Category Archives: Awards

Darrell L. Robinette Honored by SAE International with Forest R. McFarland Award

Darrell Robinette
Darrell Robinette

A Michigan Tech assistant professor in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics is among those being honored with awards from SAE Engineering.

Houghton resident Dr. Darrell Robinette was one of 26 mobility engineering professionals to win the 2019 Forest R. McFarland Award.

Honorees are recognized for their outstanding, sustained contributions to support SAE Engineering Events.

Robinette is currently an assistant professor in the Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics at Michigan Technological University, a position held since August of 2016.

Read more at the Keweenaw Report.


Gregory Odegard Elected ASME Fellow

Greg Odegard
Greg Odegard

Gregory M. Odegard has been elected a Fellow of ASME. This is a recognition of Dr. Odegard’s significant impact and outstanding contributions in the field of composite materials research through the pioneering of computational modeling techniques to predict the influence of molecular structure on bulk-level properties of composite materials. The Fellow grade is truly a distinction among ASME members.

Odegard is the Richard and Elizabeth Henes Professor of Computational Mechanics, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics.


Cam Hadden is the 2019 ME Teacher of the Year

Cameron Hadden
Cameron Hadden

At the Senior Recognition Banquet and Order of the Engineer Ceremony on Tuesday, April 23, 2019, the ME Student Advisory Committee (MESAC) chair and co-chair announced the Mechanical Engineering Teacher of the Year finalists and winner. The selection is made by mechanical engineering students second year through senior year and run by the MESAC.

The three finalists were Cam Hadden, Aneet Narendranath and Paul Van Susante and the overall winner was Cam Hadden. His name will be on the plaque in the lobby of the R.L. Smith Building (MEEM).

By Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics.


Tech Does Well in SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge

Clean Snowmobile Challenge SledMichigan Tech fared well in the 2019 SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge (CSC) held March 4-9 at the Keweenaw Research Center.

There were 22 university teams competing this year from the U.S. and Canada, 13 in the Spark Ignition Gasoline Class and nine in the Compression Ignition Diesel Utility Class. The teams came from as far east as Clarkson University and as far west as Idaho University.

The Michigan Tech CSC team took first place in the Combustion Ignition Diesel Utility Class. They received a trophy and $1,000 prize, sponsored by Oshkosh. The team received one of the Can-Do E-Controls Innovation Awards with the prize of $1,000 in value products.

The Michigan Tech CSC team also earned the Most Sportsmanlike Award ($1,000 sponsored by AVL) as recognized by the other teams.

In the Spark Ignition Gasoline Class, the Michigan Tech CSC team received the Polaris Best Handling Award. They also received a MSA Award Plaque for Endurance, having completed the 100 mile endurance and fuel economy event.

By Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics. Photos by Janet Callahan.

Clean Snowmobile Challenge Group


2019 Rekhi Innovation Challenge Winners

Beach ChallengeThe 2019 Rekhi Innovation Challenge ended Feb. 28. This year there were seven teams competing. The Rekhi Challenge is a crowdfunding competition to help promote and support student innovation and entrepreneurship through Michigan Tech’s crowdfunding site, Superior Ideas. A total of $3,035 was raised between the projects. Congratulations to the Automated Beach Safety Flag project for raising the most at $2,245. This project team will receive a matching gift of $1,000.

Here are results in the other prize categories:

Most Unique Visitors – 1st Place Wins $50 For Their Project

  • 1st place – Audio to Visual Translator
  • 2nd place – Automated Beach Safety Flag
  • 3rd place – LifePro Jackets

Most Unique Funders – 1st Place Wins $50 For Their Project

  • 1st place – Audio to Visual Translator
  • 2nd place – Automated Beach Safety Flag
  • 3rd place – LifePro Jackets

Social Media Engagement – 1st Place Wins $50 For Their Project

  • 1st place – Automated Beach Safety Flag
  • 2nd place – Audio to Visual Translator
  • 3rd – LifePro Jackets

Most Creative Marketing Communications Strategy – 1st Place Wins $50 For Their Project

  • 1st place – Automated Beach Safety Flag

The Audio to Visual project won a total of $100 in prize money and the Automated Beach Safety Flag project won a total of $1,150. Thanks to all of the donors that contributed to these projects. Your support for student innovation and entrepreneurship at Michigan Tech is greatly appreciated.

Superior Ideas was established in 2012 to help bring University research and public service projects to life. The site uses crowdfunding to raise money and awareness for University research and public service projects that may not qualify for grant funding.

Meet the Researchers

Audio to Visual Translator

Automated Cellular Beach Safety Flag System

  • Jacob Soter
  • Andrew Barnard is an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics.

ME-EM Senior Recognition Banquet December 11, 2018

MEEM Fall 2018 Ceremonies

Banquet and Program

The ME-EM Senior Recognition Banquet and Order of the Engineer Program was held on December 11, 2018.

VIEW THE PHOTO GALLERY

Keynote Speaker

Heidi Mueller
Keynote Speaker Heidi Mueller

Heidi Mueller

The speaker was Heidi Mueller, Supervisor – 2.3L GTDI Engine Calibration, Ford Motor Company.

Fall 2018 Outstanding Student Awards

Outstanding Senior Design Student Awards

John Hoffman, student Advisor Steven Ma

John Hoffman is a member of team 64 working on Laser Welding of Carbide Saw Blade contracted with Milwaukee Tool. His team’s advisor, Steven Ma, said that during the year working on the project John Hoffman has continuously shown graduate level skill in multiple areas of our senior design project in software/coding, CNC control, fixture design and hands-on machining and made great contribution to the success of the project. Although the whole team has worked well together and each individual contributed quality work, the project would not be at the point where it is currently without John’s knowledge, time, and commitment. His outstanding performance during this Senior Capstone Design project has been well recognized and is therefore nominated here for the Outstanding Student Performance Award.

Thomas Richter, SCD Team 59

Cam Hadden nominated Thomas Richter for his outstanding work on Team 59’s CAD model of the seatframe, as well as the work he has done with FEA. I believe that without his contribution, the team would not have nearly as impressive of a final presentation. From what I understand, he has done most of the modelling work by himself during semester 1, and he has done ALL of the FEA work by himself during semester 2. His FEA models are very impressive, which include not only stress analysis but also mass optimization for weight reduction… These were apparent in the team’s final presentation.

Nominee for Outstanding Enterprise Student

Cora Taylor, FSAE Enterprise

Nominated by Forumla SAE Advisor Jim De Clerck, Cora Taylor joined FSAE early in her college career. She has been involved in nearly every aspect of vehicle development and team operation. As team President, Cora proved that she could be counted on to get things done. Last May, Cora led the team through one of our most outstanding competition experiences ever.


VAKYA Business Model Places in Competition

Karuna Rana and Mayank Bagaria
Karuna Rana (left) and Mayank Bagaria (right) share second and third place awards.

The 2018 Bob Mark Business Model Competition took place Wednesday (Dec. 5, 2018) in the Opie Library. The Competition was hosted by the Innovation Center for Entrepreneurship, a collaboration between Pavlis Honors College, the School of Business and Economics and the Vice President for Research Office.

There were more than 20 participants making up 15 teams from various majors and disciplines who pitched to a panel of judges.

Ideas ranged from hypothermia preventing life jackets to a web-based stress management program. Participants had five minutes to pitch their ideas and present their business model. The judging panel then had time following the presentation to ask questions and provide valuable feedback.

The winners of the 2018 Bob Mark Business Model Competition were:

  • First Place and MTEC SmartZone Game Changer Award – Gary Tropp (Computer Network & System Administration) for VARS (Virtual Advising Registering and Scheduling)
  • Second and Third Place – Tie between Mayank Bagaria (Mechanical Engineering) for Vakya and Karuna Rana (Environmental and Energy Policy) for Reality Check
  • Audience Favorite – Nate LaJoie (Finance) and Michael Betz (Management) for Backpack Keg
  • Honorable Mention – Deanna Springgay (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) for Little Trainer
  • Honorable Mention – Russ Crofton (Mechanical Engineering Technology) for Modern Steel Bicycles

Congratulations to all winners and participants, and thanks to the panel of distinguished judges for donating their time and expertise. The Innovation Center for Entrepreneurship would also like to thank MTEC SmartZone and Arroyo Networks for their support and prize contributions. Photos from the event can be viewed and downloaded here.

The Bob Mark Competition is part of Husky Innovate, a series of workshops and competitions that guide students through key phases of business development while emphasizing strategies for success. More information on upcoming Spring Husky Innovate events can be found at mtu.edu/husky-innovate.

By the Innovation Center for Entrepreneurship.

View the Photo Gallery

Tech student teams compete in business

VAKYA Presentation by the speaker
Presentation on the VAKYA business model by Mayank Bagaria.

Bagaria’s proposal was for VAKYA, a set of glasses that would listen to speech and print the text on the lens for the wearer. Bagaria has those with total or partial hearing loss in mind for the first phase, but the second phase could include translation from different languages.

Read more at the Mining Gazette, by Joshua Vissers.


Best Poster by Kishan Bellur

Kishan Bellur
Kishan Bellur

Kishan Bellur, a postdoctoral scholar (ME-EM), recently attended the annual meeting of the American Society of Gravitational and Space Research (ASGSR) in Bethesda, Maryland. This is now the primary microgravity conference for NASA.

At the conference, Bellur received the award for “Best Poster Presentation.” His poster presentation was based on his dissertation research, which will be extended with the new NASA Physical Sciences Informatics System (PSI) grant.

The meeting took place October 31st, 2018 through November 3rd, 2018.

The members of ASGSR represent academia, government, and industry interests bonded by a common issue – how living organisms and physical systems respond to gravity.

NASA offers the PSI data repository for physical science experiments performed on the International Space Station (ISS). The PSI system is now accessible and open to the public.


ME-EM Students Excel at Global Forum

PACE Warren 2018 buildingMichigan Tech was well represented at the Partners for the Advancement of Collaborative Engineering Education (PACE) Global Annual Forum July 22-25, 2018, at the GM WarrentTech Center.

Five graduate students in mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics were a part of TEAM 3 which did well in competitions at the forum. The team took:

  • First place in Manufacturing Engineering
  • Second place in Product Engineering, and
  • Third place in Customer Insight.
  • The team also won the Siemens Award for Excellence in PLM.

The Michigan Tech grad students participating were; Manjo Balabadhruni, Karan Gundre, Aniket Jadhav, and Mayuresh Kange.


ME-EM Senior Recognition Banquet April 24, 2018

Banquet and Program

The ME-EM Senior Recognition Banquet and Order of the Engineer Program was held on April 24, 2018.

VIEW THE PHOTO GALLERY

Keynote Speaker

Jolyn Russell at the podium
Keynote Speaker Jolyn Russell

Jolyn L. Russell

Deputy Program Manager
Satellite Servicing Projects Division
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Greenbelt, MD

Jolyn Russell graduated from Michigan Tech with a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1998. She received her MS degree in Engineering Science and Mechanics from Virginia Tech in 2000.

After receiving her MS degree she was selected for the 2- year Ford College Graduate Rotational Program. In 2003 she became a Brake Integration Engineer and the program management lead for the implementation of Roll Stability Control on the E350, completing it in a record 18 months from kick-off to production launch. In 2005 she become Roll Stability Control Algorithm Engineer and algorithm module expert responsible for code development, vehicle tuning and production approval of wheel lift detection logic on all worldwide platforms including Ford, Volvo, and Land Rover.

In 2007 she joined SAIC at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center as a Lead Mechanical Systems Engineer responsible for planning, mechanical operations, mechanism testing and issue resolution for the Geostationary Operational Environmental Weather Satellites (GOES O and GOES P). One of the projects involved the implementation a new filter design on the sun telescope. In 2010 she advanced to Lead Mechanical Systems Engineer for the DESDynl, which involved leading efforts to coordinate the design and Engineering Tech Unit build for the instrument during the pre-Phase portion of the program.

In 2011 she was the Senior Mechanical Engineer for the Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) Free Flyer, responsible for development of requirements supporting the satellite procurement, including mechanical inputs for the Statement of Work, Systems Requirements Document, and launch services interface requirements document. In 2013 she was the Raven Mechanical Lead in which she led a team of mechanical engineers, designers, analysts and technicians to design, integrate, and test the Raven Tech Demo experiment from preliminary design through launch in 18 months.

Since 2015 she is the Deputy Robotics Program Manager, Satellite Servicing Projects Division, at Goddard Space Flight Center where she manages a multi-disciplined team of Mechanical, Electrical, System, and Software Engineers supporting multiple programs in the division, focused primarily on the Restore Lower Earth Orbit mission. This includes maintaining the robot systems schedule and budget, responsible for initial cost estimates and several million dollars of procurements for the flight robot.

WATCH THE KEYNOTE ADDRESS

Spring 2018 Outstanding Student Awards

Senior Capstone Design Team 14

Advisor Jaclyn Johnson

SCD Team 14, consisting of Carter Davis, Nathan Goering, Jesse Lassila, Benjamin Maat, Nick Monette and Jacob Pardy, has, as a whole, exhibited outstanding performance over the course of this project. The team has worked cohesively together to achieve the combined goal of creating a Trailed Agricultural Equipment Braking System. Team 14 has harnessed and leveraged each member’s unique strengths and areas of expertise, exhibiting impressive team dynamics, professionalism and respect. This includes the use of AMESIM modeling to validate the engineering feasibility of their design, extensive machining and manufacturing work for an effective prototype, and testing for validation. Many teams can deliver a successful prototype, however, few work as well together as Team 14 has over these two semesters, motivating each other to do better and be successful, with the end result being a superior team experience and a quality prototype which has significant potential for future success and implementation. Overall, this team has been successful due to their ability to use each individual’s skills to capacity, while exercising impressive team dynamics to meet their common final goal.

Senior Capstone Design Team 6

Advisor Fei Long

Kayla Buczkowski and Ryan Usimaki worked on Senior Capstone Design Team 6, which developed  the Next Generation Vehicle Entry/Exit Technology for Jeep. Kayla stands out for her excellent team management, customer communication as well as project planning skills. Team 6 has two student athletes with a lot of travelling throughout the academic year, which makes the team coordination and project planning very challenging. Kayla makes great efforts to keep the project moving forward with the contribution of all team members.  Ryan stands out for his excellent technical skills on both electronics and mechanics. Inspired by Ryan’s idea, team 6 decided to design a motion/gesture controlled vehicle door without a door handle, which is very innovative and challenging. Ryan takes the lead in the electronic system design and testing, and complete the prototype with the help of all other team members.

Enterprise Team Formula SAE

Advisor Jim De Clerck

Each one of the 12 graduating Formula SAE members has made significant contributions during their time on the team. Three members have made outstanding contributions:

Jayson Allison demonstrated outstanding skill and determination when he designed and machined the differential carrier and housing. Jayson continued to design and fabricate parts while he was on co-op.

Andrew Aerts outstandingly applied engineering skills from his classes to design, optimize, and fabricate two generations of differential brackets. Andrew’s latest innovative design uses cams to eliminate the need for a separate chain tensioner.

As the Chief Engineer, Conor Berndt has taken a personal responsibility to ensure that the car will be ready for competition in two weeks. Conor has worked tirelessly this year to define target performance requirements and work with team members to develop a car that meets these requirements.