more comprehensive climate and hydrodynamics model for the whole Great Lakes region, has been featured in several science media outlets including Science Daily, Phys.org, Terra Daily and Supercomputing Online News. The story was shared numerous times by collaborators and the science community on Twitter.

Weather the Storm: Improving Great Lakes Modeling

The collaborative work brought together researchers from Michigan Technological University, Loyola Marymount University, LimnoTech and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory. Pengfei Xue, an assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at Michigan Tech, led the study through his work at the Great Lakes Research Center on campus.

One of the important concepts in climate change, in addition to knowing the warming trend, is understanding that extreme events become more severe. That is both a challenge and an important focus in regional climate modeling. —Pengfei Xue

Read more at Michigan Tech News, by Allison Mills.

In the News

TechCentury, an engineering and technology publication of the Engineering Society of Detroit, reported on research led by Pengfei Xue(CEE), using computer modeling to better predict weather and its impacts on the Great Lakes. Read the article here.

C2E2 Awards for Becker and Minakata

Vice President for Research, David Reed, has announced the Century II Campaign Endowed Equipment Fund (C2E2) awards at the recommendation of the C2E2 Committee. Civil and Environmental Engineering faculty receiving awards are Associate Professor Jennifer Becker:

Outfitting a Biosafety Level 2 Laboratory for Waterborne Pathogen Research

and Assistant Professor Daisuke Minakata:

Biogas (Anaerobic Digestion) Project

The vice president for research would like to thank the review committee members for their participation in this internal award process.

For additional information on the C2E2 opportunity, visit C2E2.

By VPR.

Jennifer Becker
Jennifer Becker
Daisuke Minakata
Daisuke Minakata

Tech’s Snowfighters Prepare for Combat

Snow RemovalMichigan Tech Facilities Management leveraged resources in the Civil and Environmental Engineering department to fortify their team of snowfighters. Four members of the Facilities Management team participated in a day-long motor grader operator training, offered by the Center for Technology and Training (CTT) Monday, Nov. 7.

Jeff Shook, retired operator from Genesee County and instructor for the CTT, familiarized the Facilities Management team with basic and advanced grader controls.

Tech combats snow with its motor grader “almost every day in the winter,” says Facilities Management Site Engineer Dan Liebau. Operating a grader in a snowstorm when “it’s dark and there’s low visibility requires a different technique, a different finesse,” stated Shook.

Facilities Management’s investment in its personnel, using on-campus resources like the CTT, benefits the entire campus community by ensuring that its team is prepared for the winter ahead.

By Center for Technology & Training.

CTT Hosts First Annual Roadsoft User Conference

RUCUS 2016

The Center for Technology & Training (CTT), a part of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, hosted its first annual Roadsoft User Conference of the United States (RUCUS). RUCUS was held Nov. 1, 2016, in Lansing and was attended by 96 individuals representing 64 Michigan road agencies, as well as participants from Indiana and Pennsylvania. Roadsoft is a roadway asset management system for collecting, storing and analyzing data associated with transportation infrastructure. Roadsoft is developed and supported by the CTT with principal funding from the Michigan Department of Transportation.

Conference attendees engaged on a variety of topics including data integrity, using the Roadsoft mobile application, safety, pavement management strategies and Inventory Based Rating (IBR) for unpaved roads. The event also provided attendees with networking opportunities with other agencies and with the CTT staff.

CTT staff participating at the conference were research engineers John Kiefer, PE and Dale Lighthizer, PE; CRM administrator and software support analyst Carole Reynolds; data support and account specialist Joseph Snow; principal programmers Nick Koszykowski and Luke Peterson; and software engineers Mary Crane, Byrel Mitchell, Mike Pionke and Sean Thorpe.

Following the conference, on Nov. 2, the CTT staff visited the Allegan County Road Commission and the cities of Grand Rapids and St. Ignace to provide on-site Roadsoft training and technical assistance.

Pair of CEE students chosen as winners at The 3MT Competition

Divya Kamath is a PhD Candidate in Environmental Engineering
Divya Kamath is a PhD Candidate in Environmental Engineering
Leigh Miller
Leigh Miller is a returning PCMI Civil Engineering student

The Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, held on Oct. 12, featured 10 speakers from departments across the University. The 3MT celebrates the research of graduate students across the world. The competition supports their capacity to effectively explain their research in three minutes, in a language appropriate to a non-specialist audience.

Six of the students who participated advanced from the preliminary heats to compete in the finals. The winner of the competition, who will advance to the Midwestern Association of Graduate School’s 3MT Competition in April, was Divya Kamath’s (Environmental engineering PhD candidate) presentation on improving water quality with aquesous phase advanced oxidation processes. Muraleekrishnan Menon’s presentation on improving wind turbine rotors using active flow-control devices took second. The audience selected Leigh Miller’s (Civil Engineering PCMI student) presentation on the protection of clean water in Panama as their favorite for the People’s Choice Award.

The event was sponsored by the Graduate Student Government and the Graduate School. Thank you to all of the judges, volunteers and competitors who helped make the event a success.

CTT Staff Support TAMC 2016

TAMC 2016
Staff from the Center for Technology and Training (CTT), a part of the department of civil and environmental engineering, provided training and technical assistance for the Michigan Transportation Asset Management Council’s (TAMC) 2016 fall conference, held in Marquette on Thursday (Oct. 13, 2016). The bi-annual conference brings together representatives from Michigan’s transportation agencies as well as agencies’ superintendents, managers and staff.

Colling is Awarded

The TAMC awarded CTT Director Timothy Colling with the Carmine Palumbo Individual Award for his asset management-related service in Michigan. Additionally, Colling delivered a presentation entitled “Inventory-based Rating and Roadsoft Enhancements” during the conference. Colling, in conjunction with Technical Writer Victoria Sage, represented the CTT and helped plan and facilitate the conference.

International Activity for the Rail Transportation Group

WCRR 2016Faculty, students and staff involved in the Rail Transportation Program (RTP) had a busy summer in both presenting at and organizing conferences and events.

In late May, Pasi Lautala, director of the program, had a poster presentation on paper by Hamed Pouryousef and Lautala at the 11th World Congress in Railway Research, in Milan, Italy. Lautala also participated in the 2nd Railway Talent workshop as part of the conference.

In early June, Lautala made two presentations at the Global Level Crossing Safety & Trespass Prevention Symposium 2016, in Helsinki, Finland. Both presentations were authored by Myounghoon Jeon, Steven Landry, David Nelson and Lautala. The titles of the presentations were “Design and Evaluation of In-Vehicle Auditory Alerts for Railroad Crossings” and “Driver Behavior at Level Crossings Using Naturalistic Driving Study Data.”

Read more at Tech Today.