MAE News

This project is designed to help patients with Parkinson's Disease Mar 31, 2014
97 Senior Projects Displayed at Winter Design Review

Engineering students proudly showed off their senior design projects at the 2014 Winter Design Review in mid-March. More than 500 students were involved in 97 projects.

The students had been working on their projects for two quarters, and the Winter Design Review provided an opportunity for them to present their ideas to industry reviewers, as well as display and demonstrate the projects to a wider audience. About 45 industry representatives were on hand to review and give student teams feedback on their innovative ideas. Sixteen teams were selected for Dean’s Choice Awards (see below).

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Mary Nichols, chair of the California Air Resources Board, talks about "The California Opportunity." Mar 25, 2014
Symposium Gathers Leaders in Fuel Cell Technology

The National Fuel Cell Symposium in late February offered a meeting of the minds for researchers, policymakers and industry representatives – all important stakeholders -- in fuel cell technology.

“Finding cleaner, better, more effective ways to power ourselves around, and power the things we use every day is one of the most important challenges we face in the world today,” said UC Irvine Chancellor Michael V. Drake.

Hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Fuel Cell Research Center (NFCRC) at UCI’s Samueli School, the symposium at the Beckman Center was attended by nearly 300 people. The day’s speakers expressed their excitement that the future had arrived for fuel cells.

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Assistant Professor Kristen Davis judges the water filtration competition Mar 14, 2014
Samueli School Celebrates E-Week

Nearly 900 engineering students participated in E-Week 2014, organized by the Samueli School’s Engineering Student Council (ESC).  This year’s theme was “The Art of Engineering,” and all students who checked in received a Samueli School t-shirt. The celebration featured the Dean’s Pancake Breakfast, an Awards Banquet, 10 competitions, a BBQ and the annual softball game, pitting students against faculty. Students broke the professors’ long-running winning streak with a tie game. 

E-Week is an annual event aimed at increasing public awareness and appreciation for the engineering profession. Established in 1951 by the National Society of Professional Engineers, the weeklong celebration provides an avenue for students to demonstrate inventiveness and imagination through a variety of events.

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From left: Gregory Washington, Said Elghobashi, Derek Dunn-Rankin Feb 6, 2014
Said Elghobashi Elected to National Academy of Engineering

The celebratory events started early as colleagues gathered to congratulate Said Elghobashi on his election to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE). Election to the NAE is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to an engineer. Elghobashi is one of 67 new U.S. members and 11 new foreign associates announced today by the academy.

A professor in the Samueli School’s Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE), Elghobashi has spent his career at UC Irvine. His research over the decades has involved challenging and important areas of fluid dynamics: turbulent flows, multiphase flows, and computational fluid dynamics (CFD). His leadership in each of these areas has been well recognized, and his early works have impacted the standard commercial CFD computer codes in the field. His more recent works are setting future trends.

“It’s a good feeling to know that your peers have read your work and then voted to bestow this honor,” says Elghobashi.  “I woke up this morning to about 50 emails from around the world.”

UCI Chancellor Michael Drake, Provost Howard Gillman and Samueli School Dean Gregory Washington were on hand at a morning event to recognize Elghobashi. The chancellor noted that this was a great and much deserved honor. “Very few people rise to the top of this list. The nomination is extraordinarily competitive,” he said. “Then to get through the ballot takes the acknowledgement from peers that your work is truly invaluable.”

“What I’m most proud of with this recognition is that Said is organic to UCI,” said Washington. “He exemplifies what this university is all about. He took a chance when coming here 35 years ago, and he is as much responsible for its success as any senior administrator.”

water jet cart testing Dec 20, 2013
Fall Design Review Showcases Senior Design Projects

Around 860 people attended the 2013 Fall Design Review, including students, faculty, staff, alumni and industry representatives.

clockwise from top left: Andrei Shkel, Syed Jafar, Nader Bagherzadeh, Franco De Flaviis Dec 17, 2013
Four Engineers Named IEEE Fellows

Four Samueli School of Engineering faculty members have been designated Fellows of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the world’s largest engineering society. Selected by the IEEE Board of Directors, Fellows are named in honor of a member’s outstanding record of accomplishments.

From the Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences Department, Professor Nader Bagherzadeh was recognized for his contributions to the design and analysis of coarse-grained reconfigurable processor architectures, Professor Franco De Flaviis for his contributions to reconfigurable antennas and tunable dielectrics for wireless communication systems, and Associate Professor Syed Jafar for his contributions to analyzing the capacity of wireless communication networks. From the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department, Professor Andrei Shkel was noted for his contributions to micro-machined gyroscopes.

Ida and William Melucci Nov 26, 2013
McDonnell Douglas Seamstress Funds UCI Graduate Fellowships in Engineering

Bequest Creates the Melucci Space Exploration & Technology Fellowship

Ida Melucci, a seamstress who worked for McDonnell Douglas and then Boeing, has left a bequest of $1.5 million to UC Irvine’s Samueli School of Engineering to create graduate fellowships.

“We are honored that Ida Melucci entrusted us with her gift to continue to support and enhance the education of graduate students working in space exploration and space technology,” says Gregory Washington, engineering school dean. “We have researchers working on the Rover guidance system for landing on Mars, on electric propulsion for space craft, as well as people looking at combustion and structures. This gift will be put to good use.”

The Meluccis were both long-standing and dedicated employees of the Huntington Beach aerospace company. The late William Melucci worked in sealing and bonding. Ida Melucci worked on space blankets for the Delta rocket, missile bags and insulation blankets for the Space Station, and slip covers for cargo boxes carrying high-tech space tools on the Endeavor space shuttle.

from left, Noe Rodriguez, Lineker Phuong, Loong Sang Yong, and Greg Tamashiro Nov 20, 2013
UCI engineering school gets grant from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Funding will support continued development of student-designed solar stove

The Samueli School of Engineering at UC Irvine will receive a $100,000 Grand Challenges Explorations grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for developing a solar stove that enables carbon emissions-free cooking.

The Grand Challenges Explorations initiative is intended to foster outside-the-box solutions to persistent global health and development issues. More than 80 grants were announced today by the Gates Foundation in the 11th round of funding.

The stored energy solar stove was initially designed by a group of senior mechanical engineering students at UC Irvine under the guidance of former research adviser John Garman. It permits carbon emissions-free cooking indoors and at night, which not only reduces deforestation, labor time and safety concerns for women who leave their villages to gather firewood, but also pollutes indoor air far less than the traditional in-home cooking methods currently employed in developing countries.

The students developed a working model that uses a solar collector to concentrate sunlight on an energy storage device, which consists of an insulated box filled with potassium nitrate and sodium nitrate. The salts are heated to their melting point by the solar radiation. Within three hours in the sun, the stove stores 0.5 kilowatt-hours of energy, which is released as the molten salt slowly resolidifies. This provides a stable heat source indoors or after sunset with a surface temperature well-suited to making foods such as bread and rice. The technology has gone through two design iterations and, with this grant, will be further refined by a new group of senior engineering students.

 

Adrian Ortega Nov 19, 2013
Balsells Fellowship Program Reaches Milestone: 100th Fellow

Like the 99 Catalans before him, Adrián Ortega Novillo left the northeast region of Spain behind to study engineering at UC Irvine. He is the 100th Balsells Fellow.

Jack Brouwer Oct 29, 2013
Austrian Delegation Visits UC Irvine’s NFCRC, Smart Grid Demonstration

The Austrian Ambassador to the U.S. visited UC Irvine during the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon in October.

An array of glassblown micro-cells used to derive the magnetic field gradient. Oct 10, 2013
NSF Recognizes Andrei Shkel with EAGER Award

Professor Andrei Shkel has received a $300,000 National Science Foundation EAGER (Early-concept Grants for Exploratory Research) Award.

Farghalli Mohamed with UCI Chancellor Michael Drake Oct 7, 2013
Well-Loved Professor Retires, Goes out with a Rhyme

Beloved engineering professor Farghalli A. Mohamed celebrated his retirement and 70th birthday in late September surrounded by colleagues, faculty, staff and friends.

Jairus Racelis Oct 1, 2013
On track for clean energy

UCI will host – and compete in – the California Challenge, which pits alternative-fuel race cars against each other

St. Margaret's High School Summer Internship Sep 20, 2013
St. Margaret’s High School Students Gain University-level Research Experience during Summer Internships at Samueli School

Six students participated in this year’s St. Margaret’s Episcopal High School Summer Internship Program at the Samueli School of Engineering,

Derek Dunn-Rankin Aug 8, 2013
Professor Dunn-Rankin Honored with Oppenheim Prize

Professor Derek Dunn-Rankin has been awarded the Oppenheim Prize from the Institute for Dynamics of Explosions and Reactive Systems (IDERS). The prize honors brilliant contributions to the theoretical or interpretative aspects of combustion dynamics.

Enric Grustan Gutierrez Aug 7, 2013
Seeking a Boost

Enric Grustan Gutierrez studies propulsion so maybe it’s not surprising that he’s a force of nature himself. The high-energy mechanical and aerospace engineering doctoral candidate designs and microfabricates tiny arrays of electric-propelled thrusters that could change the way telecommunication satellites and other spacecraft are launched and navigated.

Andrei Shkel Aug 6, 2013
Professor Recognized for Exceptional Public Service

Professor Andrei Shkel, has been recognized with the Office of the Secretary of Defense Award for Exceptional Public Service by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

building a fuel cell Jul 22, 2013
Having Fun, FABcamp Style

The Samueli School’s FABcamp got off to a boisterous beginning with a full roster of middle school children. The first group of 9 girls and 20 boys could be seen touring labs and walking around the school in bright yellow t-shirts. 

Apr 30, 2013
UCI Engineering Students Take First in 2013 Design/Build/Fly Competition

UC Irvine’s engineering students won first place at the 17th annual American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Foundation Design/Build/Fly (DBF) competition in Tucson, Arizona in April.

“We expected to place in the top 10, given our preparation and effort,” says John Wei-Han Chen, senior engineering student and DBF project manager. “It definitely felt good to see all of our hard work coming together. We are extremely happy to bring back first place to UCI.”

A partnership between the AIAA Foundation, Cessna Aircraft Company, and Raytheon Missile Systems, the DBF competition provides students an opportunity to design and build a radio controlled aircraft to perform specific missions. Participants who complete a letter of intent and submit a report on time are invited to bring their plane to a central location for a fly off. Winners are determined by a combination of their report score and their flight score.

Apr 30, 2013
Celebrity Scientist

As a boy in India, Satya Atluri was thrilled to hear the voice of U.S. President John F. Kennedy on the radio, vowing to put a man on the moon. It fueled his own dreams, and he grew up to become an internationally recognized aviation and mechanical engineer.

On April 20, Atluri, now a UC Irvine Distinguished Professor, returned to his native country to receive its Padma Bhushan award “for distinguished service of high order in the field of engineering and science.”

In an ornate ceremony at the imposing governmental compound in New Delhi, Atluri clasped his hands together and gave a slight bow as the heavy pink-and-gold medal was draped over his shoulders by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee. He was told it was the first such civilian honor conferred upon anyone in the University of California system.

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