April 2018

University of Minnesota Medical Devices Center hosts world’s largest medical devices conference
More than 1,300 medical devices leaders and researchers from around the world will gather at the University of Minnesota’s 17th Annual Design of Medical Devices Conference. One of the sessions covered how modern health care is pushing makers to think about reimbursement as part of the creation process. April 11: StarTribune; KSTP

Meet a Minnesota tech CTO: Ron Lancaster, Pearson VUE
Software engineering alumnus Ron Lancaster is the CTO of a Bloomington based company that specializes in computer-based testing for high-stakes certification and licensure exams in the healthcare, finance, information technology, academic, and admissions markets. April 10: TECH{dot}MN

All about chemistry: The remarkable career of the University of Minnesota’s Izaak Kolthoff
Izaak Maurits Kolthoff was a professor of analytical chemistry at the University of Minnesota from 1927 to 1962. He is known as the “father of modern analytical chemistry.” April 9: MinnPost

This patented 3D printing method could boost medical device innovation
Mechanical engineering associate professor Michael McAlpine received a patent for 3D printed active electronic materials and devices which could include uses such as such as wearable displays and/or continuous on-eye glucose sensors. April 5: Mass Device; Onmedic; Atman (China); Medical Design & Outsourcing

How dangerous is distracted driving?
HumanFIRST laboratory director Nichole Morris points out distracted driving doesn’t always have to mean a cellphone is involved. Eating, putting on make-up, reading, talking with other passengers or watching video can also contribute to slower response times. April 5: WCCO

Researchers uncover the farthest star ever seen
Physics and astronomy assistant professor Patrick Kelly is one of the researchers who spotted an enormous blue star more than halfway across the universe. According to professor Kelly, this is the first time we’re seeing a magnified, individual star. April 2: USA Today; Business Insider; Popular Science; KARE 11; Newsweek; Popular Mechanics; Daily Mail; Science Daily; UC Berkeley; Yahoo News; Astrobiology Magazine; Tech Explorist; Engadget; The RegisterWWL-TVWGRZK5 NewsKSDKABC10WCNCWKYCWLTX; CBS19; Fox15Inside Car News; Finance News (UK); Astronomy Magazine; The Guardian; KDAL; Radio Australia; The Japan Times; Science Alert; Deccan Chronicle; Tech Times; Business Standard; Financial ExpressCBBC Newsround (UK); Motherboard; R & D Magazine; Outer Places; The Irish Sun (UK); The Sun (UK); Week Facts; CNETHealth Thoroughfare; April 3: National Geographic; Smithsonian; CNN; Fox News; Business Insider; Washington Post; INSIDER; CBS MinnesotaMinnesota Public Radio News; The Boston GlobeABC 17 NewsIndependent RecorderWeekly ObserverLivemint10TVTHE WEEK; GeekNewsmaxSputnik International; News Nation (India)The Daily Galaxy; Seeker; Live ScienceIndependent TribuneMLiveNews LedgeSci-Tech TodayDiscover MagazinePeoria Journal Star; WTVAACED MagazineKRON4The Sydney Morning HeraldKYMA; KEYT; April 4: TIME; NBC News; Forbes; KARE 11; National Post; Sci-Tech TodayThe InquisitrApex TribuneIndia Today; The Wire; April 5: Yahoo News; NBC 7 San Diego; NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth; NBC New York; NBC Chicago; NBC 10 Boston; NBC 10 Philadelphia; NBC 4 Washington; Science Examiner; Advocator; World Report Now; NECN; Astronomy Now; Imperial Valley News; Canadian Homesteading; April 6: Space Flight Insider; Week Facts; April 8: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ; Lake County News; April 15: Minnesota Daily

March 2018

 

How a $10 billion experimental city nearly got built in rural Minnesota
Former Dean of the U of M’s Institute of Technology (now known as CSE) Athelstan Spilhaus wanted to build an entire city designed for scientific advancement. March 29: Smithsonian

Gener8tor creates program in Minnesota for medical device startups
A new Gener8tor program, called gBETA, is hoping to accelerate startups in healthcare technology. gBETA’s director has ties to the University of Minnesota’s Medical Devices Center. March 26: Xconomy

UMN drone tech may prevent nitrogen contamination
Sentera has signed an agreement to bring University of Minnesota-developed corn nitrogen deficiency technology to the market. The technology allows growers to more precisely match applied nitrogen fertilizer to the optimal needs of the crop. March 22: Minnesota Daily

This skyscraper-sized air purifier is the world’s tallest
Mechanical engineering professor David Pui teaches his students that reducing the air pollution in major metropolitan areas by 20 percent can save tens of thousands of lives each year. March 21: NBC News

From a box of radio parts, Digi-Key grew into a $2.3 billion anchor of NW Minnesota’s economy
Electrical engineering alumnus and Digi-Key founder Ron Stordahl is featured in the story of Digi-Keys inception. March 21: Star Tribune; Century Link; Toshiba; Cable One; 29 similar articles

U of M crowdsourcing project transcribes Supreme Court justices handwritten notes
Physics and astronomy professor Lucy Fortson and staff member Andrea Simenstad helped develop the platform that will be used by the public to transcribe handwritten notes from U.S. Supreme Court justices. March 19: Wisconsin Public Radio

Breaking the news
School of Physics and Astronomy professors Marco Peloso, Yong-Zhong Qian and Joe Kapusta spoke about the impact that Stephen Hawking had on society, science and their own career paths and areas of study. March 14: KARE 11

U of M-developed tool for rapid infection diagnosis nears commercialization
Chemistry associate professor Valerie Pierre and her lab colleagues have developed a a cheap, easy-to-use  “dipstick”-like, urine-sampling device to rapidly diagnose urinary tract infections. March 14: Twin Cities Business; March 28: Minnesota Daily

Working for Blue: The tale of a mascot intern
Bioproducts & biosystems engineering alumnus Blair Kelly interned as the Indianapolis Colts mascot Blue before landing an job as an engineer. March 8: Colts Roundup

Joel Gagnon and Jack Kramer bond through science
Aerospace engineering students Joel Gagnon and Jack Kramer use their analytical skills and transfer them over to gymnastics. March 8: Minnesota Daily

‘Super monster wolf’ could revolutionize farming by guarding crops against animals
Computer science and engineering professor Shashi Shekhar warned that security was a key concern for AI technology. March 8: Express (United Kingdom)

U of M shows off $92.5M renovation of Northrop Mall’s Tate Hall
The John T. Tate Hall renovation focused on making the labs and classrooms more flexible and functional by preserving the building’s architectural character. March 7: Business Journal; KSTP; Finance & Commerce

3M names new CEO
Electrical engineering alumnus Michael Roman will lead 3M into the future as CEO. March 5: MPR News; Star Tribune; WCCO; Business Journal; Street Insider; KTTC; March 6: Twin Cities Business; Manufacturing.net; MRO Magazine; March 7: Chemical Engineering

Earth sciences provide insights into tooth decay
Earth sciences researcher Ashley Breiland linked a bacteria known to accumulate polyphosphate (PAB) in the ocean and in wastewater to the promotion of tooth decay. March 5: American Council on Science and Health; Medical Xpress

U of M crowdsourcing project transcribes Supreme Court justices handwritten notes
Physics and astronomy professor Lucy Fortson and staff member Andrea Simenstad helped develop the platform that will be used by the public to transcribe handwritten notes from U.S. Supreme Court justices. March 2: Access Minnesota

Poop visible from space helped scientists find a remote ‘supercolony’ of penguins
Department of earth sciences research associate Michelle LaRue warns that just because a huge colony was just found doesn’t mean that colonies in areas where sea ice isn’t great aren’t declining. March 2: Mental Floss; March 23: Air & Space

Space and bikes? They go together at this Sparta museum
Aerospace engineering alumnus Donald Kent “Deke” Slayton’s exploits are on display at the Deke Slayton Memorial Space and Bicycle Museum in Sparta, WI. March 2: Journal Sentinel

Organs on ice
Mechanical engineering professor John Bischof used specially coated iron oxide nanoparticles to thaw arteries and heart valve tissue from pigs, as well as human skin cells, rapidly and evenly, without the typical damage. March 1: Pronto

Researchers studying wild rice in lakes and streams learn about health of water
Earth sciences researcher Amy Myrbo discusses harmful effects of sulfate in waterways, on wild rice as well as other species. March 1: Environmental Monitor

Minnesota starwatch for March
Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics offers public viewings of the night sky. March 1: The Sleepy Eye Herald-Dispatch

February 2018

Sentera licenses University of Minnesota crop nitrogen status technology
Sentera has signed an agreement to bring University of Minnesota-developed corn nitrogen deficiency technology to the market. The technology allows growers to more precisely match applied nitrogen fertilizer to the optimal needs of the crop. Feb. 27: Feedstuffs; Agriculture; Feb. 28: World Fertilizer Magazine; KDUZ

Freaking strings! Fabric bike spokes are stronger than steel
Three CSE alumni invented a bike spoke stronger than its steel counterparts at half the weight of high-end metal options. Feb. 27: Gear Junkie

U of M students set Guinness World Record for Alka-Rocket launch
A triumphant team of student rocketeers from the University of Minnesota have blasted their way into history by winning the Bayer-Big Ten Alka-Rocket Challenge and capturing a place in the annals of GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS. Feb. 27: The University Network

As climate change worsens, king penguins will need to move — or they’ll die
Department of earth sciences research associate Michelle LaRue observes that effects of climate change are incredibly complex and can affect species in a variety of ways. Feb. 26: The Verge

We fact-checked 8 animal emojis. Here’s what we found
Department of earth sciences research associate Michelle LaRue deciphers which type of penguin different platforms are depicting in their emojis. Feb. 26: National Geographic

Minnesota starwatch for March
Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics offers public viewings of the night sky. Feb. 25: Brainerd Dispatch; Pineandlakes Echo Journal

Ace of space: Astronaut Duane “Digger” Carey’s trip from poverty to the cosmos
Aerospace engineering alumnus Duane “Digger” Carey flew a crew of 6 to the Hubble Space Telescope in the Space Shuttle Columbia. Feb. 23: Magnolia Banner News

Measuring the magic of healing
Computer science and engineering researchers are part of a compassionate-technology research collaborative hoping to capture evidence of the benefits of healing. Feb. 21: Scientific American

TSI endows mechanical engineering Chair at University of Minnesota
TSI Incorporated has endowed a fund establishing a Chair in the Mechanical Engineering Department. The Benjamin Y.H. Liu – TSI Applied Technology Chair recognizes Dr. Benjamin Liu, an award-winning researcher and entrepreneur who has dedicated his career to aerosols and particles research. Feb. 19: Star Tribune; International Business Times; Wall Street Select; CRWE World; 155 similar articles

Robot bees warning: Could drones for pollinating crops be told to attack us if they are taken over by hackers?
Computer science and engineering professor Shashi Shekhar warned that security was a key concern for the technology. Feb. 19: Mirror (Great Britain); Daily Mail (Great Britain); The Sun (Great Britain); Feb. 20: Express (Great Britain)

The science of winter: Ice more complex than just frozen water
Civil, environmental and geo- engineering professor John Gulliver illustrates how vehicles, ice houses, and global warming can weaken ice on lakes and rivers. Feb. 16: Inforum

Black Panther’s secret weapon explained
Physics and astronomy professor James Kakalios compares the material the Black Panther’s suit is made out of to graphene. Feb. 16: National Geographic; Feb. 26: Business Insider

New UMN tech helps local stardust hunter
Earth science research associate Anette von der Handt has been working with a local amateur scientist to identify micrometeorites from Twin Cities rooftops. Feb. 15: Minnesota Daily; Feb. 24: The Charlotte Observer; Feb. 25: Albert Lea Tribune

UMN researcher aims to make MRIs faster, more precise
Electrical and computer engineering professor Mehmet Akçakaya developed a new MRI technique experts say could cut medical costs and improve patients’ experiences during scans. February 15: Minnesota Daily

Scientists develop faster, more accurate gluten detector
Chemical engineering and materials science professors Kevin Dorfman and Daniel Frisbie along with CEMS teaching assistant Scott White have announced the development of a sensor which can detect samples of gluten in food 45 minutes faster than current methods. Feb. 13: New Food Magazine (Great Britain)

U of M crowdsourcing project transcribes Supreme Court justices handwritten notes
Physics and astronomy professor Lucy Fortson and staff member Andrea Simenstad helped develop the platform that will be used by the public to transcribe handwritten notes from U.S. Supreme Court justices. Winter ’17: Law and Courts Newsletter; Feb. 13: Press Release Point; Feb. 14: The National Law Journal; Library Journal; Legal History Blog; Feb. 15: Law Librarian Blog; National Law Journal; North Dakota Court News; Feb. 16: ABA Journal; Feb. 18: Researching Paralegal; Feb. 22: Science 360; Zooniverse; U of M Law School; Minnesota Lawyer; Daily Kos; Funk Main Stream Media; Feb. 24: Political Observer

Chemical engineering alumni elected to National Academy of Engineering
Two chemical engineering alumni were elected into the National Academy of Engineering in February 2018. Raymond Gorte was elected for fundamental contributions and their applications to heterogeneous catalysts and solid state electrochemical devices. Chun Huh is recognized for enhancing the understanding of ultralow interfacial tensions of oil/surfactant/water systems. Feb. 9: College of Engineering; Feb. 12: Journal of Petroleum Technology

UMN team updating geoscience app amid growing popularity
Geology graduate student Shane Loeffler and others on his team will update their Flyover Country mobile app with specialized data sets that may interest scientists and will make the app available on seatback screens on some major airlines. Feb. 8: Minneinno; Feb 28: South China Morning Post (China)

Lizzy Crist: The saver
Biomedical Ph.D. student Lizzy Crist is part of a research that uses 3D modeling to observe how cells move within a tumor—and why some leave for other parts of the body. Feb. 8: City Pages

Dinosaur-killing space rock may have triggered sea volcanoes
Earth science postdoctoral associate Joseph Byrnes is the lead author on a study that claims the giant space rock that wiped out the dinosaurs may have set off a chain of cataclysmic volcanic eruptions on land and undersea. Feb. 7: The Conversation; The Washington Post; The Guarding; Los Angeles Times; EurekAlert!; Science Daily; The Verge; Independent; IFL Science!; Fire Engineering; Feb. 8: Sci Fi Generation TV; Fox News; Ars Technica; Feb. 9: International Business Times; Discover; Popular Mechanics; Feb. 13: Siasat; Feb. 18: The Keene Sentinel; Feb.19: Minnesota Daily

Ride-sharing could improve Uganda vaccination rates, UMN researchers say
Industrial and systems engineering professor Diana Negoescu hopes ride-sharing will be the key to improving infant vaccination rates in Uganda. Feb. 7: Minnesota Daily

Mark Waid explains how Thor can lift Mjolnir, but no one else can (again)
Physics and astronomy professor James Kakalios concluded that Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir, is made up of uru metal that can emit large quantities of gravitons prompting the metal to increases the hammer’s weight to exactly cancel an “unworthy” person lift, or upward force, causing the hammer remains unmoved. Feb. 7: Bleeding Cool; Feb. 12: The Mary Sue

The supersonic parachutes carrying NASA’s martian dreams
Former aeronautical engineering processor Helmut Heinrich and his student Clinton Eckstrom are featured for the advances they made in supersonic parachutes. Feb. 6: LITechNews; Wired; Re-Publish News

U study: Wetlands key to keeping harmful nitrates out of waters
St. Anthony Falls Lab researchers provides new insights to demonstrate that multiple wetlands or ‘wetland complexes’ within a watershed are extremely effective at reducing harmful nitrate in rivers and streams. These wetlands can be up to five times more efficient per unit area at reducing nitrate than the best land-based nitrogen mitigation strategies. Feb. 2: USAgNet; Minnesota Ag Connection; Feb. 3: Media Indonesia (Indonesia); Feb. 8: Environmental Research Web; Feb. 10: Global News connect

Charles F. Hammer recognized for commitment to education
Chemistry alumnus Charles F. Hammer has been included in Marquis Who’s Who. As in all Marquis Who’s Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process. Feb. 2: 24-7 press release

Florida master naturalists: How climate change effects sea turtles
Mechanical engineering alumnus Tammy Tauscher will educate the public on how climate change is affecting the sea turtles that live off our coast and nest on our beaches. Feb. 1: TCPalm

Mostafa Kaveh named CSE interim dean
Mostafa “Mos” Kaveh will serve as interim dean of CSE while the college Searches for a replacement over the coming months. Feb. 1: The Minnesota Daily

January 2018

Minnesota starwatch for February
Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics offers public viewings of the night sky. Jan. 31: Mille Lacs Messenger

U study: Wetlands key to keeping harmful nitrates out of waters
St. Anthony Falls Lab researchers provides new insights to demonstrate that multiple wetlands or ‘wetland complexes’ within a watershed are extremely effective at reducing harmful nitrate in rivers and streams. These wetlands can be up to five times more efficient per unit area at reducing nitrate than the best land-based nitrogen mitigation strategies. Jan. 29: NatureMPR News; News Wise; National Science Foundation; ScienceDaily; EurekAlert; Phys.Org; Jan. 30: Science Codex; Water Online; Jan. 31: Top Producer; AgWeb; Pork

Synthetic rubber: Rubbers go the extra mile for green tyres
Chemical engineering and materials science professor Paul Dauenhauer has invented a new technology to produce automobile tires from trees and grasses in a process that could shift the tire production industry toward using renewable resources found right in our backyards. Jan. 28: Rubber Journal Asia (Malaysia)

Researchers studying wild rice in lakes and streams learn about health of water
Earth sciences researcher Amy Myrbo discusses harmful effects of sulfate in waterways, on wild rice as well as other species. Jan. 24: EurekAlert!; Bright Surf (Great Britain); Scienmag (Great Britain); Newswise; ScienceDaily; Laboratory Equipment; Phys.Org; Jan. 25: ScienceNewsline; Jan. 26; Minnesota Ag Connection; USAgNet; Science Blog; Jan. 29: WTIP

Business saves money and cuts water waste
Chemical engineering student Yohanes Agustinus was selected as a MnTAP intern for DiaSorin, and helped the company identify and implement water-saving measures. Jan. 23: White Bear Press; The Gazette

UMN team updating geoscience app amid growing popularity
Geology graduate student Shane Loeffler and others on his team will update their Flyover Country mobile app with specialized data sets that may interest scientists and will make the app available on seatback screens on some major airlines. Jan. 22: The Minnesota Daily; Jan. 29: WTIP

Mostafa Kaveh named CSE interim dean
Mostafa “Mos” Kaveh will serve as interim dean of CSE while the college Searches for a replacement over the coming months. Jan. 21: The Minnesota Daily; Jan. 29: Berkeley

Here’s what happens when one artist ponders dark matter and the unknowable with an astrophysicist
Minnesota institute for astrophysics professor Liliya Williams discussed how art and physics intersect with a local artist, and inspired some of the work in the artist new show “Smashing the Invisible.” Jan. 19: Citypages

UMN study sheds light on plastic sustainability
Chemistry professor Thomas Hoye showed some plastics can be reverted back to monomers — single molecules — which are their purest components. This makes it possible to reuse the materials. Jan. 18: Minnesota Daily

Commercially Promising Stem Cell Research Projects Land State Funding
Biomedical engineering professor Robert Tranquillo was awarded a Regenerative Medicine Minnesota grant for his ongoing work in cardiovascular tissue engineering, focusing on generating transcatheter heart valves and vein valves with the use of stem cells. Jan. 17: Twin Cities Business

Videos made by Chinese scientists reveal hidden beauty of chemistry
Chemistry alumna Liang Yan created videos that reveal stunning details that are sometimes invisible to human eyes. Under the microscope, people see metals, such as magnesium, lithium, and iron powders burn like trees and flowers. Jan. 16: People’s Daily Online – English (China); Ecns.cn (China); Jan. 17: Bastille Post (Hong Kong)

Meet Steve, a sky phenomenon coming into its own
Institute for Astrophysics professor Robert Lysak came up with an invented acronym for Steve, an atmospheric phenomenon that was identified only last spring by a Canadian Facebook group dedicated to aurora photography. Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement. Jan. 12: Star Tribune

Buying bitcoin led patent mega-millionaire to an even bigger investing idea
Computer science and engineering professor George Karypis is working with Erich Spangenberg, founder of IPew, to identify what is left in the world of intellectual property worth patenting. Jan. 12: CNBC

Explosions, flames, flying pop bottles, screaming gummy bears at the U of M
The College of Science and Engineering outreach program aimed to interest elementary students in science and teach them about the many science and technology challenges regarding our energy needs. Jan. 10: Star Tribune

Dream takes flight for Gophers gymnast who is also a drone pilot
Aerospace engineering student Jack Kramer is featured in a story about his love of flying. Jan. 8: Star Tribune

Stochastic Computing in a Single Device
Electrical engineering professor Jianping Wang and his PhD student Yang Lv have made a big leap in stochastic computing. Their device can perform the stochastic computing versions of both addition and multiplication on four logical inputs. Jan 5: IEEE Spectrum; Jan 9: NewsWise; NanoWerk; EurekAlert!; Phys.org; Tech Site; ScienceDaily; Science Codex; Jan. 10: Iran Daily (Iran); Eurasia Review (Spain); R&D Magazine; Science Newsline; Storage Newsletter (France); Tech You n Me; Controlled Environments Magazine

Researchers manipulate the flow of electrical current using spinning light
Electrical and computer engineering associate professor Mo Li used a first-of-its-kind device to demonstrate a way to control the direction of the photocurrent in light without deploying an electric voltage. This new device holds significant potential for use in the next generation of microelectronics using electron spin as the fundamental unit of information. It could also be used for energy efficient optical communication in data centers. Jan. 4: Electronic Products

Letters home create an online WWII journal
Letters and pictures sent by mechanical engineering alumnus Dorance Alquist during WWII will be featured on a new website and podcast created by Dorance’s grandson. Jan. 4: Sun This Week

Artificial organ models 3D-printed with lifelike characteristics
A team of researchers led by Mechanical engineering associate professor Michael McAlpine has 3D printed lifelike artificial organ models that mimic the exact anatomical structure, mechanical properties, and look and feel of real organs. These patient-specific organ models, which include integrated soft sensors, can be used for practice surgeries to improve surgical outcomes in thousands of patients worldwide. Jan. 4: Design News; News Dog (India); Jan. 5: The New Nation (Bangladesh)

How to melt an ice cube
Mechanical engineering professor John Bischoff used iron oxide nanoparticles to uniformly heat tissues that have been preserved in a glassy solid state. Jan. 4: What A Year!

U of M students use 3D printers to create ears, noses and blood vessels
Bio-medical engineering students are learning to make everything from ears, noses and blood vessels using a 3-D printer and biological material. This semester is the first time bio-printing has been offered at the U of M and it’s the only class of its kind in the country right now. Jan. 3: KSTP

These lab-grown blood vessel replacements could benefit dialysis patients
Biomedical engineering professor Robert Tranquillo lead a study that created lab-grown blood vessel replacements that could be used as an “off the shelf” graft for kidney dialysis patients. Jan. 3: Medical Design & Outsourcing

The story of an unrealized domed city for Minnesota
Former Dean of the U of M’s Institute of Technology (now known as CSE) Athelstan Spilhaus wanted to build an entire city designed for scientific advancement. Jan. 1: Hyperallergic

A closer look at luxe
Chemistry postdoc Addison Desnoyer vented his frustrations about Tiffany & Co.’s improper assembly of a synthetic chemistry lab in their flagship store window display. Jan. 1: Chemical & Engineering News