September 7-12, 2010


September 7, 2010

Faculty News


The National Science Foundation has awarded a three-year, $588,394 grant to Profs. Lawrence Bennett (PI) and Edward Della Torre (co-PI), both of ECE, and Virgil Provenzano (visiting scholar) to carry out research on “Magnetic Tunable Nanostructures: Property Characterization and Modeling.”  Two graduate students, Yi Jin and Shuo Gu, will participate in this award.  The research will systematically investigate the magnetic properties of nanoscaled ferromagnetic materials and compare them to their coarse-grained counterparts for use as electronically tunable magnetic nanostructures.  The results will advance the understanding of these nanostructures and promote their technological applications. This is a German-American collaborative effort, involving the Institute of Nanotechnology (Karlsruhe, Germany) with GW and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

Profs. Rumana Riffat and Baoxia Mi (CEE) have received a three-year, $122,175 grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Pakistan-US Science and Technology Cooperation Program for their proposal, "Small scale sewage treatment and wastewater reuse system for Pakistan."  Their partner institution on the grant is Quaid-i-Azam University (Pakistan).

The Children's National Medical Center (CNMC) and GW have received a prestigious Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the National Center for Research Resources of the National Institutes of Health. The $20 million award over five years will allow CNMC/GW to focus on methodologies to increase the speed in which scientific breakthrough can be brought to clinical applications for children.  From SEAS, Profs. James Hahn (CS) and Tarek El-Ghazawi (ECE) will serve as associate directors of the biomedical informatics component of the grant. They will serve on the executive committee of the CNMC/GW CTSA.

Books & Papers:

Prof. Joost Santos (EMSE) has co-authored a recently published paper with his colleague from the University of Oklahoma. The citation is: K.A. Barker, J.R. Santos, 2010. A Risk-Based Approach for Identifying Key Economic and Infrastructure Systems. Risk Analysis: An International Journal, 30(6): 962-974.

Student News

CEE doctoral student Amir Arab presented a paper entitled "A Methodological Approach for Finite Element Modeling of Pretensioned Concrete Members" at the Engineering Mechanics Institute (EMI) annual conference, which was held August 8-11 at the University of Southern California.  Co-authors of this paper are Profs. Sameh Badie and Majid Manzari (CEE).  The paper presented a new approach for modeling of precast/pretensioned concrete members.  This international event was comprised of several symposia with keynote lecturers, including a three-session symposium for constitutive modeling and computational analysis of cementitious materials and structures.

ECE doctoral student Damon Conover, working in conjunction with Prof. Murray Loew (ECE), is developing software for the National Gallery of Art  to digitally peel back the layers of paintings to find information about earlier versions of the works of art.  Their work stems from registration techniques they have used for bringing together different medical images, such as an MRI and a CT scan.  London’s National Gallery and other art museums have already shown interest in the software.  More information is available on GW Today.

Guest Vignette

Recently, the General Electric Company announced an award of $1.47 million by the U.S. Department of Energy to GE Global Research in Niskayuna, NY, along with researchers at GW, to improve the energy efficiency of residential refrigerators by 30 percent.  The success of a previous grant to GW by GE encouraged the submission of this new proposal.  Magnetic refrigeration has been used for many years near zero Kelvin, but using rare earth compounds, it has been possible to make a device that works at room temperature.  These “green” devices do not use ozone depletion refrigerants and have the potential to be highly efficient.

Prof. Larry Bennett (ECE) is the principal investigator on the GW portion ($400,000) of the grant.  Prof. Bennett will work, along with co‑PI, Prof. Ed Della Torre (ECE), graduate students Yi Jin and Shuo Gu, and GE, to develop materials for the new technology of magnetic refrigeration.  GE hopes to use the results of this research to package a practical device.  (Provided courtesy of Prof. Ed Della Torre of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering)


MAE Seminar: “Aerohydronautical Power Engineering: Can it lead the way out of the energy and climate crisis?”
Tuesday, September 14
1:45 – 2:45 pm
736 Phillips Hall

Institute for Crisis, Disaster and Risk Management: Homeland Security and Emergency Management Forum
Tuesday, September 21
4:30 – 6:30 pm
Marvin Center Amphitheater

GW Institute for Biomedical Engineering Seminar: “Endothelialization of Drug Eluting Stents:  Will new designs overcome limitations?”
Tuesday, October 19
1:00 – 2:00 pm
736 Phillips Hall

SEAS Entrepreneurship Seminar: “Student Startups: From Biz Plan to Inc 500”
Tuesday, October 26
6:00: Reception; 7:00: Panel Discussion
103 Funger Hall
Please join us for the first panel discussion in the 2010-2011 SEAS Entrepreneurship Seminar Series. Registration is required

Dissertation Defenses

Name of Student Defending:  Darnell Bennett
Title of Dissertation: "Probing Depths with a Two-Dimensional Electrical Impedance System with Applications to Breast Cancer Screening”
Wednesday, September 15 at 2:00 pm
736 Phillips Hall

Name of Student Defending:  Rohan M. Amin
Title of Dissertation: "Detecting Targeted Malicious Email through Supervised Classification of Persistent Threat and Recipient Oriented Features”
Wednesday, September 22 at 10:30 am
1776 G Street, N.W. Conference Room 120