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October 2014


Back to Boulder Homecoming Weekend is October 23-26, and the college has a lot to celebrate!

Engineering has two honorees at this year’s Alumni Association Awards Ceremony on Thursday, October 23Avery Bang (MS CivEngr’09), with the Kalpana Chawla Recent Graduate Award, and mechanical engineering student Chip Bollendonk, with the Forever Buffs Student Award. Congrats!     

On Friday, October 24, the CU-Boulder Alumni Association is proud to feature Avery Bang, who was also the 2014 Recent Alumni Award winner for the College of Engineering and Applied Science, as its Homecoming Luncheon speaker. Faculty and staff, please encourage your students to attend; this event is free for students and $15 for adults. > Learn more

On Saturday, October 25, the college is hosting a “Show and Tell” with engineering faculty and students as they exhibit their research projects while attendees get a "sneak peek" inside the new Idea Forge, housed in the former Fleming Law Building. This event is free, but registration is encouraged. > Learn more


Friday, Oct. 31, is the deadline to nominate alumni for the college’s Recent Alumni Award (RAA) and Distinguished Alumni Awards (DEAA)! A nomination (and award, if chosen) is a wonderful way to recognize the accomplishments of our alumni whose professional achievements have reflected well upon CU-Boulder and to reconnect those alumni with your department and the college.

Thank you to those of you who have already submitted nominations. If you are planning to nominate someone, please notify Alumni Relations Coordinator Melanie Sidwell as soon as possible, even if you’re still working to pull together materials. She can answer any questions you may have about the nomination and selection process.

2015 marks the 50th year of the DEAA ceremony, so your collaboration in building a strong candidate pool with your suggestions and nominations are critical to making this event even more memorable.


The GoldShirt Program continued in its goal of becoming a model for other universities, recently hosting representatives from Texas A&M’s engineering college who were interested in developing a similar academic redshirting program.

GoldShirt, which graduated members of its first cohort in December 2013, supports motivated and talented students who need additional math, science or humanities preparation before diving into the full undergraduate engineering curriculum. Students are directly admitted into the college; attend a summer bridge session after high school; and spend their first year focusing on preparing for success in their chosen engineering major. The program has already been used as a model for the STARS Program at the University of Washington and Washington State University, which was launched in 2013.


When mechanical engineering junior Yohannese Gebremedhin first participated in a Colorado Space Grant Consortium (COSGC) Arduino Workshop, the brand-new Cubes in Space program was looking for people to design and build structures to hold student experiments as they were launched into space.

Gebremedhin was hired to design the structure, working closely with COSGC Director Chris Koehler, Rubik Learning representatives and engineers from Wallops Flight Facility. He and fellow CU-Boulder studentGerardo Pulido then machined the final hardware. Gebremedhin’s structures were used to secure 112 small containers filled by teams of 11- to 14-year-olds from around the world. The experiments launched June 26. 

Honors & Awards: October 2014

Congratulations to the following individuals on their outstanding achievements: 


Bernard Amadei of civil, environmental and architectural engineering was honored with an Outstanding Projects and Leaders (OPAL) Award for education from the American Society of Civil Engineers. He also received the 2015 Washington Award from the Western Society of Engineers.

Evan ChangSriram SankaranarayananTom Yeh and Ken Anderson of computer science and Pavol Cerny of electrical, computer and energy engineering received a four-year, $1.6 million award from DOD DARPA for “Mining and Understanding Bug Fixes to Address Application-Framework Protocol Defects.”

Wendy DuBow and Lucinda Sanders of ATLAS received a three-year, $600,000 grant from NSF for “STEM-CP: BPEC - Learning from Young Women Who Participate in Computing: Longitudinal Research on the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing Program.”

Paul Goodrum of civil, environmental and architectural engineering received the Outstanding Researcher of the Year Award from the Construction Industry Institute.

Andrew Goodwin of chemical and biological engineering received the New Innovator Award from the National Institutes of Health for “Rapid, Multiscale Sensing Using Acoustic Detection Mechanisms,” which includes a five-year, $2.2 million award.

Delores Knipp of aerospace engineering sciences has been named editor in chief of Space Weather: The International Journal of Research and Applications and its companion publication, Space Weather Quarterly.

Kristine Larson and Scott Palo of aerospace engineering sciences were awarded a three-year, $596,000 grant from NASA for “Real-Time Volcanic Ash Detection Using a GPS Array Concept.”

Michael Lightner of electrical, computer and energy engineering has been named Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs for the University of Colorado system.

Karl Linden of civil, environmental and architectural engineering was named 2014 WateReuse Person of the Year by the WateReuse Association.

Qin Lv of computer science, Li Shang of electrical, computer and energy engineering, and Daven Henze and Michael Hannigan of mechanical engineering were awarded a four-year, $651,000 grant from NSF for “CyberSEES: Type 2: Collaborative Research: Connecting Next-generation Air Pollution Exposure Measurements to Environmentally Sustainable Communities.”

Garret Moddel of electrical, computer and energy engineering was awarded a patent for a new type of diode that could form the basis for a high-efficiency, low-cost and easily manufacturable photovoltaic cell. The patent portfolio is being commercialized by Abengoa Solar.

Steve Nerem and Robert Leben of aerospace engineering sciences andBenjamin Hamlington of CCAR were awarded a three-year, $973,000 grant from NASA for “Observation-Driven Projections of Future Regional Sea Level Change.”

Roseanna Neupauer and John Crimaldi of civil, environmental and architectural engineering received a three-year NSF grant of $493,000 for “Collaborative Research: Coupled Numerical and Laboratory Investigations of Chaotic Advection to Enhance Spreading and Reaction in Three-Dimensional, Heterogeneous Porous Media.”

Rafael Piestun of electrical, computer and energy engineering and Amy Palmer of chemistry were awarded a three-year $669,000 grant from NSF for “MRI: Development of an Advanced Bio-Imaging Instrument: Enabling 3D quantitative multifunctional sensing at the nanoscale.”

Martha Palmer of computer science received $895,000 as part of a three-year, $1.5 million NSF grant for “C1F21 DIBBS: Porting Practical Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML) Semantics from Biomedicine to the Earth, Ice and Life Sciences." Co-PIs include Chris Jenkins of INSTAAR, Ruth Duerr of CIRES and James Martin of computer science.

Scott Palo of aerospace engineering sciences and Thomas Woods of LASP were awarded a three-year, $958,000 grant from NASA for “Miniature X-ray Solar Spectrometer (MinXSS) CubeSat Mission.”

Theodore Randolph and Daniel Schwartz of chemical and biological engineering have been awarded a patent for technology used to stabilize freeze-dried vaccines to withstand temperature extremes. Former ChBE research assistant Amber Clausi is also an inventor on the patent.

A team led by Zhiyong “Jason” Ren of civil, environmental and architectural engineering was awarded first place in the National Science Foundation’s Innovation Corps Program for their work on a microbial electrochemical technology (MET) for wastewater treatment.

Sriram Sankaranarayanan of computer science was honored with the Provost Achievement Award at the 2014 Fall Convocation. He and David Bortz of applied math also received a three-year, $615,000 award from NSF for “CPS: Synergy: Collaborative Research: In-Silico Functional Verification of Artificial Pancreas Control Algorithms.”

Daniel Scheeres of aerospace engineering sciences and Paul Sanchez-Lana of CCAR received a four-year, $587,000 award from NASA for “The Strength of Rubble Pile NEO and Mitigation Implications.” Scheeres andJay McMahon of aerospace engineering sciences were also awarded a $750,000 two-year grant from DOD AF AFOSR for “Modeling, Observability and Change Detection in Space Situational Awareness.”

Conrad Stoldt of mechanical engineering was part of an interdisciplinary research collaboration across two CU campuses that resulted in a patent for a technique to non-invasively detect complement-mediated inflammation using nanoparticles. This method could reduce the need for frequent biopsies to diagnose and monitor inflammatory diseases like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and many others.

A team led by Michael Stowell, affiliate in mechanical engineering, has been awarded a patent for a new peptide manufacturing process.

R. Scott Summers and Karl Linden of civil, environmental and architectural engineering have received a $4.1 million grant to launch the Design of Risk Reducing, Innovative Implementable Small System Knowledge (DeRISK) Center for research and innovation in small- to medium-sized drinking water systems.


Two student teams from aerospace engineering sciences recently won prestigious international and national awards for the design of real-world space missions to Mars and the moon. Read more here.

Aerospace engineering sciences Ph.D. student Christine Fanchiang and her BioCube team won the Silicon Valley's Startup Weekend Space Competition. Read more here.

Computer science undergraduate Tommy Hoffmann and his team, Overly Kinetic, recently won the Dare to be Digital competition in Dundee, Scotland, and were one of three teams nominated for the prestigious Ones to Watch Award by the British Academy of Film and Television (BAFTA).

Environmental engineering undergraduate students Brett Blumberg, Akasha Johnson, Ashlyn Norberg and Eric Roads received first place in the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airport Environmental Interactions design challenge for their submission “Twice Repurposed Crumb Rubber as a Jet Fuel Solidifier.” Eric Bodine, Collin Androus, Taylor Deems, Kelsey Garing, Dillon Jacobs and Jennifer Westbrook received third place in the competition for their submission, “Fuel Containment Channels at Eagle County Regional Airport.”


Sarah Braker, NCWIT Communications Coordinator, ATLAS  
Robert Clark, Accounting and Payroll Specialist, Dean’s Office
J. Maureen Craig, Academic Advisor, General Engineering Plus 
Vanessa Dunn, Director of Student Engagement & Community Building, BOLD Center 
Ashley Ecklund, Undergraduate Advisor, Mechanical Engineering
Daniel Godrick, Applications and Instrumentation Engineer, ITL
Margaret Kolicko, Accounting Technician III, Aerospace Engineering Sciences 
Laurence Lambert, Administrative Assistant III, Civil, Environmental & Architectural Engineering
Ruth Mansbach, Accounting Technician III, Mechanical Engineering
Allison Palmer, Administrative Assistant II, BOLD Center
Melissa Wise, Director of Marketing & Communications, Dean's Office

Important Announcements

December 2014 Engineering Recognition Ceremony to be held at Macky Auditorium on December 19, 2014.

CUEngineering is here!
The 2014 edition of CUEngineering magazine is hot off the press! Check it out online.

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