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On Wednesday afternoon, April 29, 19 student teams from the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE) Department and College of Nursing will demonstrate their brilliant, useful, and humanitarian inventions. Their fascinating innovations include a new and improved walker for a patient suffering from debilitating rheumatoid arthritis, a more efficient and economic device for farmers to remove seeds from squash, an ergonomically correct apparatus for pulling beer kegs off storage racks in a warehouse, and a dynamometer to help rehabbing patients assess the proper positioning of their...

On Friday, April 24, seniors from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department (ECE) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst will present, display, and demonstrate 21 clever and useful electronic inventions for the public. The ECE will host its 25th annual Senior Design Project Day on campus, when 21 teams of seniors will unveil a high-tech floor show for the electronics of the future. This year’s senior design projects include an electronic navigation system for visually impaired individuals, a drone model quadcopter that automatically videotapes action sports such as mountain...

Civil and Environmental (CEE) Department graduate student Kristie Stauch-White has received a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship from the NSF Directorate for Education and Human Resources Division of Graduate Education. Stauch-White works in the lab of her CEE advisor Professor Caitlyn Butler, who is pursuing pioneering research on special “Algal-Sludge Granules,” which can produce their own oxygen during wastewater treatment, thus cutting electricity consumption in half, while also cleansing wastewater.

The Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP...

The University of Massachusetts Amherst Alumni Association will present Raphael Guzman (ECE ’88) with a Distinguished Alumni Service Award at the State House on April 23. The award honors alumni for outstanding and significant contributions of service to a particular community and to the university in the way of financial, volunteer, or advocacy support. Guzman’s award is part of a set of Distinguished Alumni Awards which each represent the highest honor bestowed by the UMass Amherst Alumni Association on alumni, faculty, and friends. Recipients of this prestigious award have translated...

The method that pharmaceutical companies use to develop new chemotherapy drugs is highly inefficient and expensive, costing one-to-ten-billion dollars and seven to 20 years for each drug. Shelly Peyton of the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is addressing this critical problem with her new research project, funded by a $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation CAREER Program.

Peyton’s research team engineers artificial tissue, which realistically mimics various human organs, then tests how cancer cells in this “biomaterial”...

After winning the UMass Amherst Innovation Challenge and its $25,000 top prize on March 30, a team of UMass graduate students is opening eyes and defogging windshields with a clever invention known as FogKicker. On April 10, Team FogKicker presented its product, a coating technology with potential applications for millions of people, during the Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council 2015 Innovation Tour. Made from natural materials, the FogKicker coating is biodegradable, easy to apply, low-cost, and long-lasting. FogKicker creates a film on a surface, which prevents...

Student-driven ideas were on display at the HackUMass hackathon held at the Integrative Learning Center April 11 and 12. Engineering students Michaela Shtilman-Minkin and Amanda Pellerite helped coordinate the event, and many teams from the College of Engineering participated. More than 600 participants, including representatives from 70 companies and students from across the region, took part in the event in the new, technology-rich Integrative Learning Center, which offers robust Wi-Fi and spacious work areas. The largest gathering of its kind in the Pioneer Valley, HackUMass sold out...

In late March the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department held its 2015 Ph.D. Poster Session, in which Azadeh Sheikholeslami won first place and the Special Tang Award, Prasana Ravindran took second place, and Hongtao Wang took third.

Sheikholeslami’s poster title was “Leveraging an Ephemeral Key to Obtain Everlasting Security in Wireless Environments,” and the faculty advisor was Dennis Goeckel. Sheikholeslami’s award was sponsored by the Shirley and Ting-Wei Tang Endowment.

The title of second-place finisher Ravindran was “Power-Optimized Temperature-...

On Saturday, April 11, from 6:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., the EWB-USA UMass Amherst student chapter held its eighth annual fund-raising social and auction at the “Duda Barn” on the property of Gillian Haven and Jim Duda, 18 Harkness Road in Pelham.

The gala evening featured appetizers, a cash bar, presentations, and silent and live auctions offering more than 100 great items, including a one-week Nantucket vacation rental and two other Cape Cod three-day-two-night rentals. All proceeds will directly benefit the EWB-USA UMass Amherst student chapter.

The money raised will...

Dr. William Leonard, a senior lecturer in the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department, has been chosen by the Office of the Provost to receive a 2015 University of Massachusetts Amherst Distinguished Teaching Award (DTA). The purpose of the DTA program, a feature of the UMass Amherst campus for 40 years, is to honor exemplary teaching at the highest institutional level. Both faculty and graduate students, nominated by students or alumni, are eligible for this highly competitive award.  DTA winners are honored at both the Undergraduate and Graduate Commencements.

As...

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