Category: Theses and Dissertations

Dissertation, thesis, and report posts

New theses and dissertations available

The Graduate School is pleased to announce new theses and dissertations are now available in the J.R. van Pelt and Opie Library from the following programs:

  • Chemical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Forestry
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Physics


Christopher DeDene
Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Zhanping You
Thesis title: Investigation of Using Waste Engine Oil Blended with Reclaimed Asphalt Materials to Improve Pavement Recyclability

Kyle Earnshaw
Master of Science in Forestry
Advisor: Blair D Orr
Thesis title: The Effects of Soil Moisture, Field-Scale Toposequential Position, and Slope on Yields in Irrigated Upland Rice Fields in Flores, Comayagua, Honduras

Michael Hochscheidt
Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Stanley J Vitton
Thesis title: Cut Slope Design for the Access to an Underground Copper Mine

Nicholas Johnson
Master of Science in Materials Science and Engineering
Advisor: Paul George Sanders
Thesis title: Processing and Mechanical Properties of Cast Aluminum Containing Scandium, Zirconium, and Ytterbium

Abdul Koroma
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Ralph J Hodek
Dissertation title: An Evaluation of the Performance and Cost-Effectiveness of Pavement Sections Containing Open-Graded Base Courses

Chee Huei Lee
Doctor of Philosophy in Physics
Advisor: Yoke Khin Yap
Dissertation title: Boron Nitride Nanotubes: Synthesis, Characterization, Functionalization, and Potential Applications

Tyler LeRoy
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Jason R Blough
Thesis title: Muffler Characterization with Implementation of the Finite Element Method and Experimental Techniques

Aashish Poudel
Master of Science in Electrical Engineering
Advisor: Daniel Robert Fuhrmann
Thesis title: Adaptive Sensing for Target Tracking Applications

Wen Nee Yeo
Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering
Co-Advisors: Tony Neal Rogers and Bahne C Cornilsen
Dissertation title: Development and Testing of an Asymmetric Capacitor with a Nickel-Carbon Foam Positive Electrode


New theses available in the Library

The Graduate School is pleased to announce new theses are now available in the J.R. van Pelt and Opie Library from the following programs:

  • Applied Ecology
  • Applied Natural Resource Economics
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Policy
  • Forest Ecology and Management
  • Geology
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


Ellis Adams
Master of Science in Environmental Policy
Advisor: Kathleen E Halvorsen
Thesis title: Nongovernmental Organization Staff Views of Global Water Privatization

Neelima Addanki
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Ossama Omar Abdelkhalik
Thesis title: Orbits Design for LEO Space Based Solar Power Satellite System

Aljaste Arvo
Master of Science in Forest Ecology and Management
Co-Advisors: Rodney A Chimner and Eric Agestam
Thesis title: Warming Alters Photosynthetic Rates of Sub-Boreal Peatland Vegetation

Benjamin Betterly
Master of Science in Applied Ecology
Advisor: John Andrew Vucetich
Thesis title: Compensatory Growth in Moose and its Relationship to Sex, Longevity, Intraspecific Competition, and Senescence

Nawaf Blaisi
Master of Science in Environmental Engineering
Advisor: Christopher L Wojick
Thesis title: Life Cycle Assessment of Trayless Dining

Suresh Bommineni
Master of Science in Chemical Engineering
Advisor: Joseph H Holles
Thesis title: Characterizations of Partially Reduced Polyoxometalate Catalysts Using Ammonia Adsorption Microcalorimetry and Methanol Oxidation Studies

Kyle Brill
Master of Science in Geology
Advisor: Gregory Phillip Waite
Thesis title: Characterization of Harmonic Tremor at Santiaguito Volcano and its Implications for Eruption Mechanisms

Darrell Cass
Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Amlan Mukherjee
Thesis title: Estimating Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Highway Construction and Rehabilitation to Support Pavement LifeCycle Assessment

Justin Clark
Master of Science in Materials Science and Engineering
Advisor: Paul George Sanders
Thesis title: High Temperature, Low Cycle Fatigue of a Hybrid Particulate/Fiber Aluminum Metal-Matrix Composite

Jason Flietstra
Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Theresa Marie Ahlborn
Thesis title: Creep and Shrinkage Behavior of Ultra High Performance Concrete Under Compressive Loading with Varying Curing Regimes

Valoree Gagnon
Master of Science in Environmental Policy
Advisor: Carol A MacLennan
Thesis title: Fish Contaminants through the Tribal Perspective: An Ethnography of the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community’s Tribal Fish Harvest

Pubodee Ratana-arsanarom
Master of Science in Materials Science and Engineering
Advisor: Yun Hang Hu
Thesis title: Structure and Properties of Graphene Nano Disks (GND)With and Without Edge-Dopants

Brandon Swartz
Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics
Advisor: Gary A Campbell
Thesis title: The Afghanistan Connection: Heroin Production, Distribution, and Consumption


New Dissertations Available in the Library

The Graduate School is pleased to announce new dissertations are now available in the J.R. van Pelt and Opie Library from the following programs:

  • Chemistry
  • Engineering Physics
  • Mathematical Sciences
  • Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
  • Physics
  • Rhetoric and Technical Communication

Amalia Anderson
Doctor of Philosophy in Physics
Advisor: Alexander B Kostinski
Dissertation title: Development of Record-Breaking Statistics for Climatological Time-Series Analysis

David Clark
Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematical Sciences
Advisor: Vladimir Tonchev
Dissertation title: Applications of Finite Geometries to Designs and Codes

Roxane Gay
Doctor of Philosophy in Rhetoric and Technical Communication
Advisor: M Ann Brady
Dissertation title: Subverting the Subject Position: Toward a New Discourse about Students as Writers and Engineering Students as Technical Communicators

Jorge Kurita Nagasawa
Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Advisor: Amitabh Narain
Dissertation title: Experimental Results on Gravity Driven Fully Condensing Flows in Vertical Tubes, their Agreement with Theory, and their Differences with Shear Driven Flows’ Boundary-Condition Sensitivities

Jiang Lu
Doctor of Philosophy in Physics
Advisor: Raymond A Shaw
Dissertation title: Dynamics of Settling Charged Particles in Turbulence: Theory and Experiments

Adan Niu
Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematical Sciences
Advisor: Qiuying Sha
Dissertation title: Statistical Methods for Identifying Gene-Gene Interactions

Archana Pandey
Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering Physics
Advisor: Yoke Khin Yap
Dissertation title: PMMA-CNT Matrices for Vacuum Electronic, Biosensing and Energy Applications

Abhishek Prasad
Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering Physics
Advisor: Yoke Khin Yap
Dissertation title: Functional ZnO Nanostructures for Electronic and Energy Applications

Xiang Zhang
Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry
Advisor: Shiyue Fang
Dissertation title: Synthesis of Chiral Ferrosalen Ligands and their Applications in Asymmetric Catalysis


Seminar: Submitting your Thesis or Dissertation to the Graduate School

Students planning on finishing a thesis or dissertation spring or summer 2012 are invited a seminar designed to help students understand the submission process and answer questions about it.

Once you register, you will receive a confirmation with the location and a reminder of the date and time.

If you are unable to join us, a taped version of this seminar is available online from our May 19th presentation.

Students who are interested in learning more about the formatting requirements and resources available to assist them should visit our formatting web page and refer to our January 27, 2011 seminar.


Gagnon to represent Tech for MAGS Competition

Valoree Gagnon

The Graduate School is pleased to announce that Valoree Gagnon is Michigan Tech’s nominee for the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools Distinguished Thesis Award.  Ms. Gagnon was nominated by her advisor, Dr. C. MacLennan of the Department of Social Sciences.  Her thesis, “Fish Contaminants through the Tribal Perspective: An Ethnography of the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community’s Tribal Fish Harvest,” conducted an ethnographic inquiry on natural resource issues in indigenous communities.  Native American communities are vulnerable to    toxic substances   present in the water they fish, despite the warnings of negative impacts this could have on human health.  Her work could help policy-makers better understand the history and culture behind this dilemma, and allow them to make policies that take into account their traditions.  Her work is being discussed among professionals in the Michigan government responsible for making policies, at the International Joint Commission on the Great Lakes, and is being prepared for presentation at a conference.  She is currently continuing her education as a doctoral student at Michigan Tech with Dr. MacLennan, and is currently funded by an NSF GK-12 Global Watershed Fellowship.

Matthew Van Grinsven

Matthew Van Grinsven was noted by the panel as a nominee of distinction.  He was nominated by his advisor, Dr. A.S. Mayer, who holds a joint appointment in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering and the Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences.  Mr. Van Grinsven’s work examined the relationship between groundwater inflows and coaster brook trout spawning sites.  This work will impact the coaster brook trout conservation efforts within the Salmon Trout River and the Lake Superior basin.  He is currently pursuing a PhD in Forest Science at Michigan Tech.

Three other graduate students were also nominated for consideration.  Lijun Chen was nominated by her advisor, Dr. B. Barkdoll of Civil and Environmental Engineering.  Nayyer Islam was nominated by his advisor, Dr. W. Pennington of the Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences.  Jillian Schubert was nominated by her advisor, Dr. A. L. Mayer, who holds joint appointments in the Department of Social Sciences and School of Forest Resources and Environmental Policy.  All of the nominations were noteworthy, and the evaluation panel had a difficult task in selecting one nominee to represent Michigan Tech.

The Dean’s Advisory Panel, representing each college or school at Michigan Tech evaluated the nominees.  The faculty on this panel represent a broad range of graduate programs:  J. Gierke (Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences), S. Martin (Social Sciences), D. Flaspohler (School of Forestry Resources & Environmental Science), X. Wang (School of Technology) and G. Campbell (School of Business and Economics).  Next year’s competition will consider applicants who have completed their degrees between October 1, 2011 and September 30, 2012.  An application consists of an abstract of the thesis, recommendation letter from the advisor, and an electronic copy of the thesis.  Please consider nominating your master’s students next year.

A complete list of former nominees may be found online.


New theses and dissertations available in the Library

The Graduate School is pleased to announce new theses and dissertations are now available in the J.R. van Pelt and Opie Library from the following programs:

  • Applied Ecology
  • Applied Natural Resource Economics
  • Biological Sciences
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Forest Ecology and Management
  • Forest Science
  • Geophysics
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
  • Physics
  • Rhetoric and Technical Communication

Sinan Abood
Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Engineering
Advisor: Ann L Maclean
Dissertation title: Modeling and Classifying Variable Width Riparian Zones Utilizing Digital Elevation Models, Flood Height Data, Digital Soil Data, and National Wetlands Inventory: A New Approach for Riparian Zone Delineation

Lauren Fry
Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Engineering
Co-Advisors: James R Mihelcic and David W Watkins
Dissertation title: Water Resources, Health, and the Sustainability of Interventions to Achieve Water and Sanitation Targets of the Millennium Development Goals in a Changing World

Jessica Galbraith-Frew
Master of Science in Physics
Advisor: Petra Heike Huentemeyer
Thesis title: Measuring Energy Spectra of TeV Gamma-ray Emission from the Cygnus Region of our Galaxy with Milagro

Christopher Gilbertson
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Theresa Marie Ahlborn
Dissertation title: Dynamic Properties of Wood Using the Split-Hopkinson Pressure Bar

Danielle Haak
Master of Science in Biological Sciences
Advisor: Nancy Ann Auer
Thesis title: Impact of Copper Mine Tailings (Stamp Sand) on Survival and Development of Aquatic Organisms Near Gay, Michigan

Matthew Howard
Master of Science in Electrical Engineering
Advisor: Christopher T Middlebrook
Thesis title: A Multi-Software Modeling Technique for Field Distribution Propagation through an Optical Vertical Interconnect Assembly

Di Huang
Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering
Advisor: Jason M Keith
Dissertation title: Modeling of Diesel Particulate Filter Filtration and Regeneration for Transient Driving Schedules

Xiayi Huang
Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics
Advisor: Mark C Roberts
Thesis title: Car Ownership Modeling and Forecasts for China

Fredline Ilorme
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Veronica Webster Griffis
Dissertation title: Development of a Physically-Based Method for Delineation of Hydrologically Homogeneous Regions and Flood Quantile Estimation in Ungauged Basins via the Index Flood Method

Christopher Johnson
Master of Science in Forest Ecology and Management
Co-Advisors: Thomas Grant Pypker and Rodney A Chimner
Thesis title: Open Top Chambers and Infrared Lamps: A Comparison of Heating Efficacy and CO2/CH4 Dynamics in a Lake Superior Coastal Peatland

Jaclyn Johnson
Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Advisor: Jeffrey Donald Naber
Dissertation title: Diesel Spray Mixing Limited Vaporization with Non-Ideal and Multi-Component Fuel Thermophysical Property Effects

Sarah Kiemle
Doctor of Philosophy in Biological Sciences
Advisor: Michael R Gretz
Dissertation title: The Extracellular Matrix of the Charophycean Green Algae

Michelle Latsch
Doctor of Philosophy in Forest Science
Advisor: Andrew John Storer
Dissertation title: Effects of Management on Native and Exotic Plant Communities in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Rita Lederle
Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Jacob Eskel Hiller
Thesis title: Accounting for Warping and Differential Drying Shrinkage Mechanisms in the Design of Jointed Plain Concrete Pavements

Daniel Lopez-Gaxiola
Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering
Co-Advisors: Jason M Keith and Julia Ann King
Dissertation title: Characterization of Thermal and Mechanical Properties of Polypropylene-based Composites for Fuel Cell Bipolar Plates and Development of Educational Tools in Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies

John Lyons
Doctor of Philosophy in Geophysics
Co-Advisors: William I Rose and Gregory Phillip Waite
Dissertation title: Dynamics and Kinematics of Eruptive Activity at Fuego Volcano, Guatemala 2005-2009

Kasra Momeni
Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Co-Advisors: Reza Shahbazian Yassar and Yoke Khin Yap
Dissertation title: Experimental and Theoretical Study of Microstructure Effect on Piezoelectric Property of One Dimensional ZNO Nanostructures

Christy Oslund
Doctor of Philosophy in Rhetoric and Technical Communication
Advisor: Nancy M Grimm
Dissertation title: Preparing Writing Centers and Tutors for Literacy Mediation for Working Class Campus-Staff

Partha Pal
Doctor of Philosophy in Physics
Advisor: Ranjit Pati
Dissertation title: Quantum Transport in a Single Molecular Junction

Siddharth Patel
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Co-Advisors: Spandan Maiti and Gregory M Odegard
Thesis title: Numerical Modeling of the Failure Mechanisms in Si Thin Film Anode for Li-Ion Batteries

Aamod Pethe
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Gordon G Parker
Thesis title: Dynamic Modeling of Active Regeneration in Catalyzed and Non-Catalyzed Diesel Particulate Filters

Jennifer Potter
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Charles D Van Karsen
Thesis title: Comparison of Modal Analysis Results of Laser Vibrometry and Nearfield Acoustical Holography Measurements of an Aluminum Plate

Anurag Rajan
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Fernando Luis Ponta
Thesis title: Effect of Mesh Distortion on the Accuracy of High Order Vorticity-Velocity CFD Approaches

Jerry Ross
Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Advisor: Lyon Bradley King
Dissertation title: Probe Studies of a Hall Thruster at Low Voltages

James Thunes
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Co-Advisors: Spandan Maiti and Gregory M Odegard
Thesis title: Topological Changes in 2D Simplicial Meshes for the Simulation of Fracture

Luke Vermeulen
Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Stanley J Vitton
Thesis title: Evaluating the Relationship between Moisture Induced Expansion and Horizontal Stress Orientation in Samples from the Nonesuch Formation

Chaiyaporn Wattanaprayoon
Master of Science in Chemical Engineering
Advisor: Michael E Mullins
Thesis title: Graphite Exfoliation by Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Extraction

Wenjie Xu
Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical Engineering
Advisor: Seyed Alireza Zekavat
Dissertation title: Multi-Antenna Non-Line-of-Sight Identification Techniques for Target Localization in Mobile Ad-hoc Networks

Daniel Yeboah
Master of Science in Applied Ecology
Co-Advisors: Andrew J Burton and Andrew John Storer
Thesis title: Variation in Carbon Content of Tropical Tree Species from Ghana

Lei Zhang
Doctor of Philosophy in Materials Science and Engineering
Advisor: Yun Hang Hu
Dissertation title: Synthesis, Structure, and Stability of Metal-Organic Frameworks

Chao Zou
Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical Engineering
Advisor: Chunxiao Chigan
Dissertation title: Coherent System Design for Cognitive Radio Networks


New theses and dissertations available in the Library

The Graduate School is pleased to announce new theses and dissertations are now available in the J.R. van Pelt and Opie Library from the following programs:

  • Civil Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Engineering Science
  • Industrial Archaeology
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
  • Rhetoric and Technical Communication

Andrew Baker
Master of Science in Materials Science and Engineering
Advisor: Stephen L Kampe
Thesis title: A Technique to Measure Heats of Reaction of Ti-B, Al-Ti-B, and Al-Ti-B4C Powder Blends

Mehmet Bicak
Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Advisor: Mohan D Rao
Dissertation title: Analytical Investigation of Squeeze Film Dampers

Lijun Chen
Master of Science in Environmental Engineering
Advisor: Brian D Barkdoll
Thesis title: Sediment Yield Reduction in an Agricultural Watershed

Pankaj Jagadale
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Fernando Luis Ponta
Thesis title: Effect of High Order Interpolation in the Stability and Efficiency of the Time-Integration Process in Vorticity-Velocity CFD Algorithms

Heather Jordan
Doctor of Philosophy in Rhetoric and Technical Communication
Advisor: Robert R Johnson
Dissertation title: Portfolios and Pedagogy: An Examination of Ideology and Use

Ethan Jordan
Doctor of Philosophy in Rhetoric and Technical Communication
Advisor: Nancy M Grimm
Dissertation title: A Place for Video Games: A Theoretical and Pedagogical Framework for Multiliteracies Learning in English Studies

Laurence Jose
Doctor of Philosophy in Rhetoric and Technical Communication
Co-Advisors: Nancy M Grimm and Robert R Johnson
Dissertation title: Technical Communication in the Global Context: A Heuristic Approach to Disciplinary Identity and Pedagogical Practices

Yu Liu
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Zhanping You
Dissertation title: Discrete Element Methods for Asphalt Concrete: Development and Application of User-defined Microstructural Models and a Viscoelastic Micromechanical Model

Michael Norconk
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Seong-Young Lee
Thesis title: A Comprehensive Review and Application of Particle Image Velocimetry

Yinghong Qin
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering
Advisor: Jacob Eskel Hiller
Dissertation title: Numerical Study on the Curling and Warping of Hardened Rigid Pavement Slabs

Brandon Sexton
Master of Science in Industrial Archaeology
Advisor: Larry D Lankton
Thesis title: “Brethren Upon The Same Level”: Membership and Class in Calumet’s Masonic Lodge

Yohannes Tafesse
Master of Science in Electrical Engineering
Advisor: Zhi Tian
Thesis title: Compressed Sensing Based Cyclic Feature Spectrum Sensing for Cognitive Radios

Claudia Toro Vergara
Master of Science in Environmental Engineering Science
Advisor: Paul Vincent Doskey
Thesis title: Nitrogen Oxides in the Firn Air at Summit, Greenland

Eddy Trinklein
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Gordon G Parker
Thesis title: Post Processing of Multiple GPS Receivers to Enhance Baseline Accuracy

Joseph Wlodyka
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Gregory M Odegard
Thesis title: Finite Element Analysis on Titan STL3 OTR Tires

Weiming Zhao
Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science
Advisor: Zhenlin Wang
Dissertation title: Memory Resource Balancing for Virtualized Computing


AAHHE/USDA-NIFA/TAMUCC Outstanding Thesis Competition

This competition is open to any Hispanic who has completed a thesis that focuses on Food and the Agricultural Sciences, between December 2010 and August 30, 2011.  Theses are eligible if they are in domains related to the USDA priority areas, including

  • Food Safety
  • Climate Change
  • Sustainable Energy
  • Childhood Obesity

The top three winners will be invited and sponsored to attend the 7th Annual AAHHE National Conference (March 8-10, 2012) in Costa Mesa, California to present their theses and receive their award, as well as participate in a Career Preparation Institute. The first place winner will receive an award of $3,000, the second place winner will receive $2,000, and the third place winner will receive $1,000.

Deadline to submit a thesis abstract for the competition:  September 30, 2011, 5pm CST.

For additional details concerning the requirements and regulations, please refer to the AAHHE website.


Nominations sought for MAGS Thesis Award

The Executive Committee of the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) is soliciting nominations for the 2012 MAGS Distinguished Master’s Thesis Awards to recognize and reward distinguished scholarship and research at the master’s level.  Michigan Tech may nominate one candidate.

Eligible students will have earned a master of science degree between October 1, 2010 to September 30, 2011.

Please see our web page for complete details on eligibility and application procedures.  Nominations are due no later than 4pm, October 10th to Debra Charlesworth in the Graduate School.


Seminar: Submitting your Thesis or Dissertation to the Graduate School

Students planning on finishing a thesis or dissertation fall 2011 or spring 2012 are invited a seminar designed to help students understand the submission process and answer questions about it.

Once you register, you will receive a confirmation with the location and a reminder of the date and time.

If you are unable to join us, a taped version of this seminar is available online from our May 19th presentation.

Students who are interested in learning more about the formatting requirements and resources available to assist them should visit our formatting web page and refer to our January 27 seminar.