Tag: Spring 2012

Special Presentation: Vidya Pratishthan’s College of Engineering; Friday, May 11th

Special Presentation: Friday, May 11th 10:00 – 11:00; MEEM 1021

Vidya Pratishthan’s College of Engineering (VPCOE), Baramati, India
Dr. Suryaji (Steve) Bhonsle,
Mentor & Director of International Affairs, Vidya Pratishthan Education Foundation, Baramati
Dr. Shankar B. Deosarkar
Principal, Vidya Pratishthan’s College of Engineering
Dr. Sachin M. Bhosle
Research Coordinator and Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Vidya Pratishthan’s COE

Vidya Pratishthan College of Engineering is a new university in India. One of our former faculty members, Dr. Steve Bhonsle (1970), is involved with the development of this university, and will be presenting with the hope of establishing an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with our department for both undergraduate and graduate students.

Video Link

MEEM Seminar April 19th: Ida Ngambeki

MEEM Seminar April 19th: Ida Ngambeki, School of Engineering Education, Purdue University
Thursday, April 19, 2012 Room 302, ME-EM Bldg. 2:00 – 3:00 p.m

Title: Exploring the relationship between person and thing orientations and technical aptitudes

One of the most prominent problems in engineering today is the low level of retention of engineering students and persistence into engineering careers. Technical aptitudes are believed to be a contributing factor to engineering students’ success and therefore, persistence. While in other professional fields a number of studies have demonstrated a strong relationship between
student interests and abilities and professional entrance and retention, little is understood about how interest affects career preferences in engineering. This seminar will examine the interaction between technical aptitudes, specifically spatial and mechanical aptitudes, and interest operationalized as a differential orientation to persons called Person Orientation (PO), distinguished by an interest in interpersonal interactions, and an orientation to things called
Thing Orientation (TO), distinguished by a desire for mastery over objects. The implications of the interactions between aptitudes and interests for persistence in engineering will be discussed.

Ida Ngambeki is a doctoral candidate in the School of Engineering Education
at Purdue University with a concentration in Ecological Sciences and Engineering. Originally from Uganda, she got her B.S. in Engineering from Smith College in Northampton MA in 2007. She is Vice Chair of the Graduate Engineering Education Consortium for Students and an associate member of
the Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society. Her research interests include motivation and interest in engineering, engineering and public policy, the
use of artifacts in engineering, and the development of engineering cognition.

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MEEM Graduate Seminar April 19th

MEEM Graduate Seminar April 19th:
Jing Wang Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering, University of South Florida

Thursday, Apr. 19, 2012 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. Room 112, ME-EM Bldg.

Dr. Jing Wang received the dual B.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering and from Tshinghua University in 1999. He received two M.S. degrees from the University of Michigan, one in electrical engineering (2000), the other in mechanical engineering (2002), and a Ph.D. degree from University of Michigan in 2006. Dr. Wang joined University of South Florida as an Assistant Professor and started the RF MEMS Transducers Laboratory in 2006. His research interests include micro/nanofabrication technologies, functional nanomaterials, micromachined sensors and actuators, RF/Microwave/THz devices. His research has been funded by grants from federal agencies (NSF, DTRA, US Army) and contracts from industries. He serves as the faculty advisor for Florida IMAPS and AVS student chapters and the
chairperson for IEEE joint MTT/AP/ED Florida West Coast Section. Recently, he has joined the prestigious IEEE MTT Technical Coordinating Committee 21 (TCC-21) on RF MEMS.


Title: Functional Nanocomposite Materials for RF/MW Device Applications

A wide variety of fuctional nanomaterials have attracted considerable attention from both academia and industries for their application in chemical, biomedical and microelectronic devices; however the successful implementation of such type of materials in RF and microwave device applications is relatively limited. In this talk, magneto-dielectric polymer nanocomposites will be introduced as a new class of functional materials well suited for RF device applications. Magnetite (Fe3O4) nanoparticles, with sub-8nm diameters and tight size distribution, are synthesized and homogeneously dispersed in Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) to enhance the microwave properties of the engineered RF substrate by increasing the relative permeability and relative permittivity. Moreover, these properties can be further improved by a dc magnetic field with strength achievable with regular permanent magnets. This work not only presents the first experimental implementation of magneto-dielectric nanocomposite engineered substrates
for RF antennas with 3-5 GHz operational frequencies, but also correlates the unique magneto-dielectric properties to the key antenna performance metrics (e.g. bandwidth, efficiency and dimensions). Aside from RF antenna applications, a new type of injection-moldable polymer nanocomposites with tailored thermal, mechanical and electrical properties have also been explored to enable a unique approach for heterogeneous integration of multichip modules on a single silicon platform. The talk will be concluded with brief discussion of several other ongoing activities within the RF MEMS Transducers group at USF which focus on implementation of a variety of nanostructured materials in form of nanolaminated ultra-thin films or nanorod array in RF/MW/THz devices

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MEEM Graduate Seminar April 12th: Kurt Schneider

MEEM Graduate Seminar: Thursday April 12, 2012 4:00-5:00 p.m., ME-EM building, Room 112

Kurt Schneider, Engineering Group Manager, Global N & V CAE and Structural Vibration, General Motors

Kurt Schneider is currently an Engineering Group Manager at
General Motors. His responsibilities includes noise and vibration
computer aided simulation, and structural vibrations across all of
GM’s products in their global market. Through his 22 year career at
General Motors, he has been a part of multiple vehicle programs in
the roles of hardware testing and development, computer aided
engineering, and advanced methods development, primarily in the
areas of noise and vibrations related phenomena.

Kurt holds a BSME from GMI Engineering & Management Institute (now called Kettering University), as well as an MSE from the University of Michigan. He is also a licensed professional engineer. He has published multiple papers on such topics as FRF based substructuring, path analysis, and simulation techniques. He has worked with software
vendors in the development of methods and tools related to substructuring and component mode synthesis that are now found in commercial simulation tools used throughout industry.

Topic: Importance of Structural Vibrations to Mechanical Engineer

Structural dynamics is a fundamental part of all designs of mechanical system. At the heart of structural dynamics is structural vibrations. Most every product ever put into production has a structural component. This spans from such small items as computer fans and hard disk drives, to bridges and high rise buildings. All of these things must consider how the structure moves dynamically, and the effects of this motion on the function, durability, and safety of the product. In this presentation, an overview of the broad field of structural vibrations is presented. Motivation for all mechanical engineers to be firmly founded in this topic is given, and an overview of the rich areas of future research is presented.

Link for Seminar abstract

MEEM Graduate Seminar April 5: Stephen W. Rouhana

MEEM Graduate Seminar April 5th:
Thursday April 5, 2012 4:00-5:00 p.m.
ME-EM building, Room 112

Stephen W. Rouhana
Ford Research & Advanced Engineering

In 2008, Dr. Stephen W. Rouhana was featured in television ads for Ford Motor Company. He obtained a PhD and MS in Physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He received three simultaneous BS degrees in Physics, Mathematics, and Religious Studies (magna cum laude) from Manhattan College.

After 17 years with the General Motors Research Laboratories, he joined Ford Motor Company. He is their Senior Technical Leader for Safety in Research & Advanced Engineering Department. He heads the Biomechanics and Occupant Protection Group in the Passive Safety Research & Advanced Engineering Department and serves as Chairman of the Occupant Safety Research Partnership; a consortium formed in 1992 by Ford, General Motors and Chrysler for research on advanced crash test dummies. His areas of interest are impact biomechanics, the development of crash test dummies, injury assessment strategies and advanced safety concepts.
As a SAE Fellow, he Chairs the SAE Impulse Noise Task Force of the Inflatable Restraints Standards Committee and the SAE Dummy Abdomen-Pelvis Round Robin Task Force. Dr. Rouhana is a member of the Stapp Car Crash Conference Advisory Committee and is on the Editorial Board of the Stapp Car Crash Journal. He serves on the Industrial Advisory Board of the Center for Child Injury Prevention Studies (C-ChIPS) at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and on the External Advisory Board for the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine (AAAM), the American Society of Biomechanics, and Sigma Xi (the National Research Honor Society).

In 2003, he was awarded the US Government Award for Safety Engineering Excellence, “In recognition of and appreciation for exceptional scientific contributions in the field of motor vehicle safety engineering and for distinguished service to the motoring public”. In 2011, he received the Award of Merit (the highest technical award) from the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine. In 2012 he became a Fellow in AIMBE. He is a two time recipient of the John Paul Stapp Award and the SAE Arnold W. Siegel Awards. Additional awards include the SAE Ralph H. Isbrandt Automotive
Safety Engineering Award, the SAE Arch T. Colwell Merit Award, the General Motors Research Laboratories Charles L. McCuen Special Achievement Award and General Motors’ highest technical honor, the Charles F. Kettering Award. He has 7 patents with another 3 pending

Engineering Considerations in Automotive Safety – A Case Study in Ford’s Inflatable Seat Belts

Automotive manufacturers consider numerous factors when designing their vehicles. Among these factors, biomechanical considerations are an integral part of the development of new safety systems. The process of developing a new safety system includes identifying a potential realworld safety enhancement, obtaining basic biomechanical knowledge, developing a design concept, building prototypes of the concept, testing the prototypes, and assessing potentially adverse effects. That process will be the focus of this discussion, using the development of the world’s first production automotive inflatable safety belt system as an example. This talk will
also touch on the current state of automotive safety and some of the emerging trends for future consideration by vehicle safety researchers.

MEEM Graduate Seminar: Hong G Im

MEEM Graduate Seminar: Thursday March 29, 2012 4:00-5:00 p.m.
ME-EM building, Room 112

Hong G Im
Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan

Professor Hong G. Im received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Seoul National University in 1986, M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Seoul National University in 1988, and M.A. and Ph.D. in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University in 1991 and 1994, respectively. After graduation, he spent two years as a Research Fellow at the Center for Turbulence Research, Stanford University, followed by a post-doctoral tenure at the Combustion Research Facility, Sandia National Laboratories from 1996 to 1999. He joined the University of Michigan in January 2000 in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, where he currently holds a Professor position. Hong Im’s research and teaching interests are primarily fundamental and practical aspects of combustion and power generation devices using high-fidelity computational modeling. Recent research topics include modeling of combustion in low temperature combustion engines, advanced models for turbulent sooting flames, and combustion characteristics of high hydrogen content fuels for advanced gas turbine applications. He is a recipient of the NSF CAREER Award in 2002 and SAE Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award in 2006. He is an Associate Fellow of American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), and serves as an Associate Editor for the Proceedings of the Combustion Institute.

Recent advances in the massively parallel computing technology have enabled first principle simulations of laminar and turbulent reacting flows to unravel fine-scale physics with ultimate realism and accuracy. To achieve this mission successfully, however, it is essential to develop reliable algorithms that are free from turbulence modeling errors and numerical dissipation.
Furthermore, the implemented submodels should be able to describe the essential physical and chemical processes, such as radiative heat transfer, spray dynamics, and soot formation. This presentation will provide an overview of recent research activities using direct numerical simulations (DNS) with detailed chemistry and transport. In particular, DNS of auto-ignition in the presence of mixture stratification is analyzed to provide insights into the characterization of
auto-ignition regimes and as a means to develop improved mixing models for turbulent combustion simulations.

Funding for the ME-EM Graduate Seminar Series is provided by Professional Plating, Inc. of Anoka, MN www.proplate.com
and the Department of Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics www.me.mtu.edu/seminar

Graduate Seminar: Greg McKenna

Thursday March 22, 2012 4:00-5:00 p.m.
ME-EM building, Room 112

Greg McKenna
Horn Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, Texas Tech University

Dr. Gregory B. McKenna has a reputation as a pioneering researcher in four areas of polymer and plastics science and technology: Physical Aging and Structural Recovery of Polymer Glasses, Solid Mechanics and Nonlinear Viscoelasticity of Polymers, Thermodynamics and Mechanics of Elastomers and Gels, Molecular Rheology.

He received his Bachelor’s in Engineering Mechanics at the U.S. Air Force Academy, and his MS in the area of composite materials from MIT. He entered active duty as a test and evaluation engineer at Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah. In 1976 he received his Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Utah. Dr. McKenna started at the National Bureau of Standards (now called NIST) as a National Research Council Postdoc and accepted a permanent position as a staff scientist in 1977. He served
as the head of the Structure and Mechanics Group in the Polymers Division at NIST from 1992-99. In 1989 Dr. McKenna became a Fellow of the American Physical Society and was the recipient of the NIST E.U. Condon Award for excellence in technical exposition for his classic review article “Glass Formation and Glassy Behavior.”

In 1998, he was elected a Fellow of the Society of Plastics Engineers.
After NIST, he joined Texas Tech University as a Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering and the John R. Bradford Endowed Chair in Engineering. In 2005 he became a Paul Whitfield Horn Professor at TTU.

He is the 2009 recipient of the Bingham Medal of the Society of Rheology, has received the International Award of the Society of Plastics Engineers, and the Mettler Toledo Award from the North American Thermal Analysis Society. He served on the Governing Board of the American Institute of Physics, the Executive Committees of the
Society of Rheology and The Division of High Polymer Physics (DHPP) of the American Physical Society. He was the Chairman of the DHPP, the Society of Engineering Science, and the Polymer Analysis Division of the Society of Plastics Engineers. Currently he is vice-president of the Society of Rheology.

Title: Using Mechanics to Interrogate the Physics of Soft Matter:
From the Glassy to the Rubbery States and from the Macro-scale to the Nano-scale

Abstract: Mechanical measurements offer a unique means of interrogating the physics of am orphous glass-formers and rubbery polymers. Here we present several vignettes to demonstrate the ability of both classical and novel rheological experiments to resolve important questions in condensed matter physics. First, results from torque and normal force measurements aimed at understanding the thermodynamics and m echanics of polymer networks in both dry and swollen states are presented. In particular, we examine the validity of the Frenkel-Flory-Rehner theory of rubber network swelling. Torsion and normal force measurements are also described for a series of polymeric glasses that exhibit similar shear moduli but, surprisingly, very different normal force responses, with one set of materials showing extreme deviations from neo-Hookean behavior and the other being close to neo-Hookean. We then describe the use of a novel torsional dilatometer, which allows simultaneous m easurement of mechanical properties and volume recovery, to investigate the aging and rejuvenation behaviors of glassy polymers.

The temperature dependence of dynamics is probed in glassy polymers that have been aged into equilibrium below the nom inal glass transition temperature and evidence is presented that time-scale divergence m ay not be a true signature of the glass transition itself. Finally, we describe a reduction in scale of the classical m embrane inflation test to allow measurement of the biaxial creep compliance of nanometer thick polymeric films using an atomic force microscope. In each instance em phasis is placed on how the measurements are designed to interrogate the physics of interest in the materials investigated.

Graduate Seminar: Jon Pharoah

Thursday March 15, 2012 4:00-5:00 p.m.
ME-EM building, Room 112
Professor Jon Pharoah, Associate Director -RMC Fuel Cell Research Centre, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada will give a presentation entitled ‘Fuel Cells and Renewable Energy … and Multi-Scale Modelling of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell’ For more information on the ME-EM Graduate Seminar Series visit http://www.me.mtu.edu/seminars/

Fuel cells of various types are firmly in the initial stages of commercialization. Phosphoric acid fuel cells have been deployed in the 250 kW range in a vast array of stationary power applications. Molten carbonate fuel cells have also been deployed in capacities from 250 kW to several MW and are fueled by either natural gas or bio gas. Solid oxide fuel cells have been deployed, again for stationary power in the 100 kW size and commercial products have demonstrated AC efficiencies in excess of 60% fueled on natural gas in units as small as 1 kW. Polymer electrolyte fuel cells have also been deployed up to capacities of 1 MW for stationary power. For mobility applications, most leading automotive companies are very close to commercial fuel cell vehicles, and virtually all of them claim that fuel cells are the only technology that can replace existing vehicles with zero emissions and the same functionality. The same fuel cells are operating in the entire fleet of transit buses in the city of Whistler, Canada, where they were introduced for the 2010 winter olympics. Smaller versions of the same fuel cells are continuing to replace lead acid batteries in forklift trucks for distribution centres, and the technology has been clearly demonstrated to give twice the talk time on a mobile phone compared to the current lithium ion battery pack. It is clear that fuel cells are well on their way to commercialization and they will continue to succeed due to their very high efficiencies and zero to low emissions. Fuel cells are also major enablers for the large scale implementation of renewable energy. Most types of fuel cells can be fueled with hydrogen, while some types require hydrogen as a fuel. Hydrogen is an ideal fuel in the sense that it can be produced from many different sources and pathways can be produced locally virtually anywhere results in noemissions at the point of use and is typically used at very high efficiency. It can be reformed from fossil fuels (with corresponding emissions of carbon dioxide), or it can be produced through the electrolysis of water using any available source of electricity. It can be used for remote electricity applications, grid energy applications and as a transportation fuel. The versatility of hydrogen open up several important possibilities for renewable energy systems as well as for utility companies. Conventional renewable energy is predominantly either wind or solar, both if which suffer from severe intermittency and a lack of predictability. When the penetration of these technologies is small, this is not a problem since the electricity grid can absorb the power when it is available and it is not overly missed when it is not. As the level of penetration exceeds around 10% of the energy mix, major problems begin to arise and typically energy grids become more costly to run and often have higher emissions. Fuel cells offer a way to increase the penetration while potentially reducing the cost of the system and certainly the emissions. When excess electricity is available from renewables, hydrogen can be produced and stored and when electricity is needed, this hydrogen can be used to generate electricity. Very few technologies have this general capability on the scale that is needed for grid storage. Hydrogen, however can also be used as chemical fuel or feed, which opens up enormous opportunities for utilities.

MEEM Graduate Seminar: Zachary Folcik

Mar 1 Mechanical Engineering–Engineering Mechanics Graduate Seminar: Mr. Zachary Folcik from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lincoln Laboratory will give a presentation entitled ‘Predicting Close Approaches in Geosynchronous Orbit’ on Thursday, March 1 at 4:00PM in 112 MEEM.  Seminar poster http://www.meem.mtu.edu/seminar/2011-12/mar01.pdf

Mr. Folcik ha s been a staff member at MIT Lincoln Laboratory since 2000. Mr. Folcik has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Michigan Technological University and a Master’s degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His work has focused on problems in orbit estimation, orbit modeling, observation association, satellite maneuver detection and optimal thrust planning.

Abstract: Predicting Close Approaches in Geosynchronous Orbit


Earth orbit has become a crowded environment. The risk of satellite collisions has become a real issue in low earth and geosynchronous orbit. This seminar introduces the current space environment, collision risk assessment and a program at MIT Lincoln Laboratory to mitigate collision risks in geosynchronous orbit. Research and development efforts to improve satellite orbit estimates and uncertainty knowledge will also be discussed.

Stabilization and Bifurcations of Unstable Processes with Time Delay

Feb 23: Professor Thomas Co from the Department of Chemical Engineering at Michigan Tech will give a presentation entitled, ‘Relay Stabilization and Bifurcations of Unstable Processes with Time Delay’ on Thurs., Feb. 23 at 4:00 P.M. in 112 MEEM.

Speaker: Dr. Tomas Co received his B.S. degree from the University of Philippines, Diliman, Philippines, in 1981 and his Ph.D. degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA in 1988, both in chemical engineering. In 1988 to 1989, he was a postdoctoral researcher at the Process Modeling and COntrol Center at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA. In 1997 to 1998, he was a visiting research engineer at the Honeywell Technology Center in Minneapolis, MN. In 2005 to 2006, he was a visiting professor at Korea University in Seoul, South Korea. From 1989 to the present, he has been a faculty member at the Department of Chemical Engineering at Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI. His research interests include large scale systems, process integrity, adaptive control, process modeling, relay stabilization, hybrid control, neural networks and fuzzy logic control.

Title: Relay Stabilization and Bifurcations of Unstable Processes with Time Delay

Abstract: Relay control is one of the simplest methods for stabilizing open-loop unstable processes by producing limit cycles. It is also used for parameter identification of unstable processes for designing other types of controllers. In this talk, we obtain the exact analysis of the limit cycles for a class of high-order unstable single input-single output (SISO) processes using relay control. A key technical lemma provides two nonlinear equations whose solutions provide the time periods of the upswing and downswing modes. Analytical and graphical methods are then used to determine the existence and multiplicity of the limit cycles. Also, necessary and sufficient conditions have been developed to determine the stability of the limit cycles. These tools then allow for the bifurcation analysis of the limit cycles based on variations in time delay. One interesting result is the presence of irregular stabilization, where increasing time delay could actually regain stability that was lost at smaller time delays. The results are then combined to provide a set of necessary conditions for relay stabilization. These conditions can be represented by a compact pyramid region which then yields some useful guidelines for the synthesis of additional compensators for relay-stabilization.