June 29 - July 12, 2020


June 29, 2020

COVID-19-related News

Headshot of Howie Huang

Dr. Howie Huang (ECE) and his PhD student Isaiah King are developing a unique visual search engine called Graggle, envisioned as the “Google Scholar for COVID-19 Research.” Graggle uses powerful graph representation and machine learning techniques to capture complex contextual relationships between different documents. It is purposely built for an open research dataset, prepared by the White House, NIH, and a consortium of medical research organizations, which consists of over 130,000 scholarly articles that were written about COVID-19 and the related coronavirus. Graggle provides researchers worldwide with faster, more informative access to knowledge that they can explore visually.

Dr. Michael Keidar

The National Science Foundation has produced a video highlighting the plasma brush research that Dr. Michael Keidar (MAE) is conducting to sterilize medical and personal protective equipment. As previously reported, Dr. Keidar received an NSF RAPID grant for this project.


Faculty News

Dr. Aylin Caliskan

DARPA Habitus Program has awarded Dr. Aylin Caliskan (CS) a 42-month, $330,000 grant to generate self-sustaining artificial intelligence models in low-resource languages that can automatically convert implicit collective associations and information to explicit knowledge. This grant was awarded as part of a large project with her collaborators from Raytheon BBN and Tufts University.

Dr. Mahdi Imani

Dr. Mahdi Imani (ECE) has received a two-year, $175,000 CRII grant from the National Science Foundation’s Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) for his project “Informative Bayesian Learning and Data Gathering Through Expert-Acquired Data.” The project aims to advance the state-of-the-art in learning and data gathering processes, and contribute to the science base of machine learning, control/learning theory, and Bayesian statistics. The overarching goal of the project is development of tools to enable optimal incorporation of user information during the learning process, as well as learning from multiple data sources acquired by non-similar users/experts.

Dr. Saniya LeBlanc

Drs. Saniya LeBlanc (MAE), Payman Dehghanian (ECE), and Ekundayo Shittu (EMSE) have received a two-year, $499,967 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy, Advanced Manufacturing Office. Dr. LeBlanc is the lead PI. For the project titled “Urban Combined Heat and Power with Integrated Renewables and Energy Storage,” the research team will partner with the GW Office of Sustainability to analyze GW's urban district energy system. The team will investigate the impact that combined heat and power, renewable electricity generation, and electricity and thermal storage have on the cost, reliability, and resilience of community energy systems that span multiple buildings. The project results will allow urban facilities and organizations to measure the value of resiliency benefits from new energy technologies and integrate that value into their investment decision-making activities.

Dr. Yongsheng Leng

Dr. Yongsheng Leng (MAE) has received a three-year, $326,429 National Science Foundation grant for the project “Computational Simulation and Cyber Software Development for Nanoscale Friction.” Dr. Leng will use this award to develop a new computational modeling and simulation tool to enable a deeper understanding of nanoscale friction dynamics to enable more efficient advanced manufacturing processes and high-performance nanoscale machines and systems.



Dr. Ahmed Louri

Dr. Ahmed Louri (ECE) and his Ph.D. students, Ke Wang and Hao Zheng, have published a refereed journal paper: K. Wang, H. Zheng, and A. Louri. “TSA-NoC: Learning-Based Threat Detection and Mitigation for Secure Network-On-Chip Architecture,” IEEE Micro: Special Issue on Machine Learning for Systems, DOI: 10.1109/MM.2020.3003576, June 2020. The work exploits the use of machine learning to detect hardware Trojans in Network-on-Chip and presents a high-performance and energy-efficient design for threat mitigation. Dr. Louri and Hao Zhang also published a separate refereed journal paper: H. Zheng and A. Louri. “Agile: A Learning-enabled Power and Performance-Efficient Network-on-Chip Design,” IEEE Transactions on Emerging Topics in Computing, DOI: 10.1109/TETC.2020.3003496, June 2020. The work exploits the use of reinforcement learning and presents an application-aware, low-power, and high-performance Network-on-Chip design for future parallel computing chips. The research published in both papers is funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation.

Dr. Volker Sorger

Dr. Volker Sorger (ECE) has published the following article in Nature Photonics: R. Maiti, C. Patil, M. A. S. R. Saadi, T. Xie, J. G. Azadani, B. Uluutku, R. Amin, A. F. Briggs, M. Miscuglio, D. Van Thourhout, S. D. Solares, T. Low, R. Agarwal, S. R. Bank, and V. J. Sorger. “Strain-engineered high-responsivity MoTe2 photodetector for silicon photonic integrated circuits,” Nature Photonics (published June 22, 2020). This article is the first GW-led article published in Nature Photonics. More information on it is available in this GW news release. The article also was featured by Science Daily on June 22. Separately, Dr. Mario Miscuglio (ECE, assistant research professor) and Dr. Sorger published another article: V. Caligiuri, G. Tedeschi, M. Palei, M. Miscuglio, B. Martin-Garcia, S. Guzman-Puyol, M. Keshavarz Hedayati, A. Kristensen, A. Athanassiou, R. Cingolani, V. J. Sorger, M. Salerno, F. Bonaccorso, R. Krahne, and J. A. Heredia-Guerrero. “Biodegradable and Insoluble Cellulose Photonic Crystals and Metasurfaces,” ACS Nano (published June 19, 2020). Dr. Sorger also published this article with his collaborators: M. Ahmed, Y. Al-Hadeethi, A. Bakry, H. Dalir, and V. J. Sorger. “Integrated photonic FFT for photonic tensor operations towards efficient and high-speed neural networks,” Nanophotonics (published online June 26, 2020).


Media Mentions:

Dr. Volker Sorger

Optics and Photonics News spoke to Dr. Volker Sorger (ECE) ahead of its Advanced Photonic Conference and published the interview on its website.


Conferences & Presentations:

Dr. Paymen Dehghanian

Dr. Payman Dehghanian (ECE) chaired the session “Renewable Energy Sources and Storage” at the 20th IEEE International Conference on Environment and Electrical Engineering (EEEIC) and 4th Industrial and Commercial Power System (I&CPS) Europe. The event, which was planned for Madrid, Spain, was held virtually June 9-12.

Dr. Igor Efimov

Dr. Igor Efimov (BME) gave the lecture “Pacemaker complex of the mammalian heart” on June 19 as part of the International Society for Heart Research Cardiovascular Webinar Series. A video of Dr. Efimov’s presentation is available online.


Other News:

Dr. Paymen Dehghanian

Dr. Payman Dehghanian (ECE) has been elevated to the grade of IEEE Senior Member. IEEE Senior Membership is an honor bestowed only on those who have made significant contributions to the profession, and it reflects professional maturity and experience. Nearly 11 percent of Power and Energy Society members are Senior Members; the IEEE average is 8 percent.


On June 23, 2020, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued Patent No. US 10,688,223 to MAE post-doc Haitao Cui for “Smart Release System for Growth Factor Delivery and Combined Bone and Vascular Growth.” Brian Coblitz (GW's Technology Commercialization Office) facilitated the prosecution of the patent application. If you have a novel idea for which you would like to get a patent, please contact the GW TCO.


Other News

The 2020 issue of Synergy magazine is now available both in web format and as a PDF. The magazine was written prior to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and was prepared for hard copy distribution. However, the decision was made later to publish the magazine digitally instead, after the end of the spring semester, so some information in this issue of Synergy reflects the status of activities at SEAS just prior to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring.


Dissertation Defenses

Deniz Marti Dissertation Defense

EMSE PhD candidate Deniz Marti successfully defended her dissertation virtually on June 25. Her dissertation, titled “Investigating Expertise Transfer and the Experts’ Cognitive Decision-making Processes in Socio-technical Systems,” was supervised by Dr. David Broniatowski (EMSE) and Dr. Thomas Mazzuchi (EMSE).


Human Resources News
HR Corner Hero

This week's HR Corner includes information related to end-of-fiscal year issues, such as using remaining time off and submitting performance reviews, as well as information on the Kronos time reporting system, #GWinSolidarity, and other topics. Please visit the HR Corner to read these updates.