Work on space ‘ice,’ inter-satellite communication wins Space Grant honors for two A&T researchers

Two new North Carolina A&T engineering professors have been honored by the North Carolina Space Grant program. Dr. Trisha Sain has been awarded the 2014-15 North Carolina Space Grant Award, and Dr. Fatemeh Afghah has received the N.C. Space Grant New Investigator Award.

headshot of Dr. Sain

Dr. Trisha Sain

Dr. Sain is an assistant professor of mechanical engineering. Her award will fund a research project titled, “Numerical modeling of constitutive behavior of ice at high strain rates.”  The study will focus on the development of a constitutive model for capturing high-rate response of “ice,” potential harmful debris that can damage aircraft and space structures.

Her research focuses on integrated computational materials engineering, including characterization of novel nanocomposite hydrogels, constitutive modeling of polymer nano-composite, computational modeling of curing kinetics and curing induced damage in thermosets under large deformation, mesoscale simulations of TiN thin film growth and 3D TiN nanostructures, and biomimetic material design.

She joined A&T last September. She had been a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Michigan, Department of Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering.

head shot of Dr. Afghah

Dr. Fatemeh Afghah

Dr. Afghah is an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering,  She won the new investigator award for her research in inter-satellite communications in autonomous small satellite networks.

She is the director of Wireless Networking (WiNet) Laboratory in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Her research focuses on wireless communications, dynamic spectrum sharing, game theory optimization, and biomedical data analysis.

Dr. Afghah also came to A&T last fall. she received her Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Maine in 2013.

The New Investigators Program is designed to strengthen North Carolina’s aerospace-related research infrastructure by providing start-up funding to early-career faculty conducting research aligned with NASA’s strategic research.

Save the date: Nano Manufacturing 2014, Sept. 24

JSNN building

Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering

  • WHAT: Nano Manufacturing 2014: A Conference to Move from Innovation to Commercialization.
  • DATE: Wednesday September 24.
  • LOCATION: Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering, 2907 East Lee Street, Gateway University Research Park.
  • ORGANIZERS: Center of Innovation for Nanobiotechnology, JSNN, Gateway.
  • SPONSORS: Greensboro Partnership, North Carolina Department of Commerce, North Carolina Office of Science and Technology.
  • PURPOSE: “Our primary goal is to bring together Founders, CEOs, Senior Executives, Business Leaders, Economic Development, Education, Government and Nonprofit Organizations to share their vision for the future and the opportunities that Nano Manufacturing enables.”
  • FOR MORE INFORMATION: Mr. Elie Azzi (click here for email), 336 285-2802, www.nanomanufacturingconference.org.

A story about Ron McNair, wonderfully animated

Ron McNair’s brother, Carl, tells the story. The animation is just beautiful.

This comes from an organization called StoryCorps. Thank you, HBCU Digest, for passing this along.

For those of you who aren’t Aggies, Ron McNair was a graduate of A&T. He is remembered here.

Nussbaum entrepreneurship center seeks big ideas: What should they do with this huge old steel mill?

Wide-angle view of the former Carolina Steel plantThe Nussbaum Center for Entrepreneurship is North Carolina’s biggest incubator for start-up businesses. They’ve helped a lot of entrepreneurs get on to good starts.

The center has been given a gigantic gift — the former Carolina Steel plant at 1431 South Elm-Eugene Street, not far from campus.  They’re looking for ideas about what to do with it, and if you have one (or more), they want to hear it. The center will hold three “visionary” meetings:

  • Wednesday April 23, 2:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday April 23, 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  • Saturday April 26, 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

The sessions will be held at the center’s office, 1451 South Elm-Eugene, adjacent to the former mill, now known as the Steelhouse Property. Each session will include a brief tour of the plant and a structured brainstorming session to solicit as many ideas as possible for uses of the property.

Click here to register. And think big. It’s a big place.

(h/t to Action Greensboro for passing this along)

Aggie students are minding their own businesses

Montage of Aggie entrepreneurs' website screenshots

Aggie entrepreneurs on the Internet

Meet Allan, Adey J, Jayrello and Justin — four undergraduates with the talent, drive and ambition to be entrepreneurs. So why wait until graduation? All four have created their own businesses as undergraduates. Anyone who says they don’t have time to live their dreams, talk to these four. You can find them on the Aggie Entrepreneurs page on the A&T website. And if you’re an enrolled A&T student operating your own business, you’re awesome, too. Tell us about it, and we’ll add you to the list.

Visiting Fulbright biochemical engineer to speak: Bio-inspired look at energy and environment issues

What: “A bio-inspired journey through some research challenges of energy and environment,” a lecture by Dr. Ramkrishna Sen, Fulbright Visiting Scholar at Columbia University.

When, where, etc: Tuesday April 15, 2014, 11 a.m. to noon, Fort IRC, Room 410. There is no charge for the workshop.  Fulbright campus representatives and interested faculty are encouraged to attend.  To reserve a seat please email Brendan McKennedy.

Background: Dr. Ramkrishna Sen is an associate professor in the Department of Biotechnology, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India. He is currently working as Fulbright Visiting Faculty in the Department of Earth & Environmental Engineering, The Fu Foundation School of Engineering & Applied Sciences at Columbia University.

Dr. Sen is a biochemical engineer by training and profession. He has been engaged in R&D in energy and the environment and healthcare. His team has been working on the process development and optimization for antitumor, broad-spectrum antimicrobial and biofilm-disrupting biosurfactants of marine bacterial origin; biosurfactant-enhanced remediation of heavy metals and polyaromatic hydrocarbons; biosurfactant-mediated MEOR and nano-particle synthesis; bioethanol from lignocellulosic biomass; biodiesel from microalgal lipid and non-conventional vegetable oils and algae based CO2 capture & sequestration (CCS) from flue gas coupled with waste water treatment.

The Outreach Lecturing Fund allows Fulbright Visiting Scholars who are currently in the United States to travel to other higher education institutions across the country.  Each year some 800 faculty and professionals from around the world receive Fulbright Scholar grants for advanced research and university lecturing.  The fund allows these scholars to share their specific research interests; speak on the history and culture of their home country; exchange ideas with U.S. students, faculty and community organizations; become better acquainted with U.S. higher education; and create linkages between their home and host institutions and the Council for International Exchange of Scholars.

The metallic biomaterials revolution will be televised and it’s going to be on tonight, actually, on UNC-TV

Screenshot of UNC-TV webpage with video

Watch it tonight on UNC-TV or why not watch it now by clicking the picture to go to the network’s website.

UNC-TV is offering viewers of “North Carolina Now” an inside look at the revolutionary developments being fomented in the Engineering Research Center for Revolutionizing Metallic Biomaterials.  Next-generation implantable medical devices … bioresorbable magnesium alloys … A&T faculty and student researchers … great stuff.

The report will air tonight on the program, which is on at 7:30 on UNC-TV stations across the state.

But those of us who live in the 21st century and are no longer accustomed to waiting around for TV shows to come on can watch it now at the UNC-TV website.  Note: The video works just fine on most browsers (including Android, Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Safari), but your results may vary on Firefox or the Lotus Notes Browser.