June 2011 eNotes

You are here

EWB-CU to Complete Reed Bed System in Nepal

System serves municipal hospital

EWB-CU to Complete Reed Bed System in Nepal

Four CU engineering students are travelling to eastern Nepal this summer to complete a reed bed wastewater filtration system for a municipal hospital in the Ilam District. The project, which was made possible through private fundraising, is one of the largest and most complicated projects undertaken to date by the CU chapter of Engineers Without Borders.

CU engineering students Arista Hickman, Marika Meertens, Taylor Pearce, and Michael Fend, along with the team's technical mentor and professional engineer, Mike Gill, will install a septic tank for a new wing of the hospital scheduled to open in September. The septic tank is the final component of the reed bed system, which is desperately needed as the hospital has been dumping wastewater into a gully that runs to the Mai Khola River, affecting thousands of people downstream who use the river as a water source.

EWB-CU Team Nepal spent the winter/spring semester at CU designing the septic tank system, planning its construction, and working with EWB-USA to certify the design for safety and engineering accuracy. This work was made possible in part by CU students who traveled to Nepal in December and worked on finalizing the reed bed structures and surveying the hospital property for the best location for the septic tank.

In addition to the construction work on the septic tank this summer, the student team plans to provide final training to hospital workers, the reed bed maintenance team, and employees of the Namsaling Community Development Center who will provide year-round oversight of the system.


Environmental Engineering Students Win National Competition

Environmental engineering seniors Eric Millinger, Lauren Schmeisser, Daniela Castanada, and Bryn Bel won first place in a national student design competition with the water softening process they developed to upgrade a Midwestern drinking water treatment plant. It was the second time that CU students have taken first place in the competition, which is sponsored by AECOM.

During the semester, the team completed an alternatives assessment and preliminary design as part of the EVEN senior design course taught by Angela Bielefeldt. The CU team was then chosen from a field of 15 teams working on two different design problems. As one of five semi-finalists, the students participated in a video interview with AECOM's New York office, and then traveled to New York City to face one other team in the final round.

Global Engineering Team Demonstrates Hybrid Aircraft

CU-Boulder graduate students in aerospace engineering sciences successfully developed a platform for an innovative hybrid aircraft engine with the help of students at two other universities and a round-the-clock design and development schedule.

The 10-foot-wide composite, blended-wing aircraft know as Hyperion was designed to demonstrate a hybrid combustion/electric engine developed by CU-Boulder undergraduates. Professor Jean Koster served as the students' advisor.

Graduate students at the University of Stuttgart, Germany, the University of Sydney, Australia, and CU-Boulder worked around the clock for nine months to design and develop Hyperion. A successful test flight was conducted at the Arvada Modelers Airpark south of Boulder on April 23.


Honors & Awards: June 2011

Congratulations to the following individuals on their outstanding achievements:


  • Alireza Doostan of aerospace engineering sciences has been selected to receive an Early Career Research Award from the Department of Energy Office of Science. His proposal, "An Enabling Computational Framework for Uncertainty Assimilation and Propagation in Complex PDE Systems: Sparse and Low-Rank Techniques," will be funded for the next five years at around $150,000 per year.
  • Mahmoud Hussein of aerospace engineering sciences has been selected to receive a DARPA Young Faculty Award. His proposal, titled "Vibration Isolation via Directional Subwavelength Dissipation," will be funded for two years at about $150,000 per year.
  • Louis Stodieck of aerospace engineering sciences is the recipient of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 2011 Jeffries Aerospace Medicine and Life Sciences Research Award. The award recognizes him "for exceptional research achievements in furthering the understanding of physiological effects of microgravity, life support systems for space, and applications of microgravity to biotechnology through academic, industry, and government partnerships."
  • Angie Bielefeldt of civil, environmental, and architectural engineering received the Max S. Peters Faculty Service Award from the college.
  • Christine Hrenya of chemical and biological engineering received the Charles A. Hutchinson Memorial Teaching Award from the college.
  • Marty Dunn of mechanical engineering (and associate dean) received the College of Engineering Faculty Research Award.
  • Sandra Vasconez of civil, environmental, and architectural engineering was recognized as the college's Outstanding Faculty Advisor for undergraduates.
  • Hanspeter Schaub of aerospace engineering sciences was recognized as the college's Outstanding Faculty Advisor for graduate students.
  • Zoltan Sternovsky of aerospace engineering sciences received the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics' Young Scientist Prize in Dusty Plasma Physics "for his pioneering contribution to the study of charged dust particle dynamics in laboratory and space plasmas."
  • Jean Koster of aerospace engineering sciences received the AIAA Rocky Mountain Section's Educator of the Year award.
  • Bernard Amadei of civil, environmental, and architectural engineering has been selected to be the Distinguished Israel Pollak Lecturer for 2011-12 at Technion, Israel Institute of Technology.
  • Bill Emery of aerospace engineering sciences was elected vice-chair of the Boulder Faculty Assembly for 2011-12.
  • The Department of Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering recognized the following faculty members:
    Karl Linden received the CEAE Distinguished Achievement Award
    Hari Rajaram received the CEAE Teaching Award
    Scott Summers received the CEAE Service Award
    Gregor Henze received the CEAE Research Development Award
    Abbie Liel received the CEAE Young Researcher Award


  • Matthew Cannella, a graduate student in aerospace engineering sciences. was selected for a one-year term as a student liaison to the board of directors of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He is pursuing PhD with a focus in fluid dynamics and propulsion, advised by Ryan Starkey.
  • Jackson Webster, a PhD student in civil, environmental, and architectural engineering, has been awarded a George Melendez Wright Climate Change Fellowship in the amount of $20,000 from the National Park Service to study the distribution of mercury in Mesa Verde National Park in southwestern Colorado. His research with Professor Joseph Ryan and the U.S. Geological Survey focuses on mercury transport from forest soils following wild fire. 
  • Carl Seubert, a PhD student in aerospace engineering sciences working with Hanspeter Schaub, was selected for the AAS John Breakwell travel award to attend the Astrodynamics Specialist Conference in Girdwood, Alaska in early August.
  • Felipe Nievinski, a graduate student in aerospace engineering sciences advised by Kristine Larson, has been selected to receive a NASA Earth and Space Science graduate student fellowship for his dissertation project on GPS Interferometric Reflectometry: Developing A Ground-Based Method To Measure Snow Water Equivalent.


  • Jana Murphy of the dean's office received the college's Outstanding Staff Award.
  • Laurels Sessler of environmental engineering received the college's Outstanding Staff Advisor Award.
  • Christina Vallejos of civil, environmental, and architectural engineering received the Employee Recognition Award for May.
  • Matt Rhode and Deborah Mellblom of aerospace engineering sciences, andEvan Cantor of computer science received the college's Commitment to Excellence Award.


New Faculty & Staff: June 2011

Welcome to the following new faculty and staff in the college:

  • Bobbie Atkinson, accounting technician, computer science
  • Louise Koulermos, administrative assistant, computer science


Important Announcements

CUEngineering:  A publication for alumni and friends. Read the 2016 edition of CUEngineering magazine here.

University of Colorado Boulder
© Regents of the University of Colorado
PrivacyLegal & Trademarks
College of Engineering & Applied Science
Contact Us