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Faculty Research Grants
Following is a partial list of recent grants received by the faculty of the School of Engineering:
Chris Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, has been named the Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network (KEEN) "2011 Outstanding Faculty Member and Network Contributor." Santa Clara University has received two multi-year grants from KEEN, totaling to over $1M. Chris has served as the University's principle investigator on the awards, working with colleagues in the School of Engineering and Leavey School of Business over the past three years on initiatives to promote an entrepreneurial mindset in all of Santa Clara's undergraduate engineers.
Bioengineering received a $10,000 grant from Intuitive Surgical for undergraduate summer research fellowships.
Jonathan Zhang, Bioengineering, has received $245,456 from the National Institute of Health to support "Regulation of Structure and Function of Protein by Glycosylation." The long-term goal of this proposal is to study the regulatory role of O-N-acetylglucosamine (O-GlcNAc) modification in biological pathways. This award provides funding for one Graduate Research Assistant and two Post Docs.
Hohyun Lee, Mechanical Engineering, has received $20,000 subcontract funding from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory/Dept. of Energy to support "Max Tech and Beyond: Ultra - Low Energy Use Appliance Design Competition." He also received $14,995 from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to support “Enhanced Solar Thermal Energy Harvest for Power Generation from Brayton Cycle.” This award is in response to the 8th Annual P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet.
Nathan Rogers ’12 and Jan (Matt) Jansen ’12, Civil Engineering received a Markkula Center Hackworth Grant for Student Research in Applied Ethics in the amount of $1,000 for a project called “Sustainable Design in Ghana.” Rogers and Jansen will be doing their senior design project on the construction of an inexpensive and sustainable house in the village of Gambibgo in northern Ghana. They received the Hackworth Grant to support their work on the senior design project’s required ethics section in which students must provide an ethical explanation and justification for the project.
Dan Lewis, Ruth Davis, Computer Engineering and Pedro Hernandez-Ramos, Education, have been awarded a three-year NSF GK-12 grant of $851,779 effective September 1, 2011. The grant broadens the education of graduate engineering students, strengthens high school teachers’ expertise in computing, introduces high school students to the breadth of computing and its impact on their lives, and ultimately increases the supply and diversity of graduates ready to enter the IT workforce.
Hohyun Lee and Kim Parnell, Mechanical Engineering, received a Technology Innovation Grant in the amount of $37,713 for "Netzsch DSC and TGA System for Material Transition Temperature and Specific Heat." In recommending this funding, the Technology Steering Committee commented: "This is a significant new capability at SCU that will update labs for courses impacting over 150 students per year as well as faculty research."
Ashley Kim, Bioengineering, received a Technology Innovation Grant in the amount of $14,231 for "Photoresist Spinner and Deionized Water System for In-house Photolithography." In recommending this funding, the Technology Steering Committee commented: "This is a significant new capability at SCU that will both reduce funds expended for outside resources and reduce turn-around time."
Nam Ling, Computer Engineering, has received $70,000 from Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. to support "Intra Prediction Model for Video Coding."
Ed Maurer, Civil Engineering, was awarded a contract for $37,160, to work with partners at The Nature Conservancy (Seattle and Washington DC) and ClimateCentral (Palo Alto) on a project sponsored by the World Bank. This project translates global climate model simulations to a regional scale and examines projected changes to extreme statistics important to urban areas and agriculture, such as changes in dry periods, heat waves, frost days, and growing degree days. While aimed at changes in North Africa and the Middle East, the project scope is global and includes the development of a web interface for viewing and downloading the projections.
Tokunbo Ogunfunmi, Electrical Engineering, received a Technology Innovation Grant in the amount of $5,929 for "Advanced Motion Estimation Algorithms for High-Efficiency Video Coding."
Daniel Strickland, Mechanical Engineering, received a Technology Innovation Grant in the amount of $21,523 for "Micro-scale Flow and Catalyst Characterization System." In recommending this funding, the Technology Steering Committee commented: "This is an interesting addition of state-of-the-art technology to a somewhat dated lab, with impact on over 150 students per year and on faculty research."
Dan Strickland, Mechanical Engineering, was awarded an EPA P3 Grant (People, Prosperity, and the Planet) of $15,000 for a student team to develop a reversible fuel cell system for storage of renewable energy. Students will compete in Washington, DC in April 2012 for a chance at Phase II funding of $90,000.
Silvia Figueira, Computer Engineering, received $5,208 as one of the CSTS Jeff and Karen Miller Faculty Fellowships in Frugal Innovation to create her Mobile Health Lab.
Unyoung (Ashley) Kim, Bioengineering, is one of the nine investigators in a multi-investigator proposal, "Advanced Bioscience Initiative," awarded by Fletcher Jones Foundation totaling $500,000.
Unyoung (Ashley) Kim, Bioengineering, and Craig Stephens, Biology, were awarded a Jeff and Karen Miller Faculty Fellowship in Frugal Innovation Grant of $4,768 for Accelerating HIV Diagnosis/Monitoring through Compact and Low-cost Flow Cytometry in Developing Countries.
Shoba Krishnan, Electrical Engineering, has received $8,333 subcontract award from the University of Minnesota/Department of Energy to support "A Nationwide Consortium of Universities to Revitalize Electric Power Engineering Education by State of the Art Laboratories." This is the first year funding of an anticipated three-year grant totaling $24,996, and is part of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act Funding.
Ed Maurer, Civil Engineering, received a Fulbright Visiting Scholars grant, "joining the ranks of distinguished scholars and professors worldwide who are leaders in the educational, political, economic, social and cultural lives of their countries." He will spend a portion of his upcoming sabbatical year in Central Chile where he will work with colleagues at the Pontifica Universitdad Católica de Chile from July through December conduction research to aid resource planners and managers in anticipating and adapting to impacts of climate change on water resources.
Chris Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, and Ruth Davis, Computer Engineering, have received $1,142,000 from the Kern Family Foundation to support "An Undergraduate Education Program in Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship." This grant is for a period of three years and the proposed initiatives are organized into several complementary categories that will improve the entrepreneurial mindset within our campus, our community, and the KEEN (The Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network) network.
Chris Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, has received $33,000 from the University of Alaska Fairbanks/NASA to support "RETINA: Robotic Exploration Technologies in Astrobiology." This program supports the K-12 Educational Modules, Undergraduate Introduction to Marie Operations, and Multi-university Interdisciplinary Senior Capstone Projects.
Nam Ling, Computer Engineering, received a $12,304 TSC grant for "High-Performance Video Codec System." In recommending this funding, the Technology Steering Committee commented: "The TSC considers this an interesting proposal that expands on an existing resource in innovative ways through small-scale parallel processing."
Dan Strickland, Unyoung (Ashley) Kim, Drazen Fabris, and Hohyun Lee were awarded a Technology Steering Committee (TSC) grant of $50,000 for a mask aligner for in-house lithographic fabrication processes.
Yuling Yan, Bioengineering, has received an additional $53,505 from UC Berkeley to support "High-Contrast Imaging of Single Molecules in Live Cells." This amendment funds Year 3 of an anticipated four year grant totaling $220,842. Dr. Yan's laboratory will contribute to the project with the development of control software and image analysis for automated OLID image microscopy.
Dan Lewis and Ruth Davis, Computer Engineering, have received a new NSF grant of $380,928 for: Daniel W. Lewis, Craig Blackburn, Pedro F. Hernandez-Ramos, Ruth E. Davis, "Special Project: Expanding the Impact of Computer Science in Silicon Valley High Schools and Facilitating Adoption of the ECS Curriculum Elsewhere," effective August 1, 2010, and expiring July 31, 2011. This is a continuing grant which has been approved on scientific/technical merit for approximately three years. Contingent on the availability of funds and the scientific progress of the project, NSF expects to continue support at approximately the following level: $380,475 in FY 2011, and $227,190 in FY 2012.
Dan Lewis and Ruth Davis, Computer Engineering, have received a new NSF grant of $380,928 for: Daniel W. Lewis, Craig Blackburn, Pedro F. Hernandez-Ramos, Ruth E. Davis, "Special Project: Expanding the Impact of Computer Science in Silicon Valley High Schools and Facilitating Adoption of the ECS Curriculum Elsewhere," effective August 1, 2010, and expiring July 31, 2011.
Christopher Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, has received $80,000 in subcontract funding from University of Alaska Fairbanks to support “RETINA: Robotic Exploration Technologies in Astrobiology;” NASA provides the funding for this project. RETINA activities will be focused on the development and use of advanced multi-robot marine systems to perform a wide variety of science objectives and to validate new platform and instrument technologies. The resulting technical capabilities will be made available to the astrobiology research and educational communities for conducting field research and outreach. Several existing robotic platforms will be enhanced to support this work; funding for graduate research assistants is also included in this subcontract.
Nam Ling, Computer Engineering, has received $125,500 in funding from Droplet Technology, Inc. to support "Adaptive Bit-Rate Control for Wavelet-Based Video Coding." The purpose of this project is to conduct research on adaptive bit-rate control for wavelet-based video coding. Unlike traditional hybrid model in standards such as the ITU-T H.264, wavelet-based coding presents a different dimension for compressing video. Rate control for wavelet-based video has not been explored widely, especially for low complexity real-time applications.
Sergio Zarantonello, Applied Mathematics, was awarded a $ 100,000 grant from the Department of Energy for the research project "Verification of CO2 Storage in Coal Beds." The injection and storage of captured CO2 in geologic structures has been suggested as a strategy to reduce industrial emissions into the atmosphere. The awarded research project entails the creation of superesolved time-lapsed seismic images to verify and monitor CO2 sequestration in unminable coal beds.
Christopher Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, has been awarded a $10,000 Workforce Development grant from the California Space Grant Consortium. The funds will support undergraduate and graduate student interns to develop and expand a network of automated satellite communication stations that are being used to monitor NASA and university-built spacecraft.
Silvia Figueira, Computer Engineering, received a $30,000 gift from Datacare Corporation to support her research on Computer Handling of Medical Records.
Wendelin Wright, Mechanical Engineering, has received an NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award grant. Year 1 funding of $115,539 has been provided for her project "Shear Banding in Bulk Metallic Glasses."
Unyoung (Ashley) Kim, Bioengineering, was awarded a Technology Steering Committee (TSC) grant of $38,364 for a fluorescence microscope for undergraduate education and research in the bioengineering program.
Christopher Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, has received $50,000 in subcontract funding from Adaptive Communications Research, Inc. (ACRi) to support “Reconfigurable Sparse Array Smart Antenna System via Multi-Robot Control.” The National Science Foundation provides the funding for this project which leverages the world-class experience of each partner—ACRI’s smart antenna experience and the Robotics Systems Laboratory’s multi-mobile robot cluster control technology.
Samiha Mourad, Electrical Engineering, was awarded a Technology Steering Committee (TSC) grant of $33,532 for Characterization of Nanoscale Samples.
Drazen Fabris and Hohyun Lee, Mechanical Engineering, were awarded a Technology Steering Committee (TSC) grant of $40,483 for lab equipment for undergraduate education in the Department of Mechanical Engineering.
Silvia Figueira, JoAnne Holliday and Weijia Shang, Computer Engineering, received a research grant of $88,939 from Intel on "Mobile Internet Device Benchmark."
Unyoung (Ashley) Kim, Bioengineering, has received a grant from the Center for Science, Technology, and Society for “Development of an Electrochemical DNA Sensor for Rapid Detection of Pathogens.” Research will be conducted into developing an aptamer-based sensor capable of continuous, real-time detection of multiple pathogens.
Hohyun Lee, Mechanical Engineering, has received a grant from the Center for Science, Technology, and Society for “Development of a Cost-Efficient and Less Electricity-Dependent Water Supply for Off-Grid Areas.” An approach to water purification that uses compressed water vapor heated by fuels available in rural areas is to be developed. The goal is to provide clean water to off-grid villages.
Nam Ling, Computer Engineering, has received a one-year, $70,000 grant from Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. to support “Predictive and Decoder-Derived Video Coding Model.” This research project explores the development of the next generation of video coding.
Edwin Maurer, Civil Engineering, and Iris Stewart-Frey, Environmental Studies, have received a three-year, $250,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to support “Assessing the Impact of a Warmer Climate on Stream Water Quality across the Mountainous Western United States.” The objective of this research project is to examine the impact of projected climatic changes on the near-surface hydrology and water quality across the mountainous western United States.
Wendelin Wright, Mechanical Engineering, has received $50,000 from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories to support "Mechanical Behavior of Amorphous Metallic Foams." This is year 3 funding of a U.S. Department of Energy Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. The award with this Amendment totals $150,000. The goals of the project are to produce amorphous metallic foams via controlled casting processes and perform mechanical testing on these materials. Funding for graduate research assistants is included.
Yuling Yan, Bioengineering, is one of the three investigators in a multi-investigator proposal “High-contrast imaging of single molecules in live cells” recently awarded by the NIH (National Institute of Health) for a 4-year funding period. She is receiving a total funding of $220,842.
Christopher Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, has received a one-year award of $55,000 from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research to support “IRIS: Intelligent Response Imaging Spacecraft.” SCU’s Robotic Systems Laboratory will develop the IRIS nanosatellite mission as part of the Air Force Office of Scientific Research University Nanosatellite Program. The IRIS nanosatellite will be developed by SCU undergraduate and graduate students as part of a comprehensive educational program. IRIS will contribute to the existing federally-funded RETINA estuarine science and ecology program by performing critical imaging and communications services.
Bioengineering has received a commitment of $200,000 in funding supporting laboratory and equipment needs through the generosity of the Fletcher Jones Foundation.
Cary Yang, Center for Nanostructures/Electrical Engineering, has received $1,328,000 in continuation funding from the U.S. Army to support “Thermal and Electrical Nanoscale Transport (TENT). The award now totals $4,355.998. The Center for Nanostructures (CNS) initiated its 5-year TENT project in 2007 with the goal of designing, fabricating, and testing a lightweight, low-resistance (electrical and thermal), longer-lasting chip using new carbon-based interconnect and thermal interface materials. Funding for both undergraduate and graduate student research assistants is included in the budget.
Computer engineering has received a 5-year NSF S-STEM (Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) grant totaling $597,781 providing $10K/year for four years to five COEN students entering SCU in 2009, 13 in 2010, 2011, 2012, and eight in 2013. Dan Lewis is the PI and Silvia Figueira is co-PI.
Christopher Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, received a new installment of $159,000 on his current NASA Ames Research Center grant in order to continue work on the development and use of satellite mission operation systems for controlling NASA spacecraft. This work includes continued operation of GeneSat-1 as well as control of the PharmaSat spacecraft which launched in May, 2009.
The School of Engineering has received a grant in the amount of $107,000 from S.D. Bechtel, Jr., Foundation to develop community-based projects in the School of Engineering, collaborating with faculty in the Department of Education and regional teachers. Walden West, a local science school for middle-school students, is a partner for the pilot.
Christopher Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, received a new $175,000 installment on a grant with NASA Ames Research Center focused on the on-orbit control of NASA spacecraft. Students in the Robotics Lab are currently supporting the development of three new satellites with colleagues at Ames.
Christopher Kitts, Mechanical Engineering, has received a one-year subcontract award of $200,000 from the University of Alaska Fairbanks to support “RETINA: Robotic Exploration Technologies in Astrobiology.” The University of Alaska Fairbanks award was funded by NASA.
Jorge Gonzalez Cruz, Timothy Hight (Mechanical Engineering), Mark Aschheim (Civil Engineering), Kathrina Simonen (California College of the Arts), and Robert Bornstein (San Jose State University): The National Science Foundation has awarded a grant of $30,000 to Santa Clara University for support of the project entitled "Industry/University Cooperative Research Center (I/UCRC) on sustainable engineering systems."
Edwin Maurer (Civil Engineering) has received a one-year subcontract award from the University of California, San Diego providing $50,000 to support "Use of Other Statistical Downscaling Techniques and Hydrological Modeling." The UCSD award was received from the California State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission. The goal of this project is to assist the project team at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography with the generation of climate change scenarios using the statistical downscaling technique used for the 2006 Scenarios Project and the use of the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model to translate these climatic scenarios into hydrologic outputs over the California region.
Solar Decathlon Team: The team has been awarded $30,000 in funding for this year, and a commitment for a minimum of $20,000 next year from the Michael Lee Environmental Foundation, a private non-profit foundation that strives to provide examples of environmental integrity and public awareness through action and education. This year’s $30,000 grant will be matched by Fr. Locatelli’s initial challenge grant of $50,000 to match, dollar for dollar, the next $50,000 raised for the project.
Ruth Davis (Computer Engineering) received a TSC grant in the amount of $3101 to purchase 94 copies of Inspiration concept map software to support work on NSF CCLI grant project, Pathways to Meaningful Learning. The software will be installed on 42 laptops in engineering, 32 systems in the multimedia lab in the Learning Commons, and on 20 systems in the computer lab in the biology department.
Silvia Figueira, Computer Engineering, received a $50,000 grant from DataCare Corporation to support her research project, “Medical Records Imaging and Processing.”
Tim Healy and Samiha Mourad (Electrical Engineering) have received a grant for $15,000 from the Technology Steering Committee in support of the ongoing development of a new laboratory in energy and instrumentation. The laboratory, to be housed in the Bannan Engineering Laboratories, will be called the Latimer Electrical Energy Laboratory, in honor of Lewis Howard Latimer, Nineteenth Century African-American inventor who made major improvements in the incandescent light bulb.
A proposal led by SCU and Solar-Tech to develop installation standards for the PV industry was awarded by the California Energy Commission (CEC). The CEC grant is for $750,000, about $250,000 will be commissioned to SCU’s Center for Sustainable Engineering Studies. The installation standards will be tested in 2009 Solar Decathlon house. Professor Mark Aschheim (civil engineering) leads SCU’s efforts.
Jorge González (Mechanical Engineering) and Mark Aschheim (Civil Engineering) will lead SCU efforts after a proposal led by SCU and Solar-Tech to develop installation standards for the PV industry was awarded by the California Energy Commission (CEC). The CEC grant is for $750K, of which approximately $250K will be commissioned to SCU’s Center for Sustainable Engineering Studies. The installation standards will be tested in 2009 Solar Decathlon house.
Solar Decathlon Team: Father Locatelli, President of Santa Clara University, has approved an initial challenge grant of $50,000 to support the 2009 Solar Decathlon team project and will match, dollar for dollar, the next $50,000 raised for the SCU team project.
Ruth Davis (Computer Engineering and Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies) and Shoba Krishnan (Electrical Engineering) received a National Science Foundation grant of $150,000 in support of their project entitled "Pathways to Meaningful Learning."
Darren Atkinson (Computer Engineering) has received an IBM Research Grant in the amount of $3,025 for his project on “Smarter Inlining: Improving the Quality of Compiler Inlining Heuristics.”
John Jameson (Center for Nanostructures) received an IBM Research Grant in the amount of $10,276 for his project on “Low-current measurement capability for collaborative Physics/Engineering development of low-noise Josephson junctions.”
Jorge Gonzalez-Cruz and Drazen Fabris (Mechanical Engineering) received an IBM Research Grant in the amount of $10,400 for their project on “On Demand Spray Cooling Using Nano-Fluids.”
Sukhmander Singh and Rachel He (Civil Engineering) received a $10,500 Technology Grant for their project on “Total Station Instruments” for a surveying course. The Technology Steering Committee noted that the project is a good example of enhancing student learning and assisting multiple units on campus.
Tokunbo Ogunfunmi (Electrical Engineering) received an IBM Research Grant in the amount of $4,000 for "Xilinx FPGA Rapid Prototyping of Algorithms."
Weijia Shang (Computer Engineering) received an IBM Research Grant in the amount of $6,000 for her project on “Stack Reduction of Recursive Functions.”
Christopher Kitts (Mechanical Engineering) has received second year funding of $55,000 from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) to support "The OBSIDIAN Nanosatellite Project." The award with this amendment now totals $110,000.
Jorge González (Mechanical Engineering) and Dr. Sergio Zarantonello (term lecturer in Applied Mathematics, and also Vice President of Engineering at 3DGeo Inc.) received a nine-months grant of $150,000 from the National Science Foundation for ground water mapping techniques using ground penetrating radar data and advanced imaging algorithms. The work is in collaboration with the University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez and 3DGeo Inc.
Sally Wood (Electrical Engineering) received an external grant for $108,139 to support super-resolution image reconstruction algorithm development and implementation for a flat camera with a micromirror array.
Christopher Kitts (Mechanical Engineering) has received a three year award from NASA providing $2,747,336 to support "Development of Small Spacecraft and Payload Design, Test and Operations."
Nam Ling (Computer Engineering) has received a $70,000 award from Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. to support "A Statistical Motion Vector Coding Model."
The objective of this project is to conduct research on an efficient statistical model for coding motion vectors for Advanced Video Codecs. It is hoped that the results will be incorporated into a future video coding international standard.
Funding is included to support a graduate student research assistant.
Ruth E. Davis has received an HP Technology for Teaching Grant to encourage the transformation of learning and teaching. The award package valued at over $68,000 included HP Tablet PC’s that will be used to support Technology Integration for Diverse Excellence (TIDE), a School of Engineering project that will extend learning gains to first-year engineering undergraduates and high school students in outreach programs.
Using HP mobile technology, participants will work in small teams on inquiry-based learning activities to explore issues related to sustainability. The goal of the project is to positively affect participants’ engagement and increase their understanding of the engineering disciplines to enable them to make informed and timely decisions regarding their choice of college major. Learn More >>
Christopher Kitts was recently awarded approximately $500,000 in external grants, with the main projects including the following: Multi-Robot Control, National Science Foundation; Development of the ONYX Microsatellite, Department of Defense (increment in funding); Test and Mission Operations for the GeneSat-1 Satellite, NASA (increment in funding); and Advanced Automobile Diagnostics, BMW.
The SCU Solar Decathlon project was awarded a $35,000 internal grant from the Technology Steering Committee. These funds will be used to instrument the house as a laboratory for sustainability upon its return to the Santa Clara campus following the Solar Decathlon competition in Washington, DC in fall 2007. A monitoring system of sensors will be implemented to gauge the sustainability of the house over time.
Dan Lewis (Computer Engineering) has received a 3-year award from the National Science Foundation that provides $102,209 to support "An Innovative Approach for Attracting Students to Computing: A Comprehensive Proposal."
SCU, St. Joseph's University, the Colorado School of Mines, Ithaca College and Duke University have received NSF awards to support this collaborative project, which addresses the issues of attracting and retaining more students in computing(especially women and underrepresented minorities) by helping high school teachers learn innovative and effective ways of introducing computing and computer programming.
The proposed approach will take advantage of students' high level of interest in media and animation. Using innovative technology to introduce high school students to programming (an important component of virtually every computing-related major, and generally a major part of first year computing classes), the project will not only attract students to computing, but also improve retention by providing the "previous programming experience" that is so important as a predictor for student success in computing in college. The new technology used to teach students is Alice. This technology has been proven successful with college students, in summer technology camps, and in the Girl Scouts with middle school students. The Project Directors believe it will be even more successful with high school students.
Cary Yang: Initial funding of $1.7 million for the first two years of the Thermal and Electrical Nanoscale Transport (TENT) Project by the U.S. Army.
The School of Engineering’s Solar Decathlon team has received a challenge grant of up to $50,000 from University President Paul Locatelli, S.J., in support of the SCU 2007 Solar Decathlon entry. The grant, which comes from the President’s Fund for Strategic Initiatives, will match funds raised by the Solar Decathlon team.