Iowa State University virtual reality system simulates the International Space Station

Nir Keren (left) and Tor Finseth, a graduate assistant in aerospace engineering, examine a virtual simulation of the International Space Station inside the C6 at Iowa State University. Image courtesy of Nir Keren.

Written by Fred Love, Iowa State University News Service They say space is the final frontier, but it’s just another day at the office at Iowa State University’s Virtual Reality Applications Center. Instead of boldly going in a starship capable of warp speeds, Nir Keren, an associate professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering, can reach [Continue Reading...]

Iowa State engineer helps Army Lab study the fundamental physics of diesel engines

Iowa State's Song-Charng Kong uses this campus engine lab and computer modeling to study and improve internal-combustion engines. Photo by Bob Elbert.

The compression-ignition, internal-combustion engine goes all the way back to the 1890s and the work of one Rudolf Diesel. All these decades later, engineers have developed advanced diesels featuring higher pressures, lighter parts, cleaner emissions and better efficiencies. Turbo diesels have even won the 24 Hours of Le Mans sports car race. So, engineers have it all figured out? [Continue Reading...]

College of Engineering to recruit new faculty for second year under president’s hiring initiative

Arun Somani

New faculty positions are approved for funding The Presidential High-Impact Hires Initiative is focused on hiring new tenured or tenure-track faculty in areas of strategic importance to the university and state of Iowa. The positions span many departments, from agronomy to statistics. Under the same initiative last year, Iowa State hired 20 new faculty. As [Continue Reading...]

ABE grad wins first place at Iowa NSF EPSCoR poster competition

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“Out of an excellent show, it was just picking the aces,” explained Iowa NSF EPSCoR Annual All-Hands Meeting Poster Competition judge Ganesh Rajagopalan. Rajagopalan was one of five judges who scored almost fifty student research posters at the competition July 22, 2014. The top three posters of the competition were given cash awards by Iowa [Continue Reading...]

Center for Biorenewable Chemicals helps Iowa State researchers launch startup companies

Fuyuan Jing

AMES, Iowa – Fuyuan Jing reached for the top shelf of his university cubicle and pulled down a box of business cards. He picked out a slick and glossy card, the company logo printed in bright blue, yellow, orange, red and green. That card identified Jing as president of VariFAS Biorenewables LLC. Jing said his [Continue Reading...]

Researchers study distances from Earth, the use of nuclear weapons to destroy anticipated asteroids

Asteroid Deflection Research Center

On Feb. 15, 2013, an asteroid exploded over Russia that was believed to be 19 meters in diameter. The asteroid struck the city of Chelyabinsk and injured more than 1,000 people, according to bbc.com. The Chelyabinsk asteroid caused panic around the world. It sparked a serious international interest in developing a plan for what to [Continue Reading...]

ISU Corn Stover Training Paying Off for Iowa Small Businesses and Startup Companies

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In the cornfields of central Iowa, employees of newly created, small, local businesses are preparing and collecting corn stover — the stalks, leaves and cobs left after grain harvest — as feedstock for the DuPont Biofuels Solutions cellulosic ethanol facility in Nevada, Iowa, which is expected to launch production this fall. The corn stover harvesters [Continue Reading...]

Celebrating the completed Biorenewables Complex

Ribbon cutting from the ISU dedication of Elings Hall and Sukup Hall

On September 25, a special event took place on the Iowa State campus – the official dedication of Elings Hall and Sukup Hall, the new home for our Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE). The new facilities provide 100,000+ square feet of research labs, classrooms, student spaces and offices – providing a state-of-the-art learning [Continue Reading...]

Iowa State University Wins Competitive $330,000 National Science Foundation Grant

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Thanks to a highly competitive $330,000 award from the National Science Foundation, the Iowa Energy Center is proud to have partnered with Professor Hui Hu and Assistant Professor Anupam Sharma of Iowa State University to create innovative dual-rotor wind turbine designs in order to improve turbine performance and wind farm efficiency. The funding opportunity comes [Continue Reading...]

Change Agent: Hongwei Xin

Hongwei Xin

His father told him years ago on a farm in rural China that science has no borders, and it was a lesson Hongwei Xin took to heart. Decades later and half a world away, Xin has dedicated his career to applying science to agriculture, making operations a little more efficient and life a little easier [Continue Reading...]

Contributing to society through research

Long Que

New electrical and computer engineering associate professor investigates nanotechnologies Long Que always thought he wanted to be a physicist. But after receiving his bachelor’s in physics from Peking University, his dreams changed. He began researching at the Institute of Optics and Electronics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, a top engineering research institution in China. That’s when [Continue Reading...]

Better biodiesel: ISU graduate students receive grant to continue biochar research

Having a job while in college can be stressful, but creating your own company is a whole other briquette in the fire.For for mechanical engineering grad students Bernardo Del Campo, Juan Proano and Matthew Kieffer, that is their reality. Their company, Artichar, works to sell the bio-renewable product called Biochar, a charcoal-like substance used as a carbon [Continue Reading...]

Iowa State University researchers turn to robotics to improve understanding of plant growth

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Iowa State University faculty members are developing a new facility that will utilize a specially designed robot to gather unprecedented amounts of data on the growth of plants under different environmental conditions. The project was funded recently by a $929,773 grant from the National Science Foundation. ISU personnel plan to have a prototype of the [Continue Reading...]

ExxonMobil supports Iowa State research in biofuels science and engineering

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ExxonMobil Corporation is establishing an advanced biofuels research program at Iowa State University. The ExxonMobil Biofuels Program will initially focus on two research projects with Iowa State. The studies are related to the fast pyrolysis of biomass – rapidly heating biomass (including corn stalks, switchgrass or wood chips) without oxygen to produce liquid bio-oil, which can [Continue Reading...]

Digital Repository reaches milestones

Materials science and engineering assistant professor awarded prestigious award

Cademartiri has been passionate about plants since a young age.

Ludovico Cademartiri is selected for the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation 2014 Young Investigator Award Developing tools for studying how plants interact with each other and their environments is a big task, but materials science and engineering assistant professor Ludovico Cademartiri has a solution. Cademartiri was recently selected for the highly prestigious 2014 Beckman Young [Continue Reading...]

ISU dedicates Elings Hall and Sukup Hall, the new home for Department of Agricultural & Biosystems Engineering

ABE Building Dedication

More than 450 people attended the Sept. 25 dedication of Elings Hall and Sukup Hall, two new buildings that serve as the home for Iowa State University’s Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering. “I’m pleased to dedicate Elings and Sukup halls as the anchors of our beautiful Biorenewables Complex,” said ISU President Steven Leath. “They [Continue Reading...]

A glimpse into the completed Biorenewables Complex

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Steve Mickelson, chair of agricultural and biosystems engineering at Iowa State University, sat down with The Des Moines Register to talk about the newly constructed Elings Hall and Sukup Hall, which now house ABE on the campus’ west end. The Register also featured the artwork, “Floating World,” which is a tribute to agricultural progress hanging [Continue Reading...]

Amy Kaleita featured in PRISM Magazine’s “20 Under 40”

Written by PRISM Magazine From the air or highway, America’s fruited plains present a uniform vista of vast abundance. Not to Amy Kaleita. The associate professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering at Iowa State University sees a “nonlinear, somewhat chaotic” array of microplots, each with unique hydrology, root depths, soil characteristics – and ripe opportunities for [Continue Reading...]

Jiles elected to Royal Academy of Engineering

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David C. Jiles, Palmer Endowed Chair in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Iowa State, has been elected to the Royal Academy of Engineering, the United Kingdom’s national academy for engineering. Jiles is the ECpE department’s first RAE Fellow. He was cited for his seminal contributions to the scientific understanding and engineering applications [Continue Reading...]

Energy Department supports Iowa State studies of concrete for taller wind turbine towers

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The U.S. Department of Energy has awarded Iowa State engineers $1 million to study how high-strength concrete can be used to build taller wind turbine towers. “I think this will revolutionize wind energy,” said Sri Sritharan, Iowa State University’s Wilson Engineering Professor in Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering and leader of the College of Engineering’s Wind Energy Initiative. “We won’t [Continue Reading...]

Ten new projects receive funding through ISU’s Iowa Nutrient Research Center

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A set of nine bioreactors were installed this month at the ISU Agricultural Engineering and Agronomy Farm near Ames as part of an Iowa Nutrient Research Center-funded research project. The bioreactor research, led by ISU and the Iowa Soybean Association, was funded last year by the center at ISU.

Sritharan partners internationally on NSF-NEES project

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Sri Sritharan, Wilson Engineering Professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering, leads a National Science Foundation (NSF) project with international collaboration in earthquake engineering. The concept for the project began in early 2000, when former graduate student Sriram Aaleti pursued research in rocking structural wall systems. Through the next few years, Sritharan and Aaleti developed [Continue Reading...]

Industrial and manufacturing systems engineering chair presents at Board of Regents meeting

Janis Terpenny presents at the Board of Regents.

Janis Terpenny talks about the Center for e-Design and Iowa State’s role in the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute. On September 10, 2014, IMSE Chair and Joseph Walkup Professor Janis Terpenny provided the Board of Regents with an overview of some important research that’s taking place at Iowa State’s campus. One topic included the [Continue Reading...]

River to river, water quality work found on many fronts

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Matthew Helmers (’95 civil engineering), associate professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering, led the team that assessed nitrogen issues for the science assessment. “Our agricultural systems are important in Iowa but evaluating ways we can reduce downstream export of nutrients also is important,” Helmers says. “My interest is seeing agricultural systems implemented that are economically [Continue Reading...]