ME-EM Earns Best of Houghton Award

MEEM Student ProjectMichigan Tech’s Department of Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics (ME-EM) has earned 2019 Best of Houghton Awards. ME-EM received the award in the Colleges and Universities category.

Each year, the Houghton Award Program identifies those believed to have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2019 Houghton Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Houghton Award Program and data provided by third parties.

The Houghton Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the Houghton area. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value.


Center for Lunar and Asteroid Surface Science

CLASS logoPaulu van Susante (ME-EM/MARC)is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $30,000 research and development cooperative agreement from the University of Central Florida.

The project is entitled, “Center for Lunar and Asteroid Surface Science (NASA SSERVI Cooperative Agreement Notice).” This is the first year of a potential Five-year project totaling $150,000.

By Sponsored Programs.

The Center for Lunar and Asteroid Surface Science (CLASS) node of the NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) facilitates NASA’s exploration of deep space by focusing its goals at the intersection of surface science and surface exploration of rocky, atmosphereless bodies.


Fall 2019 Research Seed Grant for Jung Yun Bae

Jung Yun Bae
Jung Yun Bae

The Vice President for Research Office has announced the Fall 2019 Research Excellence Fund (REF) awards.

In the College of Engineering, Jung Yun Bae received a Research Seed (RS) grant.

REF-RS grants are designed to provide untenured tenure-track academic faculty and research faculty who have been employed for less than six years with resources to develop an externally supported research program.

Bae is an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics, College of Engineering, and the College of Computing. Her research interests include coordination of heterogeneous robot teams, vehicle routing problems, multi-robot system control and optimization, autonomous navigation, and unmanned vehicles. Her main goal of research is development of operational strategy for multi-agent autonomous vehicle systems.


Mark Wallach Ranks High Among Cadets

Mark Wallach
Cadet Mark Wallach. Photo from U.S. Army Cadet Command (ROTC).

Mark Wallach, a fourth-year mechanical engineering student, was recently ranked eighth of eight thousand plus graduating cadets across the nation. The competitive ranking process takes into account academics, physical fitness, student involvement, and performance during advanced camp, a grueling 37-day training event in Fort Knox Kentucky.

He has had an award filled tenure at Michigan Tech. His name can be found on the dean’s list all six semesters, graduated the Army Air Assault School in Fort Campbell Kentucky, traveled to morocco to study their culture, and finished first out of his platoon of 40 at Advanced Camp where he also earned the coveted Recondo badge.

Wallach currently serves as the Cadet Battalion Commander leading a program of 80 undergraduate students. On May 2, Mark will be commissioning into the Army Engineer branch as a Second Lieutenant with hopes of becoming a Sapper.


Sustainable Waste Project Recognition for PhD Student and Alumni

SWANA Second Prize

The prestigious SWANA (Solid Waste Association of North America) professional society has awarded second prize in the student design competition to a team from Michigan Tech. Advised by Ezra Bar-Ziv, the team members are:
SWANA-SWDC logo graphic

  • Stas Zinchik (ME-EM PhD ’19)
  • Shreyas Kolapkar (MSME ’18)
  • Zhuo Xu (current ME-EM PhD student)

The competition took place in the 2019 WasteCon conference in Phoenix, AZ, on October 21.

SWANA’s International Solid Waste Design Competition (SWDC) is a student team competition to solve “real world” problems faced by solid waste professionals.

The competition aims at providing design experience to the students interested in pursuing an education and/or career in solid waste management. The 2019 project challenged students on “Evaluating Recycling Rate Metrics and Achieving Recycling Goals.”

SCPPE Best Oral Presentation

In addition, graduate student Zhuo Xu was recently awarded Best Oral Presentation at the 5th International Conference on Sustainable Chemical Product and Process Engineering (SCPPE) on June 30-July 3, 2019, in Tianjin, China. Zhuo Xu’s presentation “Sustainable waste to clean energy solutions” was presented in the ‘Alternative and renewable energy systems and supply chain’ session of the Conference.

2019 Frontiers Spotlight Finalist

Ezra Bar-Ziv’s research group co-authored “Properties of Torrefied U.S. Waste Blends” in Frontiers in Energy Research: Bioenergy and Biofuels. The article is part of a special topic collection.
https://doi.org/10.3389/fenrg.2018.00065

The article collection, “Advancements in Biomass Feedstock Preprocessing: Conversion Ready Feedstocks,” is one of 10 finalists for the 2019 Frontiers Spotlight Award, which supports important fields of research published as special issues in Frontiers journals. The topic was selected via peer review, based on scientific and societal importance, from approximately 1,000 Frontiers topics in 2019. The topic’s readership is among the most globally diverse of the finalists.


NASA Lunabotics Competition

Lunabotics logo with robot cartoonPaulus van Susante (MEEM/MARC) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $5000 other sponsored activities grant from the University of Michigan. The project is entitled, “MTU Team for NASA Lunabotics Competition.” This is a 5 1/2 month project.

This competition is a full-on engineering exercise where students receive practical experience in the full engineering lifecycle process from concept development to system closeout.


Jacob Franz Collaborates on 3D Printing Guide

Jacob Franz
Jacob Franz

The open-source book “Printing 3D Models for Chemistry – A Step-by-Step Open-Source Guide for Hobbyists, Corporate Professionals, and Educators and Students in K-12 and Higher Education“, by undergraduate students Elisabeth Grace Billman-Benveniste (Chemistry), Jacob Franz (Mechanical Engineering), and Associate Professor Loredana Valenzano-Slough (Chem) was recently featured in the news section of “3dprint.com – Voice of 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing.”

Jacob is a mechanical engineering student at Michigan Technological University.

After completing his BS degree in mechanical engineering (graduating in spring 2020), Jacob is planning to continue his education in the accelerated Master of Business Administration program at Michigan Tech (graduating in fall 2020) in hopes of taking on leadership and upper management roles in industry.


Nancy Barr Named an IEEE Senior Member

Nancy Barr
Nancy Barr

Nancy Barr (ME-EM) has been elevated to IEEE Senior Member status. To qualify for the honor, a candidate must be an engineer, scientist, educator, technical executive,or originator in IEEE-designated fields, have been in professional practice for at least ten years and shown significant performance for at least five of those years.

In addition to developing an extensive communication and teaming undergraduate curriculum in the ME-EM, Barr teaches two graduate communication courses. She is secretary to the IEEE Professional Communication Society Board of Governors and the ASEE North Midwest Section Campus Representative.