Sandra Gross, Administrative Assistant for the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, and Pamela Rivest, Administrative Assistant for the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, have been chosen as the 2012 winners of the Dean’s Service Award. Gross has been variously described as an “organizer extraordinaire,” a “professional who gets things done,” and the “critical component to a smooth-running department.” Meanwhile, those who nominated Rivest said that she was “an extremely talented, creative, and capable person,” a consummate professional,” the “backbone” of her department, and a “low-profile wonder woman.”

The College of Engineering welcomes new faculty members Dr. Eleni Christofa, who will join the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department after recently earning her Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley, and Dr. David Irwin, who will join the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department after earning his doctorate in Computer Science at Duke University. Christofa’s main research areas of interest are intelligent transportation systems, traffic operations and control, sustainable infrastructure management, public transportation systems, and incident detection and management. Irwin’s research focuses on cyber-physical systems, sustainability and green computing, next-generation clouds and networks, and embedded sensor systems.

Ten College of Engineering students from the summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) will be participating in a joint poster session with the Institute for Cellular Engineering and the Collaborative Undergraduate Research in Engineering REU programs on Friday, July 27. The sophisticated research being carried out by our REU students ranges from preventing carcinogens in drinking water, to studying fluid dynamics in space, to creating a sturdy rotating base for CASA’s revolutionary phased array radar. The poster session, which is free and open to the public, takes place in the Campus Center, room 1009, from 10 a.m. until noon. Come see this fascinating research!

NASA has selected an ocean-wind study led by Principal Investigator Chris Ruf of the University of Michigan to receive $151.7 million in funding over five years for a NASA mission involving small spaceflight investigations of the Earth system. Dr. Ruf earned his Ph.D. at the UMass Amherst Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, and his advisor was Emeritus Professor Calvin Swift. The mission will use a constellation of small satellites carried into orbit on a single launch vehicle.

Former School of Nursing graduate student Kavita Radhakrishnan, whose research at UMass Amherst was supported by a visionary fellowship established by Dr. Michael Hluchyj (B.S. ’76, Electrical Engineering) and Mrs. Theresa Hluchyj (B.S., School of Nursing), has accepted a faculty appointment at the University of Texas School of Nursing in Austin. She has a background as both a telecommunications engineer and a registered nurse, a combination which inspired her to do research in telehealth technology, meaning the delivery of health-related services and information through telecommunications devices. This past year, after getting her doctorate at UMass Amherst, Radhakrishnan pursued post-doctoral research at the University of Pennsylvania.

Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor C. Mani Krishna’s article, entitled “Managing Battery and Supercapacitor Resources for Real-Time Sporadic Workloads,” was the “Most Accessed” article during May of 2012 for the journal IEEE Embedded Systems Letters. His article was first published in vol. 3, no. 1, Mar. 2011, pp. 32-36, of IEEE Embedded Systems Letters. Professor Krishna was elevated to the honorary rank of Fellow in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers in 2009 "for contributions to the design and evaluation of real-time systems." Hs research specialty is real-time systems, and he directs the Architecture and Real-time Systems Laboratory (ARTS) with Professor Israel Koren.

Michael Zink and Brenda Philips of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department will serve as the lead investigators for the US Ignite program, a national “innovation ecosystem” for developing and deploying public sector applications and services on ultra-fast, software-defined networks to enhance the next generation of the Internet. The launch of the Ignite program was announced by senior officials from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and non-government partners.

Thomas J. Laramee, who received his B.S. (1994) in Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics and his M.S. (1997) in Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) from UMass Amherst, has created the Al Russell Memorial Scholarship Fund in memory of Dr. George Albert (Al) Russell, who passed away in April after a brief illness. Dr. Russell taught in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department for 34 years after earning his doctorate in 1968. Mr. Laramee currently serves as Principal Engineer of Zulily, Inc., a successful Internet startup in Seattle. Mr. Laramee pledged a cash gift of $32,000, $2,000 of which will fund the first Russell Scholar for the 2012 – 2013 academic year, while the $30,000 endowment is being invested.

The paper of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) graduate student Jia Zhao was selected for the Best Paper Award at the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Great Lakes Symposium on Very-Large-Scale Integration (VLSI), which took place in Salt Lake City, Utah from May 3 to 4. Zhao’s faculty advisor, ECE Professor Russell Tessier, and ECE Professor Wayne Burleson were co-authors of the paper, entitled “Distributed Sensor Data Processing for Many-cores.” As Tessier noted, “Jia's paper focuses on the on-chip monitoring of many-core processor chips which contain thousands of processor cores. His approach collects on-chip voltage and temperature information and uses the information to control processor performance. Significant performance and energy benefits result from this technique.”

Alumnus Mark E. Russell, who earned his M.S. degree from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department in 1985, received an Honorary Doctorate of Engineering Degree from the University of Massachusetts Amherst at its 2012 Commencement ceremonies. Russell is the Raytheon Corporate Vice President of Engineering, Technology, and Mission Assurance. Russell was recently elevated to the honorary status of Fellow by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). The prestigious distinction of AIAA Fellow is conferred upon those members of the institute who have made notable and valuable contributions to the arts, sciences, or the technology of aeronautics and astronautics.