Summer Residency Program Advances Engineering Research

Summer Residency Program Advances Engineering Research

Student working on research project with an engineering faculty member.

The School of Engineering's faculty-led program provided research opportunities for 27 students.

Under the guidance of engineering faculty members, the inaugural Summer Research Residency program provided opportunities for undergraduates to apply theoretical knowledge to a breadth of hands-on research projects.

Mechanical engineering students Manjot Singh ’23, Andrew Conti ’23, and Sergey Shemetun ’23 pursued research under the guidance of School of Engineering Dean Andres Leonardo Carrano, PhD, on a project entitled “Investigation of Optimal Growth Conditions for Root Vegetables in Microgravity Environments.” The project looks to advance space missions by developing a 3D-printing module to reliably grow root vegetables in outer space — a difficult-to-grow but important  crop to fully sustain nutritional needs of a crew. When growing vegetables in space, crews face challenges including maintaining water and nutrient delivery, lighting conditions, and support structure for the root zone growth in a microgravity environment.

“During this project, I not only gained significant research experience, but also grew as a team member and a critical thinker who is able to apply complex engineering techniques to real-life scenarios,” said Singh.

As a summer research assistant under the mentorship of John Drazan, PhD, biomedical engineering student Brigid Protzmann ’23 continued her research involving Achilles tendon injuries using a coding machine learning algorithm to classify recreational activities using data from wearable sensors. The objective of this project is to develop a machine learning approach, using insole sensors to classify gait parameters at different speeds and inclines while engaged in an activity.

“In the future, we’re hoping to predict which reactional activities might lead to an Achilles tendon injury,” explained Protzmann.

Other research projects conducted on campus this summer ranged from analyzing cyber-threats using data collected from honeypots, to measuring trust and performance in human artificial intelligence interactions, to printing scaffolds with cells using BioX 3D printer.

At the conclusion of the program, each student received a completion certificate and presented their posters at a summer symposium. 

“The level of excitement was impressive. All attendees responding to an exit survey asked to be involved in the program again in the future,” said Associate Dean Elif Kongar, PhD. “I was personally very impressed by their engagement, professionalism, work ethic, and great attitude towards research throughout the program.”

Engineering Undergraduate Summer Research Video Showcase

Tags:  School of Engineering and Computing,  Top Stories


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