September 23-29, 2013


September 23, 2013

Faculty News

Honors and Awards:

Prof. Ergun Simsek (ECE) has been selected to participate in the National Academy of Engineering’s (NAE) 2013 Frontiers of Engineering Education symposium, to be held October 27-30 in Irvine, CA.  The NAE selected 73 of the nation's most innovative, young engineering educators to participate in the symposium.  Those who were selected were nominated by fellow engineers or deans and chosen from a highly competitive pool of applicants.


Prof. Philippe Bardet (MAE) has received a three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Energy for the project “Validation Data for Depressurized and Pressurized Conduction Cooldown.”  It is a collaborative project with co-PIs at NASA Langley and Oregon State University.  The full value of the grant is $800,000, and the GW portion is $380,000.  Prof. Bardet and his colleagues will perform detailed velocity field measurements inside a large pressurized gas chamber that mimics advanced gas-cooled nuclear reactors during accident scenarios.  This will require adapting molecular tagging velocimetry to reactor conditions: high-temperature and high-pressure.  Experimental data will be used to validate CFD (computational fluid dynamics) models.

Prof. Jonathan Deason (EMSE) was awarded a three-month, $49,433 grant by the Potomac Electric Power Company to develop a smart energy consumer education curriculum and consumer research program on smart meter usage.  EMSE Visiting Scholar Joseph Cascio is working on the project with Prof. Deason, and EMSE graduate students Priya Swamy, Iryna Payosova, Junchao Gu, Soala Whyte and Benjamin Heras are participating in the project as research assistants.  The project offers potential for a subsequent longer term grant to implement the educational and research program to be developed under the award.  Prof. Deason is the principal investigator on the grant.

Media Mentions:

NewsChannel 8 interviewed Prof. Joseph Barbera (EMSE), the co-director of the Institute for Crisis, Disaster and Risk Management, on September 17 about the response to the Navy Yard shootings the previous day.



Prof. David Broniatowski’s (EMSE) paper “Does Seating Location Impact Voting Behavior on Food and Drug Administration Advisory Committees?” was published in print in this month's issue of the American Journal of Therapeutics.

Prof. Ken Chong (MAE) recently published two journal papers: 1) K.P. Chong, X. Wang, and S-L Chong, “Translational research in sustainability and mechanics,” International Journal of Sustainable Materials and Structural Systems, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp.105–122; and 2) M.D. Kuruppu, Y. Obara, M.R. Ayatollahi, K.P. Chong, and T. Funatsu, “ISRM-Suggested method for determining the mode I static fracture toughness using semi-circular bend specimen,” Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering. DOI:10.1007/s00603-013-0422-7.   The latter paper was based on a semi-circular bend specimen that Prof. Chong invented in 1984 for fracture testing of brittle materials.  Since then it has been used worldwide and is now being considered a standard.

Prof. Michael Keidar’s (MAE) article “On applicability of the ‘thermalized potential’ solver in simulations of the plasma flow in Hall thrusters” has been published online in the Journal of Applied Physics (Vol.114, Issue 10).  DOI: 10.1063/1.4821018

Prof. Zhenyu Li (ECE) and his collaborators at the Washington University at St. Louis have published the following peer-reviewed article: X.X. Xu, Z.Y. Li, and A. Nehorai, “Finite element simulations of hydrodynamic trapping in microfluidic particle-trap array systems,” in Biomicrofluidics (Vol.7, Issue 5).

Prof. Chunlei Liang (MAE) has published the following paper with his collaborator, Prof. Miyaji (Yokohama National University), and his doctoral student, Bin Zhang: C. Liang, K. Miyaji, B. Zhang, “An Efficient Correction Procedure via Reconstruction for Simulation of Viscous Flow on Moving and Deforming Domains,” Journal of Computational Physics, Vol. 256, 55–68.

Prof. Murray Snyder (MAE) has published the following paper:  L. Luznik, C.J. Brownell, M.R. Snyder, and H.S. Kang, “Influence of the Atmospheric Surface Layer on a Turbulent Flow Downstream of a Ship Superstructure,” Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology, Vol. 30, August 2013, pp. 1803-1829.

Prof. Joost Santos (EMSE) co-authored a peer-reviewed article in Risk Analysis with his doctoral student, Amine El Haimar.  The title of the article is “Modeling Uncertainties in Workforce Disruptions from Influenza Pandemics Using Dynamic Input-Output Analysis.” The complete citation details are available here.

Profs. Lijie (Grace) Zhang and Michael Keidar (MAE) have published the following papers: 1) B. Holmes, N. Castro, J. Li, M. Keidar and L. Zhang, “Enhanced Human Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cell Functions in Novel 3D Cartilage Scaffolds with Hydrogen Treated Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes,” Nanotechnology, 24:365102 (2013); and 2) M. Wang, B. Holmes, X. Cheng, W. Zhu, M. Keidar and L. Zhang, “Cold Atmospheric Plasma for Selectively Ablating Metastatic Breast Cancer, PloS ONE, 8(9):e73741 (2013).  An article titled “Nanotubes help turn stem cells into cartilage” was based on the paper published in Nanotechnology and was published September 16 on

Conferences & Presentations:

Prof. Claire Monteleoni (CS) will give an invited talk at The Third International Workshop on Climate Informatics, to be held September 26-27 at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colorado.  Her talk is titled “Machine "Learning Techniques for Combining Multi-Model Climate Projections.”  At the same workshop, Scott McQuade, a doctoral student in her group, will give a poster presentation on their paper: Scott McQuade and Claire Monteleoni, “MRF-based spatial expert tracking of the multi-model ensemble.”  Mahsa Ghafarianzadeh, a doctoral student in Prof. Gabriel Sibley's group, will also give a poster presentation on the paper: Mahsa Ghafarianzadeh and Claire Monteleoni, “Climate prediction via Matrix Completion.”  Prof. Monteleoni co-founded the workshop in 2011, and co-chaired it in 2011 and 2012. This year, she is on the steering committee.

Prof. Suresh Subramaniam (ECE) gave an invited talk titled "Towards providing reliability as a service (RaaS) in cloud computing" at AT&T Labs in Florham Park, NJ, on September 17.

Other News:

Prof. Claire Monteleoni (CS) was invited to serve (and will serve) as an area chair for the International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML), 2014, which is one of the top two international conferences in her field, machine learning.

Other News

The Institute for Biomedical Engineering is pleased to announce a call for proposals for the IBE Interdisciplinary Research Fund. This program awards up to $20,000 each for pilot projects leading to new extramural proposals.  The winner may apply for a renewal of another $20,000 at the conclusion of this award.  The deadline for response is 5:00 pm on Monday, October 7.

The Institute for Biomedical Engineering also announces the 2013-2014 Undergraduate Research Fellowship. This is an opportunity for undergraduates interested in conducting meaningful research in biomedical engineering and computing with a faculty mentor. The deadline to apply is Tuesday, October 15.

Over the summer, EMSE doctoral student Anna Noteboom worked with SEAS Computing Facility Director Raoul Gambian to turn used equipment from GW into opportunities for students at Hampton University.  Together, the two of them ensured that 43 old Sun workstations were stripped of information, reformatted, loaded with open source software, and made available for donation to Hampton University, a very good university located in Hampton, Virginia.  The computers will be used in the computer science curriculum to give additional hands-on learning and research opportunities to students.

Guest Vignette

Prof. Gabe Sibley directs the GW Robotics & Perception Group, which explores probabilistic perception algorithms and estimation theory that enable long-term autonomous operation of mobile robotic systems, particularly in unknown environments.  The group develops real-time localization and mapping systems, and is concerned with the fundamental understanding of sufficient statistics that can be used to represent the state of the world.  The Autonomous Robotics & Perception Group uses embodied robot systems equipped with a variety of sensors—including lasers, cameras, inertial sensors, etc.—to advance and validate algorithms and knowledge representations that are useful for robot navigation, planning and control. 

Prof. Sibley specializes in vision-based and inertial solutions to the “where problem”, which is perhaps best understood by reference to computer graphics: a CG movie like “Shrek” asks how a mathematical model of the world can produce a stream of images.  Prof. Sibley's lab does the exact opposite; it takes a stream of pictures captured by a robot and asks what model must exist to explain them?  This is a computationally intense estimation problem, often with millions of variables.  In real-time, we estimate both the sensor trajectory and the underlying 3D world structure.  (Provided courtesy of Prof. Gabriel Sibley of the Department of Computer Science)

SEAS Events

MAE Seminar: “Modeling and Simulations of Interfacial Flows within a Volume Tracking Framework”
Speaker: Marianne Francois, Research Scientist, Los Alamos National Laboratory
Monday, September 23
2:00 pm
726 Phillips Hall

Fluids Seminar: "Physics of Bubbles in Ultrasound Imaging and Drug Delivery"
Speaker: Dr. Shirshendu Paul, University of Delaware
Thursday September 26
2:00 pm
771 Phillips Hall

CS Research Seminar: “Semantic Segmentation for Mobile Robots”
Speaker: Dr. Cesar Cadena, George Mason University
Thursday, October 3
2:00 pm
205 Tompkins

MAE and the GW Institute for Nanotechnology: “Size-dependent Probabilistic Damage Micromechanics and Toughening Behavior of Particle/Fiber Reinforced Composites”
Speaker: Prof. J. Woody Ju, University of California, Los Angeles
Monday, October 14
1:00 pm
736 Phillips Hall

GW Institute for Biomedical Engineering Seminar: "The Fluid Dynamics of Human Birth"
Speaker: Prof. Megan Leftwich (MAE)
Tuesday, October 15
1:00 - 2:00 pm
736 Phillips Hall

MAE Seminar: “Peridynamic Theory: An Approach to Computational Mechanics without Spatial Derivatives”
Speaker: Paul N. Demmie, Sandia National Laboratories
Monday, October 21
11:00 am
204 Tompkins Hall

MAE Seminar: “Mechanical Forces Drive (and Regulate?) Organogenesis”
Speaker: Larry A. Taber, Washington University
Thursday, November 7
11:00 am
736 Phillips Hall

MAE Seminar: “Modeling Inelastic Behavior of Metals at Multiple Scales for Multiple Purposes”
Speaker, David L. McDowell, Georgia Institute of Technology
Monday, November 25
736 Phillips Hall

Career Center Events

Siemens Information Session: Graduate Program
Wednesday, September 25
12:00 - 1:30 pm
538 Marvin Center
For more information and to RSVP, go to, click on "Events", then on "Information Sessions".

Siemens Information Session: General Information Session
Wednesday, September 25
12:00 - 1:15 pm
402 Marvin Center

SAIC Information Table
Wednesday, September 25
12:30 - 3:00 pm
Lobby, Tompkins Hall

Turner Construction Information Sessions
Wednesday, September 25: 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Thursday, September 26: 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Dean's Conference Room, Tompkins Hall
To RSVP, send an e-mail to with "Attend Turner Info Session" in the subject line

Siemens Information Table
Friday, September 27
12:00 – 2:00 pm
Tompkins Hall Lobby

Deloitte Office Hours
Thursday, October 17
9:00 am - 12:00 pm
(SEAS Location TBA)

Note: All of the above organizations require U.S. citizenship for employment, but any SEAS student may attend the events taking place at SEAS.   Check with the GW Career Center about events listed in GWork.

Questions about the events above? Contact Emmy Rashid, SEAS Career Services director, at or (202)994-7892

Entrepreneurship & Other Events

10th International Conference on Intellectual Capital, Knowledge Management and Organisational Learning
The George Washington University
Thursday and Friday, October 24 and 25
Information provided courtesy of Prof. Michael Stankosky

Doctoral Dissertations

Name of Student Defending: Mohammad Al-Jawah
Title of Dissertation: “A Decision Aiding Framework for Investing in Cleaning Systems for Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Power Plants in Arid Regions”
Advisor: Prof. Jonathan Deason
Wednesday, September 25
12:00 pm
1776 G Street, Conference Room 120