Archive for Doreen Edwards
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We are at MS&T this week and a little busier than usual. We hope to bring back lots of news and information to tell you about. Meanwhile, here are a few items of interest.
Participating in the ribbon-cutting ceremony for Alfred University’s Center for High-Temperature Characterization Friday afternoon were, from left, Ralph Truitt, division vice resident & research director, Corning, Inc.; Doreen Edwards, dean of the Kazuo Inamori School of Engineering at AU; State Senator Catharine Young of Olean; Charles M. Edmondson, AU president; and Linda Jones, vice president for statutory affairs and head of the College of Ceramics at AU. Credit: Alfred University.
Alfred University dedicated a new Center for High-Temperature Characterization of Materials on Oct. 5, that will help researchers analyze new materials and their characteristics, an integral step in development of new products. The center contains five suites of specialized equipment for analyzing materials that are either processed or used at very high temperatures (1300-degrees C). In the past year, the Center for High-Temperature Characterization has helped AU researchers secure about $3 million in grants from the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy and the Defense Department. Additionally, General Electric has contracted with Alfred University to undertake characterization and analytical work on the new battery materials at a cost of $1.2 million as part of its $2 million project funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. Besides the research projects, the high-temperature materials characterization center is doing analytical work for New York State companies including Corning Inc., Corning; TAM Ceramics, Niagara Falls; Cummins Engine, Jamestown; Dal-Tile and Cooper Power, Olean; Free Form Fibers, Saratoga Springs; Air Flow Catalyst Systems, Rochester; and Ceragen, Alfred.
Boulder, Colo., will be the site of the fourth and final public workshop to gather input on the design of the proposed National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, on Oct. 18, at the Millennium Harvest House Boulder. ”Designing for Impact IV: Workshop on Building the NNMI” is organized by the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office, a federal interagency body launched in late 2011 to coordinate federal resources and to promote collaborations addressing key manufacturing technology challenges and opportunities. Area hosts include the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, the University of Colorado Boulder, Colorado State University, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The Boulder workshop will be seeking ideas on the technology focus, organization, operation, management, and other topics and activities relating to the proposed network. Advance online registration is now open and will close by Oct. 16. For more information on the workshop and to access the registration site, go to: http://manufacturing.gov/event_101812.html
On Tuesday morning (Oct. 9), Austrian daredevil Felix Baumgartner will attempt to break the world record for highest-ever skydive, leaping from a balloon nearly 23 miles above Earth’s surface. If all goes according to plan, Baumgartner will step into the void 120,000 feet (36,576 meters) above southeastern New Mexico early Tuesday, then plummet to Earth in a harrowing freefall that will see him become the first skydiver to break the sound barrier. Baumgartner hopes to break a skydiving record that has stood for more than 50 years set by Joe Kittinger (102,800 feet; 31,333 m) back in 1960 while a captain in the USAir Force. If everything works out on Tuesday, Baumgartner will also shatter the marks for fastest freefall, longest-duration freefall and highest manned balloon flight.
Editor’s note: This project has been in the works for awhile. We reported on the design of the special suit that Baumgartner will be using in a CTT last February.
A device known as a “space-time crystal,” a four-dimensional crystal that has periodic structure in time as well as space may keep perfect time forever, even after the heat-death of the universe. However, there are also practical and important scientific reasons for constructing a space-time crystal. With such a 4D crystal, scientists would have a new and more effective means by which to study how complex physical properties and behaviors emerge from the collective interactions of large numbers of individual particles, the so-called many-body problem of physics. A space-time crystal could also be used to study phenomena in the quantum world, such as entanglement, in which an action on one particle impacts another particle even if the two particles are separated by vast distances. A space-time crystal, however, has only existed as a concept in the minds of theoretical scientists with no serious idea as to how to actually build one—until now. An international team of scientists led by researchers with the Department of Energy Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has proposed the experimental design of a space-time crystal based on an electric-field ion trap and the Coulomb repulsion of particles that carry the same electrical charge.
Lots happening in our world …
Alfred University is working with TAM Ceramics of Niagara Falls and ENrG Inc. of Buffalo to develop ceramic oxide thermoelectric devices (TEG) that could lead to more fuel-efficient cars. Because these thermoelectric devices convert waste heat to usable electricity, using ceramic oxides will enable these devices to work at much higher temperatures, said Doreen Edwards, professor of materials science and dean of Inamori School of Engineering at AU. Recipient of a $200,000 New York State Energy Research and Development Authority grant to improve the TEG’s performance, TAM is developing the ceramic powder while ENrG is incorporating the materials into ceramic sheets. AU will be characterizing and sintering the powders TAM develops. Edwards will oversee the characterization, using equipment in the Center for High Temperature Characterization, which will allow researchers to measure properties of the materials at temperatures up to 1,000-degrees Celsius. Olivia Graeve, an AU engineering professor, will oversee the spark plasma sintering of the powders.
The InVentures Group, Inc. announced that it has been retained by NUENZ, Ltd., a company based in New Zealand, to provide assistance in commercializing a revolutionary new nanomaterial. NUENZ is focused on the development and commercialization of advanced silicon nitride nanofibers, a material that has significant potential in a wide range of industrial applications. Silicon nitride is generally considered to have the most desirable combination of mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties of any advanced technical ceramic material. In addition, its corrosion resistance, high fracture toughness, and wear resistance make it useful in challenging applications including heat exchangers, turbocharger rotors, nozzles, bearings, seals, valves, and others. The potential availability of a high performance reinforcement, such as silicon nitride nanofibers, is expected to have a major positive impact on the commercial development of a new generation of high performance ceramic-, metal-, and polymer matrix composite parts.
Xaar, the leader in digital ceramic printing technology, announces the Brazilian launch of a new model of the Xaar 1001 inkjet printhead family during Forn&Cer. The Xaar 1001 GS12 printhead will enable ceramic tile manufacturers to achieve even deeper and richer colors. It can also be used at double the speed of the Xaar 1001 GS6. This new printhead features Xaar’s patented TF Technolog to give unrivalled reliability with low maintenance, ensuring maximum productivity in the harshest industrial environments.
The reliability and print quality of the Xaar 1001 has revolutionized the ceramics industry. It is the printhead of choice for both ceramic tile printer manufacturers and producers of ceramic tiles.
Some 180,000 visitors are expected to attend this year’s ACHEMA from June 18th through 22nd in Frankfurt, Germany. The 4,000 exhibitors from 50 countries will also include BASF. Just as in previous years, the BASF Competence Center for Engineering & Maintenance will be represented with selected technical services at the global forum for chemical engineering and the process industry. Within an area of 118 square meters, innovations from the fields of high-pressure technology and surface technology will be showcased to visitors.
As part of the Administration’s effort to spark a renaissance in American manufacturing, the Energy Department announced it will invest more than $54 million in 13 projects to develop innovative technologies and materials for the industrial sector. This investment will help to provide American manufacturers with the cutting-edge tools, techniques and processes they need to compete successfully in the global marketplace. According to U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu, the 13 competitively selected projects demonstrate the Energy Department’s commitment to clean energy technology . “When it comes to clean energy,” he said, “[it] should be invented in America, made in America, and sold around the world.”
Entrance passes for glasstec 2012, International Trade Fair for Glass Production - Processing - Products and solarpeq, International Trade Fair for Solar Production Equipment, can now be ordered online at www.glasstec-online.com at reduced rates. The events will take place concurrently from October 23 - 26, 2012 at the fairgrounds in Düsseldorf, Germany. The online price for a 1-day ticket is Euro 28 instead of Euro 38 on show site, a 2-day ticket is available online for Euro 44 instead of Euro 55 purchased at the show and a 4-day pass costs Euro 69 online compared to Euro 80 on site. Only one entrance pass is necessary to visit both shows. Show directories cost Euro 20 onsite and online (plus shipping & handling when ordered online). New: the eTickets ordered online can be printed at home and will be converted into badges at the turnstiles on show site.
Once again, Alfred University is in the news for working with a corporate partner under the auspices of a New York State technology initiative. School officials have just announced that the university and General Electric have signed a contract to develop a new generation of sodium metal halide batteries as part of a consortium funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.
Just a few weeks back, we wrote how research groups at the school were leveraging expertise in advanced ceramics, glass and cutting-edge materials to develop working relationships with companies to develop interconnects for fuel cells and GaN-on-diamond substrate projects with private partners, also under the auspices of NYSERDA.
According to an AU press release, the latest project involves developing huge sodium metal halide batteries for applications that include hybrid locomotives and back-up power for telecommunication sites. Doreen Edwards, dean of the Inamori School of Engineering at AU says the research will focus on improving battery reliability, cycle life and performance.
The consortium, led by GE Global Research, includes AU, Clarkson University, Columbia University, SUNY-Stony Brook and Brookhaven National Lab.
In the release, Matthew Hall, an AU engineering professor, says, ”This is a fantastic opportunity for Alfred because it directly complements our research interests and expertise. At least half of our research effort is devoted to energy applications. And a lot [of the work] would be an extension of the work done on fuel cells here for the last decade.”
Hall is also director of AU’s Center for Advanced Ceramic Technology, which exists to facilitate collaboration between industry and academia. CACT receives financial support from another New York State sci-tech initiative, NYSTAR.
According to Edwards, there will be at least three major components to AU’s work. The first will be to develop a more durable and conductive ceramic electrolyte separating the cathode from the anode and will likely focus on improving the mechanical and electrical properties of beta-alumina solid electrolyte.
The second will be to identify a more robust and corrosion-resistant glass for encasing the batteries’ electrical components. According to Edwards, AU and GEGR will develop accelerated glass stability tests to understand glass corrosion mechanisms and predict seal life.
Finally, AU will also be developing computational models to accelerate further improvements, including meso-scale computer simulations to refine beta-alumina solid electrolyte sample properties and a model for predicting the thermal properties as a function of glass composition.
“We are very excited to work with Alfred University to improve our sodium metal halide battery technology,” says Job Rijssenbeek, GEGR principal investigator. “Alfred’s expertise in ceramics and glasses is world renownd and we’ve had extremely productive collaborations in the past.”
With that type of reputation, its no wonder AU and its Inamori School of Engineering seem to be on a roll with these private sector collaborations.
Recently I’ve covered a few stories related to exhibitions on technical ceramics (e.g., here and here), but these have been about exhibits that are part of much larger ceramic and glass art museums. But, today’s story is about a museum fully dedicated to the science and engineering aspects of ceramics.
Alfred University representatives have announced that they will be holding an official dedication ceremony May 10 for the Inamori Kyocera Museum of Fine Ceramics, in Alfred, N.Y., that will serve as the main showcase for ceramic research and technologies.
(First, some semantics housekeeping: Some international ceramists, especially the Japanese, use the term “Fine Ceramics” as interchangeable with “High Tech Ceramics.” Obviously, this gets confusing because many North American and Europeans also use the term “Fine China” to refer to a high quality of ceramic dinnerware. But, the “Fine Ceramics” reference in the museum’s title is made in deference to the namesake, Kazuo Inamori, founder and chairman emeritus of Kyocera Corp. — one of the world’s largest manufacturers of high-tech ceramics — and a long-time supporter of Alfred’s programs.)
The dedication ceremony will be at 12:30 p.m. on May 10, in Binns-Merrill Hall on the AU campus. The event is open to the public, and Inamori, himself, will be on hand for the dedication.
In an AU news release, the university’s president, Charles M. Edmondson, says the school is very honored to have Inamori at the event. “Dr. Inamori has been a valued friend to the University and in particular to our School of Engineering, so we are delighted he will be here as we dedicate this museum in his honor,” notes Edmondson.
Edmonson goes on to say that the museum “will play an important role in educating young people about the vital role of ceramics in the future economy — in areas ranging from information technology to medical devices, diagnostic systems, industrial equipment, renewable energy and environmental preservation.”
On the morning of the dedication, AU is holding a special symposium, ”Ceramics: Past, Present and Future,” organized in Inamori’s honor. The symposium will start at 9 a.m. on May 10 in the Nevins Theater located in the Powell Campus Center, and is open to the public, free of charge. (If you are planning to attend, AU asks that you email Marlene Wightman, director of continuing education, at Wightman@alfred.edu or to call her at 607-871-2425.
Inamori is expected to speak as part of the symposium. He will be joined by ACerS President Marina Pascucci, a 1977 AU alumna and president of CeraNova in Marlborough, Mass.; Terry Michalske (’75), director of the Savannah River National Lab; and Gary Messing (’73), head of the materials science and engineering department at Pennsylvania State University. Also among the speakers is Linda Jones, associate vice president and head of the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, who is an ACerS Fellow and a member of its board of directors.
The museum will offer information on ceramic materials and applications, including historical developments, technical breakthroughs and examples of how ceramics have become ubiquitous as enabling technology in everything from electronics to more specialized applications like fuel cells, solar panels and biomedical implants.
AU is also opening the Discovery Lab next to the Inamori Museum. School officials say the lab will be AU’s center for outreach activities involving students (and their teachers) from kindergarten through 12th grade. University faculty members are developing educational programming, including demonstrations and hand-on activities.
Doreen Edwards, dean of the school of engineering, says she anticipates visitors will include specialists and scientists. “People who are involved in the manufacture of ceramics and related technologies will find this of interest, but there is also plenty to draw the general public,” she says.
The artistic side of ceramics is not totally left out of the picture. The university notes that its Schein-Joseph Museum of Ceramics has an extensive collection of ceramic art and is located adjacent to the new museum in Binns-Merrill Hall. “This is an absolute reflection of the College of Ceramics that joins both the School of Art & Design and the Inamori School of Engineering,” says AU’s Linda Jones. “From the inception of the College, it was recognized that creativity and technical understanding are essential to address the challenges of our time.”
AU recalls that Inamori’s relationship with Alfred University dates back to the 1980s. The school awarded him an honorary Doctor of Science degree in 1988, recognizing his leadership in the field of advanced ceramic materials. He created Alfred University’s Inamori Scholarships, which assist deserving students studying art or engineering.
Using $570,000 in NSF seed money, Alfred University’s Inamori School of Engineering and the school’s Division of Student Affairs are launching an innovative leadership program for engineering students. The program, called Engineering Leadership Education and Development, will begin as a five-year program to identify and work with a group of 16 students at the university, plus help attract high school-aged females to the field of engineering.
Doreen Edwards, dean of AU’s engineering school, explains E-LEADS by noting that leadership and teamwork skills are needed for a successful engineering career. She says, “We hope to teach students that leadership occurs at all levels within an organization and that they can apply their leadership skills during their very first job as new engineers. We are particularly interested in developing leadership around issues related to gender in the science and engineering fields.”
The leadership program Edwards and others are crafting at AU might not fit the stereotyped notion of “leadership” and will be based on what is known as the Social Change Model (pdf). Julia Overton-Healy, director of the Women’s Leadership Center, explains that SCM “assumes that there are core values held within ethical leadership, and taken together, create change for the common good. Leadership, then, is not positional: it becomes a shared endeavor of committed persons working toward a common goal.”
Overton-Healy says scholars selected for E-LEAD will learn specific leadership skills. Moreover, she notes, the scholars will be helped in three strategic areas: identifying their core strengths, aptitudes and values; understanding how their experiences, privileges and disadvantages shapes how they lead; and locating opportunities to improve gender inequity in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Skills training will include public speaking, meeting management, time management, listening, and conflict resolution.
Overton-Healy says they expect the mix of theory, self assessments, skill building and real-world application will give E-LEAD scholars higher self confidence and efficacy in assuming leadership roles. They say one component will be “community building” that will include peer mentoring, colocated student housing and networking events. E-LEADS will also be able to leverage programming already offered by AU’s Women’s Leadership Center.
In regard to career development, E-LEADS will provide on-campus research opportunities for first-year students, résumé and interviewing workshops, optional co-op educational experiences and summer internships.
Edwards and Overton-Healy will serve as coprincipal investigators. They plan on using the first year of the project on program development and recruitment of the first group of E-LEAD scholars. The grant is expected to provide scholarships to 16 male and female students throughout their academic career, plus support outreach activities aimed at increasing the number of female students in engineering.
While the NSF funding provides support for the first five years, Edwards and Overton-Healy view E-LEADS as a long-term effort, and say they will be seeking corporate support to make it a sustainable program for engineering students.