Event Calendar

Mechanical Engineering 2018 Spring Seminar Series: Class 530.804 @ 210 Hodson Hall
Mar 15 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

“Advanced 3D/4D Bioprinting and Nanomaterials for Complex Tissue Regeneration”

Presented by Professor Lijie Grace Zhang, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, the George Washington University

As an emerging tissue manufacturing technique, 3D bioprinting offers great precision and control of the internal architecture and outer shape of a scaffold, allowing for close recapitulation of complicated structures found in biological tissue. In addition, 4D bioprinting is a highly innovative additive manufacturing process to fabricate pre-designed, self-assembly structures with the ability to transform from one state to another directly off the bioprinter. The term “4D” refers to the time-dependent dynamic process triggered by specific stimulation according to predesigned requirements. However, current 3D/4D bioprinting based additive manufacturing technologies are hindered by the lack of advanced smart “inks”. Therefore, the main objective of our research is to develop novel biologically inspired nano or smart inks and advanced 3D/4D bioprinting techniques to fabricate the next generation of complex tissue constructs (such as vascularized tissue, neural tissue and osteochondral tissue). For this purpose, we designed and synthesized innovative biologically inspired nanomaterials (i.e., self-assembly materials, and conductive carbon nanomaterials) and smart natural materials. Through 3D/4D bioprinting in our lab, a series of biomimetic tissue scaffolds were successfully fabricated. Our results show that these bioprinted nano or smart scaffolds have not only improved mechanical properties but also excellent cytocompatibility properties for enhancing various cell growth and differentiation, thus promising for complex tissue/organ regeneration.

Dr. Lijie Grace Zhang is an associate professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the George Washington University. She obtained her Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering at Brown University. Dr. Zhang joined GW after finishing her postdoctoral training at Rice University and Harvard Medical School. She is the director of the Bioengineering Laboratory for Nanomedicine and Tissue Engineering at GW. She has received the ASME Sia Nemat-Nasser Early Career Award, NIH Director’s New Innovator Award, Young Innovator in Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering, John Haddad Young Investigator Award by American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, and Early Career Award from the International Journal of Nanomedicine, etc. Her research interests include 3D/4D bioprinting, nanobiomaterials, complex tissue engineering and breast cancer bone metastasis. Dr. Zhang has authored 3 books, over 109 journal papers, book chapters and conference proceedings, 6 patents and has presented her work on over 280 conferences, university and institutes. She also serves as the Editor of Materials Science and Engineering C: Materials for Biological Applications; Associate Editor-in-Chief of International Journal of Nanomedicine; and Associate Editor of ASME Journal of Engineering and Science in Medical Diagnostics and Therapy.

Department of Mechanical Engineering Special Seminar @ 210 Hodson Hall
Mar 19 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

“Data-driven spectral filters for identifying structure in the streamwise turbulent kinetic energy of turbulent boundary layers”

Presented by Dr. Woutijn Baars
University of Melbourne

Even though flow-induced jet noise and wall-turbulence are highly broadband in nature, both physical phenomena exhibit a strong coherence in the acoustic pressure and velocity fields, respectively. In the first part of this seminar, a short overview will be provided on the acoustic signatures emitted by high-speed jets. Using an acoustic similarity parameter developed for a characteristic jet sound source, we highlight that nonlinear acoustic waveform distortion can be substantial, but, only under certain combinations of operating conditions and geometric scale of the jet.

The second, main part of this seminar focuses on the appearance of organized motions in wall-bounded turbulence. An organization is evidenced by the classification of distinctly different flow structures, including large-scale motions, such as hairpin packets, and very large-scale motions. In conjunction with less organized turbulence, all these flow structures contribute to the streamwise turbulent kinetic energy. Since different class structures comprise dissimilar scaling behaviors of their overlapping imprints in the velocity spectra, their coexistence complicates the development of models for the wall-normal trend of the energy statistics. Via coherence analyses of two-point data we derive spectral filters for stochastically decomposing the velocity spectra into sub-components, representing different types of statistical flow structures. In the process we reveal a Reynolds-number invariant wall-scaling for a portion of the outer-region turbulence that is coherent with the near-wall region; this supports the existence of a wall-attached self-similar structure embedded within the logarithmic region. It is also explored how these findings affect our ongoing work in the unique high-Reynolds-number boundary layer facility at Melbourne, including real-time control of the coherent scales to investigate their responsiveness to wall-based actuation.

Dr. Woutijn Baars received his B.Sc. (2006) and M.Sc. (2009) degrees from Delft University of Technology, where he experimentally studied the effects of icing on the stability of light aircraft. In 2013, Dr. Baars received his Ph.D. degree in Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics from the University of Texas at Austin. At UT Austin, his research investigations included the acoustic signatures generated by high-speed jets and the unsteady wall-pressure induced by shock wave boundary layer interactions in overexpanded nozzle flows. Currently he is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne, where he focuses on high-Reynolds-number wall-bounded flows. His ongoing research interests include the stochastic structure of wall-turbulence and how this organisation can assist active flow control for skin-friction drag reduction.

Mechanical Engineering Special Seminar @ 213 Hodson Hall
Mar 26 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

“Dynamics of buoyant particles in turbulent flows”

Presented by Dr. Varghese Mathai, University of Twente

Particle suspensions in turbulent flows occur widely in nature and industry. In most situations, the particles have a density which is different from that of the carrier fluid. This density difference can affect their motion through flows, and offers potential for changing the flow properties in many multiphase settings. In this talk, we will discuss the use of Lagrangian particle-tracking techniques to study the dynamics of light (buoyant) particles in turbulent flows.

In the first part, we address the acceleration dynamics of tiny buoyant particles (100-micron air bubbles) in a turbulent water flow. We examine the role of gravity on the bubble acceleration statistics. We find that microbubbles experience very different accelerations as compared to fluid tracers, and these occur despite their small size and minute Stokes number (small response time). Some implications of these findings to particle tracking experiments will be discussed.

In the second part, we move to the case of buoyant particles of finite size (particle size is large compared to the smallest turbulent flow length-scales). For spherical particles, buoyancy produces interesting variability in particle dynamics. In addition to buoyancy, we reveal the role of a largely ignored control parameter, the particle’s moment of inertia. Using experiments and direct numerical simulations, we demonstrate that the moment of inertia can be tuned to trigger distinctly different wake-induced-motions for both spherical and cylindrical particles. We draw some interesting analogies to the motions observed for anisotropic particles.

Dr. Varghese Mathai is a postdoctoral researcher in the Physics of Fluids group at University of Twente, the Netherlands.  He received his Master’s in Mechanical Engineering from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, and PhD in Applied Physics from University Twente, the Netherlands (2017). His PhD research was focused on the dynamics of buoyant particles and air bubbles in turbulent flows by using Lagrangian Particle Tracking and Particle Image Velocimetry techniques. His research interests lie in dispersed multiphase flows, bluff body flows, and free surface flows. His work has appeared in journals such as Physical Review Letters, Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Experiments in Fluids, and Journal of Vascular Surgery. Varghese’s work was selected among the top five PhD theses in fluid mechanics by the European Research Committee on Flow, Turbulence, and Combustion (ERCOFTAC). In 2018, he received the Best Research Prize by the European Cooperation in Science and Technology (Eu-COST).

Mechanical Engineering Special Seminar @ G33/35 Malone Hall
Mar 28 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

“Engineering Matter with Photons for Advanced Technologies”

Presented by Dr. Kitty Kumar, Carnegie Mellon University

Photons are central to many of the forefront trends in science and technology today, serving as a powerful nanofabrication tool or a delicate laser tweezer to manipulate nanoparticles, or an insightful spectroscopic probe for unraveling the structure of large protein molecules. I will present how I have developed light (photons) as the tool to encode functionality into materials and reset the state-of-the-art in flexible silicon-based and soft matter electronics. The work addresses the key challenges in the advancement of emerging technologies by studying the fundamental laser-material interactions and bridges the gap between research and commercialization.

Dr. Kitty Kumar is a postdoctoral associate at Carnegie Mellon University. Her research interests are focused on fundamental principles and practices in ultrafast laser science, soft condensed matter, laser material processing, nanofabrication, biomimetics, and programmable soft matter to address emerging scientific questions and key technical bottlenecks in advanced soft matter technologies for sensing, analysis, space exploration and biomedicine. Kitty received her Ph.D. from the University of Toronto, where she focused on the laser-assisted fabrication of flexible solar cells and developed a novel laser processing technique for three-dimensional structuring of dielectric thin films for flexible electronics. During the postdoctoral position at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Technologies, Harvard University, she concentrated on the design and fabrication of bio-inspired advanced soft robotic systems for biomedical applications.

Mechanical Engineering 2018 Spring Seminar Series: Class 530.804 @ 210 Hodson Hall
Mar 29 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Control of Wind Turbines and Wind Farms

Presented by Professor Lucy Pao, Electrical, Computer, and Energy Engineering Department, University of Colorado at Boulder

Wind energy is recognized worldwide as cost-effective and environmentally friendly and is among the world’s fastest-growing sources of electrical energy. However, science and engineering challenges still exist. For instance, in order to further decrease the cost of wind energy, wind turbines are being designed at ever larger scales, especially for offshore installations. We will overview a two-bladed downwind morphing rotor concept that is expected to lower the cost of energy more at wind turbine sizes beyond 13 MW compared to continued upscaling of traditional three-bladed upwind rotor designs. We will highlight some of the control systems issues for such wind turbines at these extreme scales and outline selected advanced control methods we are developing to address these issues. In the second part of the talk, we will discuss the growing interest in the coordinated control of wind turbines on a wind farm. Most wind farms currently
operate in a simplistic “greedy” fashion where each turbine optimizes its own power capture. Due to
wake interactions, however, this greedy control is actually suboptimal to methods in which the collective wind farm is considered. We will overview recent work in wind farm control and show selected results that demonstrate the performance improvements possible when carefully accounting for the wake interactions in coordinating the control of the wind turbines on the farm. We shall close by discussing continuing challenges and on-going and future research avenues that can further facilitate the growth of wind energy.

Lucy Pao is a Professor in the Electrical, Computer, and Energy Engineering Department at the University of Colorado Boulder. She has completed sabbaticals at Harvard University (2001-2002), the University of California, Berkeley (2008), the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory (2009), the Hanse-Wissenschaftskolleg Institute for Advanced Study in Delmenhorst, Germany (2016-2017) and the ForWind Center for Wind Energy Research at Oldenburg University (2016-2017). She earned B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. Her research has primarily focused on combined feedforward and feedback control of flexible structures, with applications ranging from atomic force microscopy to disk drives to digital tape drives to megawatt wind turbines and wind farms. She is a Fellow of the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Selected recent awards include the 2012 IEEE Control Systems Magazine Outstanding Paper Award (with K. Johnson), the 2015 Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) Journal on Control and Optimization Best Paper Prize (with J. Marden and H. P. Young), the 2017 Control Engineering Practice Award from the American Automatic Control Council, and the Scientific Award 2017 from the European Academy of Wind Energy. Selected professional society activities include being a Fellow of the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (2009-present), General Chair of the 2013 American Control Conference, member of the IEEE Control Systems Society (CSS) Board of Governors (2011-2013 and 2015), IEEE CSS Fellow Nominations Chair (2016-present), and member of the IFAC Executive Board (2017-2020).

Mechanical Engineering 2018 Spring Seminar Series: Class 530.804 @ 210 Hodson Hall
Apr 5 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

“3D-Printed Shape-changing RV-PA Conduits for Pediatrics”

Presented by Dr. Galip Ozan Erol
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University

Each year, millions of infants are born in the US and it is estimated that 20% of the newborn deaths are due to the birth defects with congenital heart defects (CHDs) being the most common type (about 40,00 births every year). Right ventricle-to-Pulmonary artery (RV-PA) conduits are frequently used to treat these complex defects in pediatrics from birth. Currently used implants to treat these defects cannot adapt to the growth of the infants and they eventually require multiple (at least 3) open-heart replacement surgeries. Hence, these inevitable surgeries result in decrease in quality-of-life and increased medical burden as the infant grows and reaches adulthood. To address this issue, we have developed self-adaptable RV-PA conduits that can change their shape in response to the physiological changes such that fewer surgeries are required to maintain healthy pulmonary circulation during growth. In this talk, I will discuss our current progress on the development of 3D-printed self-adaptable RV-PA conduit designs and their numerical simulations under various mechanical loads mimicking infant growth. I will also present our experimental efforts to 3D print FDA-approved materials for cardiovascular devices and in-vitro functionality tests to demonstrate that the implants can undergo shape-change under pulsatile flow changes observed during growth. We believe that our self-adaptive conduits can contribute to minimizing the number of surgical operations during the growth of infants with CHDs.

Dr. Galip Ozan Erol is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, focusing on pediatric cardiovascular implants under the guidance of Profs. Sung-Hoon Kang, David Gracias, Lewis Romer and Narutoshi Hibino. Ozan graduated from the Middle East Technical University in 2009 with his Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering with a Minor in Mechatronics. He completed his Master’s Degree at Washington State University in 2010 with a focus on smart materials and actuators. In 2016, he received his PhD Degree from the University of Delaware (UD) where his research focused on the development of a multi-length scale design framework for advanced woven fabrics. During his PhD, he authored 9 journal publications in various journals, and received University of Delaware Dissertation Fellowship and Graduate Student Achievement awards. He is also a professional member of ASME and SAMPE.

Mechanical Engineering 2018 Spring Seminar Series: Class 530.804 @ 210 Hodson Hall
Apr 12 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

“Light-based tools for investigating mechanisms and prevention of alcohol-induced congenital heart defects”

Presented by Professor Andrew Rollins
Biomedical Engineering and Medicine, Case Western Reserve University

Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) results from alcohol exposure during pregnancy and commonly includes growth retardation, craniofacial defects, and neurological abnormalities. Additionally, as high as 54% of live-born children with FAS have been shown to have congenital heart defects (CHD). Much remains unclear regarding the mechanisms of FAS-associated cardiac defects, especially on the influential role of altered early cardiac function (hemodynamics, conduction, biomechanical forces, etc.). This is largely due to a lack of imaging tools suitable for measuring this complex, miniscule, active organ. We have employed optical imaging tools based on optical coherence tomography (OCT) and optical conduction mapping to address these limitations. A quail model of FAS mimics a binge-drinking episode at gastrulation (week 3 in humans), when the embryo is highly vulnerable to the induction of CHDs. Two developmental stages were investigated: when the hearts were fully septated with four-chambers, and earlier, at looping stages when many important morphological changes happen. In rescue experiments, methyl donor compounds were introduced simultaneously with ethanol. Our results suggest that early functional abnormalities may serve as a mechanism for FAS-induced CHDs. Preliminary data show that Betaine and other methyl donors have the potential to rescue FAS-induced CHDs.

Dr. Rollins is a Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Case Western Reserve University, where he serves as Associate Chair for Undergraduate Education. His research interests are in the development and application of advanced biomedical optical technologies, especially optical coherence tomography (OCT), and including optical stimulation and imaging of electrophysiology. Current projects apply these technologies to the study of developmental cardiology, endoscopic imaging of cardiovascular disease, and measuring mechanical properties of the cornea.

Mechanical Engineering 2018 Spring Seminar Series: Class 530.804 @ 210 Hodson Hall
Apr 19 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm


Presented by Professor Jonathan Hopkins, University of California, Los Angeles

Architectured materials (a.k.a. mechanical metamaterials) achieve properties that derive primarily from their microstructure instead of their composition. Preliminary experimental and simulated results obtained from sub-millimeter-sized architectured-material samples show promise for achieving currently unobtainable combinations of super properties that will enable a host of next-generation technologies. The two most significant barriers preventing the practical implementation of such materials, however, include the following:

  • Design tools are currently limited in their ability to sufficiently enable the topological synthesis and optimization of such materials (particularly when they consist of nonrepeating patterns) largely because their complex features span multiple orders of magnitude.
  • Additionally, fabrication approaches do not currently exist that can fabricate practical volumes of such materials while also achieving their architecture’s submicron-sized features. Fabricating such features in a repeatable way using multiple constituent materials is even more difficult.

Professor Hopkins’ Flexible Research Group has focused much of their efforts at UCLA toward overcoming these challenges. This seminar will provide an overview of the design and fabrication tools generated by the Flexible Research Group in the context of practical architectured-material applications. The group’s design tools leverage the simplified mathematics of the Freedom and Constraint Topologies (FACT) synthesis approach to rapidly search the full design space of both periodic and nonperiodic architectured topologies to achieve desired combinations of properties. The group’s fabrication tools utilize custom-developed components (e.g., a flexure-based micro-mirror array) to generate multiple optical traps that are independently controlled to assemble large numbers of different material micro-particles simultaneously for rapidly constructing desired microstructures.

Jonathan Hopkins is an assistant professor at the University of California, Los Angeles and is the director of the Flexible Research Group. The aim of his group is to enable the creation of flexible structures, mechanisms, and materials that achieve extraordinary capabilities via the deformation of their constituent compliant elements. Prior to coming to UCLA, Jonathan was a postdoc at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory from 2010 to 2013 and received his Ph.D. (2010), Masters (2007), and Bachelors (2005) degrees all in mechanical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was honored by President Barack Obama at the White House with a DOE nominated PECASE award for his work involving the design and fabrication of architectured materials. Additionally, he is a recipient of ASME’s 2016 Freudenstein/General Motors Young Investigator Award, the V.M. Watanabe Excellence in Research Award, and the Northrop Grumman Excellence in Teaching Award.

Graduate Seminar in Fluid Mechanics @ 132 Gilman Hall
Apr 20 @ 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

4:10 pm Presentation

 “Making the Case for (slightly) Non-Circular Pipes and Beams”

 Presented by KARTHIK MENON (Adviser: Prof. Mittal)

The vortex-induced vibration response of a canonical bodies, such as a circular cylinder, has been the focus of a large number of studies. However, very little attention has been given to the effect of shape itself on the dynamics of these bodies. This study attempts to answer some fundamental questions about how the shape of a body changes its response. We show how very small changes in shape often lead to dramatic changes in the vibration response. Further, we attempt to understand this behaviour in terms of the fluid dynamic forcing on the oscillating body by employing some simplified models of vortex induced vibration.

4:35 pm Presentation

Measurement of Surface Deformation using Structured Light Methods”

 Presented by SUBRHRA SHANKHA KOLEY (Adviser: Prof. Katz)

Structured light method is a non-contact 3D surface measuring technique based on active stereo. In this method an arrangement of dots or stripes of varying intensity/color is projected on an object which is recorded on a camera. The geometric shape of the object distorts the projected pattern; this distortion is used to find the 3D surface shape of the object. In this talk, I will briefly explain the working principle and discuss the table top experiment designed to calculate surface deformation. The calibration procedures which has been followed will be discussed. The objective of this experiment was to generate data-sets of known depth and compare it with the calculated depth which will help us to improve the processing technique used in the experiment.

Mechanical Engineering Spring Seminar Series: Class 530.804 @ 210 Hodson Hall
Apr 26 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

“Tissue Origami: engineered tissue folding by mechanical compaction of the mesenchyme”

Presented by Professor Zev Gartner, Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of California, San Francisco

Many tissues fold into complex shapes during development. Controlling this process in vitro would represent an important advance for tissue engineering. We use embryonic tissue explants, computational modeling, and 3D cell-patterning techniques to show that mechanical compaction of the mesenchyme is sufficient to drive tissue folding along programmed trajectories. The process requires cell contractility, generates strains at tissue interfaces, and causes patterns of collagen alignment around and between cell condensates. Aligned collagen fibers support elevated tensions that promote the folding of interfaces along predictable paths. We demonstrate the robustness and versatility of this strategy for sculpting tissue interfaces by directing the morphogenesis of a variety of folded tissue forms from patterns of mesenchymal condensates. Our studies provide insight into the active mechanical properties of the embryonic mesenchyme and establish engineering strategies for more robustly directing tissue morphogenesis ex vivo.

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