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Design Expo 2014 Awards

Monday, April 21st, 2014

The Design Expo highlights hands-on, discovery-based learning at Michigan Tech. More than 600 students in Enterprise and Senior Design teams showcase their work and compete for awards. A panel of judges, made up of corporate representatives and Michigan Tech staff and faculty members, critique the projects. Many of them are sponsored by industry, which allows students to gain valuable experience through competition at the Expo, as well as direct exposure to real industrial problems. The fourteenth annual Expo is a combined effort of the College of Engineering and the Institute for Leadership and Innovation. The event was held in the J. Robert Van Pelt and John and Ruanne Opie Library Third Floor exhibit area on Thursday April 17, 2014.

The Design Expo highlights the core foundations of a Michigan Tech education: experiential learning; teamwork; application of theory, design, and innovation; leadership and communication; and multidisciplinary solutions to problems. The Enterprise and Senior Design students showcasing their projects today have embraced these foundations. We take tremendous pride in their accomplishments
and hard work.

Michigan Tech’s innovative Enterprise Program enables interdisciplinary learning, leadership development, and team-based work. Teams of first- through fourth-year students from diverse disciplines operate much like real companies to develop products, processes, and services within their market space. Faculty advisors serve as coaches and mentors, with industry leaders playing a
supporting role as collaborators and clients.

Senior Design enables small teams of highly dedicated students to explore and solve real industry challenges throughout their senior year. Our program connects students and industry through openended projects, which enable teams to experience and follow the complete design process—from ideation to realization.


First Place:  Team 222 Consumer Product Manufacturing

First Place: Team 222 Consumer Product Manufacturing

Second Place: Team 209 Alternative Energy Enterprise

Third Place: Team 204 Husky Game Development

(See other team pictures in the Photo Gallery from Design Expo 2014)


First Place: Teams 144/147, RAM Tailgate Structure & Accessory

First Place: Teams 144/147, RAM Tailgate Structure & Accessory Team Members: Christian Vreeland, Thomas Gruber, Evan Rosemore, Taylor Erva, Kraig Kadletz, Andrew Pospychala, Chad Dickenscheid, and Greg Reed, Mechanical Engineering Advisor: Gregory Odegard, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Sponsor: Chrysler Group LL

Team Members: Christian Vreeland, Thomas Gruber, Evan Rosemore, Taylor Erva, Kraig Kadletz, Andrew Pospychala, Chad Dickenscheid, and Greg Reed,  Mechanical Engineering

Advisor: Gregory Odegard, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Sponsor: Chrysler Group LLC

Second Place: Team 120, Automated Aircraft Sealant System

Team Members: Alison Hilditch, Andrew Reed, Nicole Maggi, and William Yahr, Mechanical Engineering; Matthew Courchaine and Patrick Harris, Electrical Engineering

Advisor: Aneet Narendranath, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Sponsor: HGS Aerospace

Third Place: Team 127: Rotary Cartridge Assembly System

Team Members: Benjamin Abraham, Sarah Daniels, and Kristi Ross, Mechanical Engineering

Advisor: Eddy Trinklein, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Sponsor: Lendrex

Honorable Mention 1: Team 105, Lightweight POP Rivet Gun

Team Members: Eric Phillips, Caleb Walk, Justin Osterhout, Daniel Carpenter, and Anthony Carley, Mechanical Engineering

Advisors: William Endres and Gregory Odegard, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Sponsor: Chrysler Group LLC

Honorable Mention 2: Team 146, Delivery Tool for a Leadless Pacemaker

Team Members: Emily Helminen, Samantha Hilliger, Daniel Leppek, Cody Mingo, Tyler Myers, and Anna Ylitalo, Biomedical Engineering

Advisor: Rupak Rajachar, Biomedical Engineering

Sponsor: Medtronic Inc.

Honorable Mention 3: Team 148, Personal Ultraviolet Radiation Monitor

Team Members: Neil Momsen, Nicole Westphal, Michael Ramalia, Joseph Frontera, and Bradley Cassiday, Biomedical Engineering

Advisors: Megan Frost and Sean Kirkpatrick, Biomedical Engineering

Sponsor: Department of Biomedical Engineering


First Place: Team 205, Velovations Enterprise

First Place: Team 205, Velovations Enterprise Team Leaders: Jay Woodbeck and Derek Turner, Mechanical Engineering Advisor: Paulus Van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Sponsors: Specialized Bicycles, Cane Creek Cycling Components, Thomson Bike Products

Team Leaders: Jay Woodbeck and Derek Turner, Mechanical Engineering

Advisor: Paulus Van Susante, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Sponsors: Specialized Bicycles, Cane Creek Cycling Components, Thomson Bike Products

Second Place (Tie): Team 215 Formula SAE

Team Leaders: Alisha Clark and Chais Eliason, Mechanical Engineering

Advisor: James DeClerck, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Sponsors: Autodesk, Polaris, GM, 3M, Ford, DENSO, Meritor, Cummins, John Deere, Alcoa, Chrysler, A&P Technology, ArcelorMittal, TeamTech, Mitsubishi Electric, Plascore, Continental

Second Place (Tie): Team 109, Balise and RFID Use in Rail Systems

Team Members: Frank Kampe, Marketing; Kevin Heras and Daniel Holmerg, Management; Min Li, Operations and Systems Management

Advisor: Saurav Pathak, School of Business and Economics

Sponsor: Technical Expert Network

Design Expo 2014 Images submitted for Image Contest


Best Overall: Stair Climbing Cane

Best Overall: 128 Stair Climbing Cane Team Members: Melissa Mack, Travis Neu, Alyssa Hynnek, Caitlyn Privette, and David Rosen, Biomedical Engineering

Team Members: Melissa Mack, Travis Neu, Alyssa Hynnek, Caitlyn Privette, and David Rosen, Biomedical Engineering

Best Technical Specification:  Martyboard – Portable Assisted Mobility Device

Ashley Kerschen, Jacob Pederson, and Jacob Liimatta, Mechanical Engineering

Best Prior Art Review and Competitive Analysis:  Synthetic Drug Detection Platform

Team Members: Tylor Rathsack, Michael Oates, Jacob Pleshe, Corey Thiel, Mechanical Engineering

There are more pictures of the Enterprise and Senior Capstone Design Teams and the Design Expo event:
Photo Gallery from Design Expo 2014

Design Expo 2014 Images submitted for Image Contest

Design Expo Website

Video clips from Expo 2014 will be able as the are processed.

Rick Berkey Receives SAE Faculty Advisor Award

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

The Society of Automotive Engineers International has honored Rick Berkey, industry projects manager for the Institute for Leadership and Innovation, with the 2014 Faculty Advisor Award. Berkey is the faculty advisor for the Supermileage Systems Enterprise.

“This is a significant honor for Rick, which recognizes his success as an advisor for the SAE Supermileage team and as a mentor for our students,” said ME-EM Department Chair Bill Predebon. “Rick utilizes his strong industry experience in teaching and mentoring his students.”

According to the SAE International website, “Dedicated faculty advisors encourage students to join SAE International and participate in Collegiate Chapters and the Collegiate Design Series, which helps them develop key skills that are transferrable to their careers.”

The SAE Faculty Advisor Award was established in 1990 and funded by the Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award Fund to recognize faculty advisors who “embody this professionalism and dedication to SAE.”

Previous winners from Michigan Tech were Jason Blough (ME-EM) and Carl Anderson (ME-EM), who were both honored twice.

World Water Day Activities at Michigan Tech

Friday, March 21st, 2014

Article by Erika Vichcales, student writer, from Tech Today, Updated March 28, 2014

In recognition of World Water Day, Michigan Tech sponsored a variety of events through March 27. This year’s international event focuses on water and energy and the connections between them.

World Water Day was started by the United Nations to raise awareness about the problems surrounding water on our planet. The world is more than 70 percent covered in water, yet less than 1 percent is available for people to use.

“Given our location, with water surrounding us, it is important to recognize the significance of water and the threats being faced by that water,” said Professor Noel Urban (CEE), the director of the Center for Water and Society. “Because we have so much water here we may not think that it is a scarce resource, but even within the Great Lakes Basin water scarcity occurs. Water quality is also an issue throughout the region.”

Michigan Tech’s World Water Day events included the following:

Monday, March 24
* Seminar by Interim Dean of Engineering Wayne Pennington on the “Nuts and Bolts of Unconventional Oil and Gas Development (Including all you might like to know about the technology and practice of hydraulic fracturing)” 3 p.m., Great Lakes Research Center 202. See the video

Wednesday, March 26
* World Water Day student poster session, 4-7 p.m., Dow Lobby. The posters will illustrate their research and course work that involves water.
* Water’s Edge Art Exhibit, Great Lakes Research Center. On display will be the work of three different artists. The exhibition will run through April 23.
* Lecture by Robert Howarth of Cornell University on environmental impacts of hydraulic fracking, the practice of injecting water underground to release deposits of oil and natural gas, 5:30 p.m. See the video

Thursday March 27
* A panel discussion on hydraulic fracturing, 10 a.m.-noon, Great Lakes Research Center 202. View the video

* Lecture: Frank Ettawageshik, Executive Director, United Tribes of Michigan
“When can we drink the water? Reflections on Indigenous water rights and sovereignty”
Guest lecture in Emma Norman’s World Resources Development class
“The main things students need to think about is how important water really is to humans and to all of our economic and cultural activity, and the need to preserve that for future generations,” said Urban. “It’s a time to think about how well we are doing that task.”

World Water Day events are sponsored by the Center for Water and Society, Sustainable Futures Institute, Keweenaw Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, Keweenaw Land Trust, Great Lakes Research Center, Visual and Performing Arts, and Finlandia University. Partial funding was provided by the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc. through a grant from the Johnson Family Foundation for a Let’s Talk About Water event.

Link to More photos and individual Poster Photos

World Water Day Poster Awards

The Center for Water and Society thanks all of the students who participated in the CWS World Water Day Poster Competition. The poster session is a significant part of our World Water Day events, and is a great opportunity to share the water research taking place at Michigan Tech. The electronic version of the posters will soon be on the CWS website for those of you who missed the poster session, or would like to review them more thoroughly.

Congratulations to our award winners!

Original Research Awards

Jennifer Fuller – 1st place – $250
Civil & Environmental Engineering
Developing a Sustainable Treatment Solution to an Urgent Problem: Synthetic Hormones in the Water Cycle

Marcel Dijkstra – 2nd place – $150
Civil & Environmental Engineering
Ecosystem function in Lake Superior: Impacts of an episodic climate anomaly

Alex Collins – 3rd place tie – $100
School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science
Inter-annual Differences in the Water Use of Mature Sugar Maple in Response to Experimental Warming and Irrigation

Ashley Coble – 3rd place tie – $100
Biological Sciences
Nutrient Limitation and Temporal Variability of Dissolved Organic Carbon Mineralization in a Lake Superior Tributary

Coursework/Informational Awards

Mary Moritz – 1st place – $250
Civil & Environmental Engineering
The Barro Blanco Dam: 30 years of engineering and politics

Jennifer Fuller – 2nd place – $150
Civil & Environmental Engineering
Performance Evaluations on the Removal of Synthetic Hormones by Advanced Oxidation Processes in Drinking Water Treatment

Laura Gallagher – 3rd place – $100
Civil & Environmental Engineering
Pseudo-steady State Evaluations on the Removal of n-propylbenzene from Water by Aqueous Phase Advanced Oxidation Processes

Link to More photos and individual Poster Photos

Lecture Guest Speaker: Dr. Robert Howarth, Cornell University

Panel Discussion on hydraulic fracturing

World Water Day poster competition

Link to More photos and individual Poster Photos

Michigan Tech Students Went to Detroit for Alternative Spring Break

Friday, March 14th, 2014

Students from the Michigan Tech National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) visited seven middle and high schools in Detroit over their Spring Break, March 11-14, 2014, to promote college and engineering to K-12 students. In the evenings, they conducted Family Engineering Night events at three K-8 schools. NSBE’s Alternative Spring Break is conducted in collaboration with the Detroit Public Schools Office of Science and the Detroit Math & Science Center, and funded in part, with a grant from John Deere.

WXYZ Channel 7 news in Detroit aired a feature story about an interview with Michigan Tech NSBE student chapter members in Detroit, working to motivate middle and high school students in Detroit schools to see college in their futures and to study science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Read More about Michigan Tech Students Head to Detroit for Alternative Spring Break

Michigan Tech NSBE students Family Engineering session at classroom in Detroit shown here in a photo from 2014

SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge 2014 Reports, Photos, Videos

Monday, March 10th, 2014

The Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Department is
a partner with the Keweenaw Research Center for the SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge held at Michigan Tech.

Playlist of Videos of Overview, Dan Hancock, president of SAE remarks, Opening, and other video clips

A page leading to the all of the results, news stories and photo galleries is provided by the department. Links to 2014 Results Pictures and Videos

Also Videos and a Video Playlist of the Handling Competition.

Photo Gallery of the 2014 Events

Results News Report: Kettering, McGill Win 2014 Clean Snowmobile Challenge

Dan Hancock, the president of SAE International, attended several of events and spoke at the Awards banquet.

Michigan Tech received the Bill Paddleford Founder’s Award for Most Sportsmanlike Conduct.

William Predebon, Chair ME-EM Department, Dave Reed, vice president for research, Michigan Tech and Dan Hancock, the president of SAE International

World Water Day Hosts a Week of Events

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

World Water Day Events at MTU: March 20, 26-27, 2014
More information

March 20: Gasland Film (7:00 pm)
March 26: WWD Poster Session (3:30-7:00pm)
Informal research discussions with students (4:00-5:00 pm)
WWD Lecture: Dr. Robert Howarth (5:30pm)
Open reception (6:30)

March 27: Hydrofraccing panel discussion (10:00am-12:00pm)
March 20–April 23: Water’s Edge Art Exhibit in the GLRC

The Center for Water and Society World Water Day Poster Competition
2 Categories of prizes: Original Research and Coursework/Informational
Open to all graduate and undergraduate students
Faculty are encouraged to assign posters as individual or group projects in their courses

Accepting Registrations through Friday, March 7, 2014 (Friday before Spring Break)

World Water Day Event Schedule:

Thursday, March 20, 2014
Green Film Series: Showing of the Gasland film
Forestry G002, Hesterberg Hall 7:00 pm

Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Student posters on display 3:30-7:00 pm
Informal research discussions with students 4:00-5:00 pm

The World Water Day Lecture
Dr. Robert Howarth, Cornell University Howarth-Marino Lab Group
“Gas from shale hydrofraccing: Environmental consequences of this new and rapidly developing phenomenon”
See Abstract
Dow 641 5:30 pm
An open reception will follow the seminar

Thursday, March 27, 2014
Panel Discussion on hydrofraccing
Moderator: Dr. Jennifer Arrigo, CUAHSI
GLRC 202 10:00am-noon

March 20- April 23, 2014
Water’s Edge Art Exhibit
Great Lakes Research Center
Featured Artists: Amy Arntson, Joyce Koskenmaki, Bonnie Peterson
World Water Day is sponsored by the Center for Water and Society (CWS), a grant/partial funding by the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc. (CUAHSI), Sustainable Futures Institute (SFI), Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC), Visual and Performing Arts, Finlandia University, Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative (LSSI), Keweenaw Unitarian Universalist Fellowship (KUUF), Keweenaw Land Trust (KLT).

Graduate Research Colloquium Awards

Monday, February 24th, 2014

Awards from the Graduate Research Colloquium 2014 Banquet held on February 20, 2014 at the Memorial Union Ballroom.

Ranjeeth Naik, ME-EM, Exceptional Graduate Student Scholar Award
Patrick Belling, Cognitive and Learning Sciences, Exceptional Graduate Student Leader Award
Kaitlyn Bunker, Electrical and Computer Engineering, 1st Place Poster
Komal Raja, Biological Sciences, 2nd Place Poster
Sasha Teymorian, Chemistry, 3rd Place Poster
Morton Harwood, Biological Sciences, 1st Place Presentation
Mehdi Mortazavi, ME-EM, 2nd Place Presentation
Shawn O’Neil, Forest Resources and Environmental Science, 3rd Place Presentation
Jennifer Fuller, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Favorite Poster Award
Maryam Khaksari, Chemical Engineering, Highest Attended Presentation Award

Dr. Stephen Kampe, Exceptional Graduate Faculty Mentor Award

There was also the Recipients of GSG Service Award, Dean’s Award for Outstanding Scholarship and Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award

Full Gallery of Photos and Results of the Graduate Research Colloquium 2014 Awards Banquet 2014

Graduate Research Colloquium Photo Gallery 2014

Graduate Research Colloquium

GRC Abstract Book

During the Graduate Research Colloquium 2014 Awards Banquet, the Michigan Technological University Board of Control stopped by the Memorial Union and Dr. Glenn Mroz and Stephen J. Hicks, Chair of Board of Control spoke to the crowd.

Stephen J. Hicks, Chair of Board of Control at Graduate Research Colloquium 2014

Board of Control at Graduate Research Colloquium 2014 at Michigan Technological University

Graduate Research Colloquium 2014 at Michigan Technological University

Rail Night Brings Industry, Educators and Students Together

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

Railroad Night offered a relaxed dine-with-industry setting for faculty, students, industry, administration and community to meet each other and to learn more about railroads and the railroad industry. The event included hors d’oeuvres , cash bar, door prizes, and more. This event continues to draw in record numbers of participants with each year with over 165 this year. The Keynote Speaker was Lisa Stabler, President of the Transportation Technology Center Inc., Pueblo, Colorado.

The Rail Transportation Program (RTP) and the Rail Engineering and Activities Club (REAC) organized the 9th Annual Railroad Night and related Rail Day activities recently. Railroad Night’s 150-plus participants made for a full house and an exciting evening. The event drew in 15 industry company sponsors including RTP program partners Norfolk Southern, Union Pacific and CN.

The Rail Transportation Program has been founded on a multi-disciplinary approach and this year’s Railroad Night demonstrated the interest across the university. Students and faculty from a diverse cross section of campus attended the event. Faculty and students from ten departments were represented, as well as the administration, including Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Max Seel, Board of Control member Paul Ollila and Vice President for Governmental Relations Dale Tahtinen.

This year’s REAC honorary member, Tom Bartlett (EE, 2008), from Union Pacific was awarded an Honorary REAC membership for his contributions to advance the RTP and REAC. Keynote speaker Lisa Stabler, president of the Transportation Technology Center Inc. (TTCI) of Pueblo, Colo., and one of the leading female executives in the industry gave a presentation on rail industry research and outlook from TTCI. Over 80 students signed up to participate in the event and were provided the opportunity to socialize, network, and dine with industry and faculty. The event this year is considered a great success and yet another step to strengthen ties between faculty researchers, rail industry representatives, local technology companies and students from Michigan Tech.

Keynote Speaker: Lisa Stabler, President of the Transportation Technology Center Inc., Pueblo, Colorado shown here with Pasi Lautala of Rail Transportation Center of Michigan Tech

A rail simulator was provided by New York Brake at Rail Night for people to try being an engineer

Rail Night at Michigan Tech: Rail Industry, Educators & Students

Some Video Clips of Railroad Night 2014

Graduate Research Colloquium Set for this Wednesday and Thursday

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014

by Dennis Walikainen, senior editor

It’s a chance for Michigan Tech graduate students to shine. The Graduate Research Colloquium, slated for Wednesday and Thursday, Feb. 19 and 20, showcases the work of current grad students, as they present their findings to judges and visitors alike.

The event coincides with the University’s Career Fair, held Tuesday, Feb. 18 and the timing is great, according to Jackie Huntoon, associate provost and dean of the Graduate School. (more…)

Society of Women Engineers Conference at Michigan Tech

Monday, February 17th, 2014

The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) section at Michigan Tech hosted the 2014 Region H SWE Conference on Michigan Tech’s campus Feb. 14 to 16. There were approximately 700 in attendance.
The conference drew members from nine Midwestern states. Three quarters of registered attendees are collegiate section members, with the rest coming from professional sections.
The c onference activities included: A networking lunch with industry professionals, a Career Fair with companies looking to recruit female employees, and a keynote speech by Patricia K Poppe, the vice president of customer experience and operations for Consumers Energy and a banquet speech by Martha Sullivan, the president and CEO of Sensata Technologies.

Photo Gallery of Events at the Society of Women Engineers Conference at Michigan Tech


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