Archives—December 2013


ME-EM Senior Awards Banquet December 2013

The Department of Mechanical Engineering–Engineering Mechanics celebrated the December 2013 Fall Semester graduating class Senior Awards Banquet and Order of the Engineer Induction on December 10, 2013 at the Memorial Union Ballroom. Timothy P. Coffield was the keynote speaker for the December 2013 ME-EM Senior Awards Banquet. However, transportation to Michigan Tech was affected by a winter storm causing flight cancellations. So he spoke to the banquet by way of the internet.
Timothy P. Coffield Biographic Sketch

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Energy Poster Session

Students from Principles of Energy Conversion (MEEM 4200) and Advanced Thermodynamics (MEEM 5200) presented the results of their semester-long projects on energy systems. There were 28 different projects at the symposium. A few of the projects being presented are:

Advancement of Combustion Process – RCCI Engines
Exergy Analysis of Thermal Power Plant
Factors Affecting Flame Propagation in Spark Ignition Engines
Plasma gasification and potentially its usefulness in the elimination of MSW
Space heating using a Solar Wall
Power Harvesting for Transportation Tunnels
Air Powered Vehicles Continue reading


Research News Summary

Research by Assistant Professor Mo Rastgaar and graduate student Evandro Ficanha (MEEM) is featured on the website of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. See “Computer-Controlled Prosthetic Closely Matches Action of Human Legs.” The Mumbai Mirror and Science World Report both published news stories about Assistant Professor Mo Rastgaar’s (ME-EM) work with the Mayo Clinic to develop a prosthetic foot that moves like a real human foot. See The Mumbai Mirror and Science World Report for the full story.

Assistant Professor Mo Rastgaar’s work designing and building a microprocessor-controlled artificial leg has been widely publicized, with more articles like the above appearing in IEEE Spectrum,, Medical Design Online, Gizmag,CNN, UPI Science News and many more outlets. He was also interviewed for Clear Channel One’s radio program Conversations in Health Care. Continue reading


MEEM Graduate Seminar: Nanofluids Droplets during Evaporation

The Department of Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics Graduate Seminar; Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013, 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. Room 112, ME-EM Bldg.,

Mr. D. H. Shin, Mechanical Engineering, Chung-Ang University

Title: Wettability Changes and Fringe Patterns of Contact Lines due to the
Local Aggregation Effect on Nanofluids Droplets during Evaporation

Recently, nanofluids (NF) are of substantial interest because of their potential in exhibiting improved thermal performance. The potential of nanofluids as the next generation of cooling fluids for automobiles and electronic devices has recently led to increased research. Mr. Shin’s research is currently focusing on characterization of nanofluid droplet evaporation by using an image visualization technique of the confocal microscope system.

This presentation will introduce a recent work regarding the nanofluid droplet
evaporation: Evaporation characteristics of nanofluid droplets with various volume fractions of 50 nm alumina (Al2O3) particles are experimentally examined. The effect of particle concentrations on droplet evaporation rates is examined and the corresponding wettability changes and the total evaporation time are also examined. Next, the contact lines of nanofluids droplets during evaporation are visualized using a slit-confocal microscopy, which allows a high-speed reflected mode. As the volume fraction of nanofluids increases, the total evaporation time and the initial contact angles decreases, while the droplet perimeters increase. In order to figure out the cause of results, the triple line of the droplet is visualized to study the wetting dynamics at the initial state using a digital image analysis technique. Conclusively, nanofluids droplets have a shorter total evaporation time than DI-water droplets do. It is observed that the nanofluid droplets are the more hydrophilic on the same kind of surfaces. Those results show the feasibility of using fringe patterns of contact lines can provide instability of a contact-line region in the thin film and further explain heat and mass transfer in this region.

Mr. Dong Hwan (DH) Shin is a visiting research scholar of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics at Michigan Technological University. He received his B.S. and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering in Chung-Ang University (CAU) in 2008 and 2010, respectively. He continues his PhD candidate in CAU, Seoul, Korea. He has already been to MTU as a visiting scholar twice in 2010 and 2012. His research interests are nanofluid and its application, evaporation of micro-droplet and its application, flame spray and its application, and computational fluid dynamics. He has published 13 journal papers and 22 proceedings.


MEEM Graduate Seminar: Advanced Space Propulsion Research at MTU

The Department of Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics
Graduate Seminar; Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. Room 112, ME-EM Bldg.
Dr. Lyon (Brad) King, The Ron and Elaine Starr Professor of Space Systems Engineering, Michigan Technological University

Titie: Advanced Space Propulsion Research at MTU

Ion thrusters, plasma rockets, and arcjets sound like the stuff of science fiction, but in reality there are more than 200 spacecraft currently in orbit that utilize these technologies. Collectively these devices are known as ‘Electric Propulsion’ (EP) since they use electrical energy to eject ionized propellant and create thrust. EP devices are used on satellites as large as 5,000 kg and also on nanosatellites as small as 1 kg. The Ion
Space Propulsion Laboratory at MTU is actively developing thrusters that cover this entire range. This seminar will present an overview of the physics and performance limitations of EP devices in general. The talk will then describe a number of active research projects at MTU including metal-propellant Hall-effect thrusters, electrospray thrusters, and exotic devices that use ferrofluids as propellant.

Dr. Lyon (Brad) King is presently the Ron and Elaine Starr Professor of Space Systems Engineering at Michigan Technological University. Dr.King earned his Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan in 1998. Prior to joining Michigan Tech Dr. King was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the National Institute of Standards and Technology Ion Storage Group in Boulder, CO. Dr. King is an experimentalist with expertise in plasma physics, spacecraft design, and electric space propulsion systems. King shared the AIAA Outstanding Paper in Electric Space Propulsion in 1999 with co-author, Dr. Alec Gallimore, for studies of particle transport in Hall Thrusters. King is presently an Associate Editor of the AIAA Journal of Propulsion and Power. King was a past Fellow of the NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC), a member of the NASA Nuclear Space Propulsion Technology Assessment Group, and a member of the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force Space Propulsion technical From 2009 to 2011 King was the Chair of the AIAA Electric Propulsion Technical Committee. King is a recipient of the National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Award (CAREER) and the SAE International Ralph R. Teetor Engineering Educator Award. In 2004, King received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers in a White House ceremony for DoD-sponsored research related to advanced space propulsion systems.