Category Archives: News

Chemical Engineering Professor Michael Mullins Wins Fulbright Distinguished Chair Award

image123334-horizThe Fulbright Scholarship Program is known throughout the world. Each year 8,000 Fulbright grants are awarded to graduate students, university faculty and researchers worldwide. Of those, just 40 recipients are chosen for Fulbright Distinguished Chair Awards, viewed as the most prestigious appointments in the Fulbright Scholar Program. For the first time, a Michigan Technological University professor has joined that elite group of eminent scholars.
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Minerick Named Associate Dean for Research and Innovation

image122968-horiz2Adrienne Minerick has been named the first associate dean for research and innovation in Michigan Tech’s College of Engineering. Dean of the College of Engineering Wayne Pennington said Minerick will coordinate faculty and staff engagement with each other and with agencies that fund research projects, ranging from single-investigator one-year projects to complex multi-disciplinary projects involving several institutions and spanning years.

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Pan American Researchers Gather in Houghton

by David Shonnard

About 40 biofuel and bioenergy researchers from many countries in the Pan American region (from Argentina to Canada) will attend a workshop hosted by the Sustainable Futures Institute at Michigan Tech tomorrow through Friday.

The goals of the workshop are to develop a research roadmap report (RRR) with diverse international perspectives and to recommend priority areas for future research. The RRR will be disseminated to funding agencies such as the National Science Foundation, Department of Energy and other federal research sponsors in the United States and their equivalents in other Pan American countries, as well as to industry and the general public.

This is the final workshop in the NSF-funded project “RCN-SEES: A Research Coordination Network on Pan American Biofuel and Bioenergy Sustainability”. The project is directed by David Shonnard (ChE) and with co-investigators Barry Solomon (SS), Kathy Halvorsen (SS), Sam Sweitz (SS) and Robert Handler (SF I).

Pan American Researchers Gather in Houghton
Pan American Researchers Gather in Houghton
Pan American Researchers Gather in Houghton
RCN Workshop on Pan American Biofuels & Bioenergy Sustainability Michigan Technological University

Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE)

Project efforts focus on woody bioenergy for heat and power, switchgrass used for cellulosic ethanol, and palm and jatropha oil for biodiesel in six case studies across Brazil, Mexico, Canada, Uruguay, Argentina, and the United States (US). This allows us to examine diverse socio-ecological systems in countries experiencing rapid bioenergy development. These systems’ complexity enables the development of new approaches to studying and assessing sustainability as it relates to dynamic systems in general, while focusing on bioenergy in particular.

Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE)
Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE)
PIRE Student Group
PIRE Student Group

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Bioenergy Across the Americas

ECNmag, an online energy magazine, reported on an international conference hosted by Michigan Tech, where 80 researchers from six countries including the US, Canada, Argentina, Brazil, Mexico and Uruguay met to discuss bioenergy.

Chemical Engineering News Briefs

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Associate Dean for Research and Innovation, Adrienne Minerick (ChE), has received a $50,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for a research project titled, EAGER: Therapeutic Protein Separations via Surface Isoelectric Focusing (SIEF).

Technology Century, a science and technology news website run by the Engineering Society of Detroit, published an article about the NSF-funded meeting of multidisciplinary bioenergy researchers from Canada, the US, Central and South America that was held at Michigan Tech last week. Read the article.

In an article about graphene, The Economist mentioned Michigan Tech’s research into graphene-based 3-D bioprinting to regenerate nerve cells in patients with spinal cord injuries.

Technology Century, a science and technology news website published by the Engineering Society of Detroit, reported on a visit by ESD executives to Michigan Tech and plans to establish a student chapter of the ESD at Michigan Tech.

Tech Century, a science and technology news service published by the Engineering Society of Detroit, ran a comprehensive report and photo gallery on their tour of Michigan Tech engineering labs last week.

ScienceAroundMichigan, a science news website focusing on Michigan research, published an article on the international bioenergy conference held at Michigan Tech earlier this month.

Caryn Heldt (ChE) is the principal on a three-year research and development project that received a $349,250 grant from the National Science Foundation. The project is titled, GOALI: Graphene Paper Sensor for Disease Detection.
Also involved in the project are Adrienne Minerick (ChE), Julia King (ChE) and Warren Perger (ECE).

TV 6 and Fox UP, reported on Professor Adrienne Minerick’s (ChemEng) appointment as associate dean for research and innovation in Tech’s College of Engineering. You can view the story online.

Assistant Professor Caryn Heldt (ChE) has been awarded an Air Force Summer Faculty Fellowship to conduct research at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio on graphene biosensors.

Adrienne Minerick has been invited to serve on the Chemical Engineering Education (CEE) Journal Publications Board. Her three-year appointment will begin Fall 2015. CEE is the premier archival journal for chemical engineering educators.

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CPM Wins 2015 Michigan Tech Design Expo Award

IMG_9685The Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise won 2nd Place in the 2015 Michigan Tech Design Expo.

Team Leader: Paul Hagadone, Chemical Engineering
Advisors: Tony Rogers and Sean Clancey, Chemical Engineering
Sponsors: AFI, BASF Corporation, City of Midland, nanoMAG, Razor Edge Systems, Wisconsin and Southern Railroad

Project Overview: CPM aims to exceed the expectations of company sponsors, improve the lives of consumers through innovation, and develop students into highly marketable professionals. The project goals for our team include improving runoff models to provide advanced flood warning in Midland, designing a kiln for cleaner charcoal production in Benin, using food waste as an alternative energy source at Michigan Tech, developing a water filtration system to cool industrial process streams, curing coatings at lower temperatures using catalysts, integrating hightech materials into athletic equipment, designing collapsible packaging for a large volume of liquid product, and conceiving and testing an innovative product idea from within CPM.

Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise at Design Expo
Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise at Design Expo
Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise at Design Expo
Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise at Design Expo
Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise at Design Expo
Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise at Design Expo

Mine Water Geothermal Project Wins Award

by Allison Mills
On April 11-13, a team of nine Michigan Tech students participated in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Sustainable Design Expo as a part of the P3 program for People, Prosperity and Planet in Washington DC. The team won the AIChE Youth Council on Sustainable Science and Technology P3 Award. This award was given to one of 40 teams by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers’ Institute for Sustainability and SustainUS, a nonprofit organization of young people advancing sustainable development and youth empowerment in the United States. The award recognizes the team that has the most interdisciplinary and community engaged project that will have a significant impact on reducing resource use locally, regionally, nationally or globally and that can benefit youth.

The team also earned an Honorable Mention P3 Award from the EPA.

The team includes the following students and was mentored by Jay Meldrum (director of the Keweenaw Research Center) and Richelle Winkler (assistant professor in social sciences):
Edward Louie, MS environmental and energy policy
David Anna, BS mechanical engineering
Krista Blumberg, BS chemical engineering
Andrew Garrod, BS mechanical engineering
Melissa Michaelson, BS anthropology
Dana Savage, BS chemical engineering
Nicolette Slagle, MS environmental engineering sciences
Theresa Tran, BS science and technical communication
Kayla Warsko, BS chemical engineering

Chemical Engineering Convocation 2015

IMG_8187 (450x300)The Chemical Engineering department Convocation ytook place in the Memorial Union Ballroom on April 1, 2015. Dr. James H. Comfort, General Manager, Cloud Services, IBM Cloud Division provided the keynote address. Dr. Comfort, a native of St. Paul, Minnesota, received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Michigan Tech in 1983 and Ph.D in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1988. The evening before, Dr. Comfort spoke at Fisher 135. The title was “Crafting a Career in Uncharted Waters: A Journey from Chemical Engineering to Cloud Computing and Back.”

Watch the video on Engineering Michigan Tech Channel on Vimeo Crafting a Career in Uncharted Waters: Dr. James H. Comfort

Many More Pictures in the Chemical Engineering 2015 Photo Gallery

Julia Zayan and Dr. James Comfort
Julia Zayan and Dr. James Comfort
Awards were presented for Prevent Accidents With Safety (PAWS) Awards: Megan Haechrel, Kristopher Kacynski, Kyle Lepeak, Eric Simon and Shannon Solden
Awards were presented for Prevent Accidents With Safety (PAWS) Awards: Megan Haechrel, Kristopher Kacynski, Kyle Lepeak, Eric Simon and Shannon Solden
Kimberly-Clark Communication Award: Megan Williams
Kimberly-Clark Communication Award: Megan Williams
Kimberly-Clark Professional Ethics Award:  Daniel LaForest
Kimberly-Clark Professional Ethics Award: Daniel LaForest
Dow Chemical Marriott W. Bredekamp Award: Paul Hagadone Jesse Johnson, Daniel LaForest and Stephanie Marshall
Dow Chemical Marriott W. Bredekamp Award: Paul Hagadone Jesse Johnson, Daniel LaForest and Stephanie Marshall
UOP Davis W. Hubbard Plant Design Team Award: Austin Gauthier, Ethan LeSage, Kaden Nesky and Danny Stawicki
UOP Davis W. Hubbard Plant Design Team Award: Austin Gauthier, Ethan LeSage, Kaden Nesky and Danny Stawicki
“Outstanding TA of the Year” Award: Danielle McDonald
“Outstanding TA of the Year” Award: Danielle McDonald
“Research Mentor of the Year” award: Caryn Heldt
“Research Mentor of the Year” award: Caryn Heldt
Teacher of the Year Award: Julie King
Teacher of the Year Award: Julie King

More Pictures in the Chemical Engineering 2015 Photo Gallery

Making a Difference Award Winners Recognized

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Several staff members were honored with Michigan Tech Staff Council Making a Difference Awards at an awards program in the MUB Wednesday.

Above and Beyond Award: David Caspary (ChemEng)
One of David’s nomination letters states that “David goes above and beyond every day to make sure that chemical engineering students get the best education possible, and that the department runs to benefit the students.” His primary role is to manage the world-class Process Simulation and Control Center. He runs Summer Youth Programs in the lab, serves on the Chemical Engineering Departmental Executive Committee and works closely with alumni. Continue reading

Biotechnology Research Center Research Forum Awards

Maria Gencoglu
Maria Gencoglu
The Eleventh Annual Research Forum sponsored by the Biotechnology Research Center was held on Wednesday, Oct. 22, and Thursday, Oct. 23. Forty-one graduate and undergraduate students conducting research in life science, biotechnology, human health and related areas presented posters. Oral presentations were also given. Speakers included Jeremy Goldman (Bio Med), Ashutosh Tiwari (Chem), Hairong Wei (SFRES), Justin Segula (SFRES graduate student), Jingtuo Zhang (Chem graduate student) and Caleb Vogt (Bio Med undergrad student). Continue reading