University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota: Department of Mechanical Engineering
http://www.me.umn.edu/

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UPCOMING EVENTS:


View CSE Events Page for upcoming events at the University of Minnesota.

View Mechanical Engineering Alumni Page to see upcoming and past events.

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NEWS:

 

View 2017 Fall Graduate Seminars

SEPTEMBER 2017

Mechanical Engineering Professor Peter Bruggeman has been appointed as Director of the High Temperature & Plasma Laboratory. He succeeds Professor Steven Girshick, who served as HTPL director since 2005.

The High Temperature & Plasma Laboratory is widely considered one of the preeminent plasma research laboratories in the world. The lab was founded in 1964 by Professor Emil Pfender, who was recruited to the ME Department by Professor Ernst Eckert. The lab grew as it was joined by Professors Steven Girshick (1985), Joachim Heberlein (1989), Uwe Kortshagen (1996), and Peter Bruggeman (2013). The HTPL, which for many years has regularly included over 20 graduate student research assistants, several postdocs and visiting scientists, and its own regular seminar series, constitutes one of the important centers of excellence within the ME Department.

Mechanical Engineering Professor William Northrop has been appointed as Director of the Thomas E. Murphy Engine Laboratory. He succeeds Professor David Kittelson as Director.

Professor Thomas E. Murphy joined the Mechanical Engineering Department after the end of World War II, after having performed engine research at the Naval Research Laboratory. He established a piston engine and gas turbine research and teaching laboratory on the fourth floor of the old ME building. Professors Perry Blackshear and Edward Fletcher became connected to the laboratory for their combustion related research activities. In 1970, Professor David Kittelson joined the group and, in collaboration with the Particle Technology Laboratory, brought engine emission and air pollution research to the lab. This led to formation of the Center for Diesel Research in 1994, in collaboration with the U.S. Bureau of Mines. 
 
Professor Will Northrop arrived in Minnesota in 2011, during this time he was instrumental in the fundraising, design, construction, and commissioning of a new $5M state of the art engine research laboratory off Como Avenue. The Thomas E. Murphy Engine Research Laboratory was completed in 2014 and named in recognition of Professor Murphy’s pioneering contributions.

AUGUST 2017

Mechanical Engineering students Rachel Anderson and Audrey Sebastian are involved in a unique yearlong internship and development program that provides an ‘experience of a lifetime’ to help solve the world’s food security crisis. They are two of only 11 university students from the Midwest who were chosen to be part of the Land O’Lakes Global Food Challenge Emerging Leaders for Food Security fellowship. Students are presenting their projects at Land O’Lakes at the end of August and will return to campus in the fall, where they will continue to serve as ambassadors for food security and the agriculture industry. Learn more: z.umn.edu/mefellol



Solar Energy: The International Journal awarded Professor Jane Davidson and Dr. Adam Gladen the Best Paper Award for 2016 in Concentrating Solar Power. Their paper entitled “The morphological stability and fuel production of commercial fibrous ceria particles for solar thermochemical redox cycling” is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.solener.2016.10.029. Dr. Gladen received his PhD at the University of Minnesota and is currently an Assistant Professor at North Dakota State University.

 

 

This summer the Mechanical Engineering department wished two retirees well on their new adventures. Congratulations to Professor Peter McMurry on his retirement, as well as Student Support Services Associate Jeanne Sitzmann.

 

 

Visiting Research Experience for Undergraduate (REU) students held a small Poster Show gathering in the mechanical engineering building atrium, as well as at the Summer Undergraduate Research Expo at McNamara on August 10th, where all College of Science & Engineering REUs presented their work. Photos> z.umn.edu/ccefp817

 



Videos by students from Xi'an Jiaotong University who were enrolled in the Mechanical Engineering 4090 Introduction to High-Power Rocketry and Stratospheric Ballooning class this summer have created some really great videos to share on YouTube. View> z.umn.edu/um409017

JULY 2017

The University of Minnesota will lead a team to develop technology to improve the fuel efficiency of delivery vehicles through real-time vehicle dynamic and powertrain control optimization using two-way vehicle-to-cloud (V2C) connectivity. If successful, developments will enable at least an additional 20% reduction in energy consumption of future connected and automated delivery vehicles. This will also lessen dependence of imported oil, decrease the sector’s carbon footprint, and solidify the United States’ status as global leader in the industry. The project team is comprised of Mechanical Engineering Professor Will Northrop, ME, PI, Computer Science faculty member Shashi Shekhar, and Mechanical Engineering Project Manager and Technology-to-Market Lead Shawn Haag. Learn more>

Rear Admiral Frederick J. “Fritz” Roegge, Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, and Mechanical Engineering graduate, made a visit to campus during Navy Week. Admiral Roegge met with ME Department Head Uwe Kortshagen and two ME professors, Lian Shen and Jiarong Hong, who have research projects with the Office of Naval Research. According to Kortshagen, "It was an honor and pleasure to meet Admiral Roegge. I was impressed by the Admiral's deep technical knowledge and his enthusiasm for engineering and science education. Our department can be proud to count Admiral Roegge among the ME distinguished alumni." Roegge has been nominated for appointment to the rank of vice admiral and for assignment as president of the National Defense University, in Washington, D.C., pending Senate confirmation. Currently stationed at Pearl Harbor, he visited the ME Department in July as part of his visit to the Twin Cities for Navy Week. With the 10th anniversary of the deadly I-35W bridge collapse, part of the week’s events included a wreath laying ceremony on the Mississippi River. Learn more> z.umn.edu/nav717


The University of Minnesota’s HumanFIRST Laboratory has received a 2017 Research Infrastructure Investment Program award of just over $186,000 from the University’s Office of the Vice President for Research. One-to-one match funding will be provided by the lab’s own accumulated funds gathered through usage fees. The HumanFIRST Lab is a facility of the U of M’s Department of Mechanical Engineering. It conducts and analyzes research generated during driving simulation studies and field tests of enhanced human-machine interfaces designed to reduce risky driving behaviors. Two advanced driving simulators are housed within the lab and host most of the research experiments. 

“When it was originally installed, the immersive simulator was state-of-the-art and among the best in the country,” says Mechanical Engineering Professor Max Donath, who, with HumanFIRST Lab Principal Researcher Nichole Morris, submitted the funding request. “However, competing institutions have now surpassed our capabilities and many primary components of both simulators were nearing the end of their life.” Morris says the lab’s simulators will allow her research team to safely test impaired driving performance to better understand and deal with drivers who may be fatigued, under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or have mild cognitive impairment. Funds from the award will be used to overhaul components of both simulators.

The Earl E. Bakken Medical Devices Center at the U of MN, under the direction of Mechanical Engineering Professor Art Erdman, PhD, is also a recipient of the 2017 Research Infrastructure Investment Program award. Funding supports an upgrade of the current Stratasys Objet Connex260 3D printer to the new Stratasys J750 machine to expand the research support services the center can provide to AHC, CSE, and other units at the U. The upgrade would enable printing of colored anatomical and non-medical models that require high resolution and variable durometer (stiffness) to replicate natural and envisioned systems.


JUNE 2017

 

 

The research of Mechanical Engineering Professor Rajesh Rajamani and lab members Yan Wang, Garrett Nelson and Ryan Madson was featured on the cover of the June 2017 issue of the IEEE Control Systems Magazine. The feature article is titled "Observers with Dual Spatially Separated Sensors for Enhanced Estimation."


 


Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering Professor and College of Science and Engineering, UMN Mechanical Engineering Alum Ronald Adrian received an Outstanding Achievement Award! Learn more> z.umn.edu/raoaw17



The research of Mechanical Engineering Assistant Professor Cari Dutcher and graduate student Hallie Boyer (PhD received May 2017), was featured on the cover of the Journal of Physical Chemistry A. The feature article is entitled "Atmospheric Aqueous Aerosol Surface Tensions: Isotherm-Based Modeling and Biphasic Microfluidic Measurements." Learn more>



Morse Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor, and Director of Medical Devices Center, Art Erdman was presented with the 2017 ASME Savio L.-Y. Woo Translational Biomechanics Medal for "translating meritorious bioengineering science to clinical practice through research, education, professional development, and with service to the bioengineering community," at the 3rd Summer Biomechanics, Bioengineering and Biotransport Conference June 21-24th in Tucson, Arizona. Learn more>

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Mechanical Engineering Professor Lian Shen has been selected as the new director of the University of Minnesota's St. Anthony Falls Laboratory (SAFL). Shen took over as SAFL's associate director for research in 2014. This five-year appointment is effective September 1st, 2017. Learn more here>

 

MAY 2017

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Benjamin Mayhugh Associate Professor Michael McAlpine and fellow engineering researchers have developed a revolutionary process for 3D printing stretchable electronic sensory devices that could give robots the ability to feel their environment. The research will be published in the next issue of Advanced Materials and is currently online, is presented online in the College of Science & Engineering article here, and is also featured in a Newsweek Tech & Science article found here>



Mechanical Engineering Professor and BioCoR Director Allison Hubel received the International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER) Award for Outstanding Achievement in Biobanking. This award is designed to recognize individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the field of biobanking. Professor Hubel is a deserving recipient of this prestigious award, as her leadership in the cryopreservation field has proven to be momentous.



Morse Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor and Mechanical Engineering Associate Department Head, William Durfee and Richard C. Jordan Professor, Morse Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor, and Director of Medical Devices Center, Art Erdman received the 2017 Entrepreneurship Faculty of the Year Award at the Founder’s Day event for the Holmes Center for Entrepreneurship, Carlson School, University of Minnesota, on May 16, 2017.

The CSE Commencement Ceremony was held May 12, 2017 at Mariucci Arena. The Departmental Mechanical Engineering Graduation Recognition Event was held earlier the same day in the Phillips-Wangensteen Bldg. View photos of the recognition event on the ME Facebook page at: facebook.com/umn.me or here>

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Mechanical Engineering PhD Students Handol Lee (adviser Professor David Pui) and Xuewang Wu (adviser Asst. Professor Xiaojia Wang) are the recipients of the 2017-18 Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship Award. The fellowship gives the University's most accomplished PhD candidates an opportunity to devote full-time effort to an outstanding research project by providing time to finalize and write a dissertation during the fellowship year.

Mechanical Engineering PhD student Woongsun Jeon's research paper on "A Novel Collision Avoidance System for Bicycles" won the first place award for the Best Transportation Systems Paper presented at the 2016 American Control Conference. The award was presented by the ASME DSCD Technical Committee on Automotive and Transportation Systems. The paper was co-authored with Professor Rajesh Rajamani.


APRIL 2017


Students Daniel Ross, Robert Belar, Elizabeth Vertina, Luke Bromback, Kevin Reddy and Ethan Brownell teamed up for their Mechanical Engineering Senior Design 4054 course where they created a device that will help farmers in Malawi extract oil from peanuts, while improving the farmer's income stream through efficient labor. Learn more in this Star Tribune article>

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Mechanical Engineering PhD candidate Everett Wenzell wins Grand Prize in Physical Sciences & Engineering at the 2017 Minnesota Supercomputing Institute Research Exhibition. The poster titled, Computation of Multiphase Breakup With a Lagrangian Volume of Fluid: Toward High-Fidelity and Affordable Simulation of Primary Atomization, is coauthored by Professor Sean Garrick. Everett is holder of the Abplanalp Fellowship and his research focuses on developing spray simulation methods that are accurate and affordable for use in industrial and scientific applications.

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Professor Lian Shen
, Benjamin Mayhugh Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and his collaborators at the Naval Postgraduate School and University of Central Florida have been awarded $3M by the High Energy Laser Joint Technology Office (HEL-JTO) to study atmospheric turbulence and its effect on optical propagation. The project is part of the HEL-JTO Multidisciplinary Research Initiative program. In this research, Prof. Shen and his collaborators will use computer simulations and field measurements to study the effect of land and water surfaces on atmospheric turbulence and the turbulent transport of heat and moisture, and model their effect on the light propagation in the atmosphere over various complex earth surfaces.

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The May 2017 issue of the journal Plasma Chemistry and Plasma Processing is a special Issue in memory of Professor Emeritus Emil Pfender. Professor Pfender joined the ME Department faculty in 1964, formally retired in 2000, and held the position of Emeritus Professor until his death in 2016. The special issue comprises 385 pages, including a forward by the co-editors, M. Boulos and P. Fauchais, and 18 original research articles. For more information about Professor Pfender, see http://www.me.umn.edu/people/pfender_memoriam.shtml.

MARCH 2017

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MSI PI and Mechanical Engineering Associate Professor Traian Dumitricã was named a Fellow in the Energy area at the Hanse-Wissenschaftskolleg (HWK) (Institute of Advanced Studies). Learn more: http://z.umn.edu/dumhwk

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Professor Tianhong Cui was selected for the 2017 class of Distinguished McKnight University Professors. The Distinguished McKnight University Professorship program recognizes outstanding faculty members who have recently achieved full professor status. Recipients hold the title for as long as they remain employed at the University of Minnesota.


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Professor Peter McMurry
to receive an Honorary Doctorate in Science from the University of Helsinki for his behind-the-scenes support of Finnish aerosol research.


shenSimulator testing is being done to improve oil tracking fate under hurricane conditions. Professor Lian Shen is Co-Principal Investigator on a Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GMRI) exploring tracking processes essential to studying ocean wave-field dynamics. The project researchers are Shen and Dr. William Drennan, U of Miami Department of Ocean Sciences. The GMRI recently awarded a grant to study how wind-wave-current interactions affect oil transport under significant wave influences, such as hurricanes. The researchers are taking a two-step approach that combines model simulations with parameters derived from laboratory wave tank experiments. Their goal is to improve our ability to monitor and contain oil in the event another spill occurs under high-turbulent conditions. More: http://z.umn.edu/shgri


A dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony was held March 2nd with a grand opening celebration of the Anderson Student Innovation Labs. With a generous donation by Clifford I. (BSB'62) and Nancy C. Anderson, and the vision of former CSE Dean Crouch, all labs are now open to students and their creativity. Students' ideas are turned into reality with hands-on learning and state-of-the-art equipment. The 10,000 square foot space includes a waterjet cutter, computer-controlled milling machines, and the largest bank of 3D printers on campus. The Design Lab was designed primarily for prototyping and is located in ME2134. The Student Machine Shop is located in ME176, and the Student Shop is located in the Civil Engineering building, room 335.

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Groundbreaking technology successfully rewarms large-scale tissues preserved at very low temperatures. This research study, led by the University of Minnesota, is a major step forward in saving millions of human lives by increasing the availability of organs and tissues for transplantation through the establishment of tissue and organ banks. UMN study authors include postdocs/researchers Zhe Gao, Navid Manuchehrabadi, Hattie Ring, Qi Shao and Jin Jin Zhang; graduate student Feng Liu; Undergraduate student Michael McDermott; Dentistry Professor Alex Fok; Radiology Professor Michael Garwood; Chemistry Professor Christy Haynes, and Distinguished McKnight University Professor & Kuhrmeyer Chair in Mechanical Engineering, John Bishchof. Learn more: http://z.umn.edu/nanowarming

FEBRUARY 2017

3updowsiscaThree Mechanical Engineering students received finalist recognition for the 2016 Dow Sustainability Innovation Student Challenge Award. The Dow SISCA recognizes the work of graduate students with innovative ideas and research that encourages and promotes sustainable solutions to the world's most pressing social, economic and environmental problems. Finalists — graduate students Kory Jenkins and Vu Nguyen - Bio-inspired peptide with controlled microstructures for piezoelectric devices, and graduate student Kanav Khosla - Development of a universal platform for aquatic germplasm cryoperservation for species conservation.

NASA Selects Proposals for First-Ever Space Technology Research Institutes. Associate Professor Traian Dumitricã is part of the “Institute for Ultra-Strong Composites by Computational Design (US-COMP),” a first-ever research institute funded by NASA. The institute focuses on the rapid development of technologies critical for extending human presence deeper into our solar system. Professor Dumitricã will use novel computational methods to design lighter and stronger materials than those currently used, even in the most advanced aerospace structures. Learn more: http://z.umn.edu/tdnasa

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"Dream of Energy-Collecting Windows is One Step Closer to Reality"
- The research of Professor Uwe Kortshagen, Mechanical Engineering Department Head, and PhD student Samantha Ehrenberg, was recently published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal Nature Photonics titled "Highly efficient luminescent solar concentrators based on earth-abundant indirect-bandgap silicon quantum dots." PLUS view Kare11 news segment here: http://z.umn.edu/11ukse Learn more: http://rdcu.be/poII and http://z.umn.edu/lsc17

bruggemanThe latest research on food decontamination with cold plasmas, by Associate Professor Peter Bruggeman and College of Veterinary Medicine Professor, Sagar Goyal, PhD, was discussed in ScienceNews. The article: “Cold Plasma Puts the Chill on Norovirus” was presented at the "2017 ASM Biothreats: Research, Response and Policy" meeting in Washington, DC, February 7, 2017. Learn more: http://z.umn.edu/scinew & http://z.umn.edu/asmmtg

 

kuehnProfessor Emeritus Thomas Kuehn is the recipient of the ASHRAE E.K. Campbell Award. This annual award is given to a current ASHRAE member in good standing who is associated with an institution of learning and teaches courses or conducts research in heating, ventilating, air-conditioning or refrigeration at the graduate and/or undergraduate level in an engineering or engineering technology program. Learn more: http://z.umn.edu/ekca



january 2017

4upPhdsCongratulations to four PhD students from the department of Mechanical Engineering who received fellowships or assistantships. Diego Escalante (advised by Professor Aksan), received a MNDrive PhD Graduate Assistantship. Focus: Development of computational tools, based on thermodynamic principles, to predict biodegradation / biocatalysis of chemicals (industrial waste / pharmaceuticals / emerging pollutants. Leila Ghanbari (advised by Professor Kodandaramaiah), received a MNDrive PhD Graduate Assistantship. Focus: A unique interdisciplinary research that combines three MnDRIVE thrust areas - robotics and sensing; brain conditions and informatics. Ghazaleh Haghiashtiani (advised by Professor McAlpine), received an Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowship for 2017-18. Focus: 3D printing electromechanical transducers that can fit various soft-matter applications for integrated actuation and sensing, such as development of dynamic cardiac models. Zhijie Zhu (advised by Professor McAlpine), received an Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowship for 2017-18. Focus: Developing smart 3D printing system to fabricate remote sensors specific to insect morphologies in non-invasive / fully autonomous manner, to benefit research in basic / applied insect ecology.

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Benjamin Mayhugh Assistant Professor Cari Dutcher was awarded the 2017-19 McKnight Land-Grant Professorship. Focus: Understanding Atmospheric Aerosol Particles through Models, Mimics, and Microfluidics. Learn more>

delegationCSE Dean Samuel Mukasa’s delegation went to Xi’an Jiaotong University (XJTU) January 8-10th to sign Joint-Lab agreement and discuss student exchanges. The delegation members consisted of Head of Mechanical Engineering Department Uwe Kortshagen, Professor David Pui, Professor Thomas Kuehn, and Charles Lo. The delegation attended the inaugural International Academic Committee meeting for the International Joint Research Laboratory of Thermo-Fluid Science and Engineering, signed the Joint Lab agreement, discussed the student exchanges, and delivered two seminars. Dean Mukasa gave a seminar on “Importance of University Partnerships to Address the Global Grand Challenges,” and Professor Kortshagen gave a seminar on “Highlights of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Research at the University of Minnesota.” They also visited the site of the Solar Assisted Large Scale Cleaning System (SALSCS), which was a collaboration between UMN (Pui), IEECAS (Cao) and XJTU (Tao). The SALSCS was completed in August, 2016 and is currently under evaluation for cleaning the surrounding area of one square kilometer. Computational fluid dynamics and weather research and forecasting calculations were performed to assess its effectiveness for cleaning large urban areas. Dean Mukasa and Profs. Kortshagen and Kuehn also visited the Institute of Earth Environment of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, where Mukasa discussed geochemistry with Academicians ZHOU Weijian and AN Zhi Sheng. (pictured from L-R — Kuehn, Kortshagen, Dr. Shuguo Wang-President of XJTU, Mukasa, Pui and Lo)

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Professor Arthur Erdman, Richard C. Jordan Professor, Morse Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor, and Director of UMN Medical Devices Center, will be presented with the 2017 ASME Savio L-Y. Woo Translational Biomechanics Medal, for "translating meritorious bioengineering science to clinical practice through research, education, professional development, and with service to the bioengineering community," at the 3rd Summer Biomechanics, Bioengineering and Biotransport Conference June 21-24th in Tucson Arizona.

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Benjamin Mayhugh Associate Professor Michael McAlpine is a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). This is the highest honor bestowed by the United States Government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Awardees are selected for their pursuit of innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology and their commitment to community service as demonstrated through scientific leadership, public education, or community outreach. Learn more: http://z.umn.edu/mcagov

Associate Professor Michael McAlpine, along with Associate Professor Brenda Ogle, Department of Biomedical Engineering, received a National Institutes of Health R01 Grant for the project titled: Extracellular matrix regulation of differentiation via modulation of ILK: application to 3D bioprinting of cardiac tissue. (Any research reported in regard to this grant was supported by the National Heart, Lung, And Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R01HL137204. All research content regarding this grant is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.)

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