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Two news items in the Indian press cite the work of Paul Siqueira of our Electrical and Computer Engineering Department on a joint $600 million project between NASA and the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). Read article in Times of India; Read The Indian Express article....

Two College of Engineering undergraduate students were among the five so-called “Rising Researchers” throughout the whole university designated by the UMass Amherst website Research Next (Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity for a Brighter Future). The two engineering winners are Electrical Engineering major Zachary Goodman and Chemical Engineering major Thomas McCarthy.

The five Rising Researchers for the fall of 2015 will soon be saluted with a special article about their research and other accomplishments in Research Next.

The Rising Researcher program...

One major thrust of Jianhua Joshua Yang’s research in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department is creating new kinds of memristor devices that, among other uses, can take humans into the so-called “last frontier” of computing: a computer that works like the human brain. No wonder that during his first year as a professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Yang has been awarded three impressive research grants totaling nearly $1.5 million.

The three grants include: $1,095,144 for phase I (an extra $500,000 is pending for phase II) from the Air Force Research...

Encryption of a message to make it undecipherable to an unintended observer is often the goal of modern security research. But what if the mere presence of the message is enough to compromise the security of the transmitting and receiver parties? Then, the detection of the presence of a transmission, even if that observer cannot decode the message due to encryption, can be highly problematic. For example, an authoritarian government is not going to allow encrypted messages to go between potentially “dangerous” parties.

The only alternative is to make sure that the observer is...

The UMass Amherst News Office reports that a team of engineers and computer scientists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst has received a three-year, $486,524 grant from the National Science Foundation for a project to enhance privacy in smart buildings and homes. The project is under the direction of David Irwin of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and Prashant Shenoy of the College of Information and Computer Sciences.

As more smart grids and buildings are fitted with digital electric meters, Web-enabled appliances and lighting, programmable outlets...

The first phase of the UMass Amherst 2015–16 Innovation Challenge kicked off its 11th year of competition on October 28, with two teams from our College of Engineering capturing the first- and third-place prizes of $1,000 and $500 respectively.

At this first Innovation Challenge event of the semester, more than 50 campus entrepreneurs and innovators participated in the MinutePitch Competition. Thirty-six teams pitched their ideas to a panel of judges, and, after three rounds, three teams emerged victorious. Two of them were from the College of Engineering. The first-place prize...

Joseph Bardin of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst has received an $844,000 equipment grant from the Office of Naval Research (ONR) Defense University Research Instrumentation Program (DURIP), which supports instruments necessary to carry out cutting-edge research relevant to the Navy’s concerns. See ONR DURIP website

Bardin’s ONR DURIP...

A long article written by Senior Editor Sally Cole of Military Embedded Systems and published on October 1, 2015, reported on the research of Joseph C. Bardin and Qiangfei Xia, electrical and computer engineering, who have developed ultra-tiny, electronic, radio-frequency (RF) switches with reprogrammable features and based on “memristor” technology.

As the Military Embedded Systems article reported, “So, what exactly is a memristor and its role in...

Three researchers in our Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department have been developing and testing the prototypes of two portable weather stations that can monitor weather and road-surface conditions on Massachusetts highways. The two “Road Weather Information Systems” (RWIS) provide a cost-effective and accurate solution for monitoring road and weather conditions in places where permanent weather stations are not feasible due to costs, accessibility, siting concerns, or rugged terrain.

The work is being carried out by ECE Professor Russell Tessier and his graduate...

Ph.D. student John Logan of the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department won the “Best Student Paper” Award at the 39th Allerton Symposium on Antenna Applications, held from September 22 to 24 in Monticello, Illinois. Logan’s faculty advisor is ECE Professor Marinos Vouvakis, and the title of his winning paper was “Low Cross-Polarization Single-Polarized Vivaldi Arrays.”

According to the abstract of the article, Logan and Vouvakis are presenting a class of single-polarized Vivaldi antenna arrays with greater than a decade bandwidth and low cross-polarization....

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