Lehigh University
Lehigh University


Lehigh Engineering Update - May 2010


  • Dan M. Frangopol, an expert in life-cycle engineering for buildings, bridges and other structures, joined a select group of faculty and alumni recently when he was elected a Distinguished Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). Frangopol, the first Fazlur R. Khan Endowed Chair of Structural Engineering and Architecture at Lehigh, is one of 13 new distinguished members of ASCE, the world's premier organization for civil engineers. Frangopol's formal induction as a Distinguished Member of ASCE will occur during the Celebration Leaders Luncheon on October 21, 2010, in Las Vegas, at the organization's 140th Annual Civil Engineering Conference.
  • Robert Wei, professor emeritus of the mechanical engineering and mechanics department, has published a book "Fracture Mechanics Integration of Mechanics, Materials Science and Chemistry." A professor at Lehigh from 1966 until his retirement in 2008, the book is a compilation of years of teaching notes, research papers and input from the materials science and engineering and chemistry departments. It is a multidisciplinary book that focuses on understanding why structures fail and what is causing those problems.
  • Rick Vinci, associate professor of materials science and engineering, has received the 2010 Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science Teaching Excellence Award for teaching mainly within a department. The recipient is selected by the Rossin Junior Fellows each spring. Vinci has received the award more than once, the last time in 2009.
  • Joachim L. Grenestedt, professor in the mechanical engineering and mechanics department, along with Lehigh's Integrated Product Development program launched a helium balloon with a tethered remote control aircraft on April 12. After the balloon had reached a certain altitude, the aircraft was released and brought down to the ground. A second receiver mounted to the balloon then was activated to deflate the balloon. The whole procedure had received clearance from FAA as well as from Lehigh and went off successfully.
  • Daniel Lopresti and Stefan Mass, professors in the computer science and engineering department, have been studying RNA editing, using the RNA Editing Dataflow System that Lopresti developed. The system identifies discrepancies that arise when DNA is transcribed into RNA.
  • Gene Lucadamo, industrial liaison officer for the Center for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology (CAMN) recently discussed nanotechnology, the CAMN, and the Lehigh Nanotech Network on BCTV, a local news source for Berks County, Pennsylvania.
  • Anne Marie Lobley, graduate coordinator for the department of materials science and engineering, was honored with Lehigh University's Tradition of Excellence Award. The award recognizes individuals or teams for exceptional contributions within their departments or throughout the university. Recipients are nominated by staff, faculty, students, alumni, parents, visitors, or vendors. Lobley was instrumental to the success of a wiring and HVAC remodeling project that had a major impact on the Whitaker Laboratory building and its inhabitants from 2008 to 2010. She has been with the university since 1998 in a variety of departments and positions.


  • The annual David and Lorraine Freed Undergraduate Research Symposium took place April 15, 2010, in the lobby of Packard Lab. The Symposium celebrates the accomplishments of undergraduate engineering researchers and provides students with an opportunity to network with their peers. Lehigh University and Lafayette College students presented their posters and described their research to a panel of judges at the Symposium. This year's Lehigh winners are as follows:
    • 1st place: Carolyn Scott, Bioengineering
    • 2nd place: Michael DiRosato, Daniel Faro, Casey Parker, Chemical Engineering
    • 3rd place: Alexander Wendt, Electrical and Computer Engineering;
    • Honorable mentions: Adam Kohn, Materials Science and Engineering; Whitney Levine and Eric Wasserman, Computer Science and Engineering.
    • People's Choice Award: Adam Kohn, Materials Science and Engineering;

  • Prasun Chatterjee, whose research at Lehigh has contributed to a new way of detecting toxic lead and copper in water, has been chosen to receive one of the highest research honors bestowed on graduate students in the field of environmental chemistry. Chatterjee will receive the 2010 C. Ellen Gonter Environmental Chemistry Award from the American Chemical Society's (ACS) Environmental Chemistry Division when ACS holds its fall national meeting in Boston this August. The Gonter award is given to a graduate student for an outstanding research paper. Chatterjee, a Ph.D. candidate in environmental engineering in the department of civil and environmental engineering, will deliver the invited Gonter lecture, "Rapid Detection of Toxic Metals in Water through pH Changes Using a Novel Hybrid Material."


  • SkillsUSA announced in early April that it has chosen John E. McGlade, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Air Products, to be the recipient of the inaugural SkillsUSA CEO Champion of the Year award. McGlade graduated from Lehigh with a B.S. degree in industrial engineering in 1976 and an M.B.A. in 1980. SkillsUSA is a national nonprofit that strives to provide a quality workforce in trade, technical and skilled service occupations with 13,000 chapters in 54 state and territorial associations. The CEO Champion award will be given each year to recognize the leadership of the chief executive of an organization doing exemplary work in the creation and support of America's highly skilled workforce. The award will also recognize CEOs for their corporation's involvement in promoting and supporting career and technical education. The CEO Champion of the Year award ceremony will take place Oct. 18, 2010 in the Grand Ballroom of the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York.


  • The fifth annual celebration of Rossin Professors and Fellows was held Friday, April 16, in the auditorium of Packard Laboratory. The ceremony recognized assistant professors and doctoral and undergraduate students within the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science who excel in their field and contribute to Lehigh University and the community. The new Rossin assistant professors are Dr. Xuanhong Chang of the materials science and engineering department, Dr. Frank Curtis of the industrial systems and engineering department, and Dr. Parv Venkitasubramaniam of the electrical and computer engineering department. Lehigh Engineering also initiated 17 Rossin Doctoral Fellows, named 30 undergraduates as new Rossin Junior Fellows and recognized some 30 other graduating seniors for their time, and efforts, as Rossin Junior Fellows.
  • Lehigh University has once again been listed among the top 50 of America's best graduate schools by U.S. News & World Report. The P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science was ranked No. 42 out of 198 colleges of engineering that grant doctoral degrees. The rankings appear in U.S. News & World Report's "America's Best Graduate Schools for 2011" issue, available on newsstands April 27.

Posted on Wednesday, May 05, 2010

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