Category Archives: Students

Rail Transportation Program Announces CN Scholarship Winners

Students on a train

The Michigan Tech Rail Transportation Program (RTP) is delighted to announce three 2018 winners of the CN Railway Scholarship. CN Railway has been an industry partner of the RTP since 2010, and in 2013 established an endowed fellowship that provides support for the RTP and scholarships to students attending Michigan Tech and involved in the rail industry. Aaron Dean (4th year, MEEM), Clarice Hill (2nd year, MEEM) and Alex Christmas (2nd year, CEE) will all receive a $1000 scholarship from the CN Endowment fund. Scholarship winners are selected each year by RTP’s Rail Transportation Advisory Board.


Ecker and Mustafa Help You Make the Most of the Latest AISC Manual

Steel Construction Manual book cover and interior

Civil engineering Master’s student Nathan Ecker has co-authored an article “Making the Most of the Manual” in the January 2018 issue of Modern Steel Construction. The second author, Muaaz Mustafa, recently graduated from from Bradley University with an MS in civil engineering. Both were American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) interns this past summer.

The article refers to the 15th Edition of the AISC Steel Construction Manual.

MAKING THE MOST OF THE MANUAL

A bevy of resources will help optimize your use of the latest AISC Manual, thus helping you optimize your steel-framed projects.

IN CASE YOU HAVEN’T HEARD, the 15th Edition of the AISC Steel Construction Manual is here! Accompanying its release are some useful, free resources that are at available at www.aisc.org/manualresources. These include the new Version 15.0 Design Examples, Shapes Database and Historical Shapes Database, Basic Design Values Cards and Interactive Reference list. These resources will help you make the most of the new 15th Edition Manual as well as the new 2016 AISC Specification for Structural Steel Buildings (ANSI/ AISC 360, available at www.aisc.org/specifications).

Read more at Modern Steel Construction, by Nathan Ecker and Muaaz Mustafa.


Green Film Series: Issues & Dialogue

(mostly) 3rd Thursdays each month, January – May 2018
Location: G002 Hesterberg Hall, Michigan Tech Forestry Bldg.
Time: 7:00-8:30 pm; enjoy coffee, dessert, and facilitated discussion
Cost: FREE, $3 suggested donation

changes
Jan. 18 – This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate Presents powerful portraits of communities on the front lines, from Montana’s Powder River Basin to the Alberta Tar Sands, from South India to Beijing and beyond. Interwoven with these stories is author Nina Klein’s narration, connecting the carbon in the air with the economic system that put it there. Klein builds to her most exciting idea: that we can seize the crisis of climate change to transform our economic system into something radically better.

 

Feb. 15 - FREIGHTENED: The Real Price of Shipping Goods 90% of goods consumed in the West are manufactured in far-off lands and brought to us by ship. The industry is a key player in world economy forming the basis of our modern civiliza-tion—without shipping, it would be impossible to fulfil the ever-increasing demands of our societies. The film reveals an invisible industry that supplies 7 billion humans and holds the key to our economy, our environment and our civilization.
Feb. 15 – FREIGHTENED: The Real Price of Shipping Goods
90% of goods consumed in the West are manufactured in far-off lands and brought to us by ship. The industry is a key player in world economy forming the basis of our modern civiliza-tion—without shipping, it would be impossible to fulfil the ever-increasing demands of our societies. The film reveals an invisible industry that supplies 7 billion humans and holds the key to our economy, our environment and our civilization.
Friday, March 23 - An American Ascent (202 Great Lakes Research Center) First ascent of Denali attempted by an all African American team. In only a few decades in the U.S., people of color will outnumber today's white majority for the first time. Yet, a staggering number of people in this soon-to-be majority do not consider the outdoors as a place for them. By taking on the grueling 20,310’ peak of the continent's biggest mountain, nine African-American climbers set out to shrink this Adventure Gap, promoting inclusion in the outdoor/adventure community. The film chronicles the challenges of climbing one of the world’s most iconic peaks.
Friday, March 23 – An American Ascent (202 Great Lakes Research Center)
First ascent of Denali attempted by an all African American team. In only a few decades in the U.S., people of color will outnumber today’s white majority for the first time. Yet, a staggering number of people in this soon-to-be majority do not consider the outdoors as a place for them. By taking on the grueling 20,310’ peak of the continent’s biggest mountain, nine African-American climbers set out to shrink this Adventure Gap, promoting inclusion in the outdoor/adventure community. The film chronicles the challenges of climbing one of the world’s most iconic peaks.
April 19 - The Creeping Garden Real life science fiction exploring a world creeping right beneath our feet, where time and space are magnified and intelligence redefined. Exploring the work of scientists, mycologists and artists, and their relationship with the extraordinary plasmodial slime mold which is being used to explore biological-inspired design, emergence theory, unconventional computing and robot controllers.
April 19 – The Creeping Garden
Real life science fiction exploring a world creeping right beneath our feet, where time and space are magnified and intelligence redefined. Exploring the work of scientists, mycologists and artists, and their relationship with the extraordinary plasmodial slime mold which is being used to explore biological-inspired design, emergence theory, unconventional computing and robot controllers.
May 17 - Burned: Are Trees the New Coal? A look at the controversy of creating energy using biomass. Film makers, Lisa Merton & Alan Dater of Marlboro Productions, visited the Warden Electric Plant in L’Anse, as they traveled across the U.S. documenting the problems created by burning this type of “green” material. Many local residents are interviewed and MDEQ public hearings are featured.
May 17 – Burned: Are Trees the New Coal?
A look at the controversy of creating energy using biomass. Film makers, Lisa Merton & Alan Dater of Marlboro Productions, visited the Warden Electric Plant in L’Anse, as they traveled across the U.S. documenting the problems created by burning this type of “green” material. Many local residents are interviewed and MDEQ public hearings are featured.

Students Collaborate with UPPCO for Senior Design

UPPCO and CEE Students

BARAGA COUNTY, Mich. (WLUC) – A group of students are getting real-world experience as part of their senior design project through a collaborative effort between Upper Peninsula Power Company (UPPCO) and Michigan Technological University.

For their project, students are investigating the possibility of adding a new generator at UPPCO’s Prickett hydroelectric generation facility to take advantage of bypass flows that are required under the company’s existing operating license.

Read more at the TV6 FOX UP.


Student, Professor Chosen to Lead Silicon Valley Meetup

University Innovation FellowsMagann Dykema, (CEE) a fourth-year civil engineering student and a University Innovation Fellow, has been chosen by the University Innovation Fellows program as one of 23 student leaders for the program’s Silicon Valley Meetup Nov. 16-20, 2017. This is the third time that Dykema has served in this role.

The student leaders were hand-selected out of an international community of more than 1,200 Fellows for the impact they have had at their schools and for their contributions to the movement.

University Innovation Fellows has also asked Mary Raber (PHC) to serve as one of two mentors to the 30 faculty members who will also attend the event. This is the second time Raber has served in this role.

At the Silicon Valley Meetup, Dykema and Raber will represent their schools in front of 300 student and faculty attendees from 82 universities and colleges around the world. They will share their UIF work, modeling for the new Fellows and faculty the kind of impact they can have at their own schools.

University Innovation Fellows (UIF) is a global program run by Stanford University’s Hasso Plattner Institute of Design. UIF empowers student leaders to increase campus engagement with innovation, entrepreneurship, creativity and design thinking.

By Jenn Donovan.


Environmental Engineering Undergrad Selected as a Portage Health Foundation Intern

Rose Turner

Rose Turner, a senior undergraduate student in environmental program, has been selected as a Portage Health Foundation Intern through the Undergraduate Research Internship Program. Rose will work with Dr. Minakata investigating the treatment feasibility of polyfluorinated carbons using sulfate radicals in advanced oxidation process. Polyfluorinated carbons have been found in nation’s drinking water and one of emerging water contaminants. Rose will present her research findings at the Undergraduate Research Symposium in March 2018.

 


You, Students Travel to Minnesota

Zhanping You MnROAD
Zhanping You at MnROAD Grand Opening in Minnesota

Zhanping You (CEE), students Siyu Chen, Fangyuan Gong, Ran Zhang, and visiting scholars Songtao Lyu and Chundi Si attended the National Road Research Alliance (NRRA) Grand Opening at MnROAD Tuesday, October 10, 2017.

You received a plaque from Minnesota Department of Transportation Commissioner Charles Zelle for Associate Member Michigan Tech Transportation Institute. US Rep. Tom Emmer and Zelle joined the event.

Zelle, Deputy Commissioner Susan Mulvihil and associate members of NRRA cut the ribbon with Rep. Emmer.

MnROAD, located near Albertville, Minnesota, is a pavement test track consisting of various combinations of road-building materials and designs. MnROAD collects pavement field data with thousands of sensors located in each test section. A tour of MnROAD Low Volume Road was shown by the MnROAD staffs.

PHOTO GALLERY


Rail Transportation Program and Railroad Club Activities

Railway InterchangeRail Transportation Program and Railroad Club participate in Railway Interchange

Pasi Lautala, director of Michigan Tech’s Rail Transportation Program (RTP) and 11 undergraduate and graduate students participated in the Railway Interchange on Sept. 17-20, 2017, in Indianapolis.

With over 8,500 participants, Railway Interchange is the largest railway conference in the US, organized by several professional associations. As part of the student activities, Team 1 of the Railroad Engineering and Activities Club (REAC), consisting of Aaron Dean (ME), Alyssa Leach (CE), Alex Christmas (CE), Derek Owen (CE) and Mario Marachini (CE) got 3rd place in the student quiz bowl. Team 2 (Kyle Dick, Andrew Erickson, Erick Flaten, Clive Pinto, Pratik Tuplondhetook) took 7th place in the bowl. Aaron Dean also had success in the undergraduate student poster competition, taking the 1st place with his poster on “Using In-Vehicle Head Orientation Sensing Data to Rapidly Evaluate Driver Visual Scanning Behavior at Rail Grade Crossings”. Dean also presented a poster- “The Evaluation of Driver Compliance Behavior at Grade Crossings based on Naturalistic Driving Study Data” by Modeste Muhire in his absence as part of the graduate poster competition, taking the 2nd place.

As part of the conference, five Michigan Tech students were also recognized for winning student scholarships by the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance of Way Association (AREMA). To cap a successful conference, Dr. Pasi Lautala presented “Evaluation of Driver Behavior at Highway Rail Grade Crossings” in the closing general session of the conference.

Rail Transportation Program presents at the SHRP2 Safety Symposium

Pasi Lautala, director of Michigan Tech’s Rail Transportation Program (RTP) and Aaron Dean, a senior in the ME Department and an undergraduate research assistant for the RTP, participated in the Tenth SHRP 2 “Safety Data Symposium: From Analysis to Results” on Oct.6, 2017, in Washington, DC.

The Symposium included nineteen selected presentations by the researchers within and outside the US that use the SHRP 2 Naturalistic Driving Study database.

Aaron Dean presented his research on “Development & Validation of Post-Processing Methods for the SHRP2 MASK Head Pose Data”, and Lautala presented on “Using NDS data to evaluate driver behavior at highway-rail grade crossings”.

Michigan Tech was the only institution invited to make two presentations in the conference and Dean was the only undergraduate presenter.


Rail Transportation Program Leads Two Rail Related Senior Design Projects

Peshekee Wood Yard

RTP lead two rail related civil/environmental senior design projects during the 2016-17 school year.  During the fall semester a team of 15 students worked on improvements to the Peshekee logyard owned and operated by Longyear, LLC.  Their work included rail and highway transportation improvements to serve the site, preliminary plans for a rail served transload warehouse and fuels transload area, and environmental permitting requirements for the proposed work.  Suggested improvements included 3950 linear feet of trackwork valued at $1.5 million, $560,000 in site improvements, $230,000 for equipment and tanks to support the fuels transload operation, and $150,000 for the transload warehouse.  An additional $200,000 was recommended to procure a trackmobile to improve rail operations in the expanded site.  Environmental costs were reduced by the team recommendation for wetland preservation in place of more costly remediation methods.

Peshekee Wood Yard 2.jpg

During the spring semester a separate team of 16 students worked with Sawyer International Airport to provide conceptual and preliminary work on rail access to a proposed refinery site and rail and highway access to a proposed warehouse site.  The refinery access team recommended constructing a loop track with 3.5 miles of new trackwork at a price of nearly $9million, while the warehouse team found that rail access would require $6.5 million for the full build out, but a phased approach could bring initial construction down to 21,000 linear feet of rail at $4.5 million, with the remaining work completed as traffic at the warehouse site developed.  Highway access and parking facilities for the new warehouse complex would require 3500 linear feet of new roadway, and 160,000 square feet of new parking and support pavements at a price of nearly $3.5 million.  SAI also asked our environmental team to look at a recent study on PFC contamination on the airport site produced by the US Air Force Civil Engineering Center. The team produced a detailed report, including recommendations for additional testing and monitoring.


Cold Weather Dusting from Mine Tailing Impoundments

oommen-personnelVitton seagren-personnel

Dr. Thomas Oommen, Dr. Stanley Vitton and Dr. Eric Seagren recently completed a NSF project on dusting from mine tailings impoundments.  In the project they evaluated remote sensing tools for monitoring impoundments for dusting potential, and innovative biomediated approaches for mitigating dusting.  In particular, they focused on the problem of cold weather dusting.

As part of the project output, with the help of the CinOptics Enterprise on campus, they are producing a series of videos on the problem of cold weather dusting from mine tailings impoundments, and conventional and innovative techniques for mitigating cold weather dusting.

This is the first video in the series.  It is a review of the problem of cold weather dusting.