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Research Highlights

There is international news coverage of a device that uses a natural protein to create electricity from moisture in the air, a device developed by Jun Yao of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and Derek Lovely of the Microbiology Department. They say their new technology could have significant implications in addressing issues of renewable energy, climate change, and medicine. Their “Air-gen,” or air-powered generator, incorporates electrically conductive protein nanowires produced by the microbe Geobacter and connects to electrodes in such a way that electrical...

A paper published in the prestigious journal Nature in October and co-authored by Associate Professor Joseph Bardin of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department is ranked Number 12 in the annual Altmetric Top 100 highlights of research published in 2019. The list includes research papers that have generated outstanding international online attention and discussion. Altmetric tracks and analyzes the online activity associated with scholarly research.

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Associate Professor Marco Duarte of the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department is part of an interdisciplinary, inter-institutional team of researchers who recently received a three-year, $1.5-million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to further develop the foundations of data science in a project that will create one of NSF’s TRIPODS Institutes for Theoretical Foundations of Data Science. TRIPODS stands for Transdisciplinary Research in Principles of Data...

The UMass News Office reports that University Distinguished Professor Lixin Gao of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department has collaborated with computer scientist Arun Venkataramani to land a a three-year, $1.2-million grant from the National Science Foundation to develop and test a method to improve interdomain routing. It is “the top-level protocol that holds the entire Internet together,” the two researchers explain. They add that these new routing strategies should improve fundamental robustness, security, and...

A team at UMass Amherst led by chemist Dhandapani Venkataraman and electrical engineer Zlatan Aksamija report in Nature Communications on an advance toward more efficient, cheaper, polymer-based harvest of heat energy. Aksamija explains that “Using polymers to convert thermal energy to electricity by harvesting waste heat has seen an uptick in interest in recent years. Waste heat represents both a problem but also a resource; the more heat your process wastes, the less efficient it is.” Harvesting waste heat is less...

Associate Professor Do-Hoon Kwon of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department has received a research award of $367,004 over three years from the Army Research Office. Kwon’s project, "Single and dual polarized metasurface cloaks for microwave invisibility and low observability,” introduces and demonstrates a new electromagnetic cloaking physics applicable to large free-standing scatterers.

“The potential impact of the proposed effort reaches beyond demonstration of a new...

The UMass eXperimental X-band radar (UMaXX), a collaborative effort between the Microwave Remote Sensing Laboratory (MIRSL) and the Engineering Research Center for Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere (CASA), is now providing a groundbreaking data feed from the UMaXX radar on Orchard Hill to the National Weather Service's (NWS) Eastern Regional Headquarters. The radar data will be used by NWS regional forecast offices – principally in the Boston, Albany, and Portland areas – and are viewable in near real time...

Assistant Professor Zlatan Aksamija of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department was part of the UMass team of chemists and electrical engineers who outlined a new way to advance a more efficient, cheaper, polymer-based harvest of heat energy to produce electricity. Aksamija and chemist Dhandapani Venkataraman reported their findings this month in Nature Communications.

“By one official...

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