Engineering Science and Mechanics News

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Butterfly-inspired AI technology takes flight

4/1/2024

When it comes to mating, two things matter for Heliconius butterflies: the look and the smell of their potential partner. The black and orange butterflies have incredibly small brains, yet they must process both sensory inputs at the same time — which is more than current artificial intelligence (AI) technologies can achieve without significant energy consumption. To make AI as smart as the butterflies, a team of Penn State researchers has created a multi-sensory AI platform that is both more advanced and uses less energy than other AI technologies.

Christian Peco receives 2024 NSF CAREER Award

3/22/2024

Christian Peco, assistant professor of engineering science and mechanics in the Penn State College of Engineering, earned a five-year, $549,445 U.S. National Science Foundation CAREER Award for a project that will examine biological organisms like slime molds and fungi for inspiration in designing decentralized intelligent collaboration algorithms.

Andrea Argüelles receives 2024 NSF CAREER Award

3/20/2024

Andrea Argüelles, assistant professor of engineering science and mechanics in the Penn State College of Engineering, earned a five-year, $696,010 U.S. National Science Foundation Early Career Development Award for a project titled, “Advancing ceramic processing science through acoustic characterization.”

Twelve alumni recognized with College of Engineering’s highest honor

3/18/2024

Twelve Penn State engineering graduates have been selected to receive the Penn State College of Engineering’s Outstanding Engineering Alumni Award.

Powering accessible, collaborative art

3/14/2024

In a recent installment of “A Note from Neeli,” Penn State President Neeli Bendapudi visited the Center for Pedagogy in Arts and Design where she received a hands-on demonstration of “Together, Tacit,” an interdisciplinary research and creative collaboration between the College of Arts and Architecture and the College of Engineering. In the project, artists and engineers are building a haptic glove powered by virtual reality, allowing visually impaired and sighted individuals to work together to create a sculpture.

Q&A with Larry Cheng: Monitoring neurological conditions in real time

3/11/2024

A team of researchers led by Huanyu “Larry” Cheng, the James L. Henderson, Jr. Memorial Associate Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics (ESM) at Penn State, created a highly-sensitive and cost-effective sensor to better monitor the concentration of dopamine and tyrosine — a neurotransmitter and an amino acid, respectively, that are present in the brain — in sweat or urine.

3D-printed skin closes wounds and contains hair follicle precursors

3/1/2024

Fat tissue holds the key to 3D printing layered living skin and potentially hair follicles, according to researchers who recently harnessed fat cells and supporting structures from clinically procured human tissue to precisely correct injuries in rats. The advancement could have implications for reconstructive facial surgery and even hair growth treatments for humans.

New structural insights could lead to mechanical enhancement in alloys

2/21/2024

A new class of metallic materials with potential applications in airplane turbines, nuclear reactors and equipment for space exploration can withstand extreme temperatures and resist fractures, but scientists haven’t understood why until now. According to a new study co-led by Penn State researchers, the answer could relate to the material’s short-range order, or the local arrangement of atoms within a material.

A Note from Neeli: February 2024

2/7/2024

Neeli Bendapudi shares the story of “Together, Tacit,” an inspiring interdisciplinary research and creative collaboration between the College of Arts and Architecture and College of Engineering. This research project combines the strength of our interdisciplinary focus, the dedication of our amazing faculty, and the tenacity of a remarkable student.

Iam-Choon Khoo receives international photonics award

2/2/2024

Iam-Choon Khoo, the William E. Leonhard Professor of Electrical Engineering, received the 2024 Maria Goeppert Mayer Award in Photonics from SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics.

Two international societies honor Lakhtakia’s electromagnetics, materials work

2/2/2024

Akhlesh Lakhtakia, Evan Pugh University Professor and Charles G. Binder Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics, was awarded two recognitions by two international scientific societies, SPIE and Sigma Xi.

Media mention: Musk says first human received Neuralink implant; scant other details

1/31/2024

Laura Y. Cabrera, associate professor of engineering science and mechanics and of philosophy and the Dorothy Foehr Huck and J. Lloyd Huck Chair in Neuroethics, was featured in an AP News article.

Patrick Drew named Huck Institutes associate director

1/15/2024

Patrick Drew, professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics, has been named associate director of the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences.

Integrating dimensions to get more out of Moore’s Law and advance electronics

1/10/2024

Moore's Law, a fundamental scaling principle for electronic devices, forecasts that the number of transistors on a chip will double every two years, ensuring more computing power — but a limit exists. Today's most advanced chips house nearly 50 billion transistors within a space no larger than your thumbnail. The task of cramming even more transistors into that confined area has become more and more difficult, according to Penn State researchers.

Two-channel sensor measures biomarker concentration in sweat

1/4/2024

A team of Penn State researchers has developed a sensor that accurately detects biomarker concentrations in sweat samples.

Health data, faster: Wearable stretchy sensor can process, predict health data

12/18/2023

Engineering researchers created a machine learning platform that can more efficiently analyze and predict datapoints collected by wearables. They applied the platform to a new stretchy, wearable throat sensor that records vibrations and electrical muscle impulses from the neck area to monitor a user’s speech and swallowing patterns.

Q&A: Joining India and United States in higher education

12/7/2023

Akhlesh Lakhtakia, Evan Pugh University Professor and Charles G. Binder Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics, spoke with Penn State News on Penn State’s efforts to build relationships between India and the U.S. in higher education.

Growing biofilms actively alter host environment, new study reveals

12/6/2023

A new study led by Penn State researchers reveals exactly how growing biofilms shape their environments and fine-tune their internal architecture to fit their surroundings. The findings may have implications for a wide variety of applications, from fighting disease to engineering new types of living active materials.

Engineering alumni society recognizes awardee’s outstanding contributions

11/20/2023

At its annual awards ceremony, the Penn State Engineering Alumni Society (PSEAS) recognized engineering faculty, staff and alumni members for outstanding teaching, research, advising and service.

Engineering student named NASA Space Technology Graduate Researcher

11/1/2023

Andrew Pannone, a fourth-year doctoral candidate in the Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics, was selected as a 2023 NASA Space Technology Graduate Researcher.

Five engineering students receive NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

10/26/2023

The Graduate School at Penn State welcomed 20 new National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program recipients for the 2023-24 academic year. Five College of Engineering graduate students received the fellowship, and two engineering graduate students were recognized as honorable mentions.

Engineering professor elected fellow of Society of Engineering Science

10/25/2023

Judith Todd, professor of engineering science and mechanics at Penn State, was elected a fellow of the Society of Engineering Science.

Can AI crave a favorite food?

10/4/2023

Can artificial intelligence (AI) get hungry? Develop a taste for certain foods? Not yet, but a team of Penn State researchers is developing a novel electronic tongue that mimics how taste influences what we eat based on both needs and wants, providing a possible blueprint for AI that processes information more like a human being.

Project aims to develop all-in-one semiconductor that stores, processes data

10/3/2023

A multi-institutional project led by a Penn State researcher is focused on developing an all-in-one semiconductor device that can both store data and perform computations. The project recently received $2 million in funding over three years as part of the new National Science Foundation Future of Semiconductors program.

New wearable sensor makes continuous analysis of sweat possible, researchers say

9/27/2023

Continuous monitoring of sweat can reveal valuable information about human health, such as the body’s glucose levels. However, wearable sensors previously developed for this purpose have been lacking, unable to withstand the rigors or achieve the specificity needed for continuous monitoring. Now, Penn State researchers have created a novel wearable patch that may be up to the task.

Making AI smarter with an artificial, multisensory integrated neuron

9/12/2023

Biological senses synergize to give a comprehensive understanding, particularly when individual signals are subtle. The collective sum of biological inputs can be greater than their individual contributions. Robots tend to follow more straightforward addition, but Penn State researchers have now harnessed the biological concept for application in artificial intelligence to develop the first artificial, multisensory integrated neuron.

Long-Qing Chen elected as 2023 member of the Academia Europaea

8/29/2023

Long-Qing Chen, Hamer Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and professor of engineering science and mechanics and of mathematics, has been elected as a foreign member of the Academia Europaea.

Penn State receives $3M grant to address insect biodiversity crisis

8/28/2023

A team of Penn State researchers has received a $3 million grant from the National Science Foundation to spearhead a new initiative to create novel monitoring systems for insect populations.

Five engineering student teams honored in national airport design competition

8/11/2023

Five student teams from Penn State’s Engineering Leadership Development program in the School of Engineering Design and Innovation earned recognition in the 17th-annual University Design Competition for Addressing Airport Needs, sponsored by the Transportation Research Board’s Airport Cooperative Research Program.

Q&A: The neurology of slumbering whiskers

7/27/2023

Penn State researchers published a paper in Communications Biology finding that sleep-related changes to blood flow in the brains of neonatal mice far outweigh any caused by sensory stirrings.

Stretchy integrated electronics may be possible with sandwiched semiconductor

7/23/2023

An international team led by Penn State reserachers developed an approach to improve the mechanical stretchability of n-type semiconductors, which could lead to the advent of truly elastic electronic systems.

NIH grant to facilitate high-speed bioprinting of bones, tracheas, organs

7/20/2023

The National Institute of Health awarded over $2 million to a team led by Ibrahim T. Ozbolat, professor of engineering science and mechanics, of biomedical engineering and of neurosurgery at Penn State, to quickly and efficiently bioprint human tissues at scale.

Penn State announces faculty recipients of 2023-24 U.S. Fulbright Scholar awards

7/17/2023

Two faculty in the Penn State College of Engineering have received Fulbright Scholar Awards for the 2023-24 academic year, according to the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program.

Several Penn State labs receive UN-endorsed sustainability certification

7/10/2023

Fifteen Penn State research labs have earned My Green Lab certifications at one of the three highest levels available: gold, platinum or green. The certification is recognized by the United Nations as a key measure toward the goal of a zero-carbon future.

Engineering science graduate student receives national fellowship

7/3/2023

Lauren Katch, a doctoral student in the Penn State College of Engineering’s Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics, recently received a one-year, $20,000 fellowship from the American Society for Nondestructive Testing.

Penn State Global announces Collaboration Program awards with Monash University

6/28/2023

Penn State and Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, announced the awarded grants of the third round of the Collaboration Program, which included funding awarded to Laura Cabrera, associate professor of engineering science and mechanics, and Tong Qiu, professor of civil and environmental engineering.

Judith Todd named honorary member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers

6/23/2023

Judith Todd, professor of engineering science and mechanics at Penn State, has been named an honorary member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Media mention: ‘AI In Biomanufacturing: From Protein Prediction To Fashion Design’

6/23/2023

Melik Demirel, Lloyd and Dorothy Foehr Huck Chair in Biomimetic Materials, professor of engineering science and mechanics and director of the Center for Research on Advanced Fiber Technologies, wrote an article for Forbes that focused on using artificial intelligence to make biomanufacturing more efficient.

College of Engineering recognizes 2023 Early Career Award recipients

6/12/2023

The Penn State College of Engineering will recognize 10 alumni with the Early Career Award for their achievements and demonstrated commitment to their professions, communities and Penn State at a ceremony on June 16 at University Park.

Media mention: ‘Elon Musk’s brain implant company is approved for human testing. How alarmed should we be?’

6/4/2023

Laura Y. Cabrera, associate professor of engineering science and mechanics and of philosophy and the Dorothy Foehr Huck and J. Lloyd Huck Chair in Neuroethics at Penn State, was quoted in an article by The Guardian.

Newborn baby inspires sensor design that simulates human touch

6/1/2023

Led by Huanyu “Larry” Cheng, James L. Henderson Jr. Memorial Associate Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics, a team of researchers has developed a sensor capable of detecting subtle pulses, operating robotic limbs, and creating ultrahigh-resolution scales.

Media Mention: ‘Impact, visibility and connection: Dr Ibrahim Tarik Ozbolat talks open access publishing with IOP Publishing’

5/30/2023

Ibrahim Ozbolat, professor of engineering science and mechanics and of biomedical engineering, discusses his latest findings and open access publishing in a Q&A with IOP Publishing, the publishing arm of the institute of physics.

Huanyu “Larry” Cheng invited to Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting, post-conference program

5/25/2023

Huanyu “Larry” Cheng, James L. Henderson Jr. Memorial Associate Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics at Penn State, has been selected to attend the 72nd Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting and the Baden-Württemberg Post Conference Programme 2023.

Low-cost, waterproof sensors may create new health-monitoring possibilities

5/16/2023

A Penn State-led team of researchers has literally put pencil to paper to create an accessible, affordable, waterproof and wearable sensor to monitor multiple vital signals.

Projects to advance zero-waste water research, solutions

5/2/2023

A new master agreement with ENOWA, a company tasked with pioneering sustainable energy and water innovations, will support Penn State research efforts in sustainable water solutions.

Schreyer Honors College announces 2023 student and faculty award winners

4/27/2023

Seven Schreyer Scholars and two Penn State faculty members have been selected as recipients of Schreyer Honors College awards for the 2022-23 academic year.

College of Engineering names student marshals for spring 2023 commencement

4/25/2023

The Penn State College of Engineering has named its student marshals for the spring 2023 commencement ceremony. One student is selected to represent each of the 14 majors associated with the college and the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps program.

Media mention: ‘Biomanufacturing: Present And Future’

4/20/2023

Melik Demirel, Lloyd and Dorothy Foehr Huck Chair in Biomimetic Materials, professor of engineering science and mechanics and director of the Center for Research on Advanced Fiber Technologies, wrote an article that appeared on Forbes.

Improved, self-healing medical sensor responds to temperature, adapts to skin

4/18/2023

A team led by a Penn State researcher has developed a medical sensor that can transform from rigid to soft to accommodate changing structural needs and can heal its own normal wear and tear.

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