College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Shaurya Purohit came to Iowa State to step out of his comfort zone

Throughout his professional and academic journey, Shaurya Purohit’s philosophy has always been that life begins when you step out of your comfort zone. 

When Purohit received his bachelor’s degree from Manipal University Jaipur in India, he followed that philosophy when he came to Iowa State to pursue his PhD in cyber security in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECpE). He was fascinated by autonomous vehicles and learning how self-driving cars work.

New cybersecurity center to protect grids integrated with renewables, microgrids

The DOE funding will create a new cybersecurity center based at Iowa State called CyDERMS, the Center for Cybersecurity and Resiliency of DERs and Microgrids-integrated Distribution Systems. DERs are distributed energy resources such as wind and solar farms or energy storage technologies. Microgrids are local DER grid systems that can be connected to or isolated from the larger grid. Closing or isolating grid connections can help maintain service during cyberattacks or damaging storms.

Trevor Friedl’s computer engineering career takes flight

When he isn’t drumming or in class, Friedl works as an engineering research assistant, helping build a machine learning model to accurately detect imperfections in motor cylinder heads by just an image. It has been a priceless experience for him, learning how to work on an engineering team and understanding the business and administration side as well. 

New cybersecurity center to protect grids integrated with renewables, microgrids

Iowa State University engineers lead a project to help the power industry defend itself that has been selected by the U.S. Department of Energy for a or a two-year, $2.5 million grant. Project partners will also contribute $1 million in cost-share funding, including equipment and labor costs.

Engineers making a better, more profitable grid for distributing solar power

Zhaoyu Wang’s research specialty is working to modernize electric grids for better, more reliable energy flow. The latest project he’s leading, in fact, is called “MODERNISE,” for “Modernizing Operation and Decision-Making Tools Enabling Resource Management in Stochastic Environment.”

Lin Zhou explores the atomic realm at the Sensitive Instrument Facility

The Sensitive Instrument Facility (SIF), a part of Ames National Laboratory, boasts two-feet thick concrete floors with built-in vibration-dampening layers, aluminum-plate lined bays, and fiberglass reinforced concrete for electro-magnetic isolation and vibration-free heating and ventilation. These features help ensure that state-of-the-art instrumentation housed in the SIF achieves the most accurate results.

Hongwei Zhang awarded Willard and Leitha Richardson Professorship in Electrical and Computer Engineering

Zhang is a leader in the research of wireless networks. He is the director of the Center for Wireless, Communities and Innovation (WiCI) as well as the principal investigator for ARA, a first-of-its-kind wireless living lab to connect rural communities and industries.

From uncertain to passionate, Erik DeMeyere found his path in materials engineering

“I was really struggling with what path I wanted to take. I enjoyed physics and chemistry in high school but knew I didn’t want to be a chemist or physicist,” DeMeyere said. “And then I saw materials engineering listed, which, at the time, I didn’t even know existed. After doing some research, I realized I had been interested in materials science all along.”

Sid Pathak receives NSF CAREER award for studying pseudomorphic phases in multilayered nano-laminates

Department of Materials Science and Engineering Assistant Professor Sid Pathak has been selected for a 2024 National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) award for his project, “Towards a Fundamental Understanding of Interface Strain-Driven Pseudomorphic Phase Transformations in Multilayered Nanocomposites.”

Meng Lu member of team that won 2024 Bailey Award to support exploration into antimicrobial resistance

Iowa State University’s 2024 Bailey Research Career Development award has been granted to a team of Cyclone scholars with plans to address increasing rates of antimicrobial resistance by transforming predatory viruses into an antibiotic substitute.

Cyclone Engineers selected to lead $12-million Dept. of Energy project to build rural Iowa’s first ‘microgrid’

The $11.9 million investment would provide Montezuma with a microgrid, a small-scale electricity network that can operate as an independent system or can be connected to the larger grid.

Cheng Huang receives NSF CAREER award to attain omnidirectional and efficient wireless power transfer systems

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering Harpole-Pentair Assistant Professor Cheng Huang has been selected for a 2023 National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) award for his project, “Towards 3D Omnidirectional and Efficient Wireless Power.”
CAREER awards are the NSF’s most prestigious awards given to early-career faculty. The support aims to build a firm foundation for leadership in integrating research and education.