December 3-9, 2012


December 3, 2012

Faculty News


Prof. Zoe Szajnfarber (EMSE) has been awarded a $100,000 extension to her NASA grant for this fiscal year. The title is "Strategies for encouraging innovation at NASA through organizational design and technology investment." The project will investigate the link between R&D investment, working level incentives, and space mission outcomes.

Media Mentions:

Prof. Pinhas Ben-Tzvi (MAE) gave an invited live television interview to CTV News Channel on November 21. His interview with anchor Dan Matheson covered a discussion on “The Advancement of Robots.”

Prof. Michael Keidar (MAE) was quoted, and his lab’s work on cold plasma cancer therapy mentioned, in a November 29 Inside Science article, “Leukemia-killing Plasma Beam Could Offer New Cancer Treatments.”


Prof. Pinhas Ben-Tzvi (MAE) and his doctoral student Paul Moubarak have published the following peer-reviewed journal paper: Moubarak, P., Ben-Tzvi, P. “Modular and Reconfigurable Mobile Robotics,” Journal of Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Vol. 60, Issue 12, pp. 1648-1663, December 2012.

Prof. Lijie Grace Zhang (MAE) and her students Benjamin Holmes and Nathan Castro have published the following paper: B. Holmes, N. Castro, L.G. Zhang, and E. Zussman. “Electrospun Fibrous Scaffolds for Cartilage and Bone Regeneration: Recent Progress and Future Developments,” Tissue Engineering Part B, 18(6):478-486 (2012).

Conferences and Presentations:

Prof. James Lee (MAE) and his doctoral students, Jiaoyan (Jenny) Li, Zidong Yang, and Zhen Zhang made the following presentations at the ASME 2012 International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition, held November 9-15 in Houston, TX:

1) James Lee, Jiaoyan (Jenny) Li, and Xianqiao Wang, "Multiple Length/Time Scale Modeling of Multi-physics;"
2) Jiaoyan (Jenny) Li, James Lee, Lijie Zhang, and Ken Chong, "Damage Propagation in Composite Material Reinforced by Randomly-Dispersed Particles;"
3) Zhen Zhang, Xianqiao Wang, and James Lee, "Mechanics of fracture of graphene at nanoscale;"
4) Zidong Yang, Xianqiao Wang, and James Lee, Azim Eskandarian. "Simulating Nano-Machining Process with Molecular Dynamics"; and
5) Jiaoyan (Jenny) Li and James Lee, "Multiple Length/Time Scale Modeling of Multi-physics for Multiphase Material System." This is a Micro Nano Forum Poster Presentation.

Prof. Claire Monteleoni (CS) visited the U.S. Census Bureau on November 29 and gave an invited talk at the Center for Statistical Research and Methodology. She is presenting the same invited talk, titled “Clustering Algorithms for Streaming and Online Settings,” at the GW Department of Mathematics on December 3.

Prof. Michael Plesniak (MAE) attended the 65th annual meeting of the American Physical Society (APS) Division of Fluid Dynamics in San Diego, CA, November 17-20. Prof. Plesniak chaired the D16 Biofluids: Arteries session and made four presentations with his students and collaborators, including MAE post-doctoral scholars, Byron Erath, Kartik Bulusu, and Kelley Stewart; MS student Leanne Penna; undergraduate students Shannon Callahan, Kirin Caldwell and Christopher Popma; and undergraduate intern, Daniel Plesniak, from Haverford College. The presentations were as follows: “Detection of multi-scale secondary flow structures using anisotropic 2D Ricker wavelets in a bent tube model for curved arteries,” “Perturbation-induced secondary flow structures due to fractured stents in arterial curvatures” “A regime map for secondary flow structures under physiological and multi-harmonic inflow through a bent tube model for curved arteries,” and "Three-Dimensional Flow Separation Induced by a Model Vocal Fold Polyp." Prof. Plesniak is a member of the Nominating Committee and also serves on the Division of Fluid Dynamics Executive Committee, which held its annual business meeting during the conference.

Tejas Ruparel (CEE graduate student), Prof. Azim Eskandarian (CEE), and Prof. James Lee (MAE) presented their paper, “Multiple Grid and Multiple Time-scale (MGMT) Simulations in Continuum Mechanics,” at the 2012 ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, held November 9-15 in Houston, TX. The paper was selected by the ASME Applied Mechanics Division and awarded second place in the Best Student Paper Competition.

Prof. Kausik Sarkar (MAE) and his graduate students recently attended the 65th annual meeting of the American Physical Society Division of Fluid Dynamics, held November 17-20 in San Diego, CA. They presented following five talks there:

1. Sarkar, K. 2012 “A theory of wall-induced lateral migration of a drop in shear: effects of drop inclination and viscoelasticity,”
2. Sarkar, K., Mukherjee, S. 2012 “Effects of viscoelasticity on the migration of a viscous drop in a shear flow near a wall,”
3. Paul, S., Sarkar, K., Wheatley, M. 2012 “Nonlinear dynamics of PLA (poly-lactic acid) encapsulated ultrasound contrast microbubbles,”
4. Singh, R., Sarkar, K. 2012 “Pair-collision between heterogeneous capsules in simple shear: Effect of membrane stiffness,” and,
5. Srivastava, Paul, Sarkar, K. 2012 “Effects of inertia on the steady shear rheology of concentrated emulsions: sign reversal of normal stress differences.

Other News:

Prof. Howie Huang’s (ECE) research, "Pay as You Go in the Cloud: One Watt at a Time," won the ACM Undergraduate Student Research Competition at Supercomputing conference (SC'12) last week. In this work, Prof. Huang and Kayo Teramoto propose a pay-as-you-go per-watt-hour pricing model for cloud computing, where pricing becomes a more accurate cost estimate of the service received by the customers, and cloud computing providers’ profit can become more stable. Kayo, currently a sophomore at Yale, did this work in Prof. Huang’s lab last summer. Prof. Huang and Kayo have been invited to the Grand Finals next year.

Prof. Rumana Riffat (CEE and associate dean for academic affairs) received two GW Service Excellence Awards in the Collaborative Initiative category at the university’s November 15 Service Excellence Celebration. One award was for the Sustainability 1001 Team, where faculty from five schools worked together to develop and team-teach SUST 1001, the introductory course in the new sustainability minor. The group was praised for exemplary teamwork, learning, and collaboration. The other award was for the Clinton Global Initiative University at GW, where a large group of faculty, staff, and students worked together successfully to arrange and hold the event at GW.

The GW Institute for Nanotechnology is pleased to announce that Profs. Lijie Grace Zhang (MAE) and Joseph O'Brien (professor of orthopedic surgery) have won its 2012-2013 Interdisciplinary Research Grant for “Development of an innovative nerve graft via nanotechnology for spinal cord injury treatment.”

Guest Vignette:

With the reelection of President Obama, it is certain that the U.S. will be accelerating its recent push towards the development of all types of renewable energy sources. This rapid growth mirrors that of the environmental and energy management (EEM) concentration in EMSE, in conjunction with other academic programs throughout SEAS and GW.

EEM doctoral students such as Steven Burns, Iryna Payosova and Mohammad Al-Jawah are actively engaged in cutting-edge research in the middle of this rapidly expanding area, complementing state-of-the-art courses taught by leading energy expert adjunct faculty such as Dr. Elvin Yuzugullu of the SRA Corporation, Dr. Rachael Jonassen of LMI and Dr. Jim Galvin of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Many EMSE graduates who have achieved substantial positions in renewable energy areas, such as Ariel Castillo with the Department of Defense and Laura Verduzco of the Chevron Corporation, have chosen to stay actively engaged with the EEM program, adding an important set of benefits to her current students.

While a complete listing of ancillary EMSE energy activities would be too long to include here, examples include the new joint EMSE/MAE Energy Engineering and Management certificate program, participation in monthly meetings go the "solar salon" group organized by the Energy and Environment Study Institute, involvement in the recent DOD "Next Generation Energy Technology" symposium, association with GW's new undergraduate minor in sustainability, external sponsorship of energy related research, conference presentations, and so on. While the energy challenges of the U.S. are great, the opportunities created by those challenges are also great, and the faculty and students of the EMSE and our colleagues throughout SEAS are fortunate to be in the forefront in this extremely important and challenging area. (Provided courtesy of Prof. Jonathan Deason of the Department of Engineering Management & Systems Engineering)

SEAS Events:

GW Institute for Biomedical Engineering Colloquium: “Ultrasound Enhanced Triggered Release of Liposomal Contents”
Dr. Sanku Mallik, North Dakota State University
Thursday, December 6
1:00 - 2:00 pm
204 Tompkins Hall
More info . . .

MAE Seminar: “A Detailed Assessment of Numerical Flow Analysis (NFA) in the Prediction of Planing Boat Hydrodynamics”
Dr. Thomas Fu, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Carderock Division
Thursday, December 6
2:00 pm
640 Phillips Hall

MAE Seminar: “Inductive Pulsed Plasma Thruster Research and Development at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center”
Dr. Kurt Polzin, NASA’s George C. Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, AL
Tuesday, January 15
2:00 pm
736 Phillips Hall

Dissertation Defenses:

Name: Taisen Zhuang
Dissertation Title: "Micro-Cathode Arc Thruster System for Cube Satellite"
Advisor: Prof. Michael Keidar
Thursday, December 3
12:00 - 2:00 pm
640 Phillips Hall

Entrepreneurship Events:

$60,000 GW Business Plan Competition:
$10,000 - Best Undergrad Business Plan
$5,000 - Older Adult-Focused Innovation category, thanks to AARP Foundation
$4,000 - Best Sustainable Technology Award
$1,000 - Audience Choice Award
Application deadline: January 28, 2013.