Author: Sue Hill

Jeffrey Allen Elected as an ASME Fellow

Jeffrey S. Allen
Jeffrey S. Allen

Jeffrey S. Allen, (ME-EM) the John F. and Joan M. Calder Professor in Mechanical Engineering, has been elected a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

The award is in recognition for Allen’s research contributions in optical diagnostic development for investigating fluid and heat transfer phenomena, his engineering design contributions in microgravity while at NASA, and his leadership in engineering education.

The ASME certificate was presented to Allen at the ME-EM Faculty and Staff meeting earlier this month.


Peters, Stabenow Applaud $4.5 Million Federal Funding to Help Advance MTU Automated Vehicle Research

Michigan icon.

Michigan’s U.S. Senators Gary Peters and Debbie Stabenow welcomed $4,498,650 in federal funding awarded to Michigan Tech for self-driving vehicle research and development on March 10, 2021. The funding—awarded through the Department of Energy—will support ongoing projects to enhance connected and automated vehicle technologies that improve driver safety by eliminating risk found in human error.

Led by the University and in partnership with General Motors (GM), the American Center of Mobility and Stellantis, this research aims to identify additional opportunities for fuel savings and EV range optimization by creating more intelligently operating vehicles. 

“Michigan continues to be a global leader in developing self-driving vehicle technology, thanks in part to work being done at distinguished institutions like Michigan Tech,” said Senator Peters, Chairman of the Commerce Subcommittee on Surface Transportation, Maritime, Freight, and Ports. “This investment will spur future innovation and development surrounding mobility as we work to usher self-driving cars safely onto our roadways while ensuring Michigan remains on the forefront of automated transportation.”

“Michigan workers, manufacturers and universities are the best in the world and continue to lead the development of next-generation vehicles. Michigan Tech is one of those institutions leading the way in creating longer-range electric and autonomous vehicles, improving safety and making our cars more energy efficient. This investment will ensure Michigan remains a global leader,” said Senator Stabenow.

The project is led by Jeffrey Naber, the Ron and Elaine Starr Professor in Energy Systems, in Michigan Tech’s Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Department and the director of the Advanced Power Systems Research Center.

“We are proud to continue our support of advancing autonomous and connected vehicle technologies through collaborative research with industry and the Department of Energy,” said David Reed, Vice President of Research, Michigan Technological University. “This program builds upon our strengths in power systems, controls, and systems engineering to improve driver safety for all.”

 More information on the Department of Energy Grant program can be found at ARPA-E Funding Opportunity Exchange and Department of Energy Funding & Financing.


Postdoctoral Research Associate: Diesel Engine Aftertreatment Modeling and Simulation

Michigan Technological University
Houghton, MI
25 January 2021

Position Description

The Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics Department at Michigan Technological University is hiring a postdoctoral research associate for a recently funded U.S. Department of Energy project to develop off-highway diesel engine aftertreatment technology that reduces the cost and complexity. Optimal design of a single device that combines the functions of a Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC) and a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) is the focus of the research. Referred to as a DOCF, it will simultaneously control a diesel engine’s CO, HC and PM emissions. Achieving the project goals requires a combination of modeling and simulation (M&S), reactor experiments, prototype development and engine test cell studies. In addition to Michigan Tech, the project team includes Pacific Northwest National Laboratories (PNNL) and several commercial partners. The integrated nature of the project requires close collaboration among all its partners including not only co-development of M&S codes but also reactor and engine test cell experiments. This position focuses on the M&S code development, the model calibration with test data and its use for DOCF design.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

Your primary duties will be: (1) development of the DOCF’s M&S codes, (2) the calibration of the model to test data, (3) periodic reporting to our research customer and project partners and (4) publication of the results in peer-reviewed journals. Other duties may be assigned as the project develops. Because calibration requires a thorough understanding of both the DOCF’s physics and the test data, it’s important that you work closely with researchers responsible for conducting both reactor and engine tests. Model development minimally requires that you have experience with (1) diesel engine aftertreatment technologies and (2) modeling a gas flow device that has coupled thermal and chemical kinetic responses. It’s imperative that the resulting M&S codes be predictive and can be used for extrapolated DOCF design. Fortunately, Michigan Tech has a long history of diesel engine aftertreatment component M&S development including: DOCs, DPFS, Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCRs) and most recently, a combined SCR/DPF device. Most of these models exist in MATLAB and Simulink. The expectation is that our existing models, and those of our project partners, can be leveraged to implement this DOCF modeling effort.

Minimum Required Education

  • A PhD in mechanical or chemical engineering, or a closely related field

Minimum Required Experience

  • Model development using MATLAB and Simulink
  • Diesel engine aftertreatment component analysis involving chemical reactions, transport phenomena and thermal response

Minimum Required Skills, and Abilities

  • Advanced chemical process knowledge consistent with a PhD degree in chemical or mechanical engineering
  • Advanced modeling techniques using MATLAB and Simulink.
  • Demonstrated abilities in (1) oral and written communication and (2) working with diverse groups of students, faculty, and staff

Desirable Experience

  • DPF and/or other emission component modeling
  • Aftertreatment component model calibration
  • Reactor or engine test cell studies

Desirable Skills, and Abilities

  • Experience with COMSOL Multiphysics, GT-Suite or similar programs

Term

  • The appointment is for 12 months with a yearly renewal option

Application Instructions

Please submit the items below to Marlene Lappeus by email, mmlappeu@mtu.edu. Applications will be reviewed as they arrive with the goal of making a selection by March 2021.

  • Your CV, including a list of your publications
  • One-page description of your relevant research experience
  • Contact information of three references

Senior Capstone Team Places in National Airport Design Competition

Glycol Collection Cart illustration.

A project designed by a Michigan Tech Senior Capstone team placed second in the Transportation Research Board’s Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) student design competition. The team’s submission in the Airport Environmental Interactions Challenge design category was “Glycol Collection Cart: A Design for Small Airports.”

Undergraduate team members are Derek Cingel, Jared Langdon, Bryce Leaf, Ruth Maki, and Douglas Pedersen. Amanda Moya and Alec Mitteer also participated the first semester of the project.

They were advised by Paul van Susante and Michigan Tech Senior Capstone Design Program Director William Endres.

The selection was made from 63 entries by a panel of industry, FAA and academic experts. For its entry, the team will receive a $2,000 award.

The Transportation Research Board is a program unit of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine — private, nonprofit institutions that provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions related to science, technology, and medicine.


Choi and Barr Present ASEE Conference Paper

ASEE Virtual Conference June 22 to 26 in 2020

Chang Kyoung Choi (ME-EM) and Nancy Barr (ME-EM) presented a paper titled “Peer Presentations as a Student-centered Learning Approach in the Nanotechnology Class” in the Graduate Studies Division of the recent virtual ASEE Annual Conference.

This paper discussed the first phase of a multi-year study on the use of an active learning approach called student-centered learning to build communication skills in a graduate-level nanotechnology course.

Both are faculty in the Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics where is Choi is an associate professor and Barr is a professor of practice-engineering communication.

The conference “At Home with Engineering Education” took place June 22-26, 2020. It was presented by the University of Maryland. ASEE is the American Society for Engineering Education.


Bo Chen Named ASME Fellow

Bo Chen
Bo Chen

Bo Chen (ME-EM) has received the designation of Fellow from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

The ASME Committee of Past Presidents confers the Fellow grade of membership on worthy candidates to recognize their outstanding engineering achievements.

Nominated by ASME Members and Fellows, an ASME Member has to have 10 or more years of active practice and at least 10 years of active corporate membership in ASME.

William Predebon, chair of the the Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics said, “Dr. Chen has made major contributions in her field of embedded systems with application to hybrid-electric and electric autonomous systems. Her course in Model-based Embedded Control System Design is regularly in high demand by not only ME students but also EE students. This is a testament to the importance of the topic and her teaching ability.”

Chen conducts interdisciplinary research in the areas of mechatronics and embedded systems, agent technology, modeling and control of hybrid electric vehicles, cyber-physical systems and automation.


Barnard Presents at Webinar on N95 Mask Decontamination

Andrew Barnard's presentation with one screen on the first generation prototype.

Andrew Barnard (ME-EM/GLRC) presented to an international audience Sunday at a webinar on the decontamination of N95 masks. Barnard was invited by a group of scientists, doctors and engineers to present on the Mobile Thermal Utility (MTU) Sanitizer.

The seminar was simulcast through both Zoom and YouTube Live. There were more than 450 attendees on Zoom from more than 50 countries, including many African, South American and Central American nations. In addition, more than 1,000 attended via YouTube Live.

In addition to Barnard, panelists included researchers from Harvard, MIT, the University of Chicago, Clemson, Massachusetts General Brigham Hospital and more.

“I am proud to represent Michigan Tech among this group of distinguished scholars. It has been an honor to work with the incredible team here at MTU on this project,” Barnard said. “Thank you for all the support of this team. It is gratifying to know the administration sees value in supporting the global health care community during this pandemic. Your efforts and support have not gone unnoticed.”

Those who missed the livestream can watch the seminar on YouTube. Barnard’s presentation begins at 1:14:16. He also speaks during the Q&A at the end of the webinar at 1:40:02 and 1:44:21.


ME-EM Honors BSME Graduates, Faculty in Spring 2020

Order of the Engineer for Over 50 Years

Order of the Engineer

The Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics recently honored its graduating BSME students and select faculty during its virtual Order of the Engineer Induction Ceremony. More than 200 people witnessed the induction of 132 BSME spring/summer graduates into the Order of the Engineer, marking the beginning of their careers as professional engineers.

ME-EM Teacher of the Year

Gordon Parker

Additionally, the department honored two faculty for their instructional efforts. Gordon Parker received the ME-EM Teacher of the Year Award, with Aneet Narendranath honored as the runner-up. Undergraduate students in the department select the recipients each year via their responses to a survey regarding which instructors have had the most positive impact on their education.

One student said of Parker, “He not only encourages the success and growth for each student in his class, but also provides the tools for everyone to do so. Not many students want to miss his lectures, as they are interesting, engaging, and fun. He spends a great deal of his free time creating quality notes and examples that are easy to follow and help a lot to understand the material.”

Of Narendranath, a student said, “He has regularly displayed exemplary teaching ability and a genuine interest in his students and their success, both in and outside of the classroom. He communicates course material clearly; keeps lectures interesting through stories, jokes, and fun facts; connects course material with real-world applications; and makes himself very approachable and available to his students.”

Spring 2020 Outstanding Student Awards

Finally, the following four graduating seniors were recognized for their outstanding contributions to their Enterprise or Senior Capstone Design projects:

  • Austin Arenz – Formula SAE
  • Eric Bauer – Blizzard Baja
  • Jake Fedie – Blizzard Baja
  • Ben Hubbard – SCD Team 18 Nexteer Bearing Noise Test Rig Design and Metric Development

Berries and Brews Project Funding

Michigan Craft Beverage Council graphic

Momoko Tajiri (Chemistry/MuSTI) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $33,597 research and development grant from the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development – Michigan Craft Beer Council.

The project is entitled, “Berries & Brews: Understanding the Market and Technological Processing Opportunities of Michigan Grown Fruit in the Craft Beverage Industry”. Jenny Apriesnig (College of Business/MuSTI), Ezequiel Medici (MEEM/MuSTI), Kazuya Tajiri (MEEM/MuSTI), Lynn Mazzoleni (Chemistry/MuSTI), and Martin Thompson (Chemistry/MuSTI) are co-PIs on this 16-month project.


Cyber Education Funding for Barnard Group

Andrew Barnard
Andrew Barnard

Andrew Barnard (ME-EM/GLRC) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $248,517 research and development grant from The U.S. Department of Defense, Office of Naval Research.

The project is entitled, “ONR STEM ROTC Cyber Education Initiative.” Timothy Havens (CComputing/GLRC), Laura Brown, (CC/GLRC) and Yu Cai (CC/GLRC) are co-PI’s on this one-year project.

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