University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Mario Parente, an expert in the analysis of hyperspectral images and a professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, plays a critical role in a new $1.2-million National Science Foundation grant to apply recent advances in biologically inspired deep learning methods to analyze large amounts of scientific data from Mars. Parente’s research on hyperspectral camera images is being applied to direct the analysis of data gathered by a NASA orbiter, which is currently examining the chemical composition of rocks and dust on Mars.

Professor Paul Siqueira of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst has been selected to serve as one of the Co-Leads for an $800-million collaborative space mission being carried out by NASA and the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). Siqueira was already one of 20 scientists chosen to guide the NASA-ISRO satellite mission to observe Earth and to study “Earth Deformation, Ecosystem Science, and the Dynamics of Ice.”

On Saturday, May 7, the College of Engineering and Dean Tim Anderson celebrated the successful completion of another academic year by paying tribute to several award-winning students, honoring this year’s outstanding faculty award winners, and sending some 400 seniors into the engineering profession with words of wisdom, advice, and good humor.

Each year seniors from the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst present, display, and demonstrate some 24 clever and useful electronic inventions for the public. This year five teams of senior ECE majors won the nine prizes given out for the event. See full descriptions of all projects.

During the 2015-2016 academic year, the College of Engineering was fortunate to have six talented new faculty members join us from all four departments. Our new academics included John Klier, the head of the Chemical Engineering (ChE) Department, Simos Gerasimidis and Kara Peterman of the Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) Department, Juan Jiménez and Yubing Sun of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE)Department, and Guangu Xu of the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department.

“Come to M5 for Tech Talks and Workshops by Facebook, Dropbox, Intel, Fitbit, Circuitmaker, OpenBCI, Pair, RSA, Autodesk, Barnstorm Studio, and many more to come!” It is any tech-driven student’s ultimate dream.

Three out of the six teams that won prizes in this year’s $65,000 University of Massachusetts Innovation Challenge Final Competition were spearheaded by engineering students. The three engineering winners were third-place finisher Brobar and two other finalists, Glow and Lumme.  Coordinated by the Berthiaume Center for Entrepreneurship, an Isenberg-based initiative that promotes entrepreneurship across the UMass Amherst campus, this culminating event of the multi-stage Innovation Challenge featured a Shark Tank-style contest presented to six judges and an enthusiastic audience.

David McLaughlin, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Administration and a professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, has been selected for two major honors by the UMass Institute for Teaching Excellence and Faculty Development (TEFD). First, McLaughlin received a Distinguished Teaching Award, the university’s highest honor for classroom excellence. TEFD then named McLaughlin one of the 12 TIDE Ambassadors for the campus, with TIDE standing for Teaching for Inclusiveness, Diversity, and Equity.

Dean Tim Anderson has announced that faculty members Erin Baker of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE) Department, Joseph Bardin of the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department, and Wei Fan of the Chemical Engineering (ChE) Department have been selected as outstanding faculty in the College of Engineering for 2016.

Four College of Engineering undergraduate students were among the eight so-called “Rising Researchers” throughout the whole university campus as designated by the UMass Amherst website Research Next (Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity for a Brighter Future). All four engineering winners were recently profiled, along with the four other Rising Researchers from across the UMass campus, on Research Next. See entire article.