August 17-30, 2020


August 17, 2020

Faculty News

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Dr. Rumana Riffat (CEE) and a team of researchers from academia and Water Resource Recovery Facilities have received a three-year, $999,670 grant from the EPA STAR (Science to Achieve Results) program. The team is led by Water Research Foundation, and partners include GW, Columbia University, Northwestern University, DC Water, and Hampton Roads Sanitation District. Dr. Riffat’s (GW) portion of the award is $250,000. The project is aimed at improving full-scale applications of shortcut nitrogen removal processes by increasing nitrite availability for anaerobic ammonium oxidizing bacteria (anammox) in mainstream systems together with biological phosphorus removal.



Headshot of Kausik Sarkar

Dr. Kausik Sarkar (MAE) and his PhD student Jenna Osborn, along with collaborators, have published this paper: J. Osborn, J. Pullan, J. Froberg, J. Shreffler, K. Gange, T. Molden, Y. Choi, A. Brooks, S. Mallik , and K. Sarkar. “Echogenic exosomes as ultrasound contrast agents,” Nanoscale Advances, 2, 3411-3422.


Dr. Ekundayo Shittu
Dr. Jonathan Deason

Dr. Ekundayo Shittu (EMSE) and Dr. Jonathan Deason (EMSE) are co-authors on this paper: G. Kumbaroğlu, C. Canaz, J. Deason, and E. Shittu. “Profitable Decarbonization through E-Mobility,” Energies, 2020, 13, 4042. The paper evaluates the impact of electric vehicle deployment on electricity generation and CO2 emissions to showcase their interdependence, particularly the reduction in the marginal cost of emissions through electric-bus transportation. Dr. Gurkan Kumbaroğlu, from the Industrial Engineering Department at Bogaziçi University, was a Fulbright scholar for six months at the Environmental and Energy Management Institute (EEMI).


Dr. Rene van Dorp
Dr. Ekundayo Shittu
Dr. Thomas Mazzuchi

The paper titled “Generalized Trapezoidal Ogive Curves for Fatality Rate Modeling,” co-authored by Dr. Rene van Dorp (EMSE), Dr. Ekundayo Shittu (EMSE), and Dr. Thomas Mazzuchi (EMSE), was recently accepted in a COVID-19 special issue in the journal Chaos, Solitons & Fractals: X (2020, 100043). The paper establishes a novel Generalized Trapezoidal Ogive distribution (GTO) for flexible and sequential modeling of COVID-19 fatality curves. Their model allows for asymmetry of the infection rate curve opposite to, for example, the Gaussian Error Infection (GEI) rate curve utilized early on for COVID-19 epidemic projections by The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. The ability to separately model three stages of an epidemic's progression is a distinct feature of the model proposed.



Media Mentions:


Conferences & Presentations:

Dr. Ahmed Louri

Dr. Ahmed Louri (ECE) and his PhD students, Hao Zheng and Ke Wang, presented the paper “A Versatile and Flexible Chiplet-based System Design for Heterogeneous Manycore Architectures” at the 57th Design Automation Conference (DAC), held July 20-24. DAC is recognized as the premier conference for computer design and automation. The paper presents seminal work in designing a versatile and flexible communication network that can support multiple applications running on the same parallel computing platform, such as multicore architectures, parallel computers, and data centers. Such an invention will have a far-reaching impact on our society for emerging applications such as autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, 5G and 6G communications, and the Internet of Things, where computing speeds and energy efficiency are paramount. The paper was nominated for the Best Paper Award of DAC 2020, selected from nearly one thousand submissions. The GW Technology Commercialization Office is patenting the new discovery. This research was sponsored by the National Science Foundation and an endowment fund.

Dr. Suresh Subramaniam

On August 3, Dr. Suresh Subramaniam (ECE) delivered an invited talk at the Pacific Rim Conference on Lasers and Electro-optics. The title of his talk was “The evolution of optical data center network architectures.”


Other News:

Dr. David Broniatowski

Dr. David Broniatowski (EMSE) has been named associate director of GW's Institute for Data, Democracy, and Politics.

Dr. Igor Efimov

Dr. Igor Efimov (BME) has accepted a five-year appointment as editor-in-chief of the journal Cardiovascular Engineering and Technology. His position starts January 1, 2021. Cardiovascular Engineering and Technology is a journal of the Biomedical Engineering Society and is published by Springer Nature. It is the only journal in the entire cardiovascular field that focuses on engineering aspects of cardiovascular science and medicine.


Dr. Shelly Heller
Dr. Costis Toregas

The National Security Agency has awarded Dr. Rachelle Heller (CS) and Dr. Costis Toregas (director, Cyber Security Policy and Research Institute) a one-year, $290,000 CyberSecurity Scholarship grant to support two continuing masters’ students and one new student.


Dr. Shelly Heller

During the week of August 10, Dr. Rachelle Heller (CS) hosted the GW Gen-Cyber Middle School Girls Cybersecurity Day Camp, which is funded by a National Security Agency grant. This summer the camp was held online. The SEAS community can view features of this year’s camp at the camp’s interactive virtual reality site.


Student News
On August 12, CNN published an editorial by CS junior KaYesu Machayo titled “What I fear about remote learning.”


CEE doctoral student Ali Gerami Matin and his PhD advisor, former CEE faculty member Dr. Arzhang Angoshtari, recently published the book Finite Element Methods in Civil and Mechanical Engineering: A Mathematical Introduction in CRC Press.


Konstantin Mitic, a BME master’s student and GW Innovation Fellow, has received funding from the Clinton Foundation for the project COVID Mali. COVID Mali is a consortium of skilled engineers, professionals, and makers based in the US and Mali who aim to provide much-needed PPE, specifically face shields and gowns, to 5,000 Malian health workers by utilizing 3D printing capabilities.


Other News
AI for Good Global Summit—August 25 deadline to submit project proposals: The XPRIZE Foundation and ITU have teamed up to explore solutions through the Collective Pandemic Intelligence Breakthrough Track as part of this year’s AI for Good Global Summit. The summit is a United Nations platform, centered around annual global summits, that fosters a dialogue on the beneficial use of artificial intelligence, by developing and promoting concrete projects. Join them in solving pandemic responses together by submitting a project to the Pandemics Breakthrough Track. Projects with the potential to generate the highest and most immediate impact will be championed by experts and considered for a finalist position. The top three finalists will then be selected by the Pandemics Track Brain Trust and will have the opportunity to present their projects at the virtual AI for Good Global Summit September 21-25. Submissions will be accepted through August 25. GW is one of 11 university partners of the XPRIZE Foundation’s Global Pandemic Alliance.


External Events
GW Coders
Every Friday, beginning September 11
11:00 am
Complete this short form to learn more
GW Coders is a new community that brings together students and faculty to apply computational and data analytics skills in research. We will share coding experiences, learn some new skills, and build our professional networks. GW Coders is for everyone, from those just getting interested in coding to those who have years of experience; for undergraduate and graduate students; for faculty in any discipline; for others in the DC community who want to join us.


Office of Research Integrity Seminar: “Responsible Conduct of Research”
Weekly, beginning Thursday, September 3
12:00 – 1:30 pm
This fall 2020 seminar course is designed to develop and strengthen ethical problem-solving skills and foster sensitivity to ethical issues in the conduct of research. Registration is open to the entire campus community but will be capped at twenty participants. Please register early to secure your space. If you have questions about the seminar, please email the Office of Research Integrity.


Dissertation Defenses
Student Name: Sarah Alzakari
Dissertation Title: “Partly-Pseudo-Linear Cryptanalysis of Lightweight ARX Block Ciphers SPECK and SPARX”
Advisor: Dr. Poorvi Vora (CS); Presiding: Dr. Abdou Youssef (CS)
Thursday, August 20
11:00 am – 1:00 pm


Human Resources News
HR Corner Hero

This week's HR Corner includes information related to the temporary suspension of employer base and matching contributions to retirement plans, changes to campus access, updates to GW's FY21 holiday schedule, and more. Please visit the HR Corner to read these updates.