Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Eppes, Milanovic, and Patlolla Present Research Paper at COMSOL Conference

Surface temperature distribution (t = 3.2 ms)
Tom Eppes, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, CETA; Ivana Milanovic, professor of mechanical engineering, CETA; and Harini Patlolla, electrical engineering graduate student, presented a research paper at the COMSOL Conference, which took place earlier this month in Newton, Mass.
The annual conference features peer-reviewed work in the area of multiphysics modeling and simulations.
The paper, "Early Stage Melt Ejection in Laser Percussion Drilling," describes a percussion laser drilling model during the early stage of melt formation and ejection. The target material is iron with temperature dependent material properties that are used to model the phase transitions. Velocity and temperature fields above and within the target metal are discussed.  The size and shape of the vapor and melt fronts during the drilling process are revealed with a particle trace analysis.

Four CETA Students Attend COMSOL Conference

(L-R) Harini Patlolla, Aneela Naz, Tom Eppes, Annie Becerra, and Karen Brzostowski

Four CETA engineering students attended the annual COMSOL conference in Newton, Mass., from Oct. 3-5. On hand were Harini Patlolla and Aneela Naz, both master’s candidates in electrical engineering, as well as Annie Becerra, a senior electrical engineering major, and Karen Brzostowski, a junior in mechanical engineering. Accompanying the students was Tom A. Eppes, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering.
The conference features peer-reviewed work in the area of multiphysics modeling and simulations and consists of keynote addresses, user presentations and minicourses.

Patlolla presented a paper titled "Early Stage Melt Ejection in Laser Percussion Drilling," co-authored with Eppes and Milanovic. The four students, along with Stacey Dufrane, a junior in mechanical engineering, have been working on research projects in laser drilling, electronic heat sink trade-offs, and conformal patch antenna design funded by a grant from WELFund.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Fang Serves as Editor-in-Chief of ASCE Conference Proceedings on Multimodal Transportation Systems

Clara Fang, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, CETA, recently served as the editor-in-chief for the Proceedings of the 12th COTA International Conference of Transportation Professionals (CICTP 2012): Convenient, Safe, Cost-Effective and Efficient Multimodal Transportation Systems, published by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).
The cover of the conference proceedings on multimodal transportation systems, for which Fang served as editor-in-chief.
The co-editors of the proceedings include Heng Wei, associate professor at the University of Cincinnati; and Yunpeng Wang and Jun Zhang, professors at Beihang University in Beijing, China. The conference proceedings are indexed via the EI Compendia, one of the most comprehensive engineering literature databases available to engineers.

As the editor-in-chief, Fang led and organized a rigorous two-stage (abstract and full-text paper) technical review and editing process. The CICTP 2012 received a large number of high-quality technical contributions. Among the nearly 900 abstract submissions, a total of 369 papers were finally accepted for publication in the proceedings. The conference papers address a wide range of topics in 11 areas, including transportation planning, intelligent transportation systems, public transportation, air transportation, railway, logistics and freight transportation, safety and emergence response, energy saving and environmental protection. It is expected that research and studies gathered in these proceedings will contribute to future needs of a multimodal transportation system, and help to advance transportation sustainability, energy independence, economic vitality, and quality of life.

The CICTP 2012, held in Beijing, China, from August 3-6, 2012, attracted more than 1,000 participants internationally from countries and regions including mainland China, the United States, Taiwan, Germany, Canada, United Kingdom, Egypt and Iran. Fang also served as the chair of the Conference Executive & Organizing Committee to lead the development of nearly 30 conference sessions including plenary, invited, technical, and forums. These talks addressed current practice and state-of-the-art transportation topics of interest to professionals from government, industry, and academic institutions.

Ilumoka to Serve on State Disparity Study Committee

Abby Ilumoka, professor of electrical and computer engineering, CETA, will be working with the Connecticut General Assembly to conduct a disparity study to determine whether the state’s set-aside program achieves the goal of facilitating participation in state contracts of small contractors and minority business enterprises.
Ilumoka is a member of the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering, the organization under contract with the state to conduct the study.
See a list of members of the Connecticut Disparity Study Committee


CETA student Colin Pfund travels to Budapest for Confrence

Audio Engineering Society (AES) Conventions occur bi-annually, once in the US and once in Europe. Professionals and students from around the world gather for a diverse technical program of workshops, presentations, and student competitions, accompanied by the industry's largest trade show. AES Conventions are the organization's largest summits, offering enlightening sessions and invaluable networking opportunities.

At the 131st Convention in New York last fall, I was elected Vice Chair of the AES Student Delegate Assembly (SDA) for North and Latin America after serving as President of our student chapter for two years. The new position is a two-year commitment that includes planning and facilitating student events at the US and international conventions.

The five months leading up to AES 132 Budapest consisted of weekly Skype conference calls, periodic blogging, and other tasks delegated by the European Chair of the SDA and our advisor, the Chair of the AES Education Committee. There was a lot of prep work to be done, and I found myself using skills learned in audio classes to prepare promotional materials and knowledge gained in english classes to revise and edit the official rules for the Student Recording Competition. I had to do some research, too; I had never booked a flight, dealt with foreign currency, or used any language other than English to buy food or check into a hotel!

The Convention, held on April 26-29, was extremely successful. All of our events went swimmingly, and we saw a huge turnout of students from England, France, Germany, Austria, Poland, Serbia, Sweden and more. I was given chances to speak at multiple meetings, had an active role in the playback of student projects during the Recording Competition finals, and spoke with prospective scholars while manning the University of Hartford display at the Education and Career Fair. The most stressful part may have been the last-minute planning of the Student Party, which followed my proposal to have the students pitch-in for a boat tour on the Danube River. With some help from our volunteers, we were able to turn a long shot into a reality, and enjoyed magnificent views while bumping shoulders with top record mastering engineers and AES VPs.

I learned that when you travel abroad, you have to leave your comfort zone and depend on things like maps and phrase books; simple tasks like walking to the corner store become bold acts of courage. Once I overcame my initial worries, I was blown away by a beautiful city. Everything about the trip was spectacular -- the plane rides, the monuments, the hilltop views of the city, the Hungarian Goulash soup, the sunset cruise, meeting students from around the world, and taking an active roll in a global community.

Trips like mine may seem like rare opportunities, but they start with getting involved on-campus. The University provides a myriad of clubs and organizations that can really take you places. The AES has done wonders for my professional development, and I strongly encourage other CETA students to join the engineering societies.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Architecture Student to Give Lecture on His Studies in Italy

Fourth-year architecture student Andre Stiles will present a lecture on his recent foreign studies experience in Italy, and how it has broadened him and his perspective on architecture.
The lecture will take place on Monday, Oct. 15, at 4 p.m. in Wilde Auditorium. The lecture is free and open to the public. Visitors are encouraged to park in visitor lots K and D.
The Architecture Lecture Series is made possible through the JCJ Architecture endowment of the Department of Architecture at the University of Hartford.

NASA SPACE Grant Applications Due

“The Connecticut Space Grant Consortium is accepting applications for their Fall Call for Applications.  Proposals are being accepted for the following award categories:

Faculty Grants:  Research - $20,000, Seed Research - $6,000, Curriculum Development - $15,000, Collaboration - $15,000, Travel – up to $1,000

Graduate Student Grants:  Research - $20,000, Travel – up to $1,000

Undergraduate Student Grants:  Research - $5,000, Industrial Internship - $5,000, Project – up to $1,000, Senior Design Project – up to $3,000, Travel – up to $1,000

CT Space Grant endeavors to support diverse projects, in all areas of interest to NASA.  These areas may include, but are not limited to, research related to aeronautics/aerospace, STEM, and STEM education.

Applications will be accepted until 2:00pm on Thursday, October 18, 2012.  More information can be found at,  Please note:  Space Grant award recipients must be US citizens.” 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Udall Foundation Scholarships

In 2013, the Udall Foundation expects to award 50 scholarships of up to $5,000 and 50 honorable mentions to sophomore and junior level college students committed to careers related to the environment, tribal public policy, or Native American health care.
Scholarships are offered in any of three categories:

• To students who have demonstrated commitment to careers related to the environment, including policy, engineering, science, education, urban planning and renewal, business, health, justice, economics, and other related fields; or

• To Native American and Alaska Native students who have demonstrated commitment to careers related to tribal public policy, including fields related to tribal sovereignty, tribal governance, tribal law, Native American education, Native American justice, natural resource management, cultural preservation and revitalization, Native American economic development, and other areas affecting Native American communities; or

• To Native American and Alaska Native students who have demonstrated commitment to careers related to Native health care, including health care administration, social work, medicine, dentistry, counseling, and research into health conditions affecting Native American communities, and other related fields.

For more information, check out the Udall Foundation website and contact Professor Katharine Owens, the campus Udall representative, at

Professors in CETA get article nationally published

By in News,
In an effort to improve the College of Engineering, Technology and Architecture, associate professor Tom Eppes along with professor of mechanical engineering Ivana Milanovic recently published an article outlining liberal arts skills that need to be assessed in CETA students.
Spurred by a committee headed by Assistant Provost and Dean of Faculty Development, H. Frederick Sweitzer, and represented by people from all the colleges of the University, the article was published in the “Journal of College Teaching and Learning” earlier this year.
The committee decided which skill to tackle first and then found a way to measure those skills.
They first focused on writing skills throughout the University and launched pilots to get results and find out what faculty thought.
The article, titled “Towards Liberal Education Assessment in Engineering and Technology Programs” outlines a plan to meet the new accreditation requirements set by New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).
One of the CETA programs is also up for their accreditation this year by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).
“The paper describes the overall motivation beginning with NEASC to what’s been done by other educational institutions to try and create some groundwork for doing a better job of assessing liberal education skills to focusing on curriculum in CETA and ending with some pilot results that demonstrate our application of this,” Eppes said.
The three main liberal skills looked at included critical thinking, problem solving and creativity.
“We wanted to find the right tool to come up with a good estimate of what level achievement resides,” Eppes said. “We do not currently perform critical thinking assessments on graduates.”
Eppes and Milanovic found the easiest way to assess these key liberal education skills in CETA students being the senior capstone class.
The class, which is a culmination of everything students have done in their four years at the University, includes working in teams, varied assignments and doing original work.
The class also already has a built in interview and debrief period with students which proved crucial to Eppes and Milanovic’s work.
“We found it a pretty convenient mechanism available to us without much additional work,” Eppes said. “As engineers, we focus on the technical component of students’ designs.”
“We’re fascinated by engineering elements,” Eppes went on to add. “This effort allows us to get to see other skills that make students more or less successful in capstone.
“The ability to discover one’s critical thinking level, problem solving and creativity as a standalone skill is something we had not been doing and those are important in capstone success and once they graduate in industry or advanced degrees.”
These core skills: critical thinking, problem solving and creativity are essential to work in a complex and technical environment.
From here, the plan is to take the study to its next level by incorporating a higher level of critical thinking skills on a University level.