Cyber-physical Security Workshop July 30-31, 2019

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Michigan Technological University is pleased to announce a two-day workshop on cyber-physical security for power infrastructure and transportation to be held July 30-31, 2019 on Michigan Tech’s campus.  Experts from industry and the academy will share information on current threats and countermeasures to protect power infrastructure and transportation systems.

Registration protocols will support 13 hours of continuing education for professional license holders.

The workshop includes the following list of speakers and topics:

Secure Operations Technology,  Mr. Andrew Ginter from Waterfall Security
Bottom-up Electrical Vehicle Forecasting, Dr. Pedram Jahangiri, National Grid
Assessing and Evaluating Risk of Passenger Rail Transportation Systems, Mr. Loel Langill, AECOM
Cyber Insurance for Power Grid, Prof. Chee-Wooi Ten, MTU
Security for System Wide Power Control and Protection, Mr. Koji Yamashita, MTU
Emerging Threats and Case Studies, Prof. Yu Cai, MTU
Interdependency Between Grid and Transportation, Prof. Wencong Su, U-Mich-Dearborn

A more detailed schedule and more information about the speakers and topics can be found Cyberphysical Security Workshop Info.

The cost of the conference is $1500; Alumni can register at the discounted price of $1200 by using promotional code MTUALUMNI on the registration form.

A block of rooms has been reserved at the Magnuson Hotel Franklin Square Inn under “MTU CPS Conference.”  The rate for the conference is $99 per night for single occupancy; $104 a night for double occupancy. To make a reservation under this block, call 906-487-1700 by July 8.

For information on area attractions, contact the Keweenaw Chamber of Commerce.

If you have any questions, please contact the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at 906-487-2550 or email ece@mtu.edu.

 



Kunle Oluwatomilayo Leads Outreach on True African Story

Kunle Oluwatomilayo
Kunle Oluwatomilayo

On May 15, 2019, eight students from the African Students Organization (ASO) chapter of Michigan Tech went to Dollar Bay High School to share a perspective of African history and culture that is often misrepresented or ignored by Western media.

Meeting a class of middle and high school students, Kunle Oluwatomilayo (PhD student, ECE), president of ASO, opened the floor with introductory remarks. Highlighting the historical significance of Africa to human existence. ASO’s interaction with the Dollar Bay School involved an exposition of West African naming practices, a telling of Asante folklore, a video showing different places in all 54 African countries, and a lesson on some facts about the African continent that are rarely pointed out.

Tolu Odebunmi (PhD student, Humanities) explained how the pronunciation of names worked in Yoruba, one of several languages in Nigeria. By referring to the tonal nature of Yoruba pronunciation, Tolu explained how names were significant in most African cultures. Of particular interest was the meanings attached to names and how the circumstances surrounding the birth of a child could dictate the name that was given to a child. For example, some ethnic groups in Ghana name their children based on the day of the week that a child is born.

While the video served as a means to retell the African story, the lesson led by Alfred Owusu-Ansah (PhD student, Humanities) highlighted rarely mentioned issues; Alfred pointed out how the world’s oldest university was established in 859 C.E. in Morocco by a woman. He also pointed out other firsts, like the first successful heart transplant was achieved in South Africa. In encouraging the students to explore the rich diversity of Africa, he suggested that they could read Nobel Laureates like Wole Soyinka of Nigeria or Nadine Gordimer of South Africa; or follow great scientists like Sameera Moussa (a renowned nuclear scientist) of Egypt, and Philip Emeagwali of Nigeria, who built the fastest computer of the time in 1989.

After the lesson students were invited to ask questions. This led to what was perhaps the climax of the day when a very bright student asked: “We hear that Africans are corrupt, how true is that?” Alfred pointed out that corruption does exist at different levels in the different countries in Africa; the same way that corruption exists at different levels in all countries in the world. Alfred highlighted the importance of checks and balances in any system of governance that seeks to minimize corrupt practices, which is as true for Africa as it is for North America. This led to a conversation on the cultural differences between African countries and the United States of America. It was clear that both Africans and Americans had a lot of respect for each other and were eager to learn new things. Ending the interaction with a song, the president of ASO sees this interaction as one of many that can help both Africans and the people of the great Upper Peninsula understand each other better.

by Bello Adesoji | African Student Organization.


Havens and Pinar Publish on Fusion in Neural Networks

Timothy Havens (ECE/ICC) and Anthony Pinar (ECE) coauthored the article, “Enabling Explainable Fusion in Deep Learning with Fuzzy Integral Neural Networks,” which was accepted this month for publication in the journal IEEE Transactions on Fuzzy Systems.

DOI: 10.1109/TFUZZ.2019.2917124

Extract

Information fusion is an essential part of numerous engineering systems and biological functions, e.g., human cognition.

Fusion occurs at many levels, ranging from the low-level combination of signals to the high-level aggregation of heterogeneous decision-making processes.

While the last decade has witnessed an explosion of research in deep learning, fusion in neural networks has not observed the same revolution.

Herein, we prove that the fuzzy Choquet integral (ChI), a powerful nonlinear aggregation function, can be represented as a multi-layer network, referred to hereafter as ChIMP. An additional benefit of ChIMP/iChIMP is that it enables eXplainable AI (XAI).

Timothy Havens
Timothy Havens
Tony Pinar
Tony Pinar

Better to Light a Candle: Chapter Two

EE4800 Poster
Figure 1: EE4800 course poster.

Michigan Tech’s new course in printed circuit board (PCB) manufacturing is the topic of a series of columns in I-Connect 007. The second column “Better to Light a Candle” Chapter Two—Introduction to PCB Fabrication,” by Marc Carter, features an interview between Marc Carter, Christopher Middlebrook (ECE), and the students in the PCB manufacturing class.

Better to Light a Candle: Chapter Two—Introduction to PCB Fabrication

Editor’s Note: This column is part of a series on a new university course in PCB manufacturing at Michigan Technological University. Marc will chronicle the progress of this class, interview the guest lecturers, introduce the students, etc. The interview with students was also edited for clarity.

In my first column, I reported on a grassroots effort being started to prepare the next generation of printed circuit board (PCB) “experts.” A fortunate alignment of academia, the industry, resources, and concerned, well-seasoned board geeks came together to pass on PCB experience to the next generation through a very practical design, build, assemble, and test opportunity at Michigan Technological University (MTU). I also shared the thoughts of a few of the many people that were key players in getting this effort started.

As a reminder, “EE4800: Printed Circuit Board Fabrication” is a hands-on class intended to give engineering undergraduate students an introduction to the basics of printed circuit design, fabrication, and assembly, which started on January 14 of this year. A high-level overview of the course, it’s approach, and goals can be seen in the poster shared at several events at IPC APEX EXPO 2019 in San Diego, California (Figure 1).

Read more at I-Connect 007, by Marc Carter.

Related:

Better to Light a Candle: Chapter One—Prepping the Next Generation


Awards presented at ECE Spring 2019 Senior Banquet

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering held its Spring 2019 Senior Banquet on Thursday, April 18. Sam Solverson was the winner of the 2019 ECE Departmental Scholar Award, given to a senior who best represents student scholarship at Michigan Tech. This outstanding student is considered excellent not only by academic standards, but also for participation in research scholarship activity, levels of intellectual curiosity, creativity, and communication skills.

Sam Solverson, 2019 ECE Departmental Scholar, pictured with Dan Fuhrmann, former ECE chair.

Sam was nominated by instructor John Pakkala. “He took an informal, voluntary, but strong leadership role in the Fall 2018 Design Fundamentals course. I have witnessed his good work in both Chamber Choir and in Wind Symphony. And his GPA is hard to beat!” Associate professor Roger Kieckhafer says, “ In EE 3173, he scored THE highest grades in the class. He even installed Quartus on his own laptop (which makes him a braver man than me). In EE-4173 and EE-4737, he is currently scoring a perfect 100% in both classes. He has installed IAR Workbench on his laptop and is purchasing the eZ430 development hardware. He found a typo in one of my lectures, because he actually read the datasheet in the references. I think Sam completely embodies the best that we can ask for in a student.” Academic advisor Judy Donahue noted, “He’s been very helpful with ECE recruiting events – all of them! And he is a member of the Aerospace Enterprise.”

2019 ECE Woman of Promise, Katelyn Rhue, pictured with Glen Archer, ECE interim chair.

The 2019 ECE Woman of Promise was awarded to Katelyn Rhue.  The goal of this program is to recognize women at Michigan Tech who go “above and beyond” what is expected of them in terms of being a well-rounded student – one who has demonstrated academic achievement, campus and community leadership, good citizenship, creativity, etc. In short, women who exemplify the early-on criteria that would be considered when selecting future inductees to the Presidential Council of Alumnae.  he departments’ Women of Promise are recognized at the annual Presidential Council of Alumnae (PCA) Induction Ceremon/Luncheon held during the Fall semester. Recipients are also invited to other PCA activities where they have the opportunity to provide input on a variety of topics.

Katelyn was nominated by assistant professor Jeremy Bos. Jeremy noted, “Katelyn is the current student director of Robotics Systems Enterprise. Last semester Katelyn was assistant director and took on as her management project a RSE team bonding activity. Katelyn organized and executed the event so that the enterprise was involved and included; we had nearly 100% participation. During the actual event, she facilitated the activities and made sure they were actually social. This is Katelyn’s third management position in RSE having started as outreach coordinator. In every position she has been the example to her peers on how to do the job. Katelyn is a natural leader and the ideal candidate for the Woman of Promise award.”

2019 Carl S. Schjonberg Outstanding Undergraduate Student, Lucas Simonson, pictured with Dan Fuhrmann, former ECE chair.

The 2019 Carl S. Schjonberg Outstanding Undergraduate Student Award is awarded annually to an outstanding undergraduate student who exemplifies a dedication to learning and a commitment to the University. Professor Schjonberg was a faculty member in the Electrical Engineering Department from 1936 to 1970. He contributed significantly to the growth and development of the department and was dedicated to the education of electrical engineering students. This endowed award was established by his wife as a memorial to his long and dedicated career as an educator. This year, the award was given to Lucas Simonson.

The Hard Surface Disinfectant Prethread and Automation Team, winner of the 2019 Larry Kennedy Industry Innovation Award. Pictured from left to right, Trever Hassell, advisor; Chris DeWidt, Jacob Erickson, Clinton Andrews, Stefan Koerner. Missing from photo: Drew Wilkerson

The ECE External Advisory Committee (EAC) is a collection of volunteers from many different industries whose goal is to ensure the ECE academic program is aligned with industry to produce graduates companies would want to hire. Each year at their spring meeting, the EAC members observe ECE’s senior design and enterprise team presentations and poster displays and select a team that best meets or exceeds specific criteria related to today’s industry needs. The Larry Kennedy Industry Innovation Award is given to the senior project that shows the highest level of project management, applied engineering and application to industry. Larry Kennedy served on the EAC for many years and succumbed to illness while serving as chair.

This year’s Larry Kennedy Industry Innovation Award went to The Hard Surface Disinfectant Prethread and Automation Team, advised by Trever Hassell, ECE Academic Advisor and Instructor.  Members of the team include Chris DeWidt, Jacob Erickson, Clinton Andrews, Stefan Koerner and Drew Wilkerson.

HKN Professor of the Year Award winner Kit Cischke (left) presented by HKN president Warren Kretteck (right)

Each year, the Eta Kappa Nu Honors Society (HKN) polls the ECE student body to select the winner of the Professor of the Year award within the ECE Department. This fun event at the end of the Spring semester allows ECE students the opportunity to thank and encourage outstanding ECE faculty. The award is presented at the Spring Senior Banquet.  The 2019 HKN Professor of the Year was awarded to Kit Cischke – again! Kit also won HKN Professor of the Year in the 2012-2013, 2013-2014, and 2015-2016 academic years.  Says Warren Kretteck, HKN president, “Kit is an exceptional professor who always breaks down difficult information in a way that is easy to understand and fun to learn. I have had him for a few classes  and it is no surprise that he has won the Professor of the Year Award before. With the way he teaches and his involvement in the department, you can tell he is dedicated to student learning.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Cameron Philo Wins Best Technology Venture at 2019 CMU Competition

Cameron Philo
Cameron Philo

Five student teams from Michigan Technological University traveled to Central Michigan University (CMU) in Mount Pleasant, MI to compete in the ninth annual New Venture Competition held Friday, April 12, 2019.

Cameron Philo won Best Technology Venture for Life Pro Jackets and was awarded $10,000. Philo participated in Michigan Tech’s I-Corps Site Program last Fall. I-Corps is a team-based program structure that was developed through a partnership between the National Science Foundation (NSF) and Silicon Valley entrepreneurs.

Read more at the Pavlis Honors College Blog.

Related:

Cameron Philo receives Best Green Innovation – Bob Mark Elevator Pitch Competition


Giving Day is April 11th!

April 11th is Michigan Tech’s first 24-Hour Giving Challenge! Support your favorite area of campus by making a gift of any amount!  There are so many opportunities throughout the day to have our gifts matched along with additional funds from generous donors. Leroy Keranen ’61 has generously agreed to donate $25,000 to the robotics engineering fund if 25 people donate any amount.  Simply go to www.give.mtu.edu and click on the Robotics Engineering campaign. #goldblackgiveback

 


Christopher Middlebrook Presents for SPIE

Christopher T. Middlebrook
Christopher T. Middlebrook

Chris Middlebrook (ECE) was recently hosted by the ECE SPIE Chapter at Georgia Tech. On March 12, Middlebrook provided a presentation entitled “Embedded and Integrated Passive Waveguides and Active Integrated Optical Devices.”

SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics. Details of Middlebrook’s presentation are available online.


ECE Texting Campaign a Success

Students at computers
Photo by Glen Archer.

The first Electrical and Computer Engineering department texting campaign was held on March 26, 2019. The texting campaign is similar to the calling campaign the department put on earlier in the semester; however, students were able to send in questions via text.

Five current Tech students held conversations with approximately thirty students who had been accepted to Michigan Tech, answering questions all across the board.

The event was a success, and our students had a great time answering questions and discussing their experiences as a Husky—which can clearly be seen by the smiles.

By Kelsey Robinson, EE senior.