Category Archives: Research

M-TRAC Request for Proposals Now Open

image11264-persMichigan Tech’s Office of Innovation and Industry Engagement (IIE) announces a call for proposals for its new Michigan Translational Research and Commercialization (M-TRAC) program.

The M-TRAC grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation program sponsors collaborative translational research projects led by teams of researchers and business advisors as needed working in advanced applied materials. The mission of this program is to develop technologies that address unmet or poorly met market needs. Examples of desirable translational research goals and outcomes include achieving specific milestones on the path to commercializing systems, materials, processing technologies or devices which serve a well documented market need. Proposals may address proof of concept demonstration, prototype development or process scale up that is necessary to attract follow-on funding from third parties. Project funding is in the range of $10,000–$50,000 but additional commercialization value is likely to be found through collaboration with the program’s outside oversight committee.

The proposal must relate to an innovative technology previously disclosed to IIE through the invention disclosure process. The PI must be willing to become involved in the initial business development activities such as customer discovery, competitive analysis, follow-on funding development, patent filings and assessment of the intellectual property landscape surrounding the technology.

The application process begins with a one page letter of intent due Jan. 28, which should be emailed to Program Director John Diebel. Applicants are advised to consult with Diebel on proposal and budget development. Proposals accepted by the oversight committee will be invited to submit a more detailed proposal in early April. Details on the program and application process can be found on the M-TRAC website.

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).

Thank you to the participants, the judges and all who helped with another successful BRC Research Forum. A list of BRC award winners is below.

Graduate Grand Prize
Maria Gencoglu (ChE) “A New Virus Purification Process: Virus Flocculation in the Presence of Osmolytes”
Advisor: Caryn Heldt

Graduate Merit Awards
Emily Shearier (Bio Med) “Mesenchymal Stem Cell Spheroids for Therapy Following Axillary Lymph Node Dissection” Advisor: Feng Zhao

Yu Wang (Bio Med) “Building a Virtual Breast Elastography Phantom Lab Using Open Source Software”
Advisor: Jingfeng Jiang

Undergraduate Grand Prize
Caleb Vogt (Bio Med) “Human Mesenchymal Stem Cell Response to Nitric Oxide Relesasing Materials”
Advisors: Megan Frost and Feng Zhao

Undergraduate Merit Award
Mitchell Tahtinen (Bio Med) “Prevascularization of Natural Extracellular Matrix Scaffold”
Advisor: Feng Zhao

Michigan Space Grant Consortium Funding Opportunities Available


The Michigan Space Grant Consortium has funding opportunities available in the following categories:

Undergraduate Fellowship
Graduate Fellowship
Pre-College Education
Public Outreach
Teacher Training
Research Seed Grant

The internal Michigan Tech deadline is noon on Wednesday, Nov. 12. To read announcements, submission requirements and to submit a proposal, visit the MSGC website. Note— proposals must be submitted electronically, and those exceeding the stated page limits will not be considered.

Specific information regarding Michigan Tech’s requirements and submission procedures can be found at funding. For more information, contact Paige Hackney ( or 7-4371) in the Pavlis Honors College.

Only US citizens are eligible to apply for these fellowship grants. Women, underrepresented minorities and persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply to all MSGC funding opportunities.

View the MGC Poster 2014_poster4

Michigan Space Grant Consortium Conference

The Michigan Space Grant Consortium (MSGC), of which Michigan Tech is a member, will host its annual conference at the University of Michigan on Saturday, Oct. 18, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The event will be held in the Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Building at 1320 Beal Ave. in Ann Arbor on the North Campus. MSGC supports student work in space-related science and technology—as well as STEM disciplines—in Michigan.

The conference offers students, faculty, instructors and researchers the opportunity to display their research through presentations and posters. Registration is free but required to allow for adequate planning for seating, meals and refreshments. The registration deadline date is Oct. 6, and travel assistance is available for students.

Non-MSGC individuals and groups from academia, industry and the local community are also invited to share their experience and knowledge in aerospace, space science and aeronautics.

To register and for more information, see online. The on-campus contact is Paige Hackney, in the Pavlis Honors College, she can be reached at or 7-4371.

MTRI Research Featured at Michigan Tech

IMG_0430The staff of the Michigan Tech Research Institute (MTRI) in Ann Arbor was on campus on Friday, Sept. 19, to conduct a poster session in the Dow Atrium (sixth-floor campus entrance). MTRI scientists and engineers were also available to discuss projects, collaborations with Michigan Tech departments and staff, and areas of research interest. The session is intended to outline the institute’s current activities and to explore opportunities to develop new working relationships. Examples of research included: Signature Study for Vehicle-Animal Collision Avoidance, 3D Wireless Bridge Inspection, Wave-Ice sensor network, EPA Costal Wetland Mapping, Monitoring Harmful Algae Blooms (HABs) in the Great Lakes, Characterization of Unpaved Road Condition Through the Use of Remote Sensing: Road Condition Data Collection and Analysis, Application of Geospatially Enabled Geographic Response Plans for Oil Spill Response in the Western Basin of Lake Erie and more. See more examples at MTRI Posters

See Pictures of the MTRI Poster Session

View video clips of examples of some of the MTRI projects

MTRI, a research center of Michigan Technological University, is a recognized leader in the research, development and practical application of sensor and information technology to solve critical problems in national security, protecting and evaluating critical infrastructure, bioinformatics, earth sciences and environmental processes.

Lake Superior Joint Monitoring Program

IMG_8027 (1280x853)Great Lakes Research Vessel NOAA RV 5501 at Michigan Tech: Lake Superior Joint Monitoring Program July 2014

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) provided the boat and crew and Michigan Tech provides the people who do the sampling as part of NOAA’s Great Lakes Monitoring program. Michigan Tech and NOAA share in the analysis and discovery.

Crew: Beau Braymer, Captain of RV5501; Bob Harvey, Mate of RV5501; Dr. Gary Fahnenstiel, Senior Scientist, Great Lakes Research Center and Michigan Tech Research Institute; Dr. Foad Yousef, Post doctoral research Michigan Tech and Erin Cafferty Michigan Tech Research Institute, research in freshwater biology phycology.

Other projects that will using the research vessel include Marcel Dijkstra (CEE), North Entry offshore transect with water samples; Colleen Mouw (GMES), NASA Optical Propertiesa and Transects from North Entry and Keweenaw; Mike Aboott (GLRC), buoy maintenance; and Amy Marcarelli (BioSci), Coast Sediment Exchange and the River mouths around Keweenaw.

RV 5501 is a vessel of the NOAA – National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL); The Boat Engineering Branch of the United States Coast Guard (USCG) Engineering Logistics Center designed the 55′ ANB (Aids to Navigation Boat). The Coast Guard Yard completed the detailed design and contracted the initial production of 55′ ANB. The 55′ ANB is designed primarily to service aids to navigation within the inland waters, bays, sounds and harbors of the United States. It is capable and equipped to support multi-mission operations.

View more Photos or slide show

View the Video Lake Superior Joint Monitoring Program at the Great Lakes Research Channel

Great Lakes Research Vessel NOAA RV 5501 at Michigan Tech: Lake Superior Joint Monitoring Program July 2014
Great Lakes Research Vessel NOAA RV 5501 at Michigan Tech: Lake Superior Joint Monitoring Program July 2014

Center for Diversity and Inclusion Hosts Research Gallery

Center for Diversity and Inclusion invites the campus community to this year’s MiCUP/MI-LSAMP Research Gallery Walk, held on Thursday, June 19, from 3-5 p.m. in the Rozsa Center Lobby.
The event recognizes the research of students participating in the seven-week Michigan College/University Partnership Program (MiCUP) and the Michigan Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (MI-LSAMP) Program here at Michigan Tech.

View thew 2013 Research Gallery

World Water Day Activities at Michigan Tech

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
Moderator: Dr. Emma Norman, Social Sciences, Michigan Tech
Dr. Wayne Pennington, Interim Dean of the College of Engineering; Professor of Geophysical Engineering, GMES, Michigan Tech
Mr. Frank Ettawageshik, Executive Director, United Tribes of Michigan
Dr. Robert Howarth, Professor of Ecology & Environmental Biology, Cornell University

* 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; Moderator: Dr. Emma Norman, Social Sciences, Michigan Tech
World Water Day poster competition

Link to More photos and individual Poster Photos

Graduate Research Colloquium Awards

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

Graduate Research Colloquium Set for this Wednesday and Thursday

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. Continue reading

Space Solar Power Workshop a Success

Michigan Technological University, in collaboration with professionals from NASA, the Naval Research Laboratory, and the Space Solar Power Institute, hosted a Space Solar Power (SSP) workshop to clarify the challenges facing SSP implementation. The workshop was held in conjunction with the IEEE International Conference on Wireless for Space and Extreme Environments at Baltimore, MD, November 7 – 9, 2013. Researchers from Industry and Academia of many countries including India, Japan, UK and USA participated in this event. Continue reading