Also In This Section
  • Categories

  • Recent News

  • Category: News

    SnP Lab Student Research Assistant Position


    The Security and Privacy Lab is looking for an hourly-paid Research Assistant. The student will work on IoT security, mobile security, or cloud computing security.

    The student is expected to be:

    • 1) Eager to solve problems
    • 2) Familiar with operating systems
    • 3) Familiar with system programming (C is preferred)

    If you are interested, please send your resume to Professor Bo Chen (bchen@mtu.edu), Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science.

    Dr. Chen’s website: https://cs.mtu.edu/~bchen
    SnP Lab website: https://snp.cs.mtu.edu

    Dr. Bo Chen and students in the SnP lab


    Michigan Tech Joins PSERC

    By Kimberly Geiger, College of Engineering, June 8, 2021

    Michigan Technological University has joined the Power Systems Engineering Research Center (PSERC) — a collaboration of university and industry members.

    “We are very pleased to be members of PSERC, where our researchers can combine efforts with other members to creatively address key challenges in creating a modern electric energy infrastructure,” stated Janet Callahan, dean of Michigan Tech’s College of Engineering. “Michigan Tech will be the 13th university in the partnership, and will bring three new industry partners into PSERC,” she added.

    Those partners are DTE, Consumers Energy and Hubbell. The full list of member universities is available on the PSERC website.

    “The overall goal of joining PSERC is to catalyze transdisciplinary research by teaming up with other institutions and relevant industry partners for national grant competition,” said Chee-Wooi Ten, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at Michigan Tech. Ten will serve as Michigan Tech’s PSERC site director.

    Started as a National Science Foundation (NSF) Industry-University Cooperative Research Center (IUCRC), PSERC began in 1996 and was first led by Cornell professor Robert J. Thomas, and then Vijay Vittal of Arizona State University. Today PSERC is directed by Kory W. Hedman, professor of electrical and computer engineering at Arizona State University. 

    PSERC member expertise includes power systems, applied mathematics, complex systems, computing, control theory, power electronics, operations research, nonlinear systems, economics, industrial organization and public policy. 

    Michigan Tech brings much to the research collaborative, said Callahan, particularly in key areas of power systems engineering, social sciences and, most importantly, computing involved heavily in data science and cybersecurity. Cross-disciplinary interaction will be encouraged and expected, for example, with the University’s Department of Applied Computing where Ten holds an affiliated faculty position and where Hubbell is a member of the departmental industrial advisory board.

    Membership in PSERC will enable Michigan Tech to apply for seed grants together with other PSERC universities. Ten envisions Michigan Tech faculty members submitting seed grant proposals annually. “PSERC membership will enable Michigan Tech to go beyond its traditional research boundaries,” he said. “Historically, power area research at Michigan Tech focuses on the metering of electrical loads met by generation. We’ll see more opportunities that involve the intersection of new cross-disciplinary areas.”

    PSERC grants can also fund graduate student research, noted Callahan. “Any faculty member at Michigan Tech can submit proposals, but this is especially good news for assistant professors and other new faculty members seeking to establish a research program,” she said. “This aligns with our institutional Tech Forward initiatives and University vision to grow to 10,000 students, especially our graduate student population.”

    Members of PSERC typically meet in person three times per year with the PSERC  Industrial Advisory Board (IAB). This meeting provides a regular opportunity to build new and productive partnerships among faculty and students from other PSERC universities as well as with industrial partners.

    “These meetings are unparalleled, a regular opportunity to meet and mingle with energy researchers from other PSERC institutions. We’ll be able to brainstorm and discuss possible collaborations,” said Ten. “I am also very pleased to work with Kory Hedman, the new director of PSERC.”

    “While we are now part of the PSERC ecosystem that allows us to submit proposals, the work has only just begun,” Ten concluded. “I am looking forward to working with our PSERC members and creating value with Michigan Tech’s research strengths.”

    View the original article here.

    Michigan Technological University is a public research university, home to more than 7,000 students from 54 countries. Founded in 1885, the University offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in science and technology, engineering, forestry, business and economics, health professions, humanities, mathematics, and social sciences. Our campus in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula overlooks the Keweenaw Waterway and is just a few miles from Lake Superior.


    Sidike Paheding Publishes Paper in IEEE Access

    Dr. Sidike Paheding, assistant professor of Applied Computing, is the co-author of a paper published June 3, 2021, the journal “IEEE Access.” The paper is titled, “U-net and its variants for medical image segmentation: A review of theory and applications.”

    The paper discusses U-net, an image segmentation technique developed primarily for image segmentation tasks.

    The co-authors of the paper are Nahian Siddique, Colin P. Elkin, and Vijay Devabhaktuni, all with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Purdue University Northwest, Hammond, Indiana.

    Abstract

    U-net is an image segmentation technique developed primarily for image segmentation tasks. These traits provide U-net with a high utility within the medical imaging community and have resulted in extensive adoption of U-net as the primary tool for segmentation tasks in medical imaging. The success of U-net is evident in its widespread use in nearly all major image modalities, from CT scans and MRI to Xrays and microscopy. Furthermore, while U-net is largely a segmentation tool, there have been instances of the use of U-net in other applications. Given that U-net’s potential is still increasing, this narrative literature review examines the numerous developments and breakthroughs in the U-net architecture and provides observations on recent trends. We also discuss the many innovations that have advanced in deep learning and discuss how these tools facilitate U-net. In addition, we review the different image modalities and application areas that have been enhanced by U-net.

    The paper can be accessed on the IEEE Access website.

    IEEE Access is a multidisciplinary, applications-oriented, all-electronic archival journal that continuously presents the results of original research or development across all of IEEE’s fields of interest. Supported by article processing charges, its hallmarks are a rapid peer review and publication process with open access to all readers.


    Volunteers Sought: Remote Augmented Reality Data Collection

    by Computer Science

    We are looking for volunteers to take part in a study exploring how people may interact with future augmented reality (AR) interfaces.

    During the study, you will record videos of yourself tapping on a printed keyboard. The study takes approximately one hour, and you will be paid $15 for your time. You will complete the study at your home.

    To participate, you must meet the following requirements:

    • You must have access to an Android mobile phone.
    • You must have access to a printer.
    • You must be a fluent speaker of English.
    • You must be 18 years of age or older.
    • You must live in the United States.

    If you would like to take part, please contact Reza Habibi at rhabibi@mtu.edu


    New Chair of CLS Has Passion for Human Factors and UP Life

    by Chris Clonts, College of Sciences and Arts

    David Hemmer, dean of the College of Sciences and Arts, has announced that Kelly Steelman has accepted the position as chair of the Cognitive and Learning Sciences department.

    Steelman, an associate professor of psychology and an affiliated associate professor of mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics, had been working as the interim chair.

    Hemmer cited Steelman’s work developing Michigan Tech’s new bachelor’s degree in human factors as one reason he’s happy to see her in the role. “Kelly has done a great job as interim chair, including shepherding the department’s new human factors BS degree through to approval,” he said.

    Here’s what Steelman said about the new undergraduate major in human factors:

    “Our new human factors major will be great for students that are interested in designing the future and building new technologies, but also really care about people and want to understand why people do the things that we do and why we make the mistakes that we do,” she said.

    “A human factors program is a particularly good fit for Michigan Tech, as it blends foundational coursework in psychology with courses in systems engineering, human-computer interaction, usability, business, and design,” she continued. “Designing the major was a true multidisciplinary effort, with faculty from numerous departments and colleges providing input and feedback.”

    Find out more about Steelman, from her (really) long journey to Houghton to her roller derby involvement.


    Special Recognition for Applied Computing Class of ’21 B.S. Graduates


    Applied Computing: Class of 2021 Special Recognition


    Link to the Computer Science Special Recognition awards.


    Heather Harris: Outstanding Graduating Senior

    Heather has been an outstanding student ever since she has started at Michigan Tech. She was punctual, rarely missed a class, was a very active participant in class, and never missed an assignment in her EET courses. She also played a major role in the EET Senior Design swingset project. She spent a lot of time on developing the swing and addressing all the comments that were received regarding safety of the final product.


    Charles Warren: Outstanding Graduating Senior

    Charles was an undergraduate studying Computer Network and System Administration and a graduate student pursuing an MS in Cybersecurity. He graduated with a cumulative GPA of 3.90 and a departmental GPA of 4.0.

    During his time at Michigan Tech he co-founded a student organization that focused on student-led instruction and research in networking and computing topics. It has grown into an undergraduate, graduate, and alumni organization focused on providing cloud and education services at low to no cost as a Non-profit Organization.

    Charles has also been an instructor with Dr. Guy Hembroff’s State of Michigan’s Career Technical Education (CTE) funding (2018-2021), which provides local high-school students a cybersecurity curriculum at Michigan Tech.

    He is currently working in Palo Alto as a Resident Engineer for security automation. He is a lifelong learner who is always looking to push the boundaries of his industry and to further his own and others’ understanding of topics in computing. His research interests include: cybersecurity, secure design, network security, public key infrastructure (PKI), and Internet of Things (IoT).


    Joseph Barbercheck: Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Assistant

    Joe has been a trustworthy and responsible teaching assistant. He has been extremely flexible and has tried his best to help everyone even outside of the scheduled lab times. If a student or a faculty needed extra help, he volunteered his time to make things work.

    Besides being an excellent teaching assistant, he also took good care of equipment in the lab and performed routine maintenance tasks such as changing fuses, ordering parts, and stocking the lab with all the necessary components.


    Stuart Hoxie: Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Assistant

    Stuart provided teaching and lab assistance during the Spring 2021 semester for our CNSA and Cybersecurity students in three classes: Microsoft System Administration, Scripting for Automation, Administration, and Security, and Cybersecurity II.

    While Stuart has already proven to be a valuable team member working in groups, the Spring semester was his time to exhibit his strong work ethic while operating independently to assist students with both classroom and laboratory questions and issues.

    The semester was challenging dealing with COVID and remote work, but Stuart took it in stride – remotely assisting students using the virtual cluster for labs, managing emails and the Canvas course sites, making himself available by attending Zoom meetings, all while reviewing and grading student submissions.

    Stuart turned a challenging situation into one of the best semesters for both students and faculty.


    Special Recognition for Computer Science Class of ’21 B.S. Graduates


    Computer Science:
    Class of 2021 Special Recognition


    Link to the Applied Computing Special Recognition awards.


    Vic Felton, Excellence in Teaching

    Vic was a standout Lab Assistant in the CS1121 Introduction to Programming course, helping first-time programming students one-on-one in a lab setting that was made even more challenging by COVID-related restrictions.

    CS1121 instructor Prof. Briana Bettin describes Vic as “patient and persistent” and adds that his teaching style “has consistently led students to discover the answers to their own questions.”


    Sarah Larkin: Excellence in Research and Teaching

    Sarah was supported by the National Science Foundation, through a Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) grant, on a project with Prof. Soner Onder to develop a new processor design.

    Sarah was also a dedicated and effective Lab Assistant for CS1121, and a longtime contributor to K-12 computer science teaching through WiCS (Women in Computer Science), NCWIT-sponsored Aspire-IT workshops, and Copper Country Coders.

    Prof. Briana Bettin says that Sarah “blends curiosity, passion, leadership, and dedication to perfection.” From prospective students and undergraduates she mentors to graduate students and faculty she works alongside, her ethics and devotion are unparalleled and unforgettable.


    Alec Rospierski: Excellence in Leadership

    Alec led a Senior Design team in developing the Micro:bit app, allowing middle and high school students to conduct science experiments online. This project was a collaboration between Michigan Tech and Washington University in St. Louis.

    He also served as team leader in the User Interface course in developing an app allowing middle and high school students to conduct simulation of the spread of COVID and other infectious diseases.


    Katie Schmidt: Excellence in Leadership

    Katie served as President of the Copper Country Coders student organization. This group works with local middle and high school students, providing small-group courses in computer science and programming.

    Under her leadership, Coders made great strides in developing a sustainable organizational structure, recruiting new members, and creating an engaged community of student instructors through reflection meetings and social events.

    Prof. Charles Wallace, faculty co-advisor of Copper Country Coders praises “Katie’s ability to lead in an inclusive and compassionate way that inspires others.”


    Mechatronics Master of Science, Class of ‘21


    The Michigan Tech Master of Science in Mechatronics, launched in 2019, has congratulated its first graduates this spring: Chinmay Kondekar (EE), Chukwuemeka George Ochieze, and Ahmat Oumar. Read their stories below.


    Ahmat Oumar


    Ahmat Oumar was very interested in finding an engineering discipline combining the new engineering principles of the age of automation.

    “I was looking for a discipline that will combine principles in electrical engineering, mechanical engineering and computer science,” he explains. “And the College of Computing Mechatronics program has been the right answer.”

    “Michigan Tech Mechatronics has been a great learning experience for me,” Oumar says. “The frequent lab practices to apply the principles learned in class especially enhanced my learning. This will make it easier to make a smooth transition into industry.”

    Oumar also credits his professors as instrumental in his success. “They make themselves available to students, not only in teaching and guiding, but also through mentoring.”


    Chukwuemeka George Ochieze


    Chukwuemeka George Ochieze—now enrolled in a Ph.D. program at Michigan Tech—checked out the College of Computing Mechatronics master of science program a few years ago.

    He was intrigued by the equipment available to students and the many research projects that could be accomplished within the program. Both aligned perfectly with his interests. And he regards the location of Michigan Tech and the region’s weather conditions as a good atmosphere for study.

    “Mechatronics is important in this century because every system consists of different subsystems that require a particular mechatronics application,” says Ochieze. “For example, people who work on fluid power systems should understand automation and controls.”

    Ochieze says that working with faculty and researchers in the various fields of mechatronics helped him to think differently with respect to the subject of application.

    “I pursued so many projects while here on campus,” he adds. “My work with wearable devices shaped my interests and allowed me to apply what I’ve learned so far in the Mechatronics program. His current focus is on the robotics field, which Ochieze says stems from his exposure to robotics and programming in the Mechatronics M.S. program.

    Ochieze was a mechatronics instructor in the 2020-21 academic year for the Career Technical Education (CTE) program in Mechatronics, recently launched by Michigan Tech and the Copper Country Intermediate School District (CCISD). The 12-month Career CTE program is for high school juniors or seniors. Read the story.

    And Ochieze tried many indoor and outdoor events that includes, “skiing, indoor and outdoor soccer, skating, tubing, winter carnivals, career fairs, late nights in the library trying to figure out projects, passport to the world, to mention but a few.”

    “Personally, I think the best memories I have was the career fairs events, having the opportunity to exchange information with people who have similar interests and also sharing your thoughts to people who have worked for a long time in the industry,” Ochieze says.

    Chinmay Kondekar


    Read Chinmay Kondekar’s story.

    Graduate student Chinmay Kondekar heard about Michigan Tech during his undergraduate studies. Sometime later he read a social media post about work opportunities in the robotic and automation labs, and Michigan Tech again came to his attention.

    “At that time, I was working as a controls engineer in India,” he says. “Robotics and automation interest me, and when I saw who had written the post (a former graduate student of Sergeyev’s), I knew I had found the perfect degree program.”

    Kondekar’s final design project was to create an interconnected system that is flexible, reconfigurable, and controlled from a central control interface to emulate a production process. The system is used to machine different patterns on a block of foam.

    “I enjoy solving problems and coming up with a solution to make things work,” he shares. “When starting the [final] project, I had a lot of unknown variables but I knew how to approach them and, eventually, I came up with solutions and made the system work. It’s highly rewarding to watch the finished system come together, and then to see it work automatically after pressing just three buttons.”

    Kondekar’s project would not have been possible without generous support from Mr. Mark Gauthier and his team at Donald Engineering. “Mark has helped the department acquire the best industry-grade hardware, and his expertise in pneumatics helped the project concept become reality,” Kondekar says.

    Kondekar says he has enjoyed his learning and life experiences at Michigan Tech. Plus, he loves the outdoors. “I am an outdoors guy and I love the UP, especially the summers. It’s full of good people and great beer!”


    Driving in the Snow is a Team Effort for AI Sensors

    by Allison Mills, University Marketing and Communications

    A major challenge for fully autonomous vehicles is navigating bad weather. Snow especially confounds crucial sensor data that helps a vehicle gauge depth, find obstacles and keep on the correct side of the yellow line, assuming it is visible. Averaging more than 200 inches of snow every winter, Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula is the perfect place to push autonomous vehicle tech to its limits.

    In two papers presented at SPIE Defense + Commercial Sensing 2021, researchers from Michigan Technological University discuss solutions for snowy driving scenarios that could help bring self-driving options to snowy cities like Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis and Toronto.

    The team includes Nathir Rawashdeh and doctoral student Abu-Alrub (CC) as well as Jeremy Bos and student researchers Akhil Kurup, Derek Chopp and Zach Jeffries (ECE).

    Read more about their collaborative mobility research on mtu.edu/news.

    This MTU news story was published by Science DailyTechXploreKnowridge Science Report and other research news aggregators.


    ICC Researcher Profile: Tony Pinar


    The Institute of Computing and Cybersystems (ICC) is pleased to welcome Tony Pinar as a member. Pinar’s primary research interests are in applied machine learning and data fusion.

    A lecturer in Michigan Tech’s Electrical and Computer Engineering department, Pinar holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Michigan Tech. His previous positions include research engineer for Michigan Tech’s Advanced Power System Research Center and electrical design engineer for GE Aviation. He is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society.

    Pinar’s teaching interests include machine learning, signal processing, and electronic design. Included among the classes he teaches are Electronics, Electronic Applications, Probability—Signal Analysis, and Control Systems I.

    “Teaching is like a puzzle where one may have to take a difficult concept, reduce it to digestible pieces, and deliver them to fresh minds in a way to maximize understanding and insight,” Pinar says. “That challenge is what drives me to be a better teacher.”

    Pinar believes that to be a good teacher one must understand the topics very well and he strives for the most effective delivery. “This keeps me on my toes, forces me to constantly identify holes in my knowledge, and drives me to continuously strive to learn new things,” he explains.

    On research, Pinar says it is rewarding to work on open-ended and novel problems that are in their infancy and at the cutting edge of today’s technology.

    “It is also exciting to me to watch the cutting edge move forward, see what sticks and what doesn’t, and observe how the direction(s) of the field evolve,” he adds. “I’m very new to this domain so I haven’t been able to observe it for long, but I am looking forward to witnessing the future of the field.”