Category: New Funding

John Baeten

John Baeten (Ph.D. candidate, IHA) has received a research grant from the Mining History Association to study the industrial heritage of the Mesabi Iron Range of Northern Minnesota. Baeten’s research project investigates the historic context of low-grade iron ore mining and processing in the Mesabi Range through the lens of industrial heritage and environmental history. His project will consist of  both archival and field research. While in the field he will be conducting a driving and pedestrian survey of the western Mesabi Range, documenting the historical footprints of iron ore “beneficiation” plants that produced both “washed ores” and the more familiar taconite, concentrated iron ore pellets, before shipment to the steel mills of the Great Lakes and beyond. The landscape he is investigating has undergone extensive abandonment and scrapping. This project hopes to connect the stories of direct shipping iron ores to taconite by exploring how the development of washable iron ores in the Mesabi Range helped pave the way for the eventual success of the taconite industry.


Schneider receives grants to support his M.S.(I.A.) thesis project

Daniel Schneider at work
Daniel Schneider (MS-IA student) works on a measured drawing of a 19th-century border stamping machine that was used to manufacture wood type for printing decorative borders.

Daniel Schneider, a master’s student in the Industrial Archaeology program has received funding through two grants totaling $2,800 for his master’s thesis project at the Hamilton Wood Type Museum in Two Rivers, WI.  A grant from The Kohler Foundation, Inc. of Wisconsin supports a series of oral history interviews with workers who produced wood printing type in the type shop of the Hamilton Manufacturing Company. Another grant from the Wisconsin Humanities Council supports a public archaeology component of Schneider’s thesis research, which involves the experimental operation of an 19th-century stamping machine that produced wood type for printing decorative borders.  These borders would have been used on posters and other large-scale printed matter such as flyers and handbills. He has made a number of trips to the museum to document and rehabilitate the machine, meet with former employees, and use the museum’s archives.  He also attended a Wayzegooze event there last in November where he interacted with leaders in the current wood type printing community.

Schneider will demonstrate the machine’s operation March 10-14, 2015, at Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum. The museum is in Two Rivers, WI, 40 miles southeast of Green Bay, and is the largest museum devoted to wood type printing in the country (and perhaps the world).  He is also in charge of the letterpress studio at the Copper Country Community Arts Center in Hancock, MI.


Langston Receives NSF Grant on Mining Toxin Migration

Langston1Nancy Langston has received $270,000 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a three year research project titled “Historical and Spatial Aspects of the Migration of Toxic Iron-Mining Contaminants into the Lake Superior Basin.”

Abstract:

This project investigates the mobilization of toxic mining contaminants in the Lake Superior basin. The investigator will conduct archival research and oral-history interviews, and she will develop a geo-spatial database. She plans to link her historical research with contemporary policy and regulation issues, and to engage with local communities, including Native Americans in the region.

The investigator is a well-known environmental historian whose previous work has drawn on multiple disciplines and generated significant media interest; she has a network of contacts that includes a documentary filmmaker and relevant stakeholder groups. The project will produce a narrative of environmental history with the potential for overlap with important questions of technology, culture, and society. It will be of interest to citizen scientists, a wide-array of scholars, and the general public. The most important broader impact of the project is that it might very well influence contemporary policy and law-making.


Winkler Receives Funding for Geothermal Energy Feasibilty Guide

img. from Ohio DNR
img. from Ohio DNR

Richelle Winkler was recently awarded a Phase 1 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency’s P3 (People, Prosperity, and Planet) program to supervise an interdisciplinary team of students to develop a guide that former mining communities can use to self-evaluate the feasibility of tapping into water in abandoned mines for geothermal energy. The student design team, led by Environmental and Energy Policy MS student Edward Louie, will present their guide at the Sustainable Design Expo in Washington DC in April 2015 and compete for a Phase 2 award of $90,000 to implement the project. Social science students are partnering with an Alternative Energy Enterprise team led by Jay Meldrum (Michigan Tech’s Keweenaw Research Center) on this project. The full team is also working closely with a community advisory board made up of leaders in the Calumet, MI community. It was Calumet community members partnering in Winkler’s community-engaged research with Main Street Calumet that started the idea for this project.


Rouleau receives funding for degrading organic compounds

Mark Rouleau
Mark Rouleau

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded $330,000 for a three-year project to Daisuke Minakata (PI: Civil & Environmental Engineering) and  Mark Rouleau (Co-PI: Social Sciences) for a project on “Coupling Experimental and Theoretical Molecular-Level Investigations to Visualize the Fate of Degradation of Organic Compounds in Aqueous Phase Advanced Oxidation Systems.”  Rouleau’s contribution will be to design and implement an agent-based computer simulation to forecast the fate of organic compounds during the process of waste water treatment. His goal is to develop a simulation that will be capable of “grading” treated waste water for potential chemical contaminants prior to public reuse. For the full abstract see NSF Award Abstract #1435926.

slide 4
visualization of decay process