Category: Alumni

If You Have a Michigan Tech Degree, Bhakta Rath Knows You Can Do the Job

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“We need to excite American students about the STEM fields, and if you excite the teachers, they excite the students,” Rath explains. He has successfully talked the Office of Naval Research into funding summer teachers’ camps.

Bhakta Rath ’58 is the associate director of research and head of the Material Science and Component Technology Directorate of the US Naval Research Laboratory. Rath earned his Master of Science in Metallurgy from Michigan Tech in 1958 and received an honorary doctorate in engineering when he spoke at Tech’s December 2007 Commencement. In 2008, he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

Alumnus Teams with Tech on a Project to Reclaim Stamp Sand and Grow an Industry

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The president of the company GreenSand Corp. is alumnus Domenic Popko, formerly of Negaunee, now of Traverse Bay. He is the entrepreneur behind the utilization of Keweenaw stamp sand and a joint inventor of the underlying technology. Popko has two degrees in geological engineering from Michigan Tech and worked at the Institute for Materials Processing for five years.

Taking advantage of the antimicrobial nature of copper in the stamp sand to make a better roofing shingle is an idea that Popko has been working on, in collaboration with Michigan Tech, for some time. “An awful lot of study has been done,” he says. Besides Hodek and Baker, other Tech scientists who have contributed to the project are Director Jim Hwang and Research Scientist Bowen Li, both of the Institute of Materials Processing. Popko calls all four of these colleagues “people of foresight.”