February 12, 2014
am very pleased that two longtime faculty members of the UCLA Henry
Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, Chandrashekhar Joshi,
distinguished professor of electrical engineering, and Alan N. Willson,
Jr., distinguished professor emeritus of electrical engineering, were elected to National Academy of Engineering last week.
NAE membership is amongst the very highest of honors for an American
engineer. Alan and Chan, pioneers in their respective fields and
teachers of generations of UCLA students, are truly deserving of this
recognition. Chan was cited by the academy “for contributions to the
development of laser and beam-driven plasma accelerators.” Alan, the
inaugural Charles P. Reames Professor of Electrical Engineering, was
cited by the academy “for contributions to the theory and applications
of digital signal processing.” It is worth noting that 28 affiliated
faculty of UCLA Engineering are now NAE members.
Last month, one of those NAE members, James Liao, distinguished
professor and chair of the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Department, was announced as a recipient of the 2014 National Academy of Sciences Award for the Industrial Application of Science.
Jim, who is the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation Professor of Chemical
Engineering, was amongst 15 individuals recognized by the academy this
year for major contributions in the physical, biological and medical
I’m also pleased to highlight that two of our assistant professors,
Robert Candler, of electrical engineering, and Tyson Condie, of computer
science, have received a CAREER Award from the National Science
Foundation. This prestigious award recognizes the country’s promising
young researchers, and Tyson and Rob have already made great strides
since their arrival at UCLA Engineering. The school is home to more than
50 CAREER Award winners.
Finally, I’m very pleased to note that last week’s Tech Forum was the
biggest ever in terms of attendance. Our keynote speaker, Arati
Prabhakar, director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
(DARPA), delivered a great lecture on the future of technological
research. Her keynote was followed with an excellent panel on the
direction of aerospace and defense industries. Our students across all
departments presented posters in an annual competition, and our faculty
presented a series of compelling lectures in computing and
cybersecurity; energy and environment; engineering in medicine; and
sustainability and manufacturing.
Vijay K. Dhir
||Two UCLA Engineering Professors Elected to National Academy of Engineering
Joshi, distinguished professor of electrical engineering, and Alan N.
Willson Jr., distinguished professor emeritus of electrical engineering
and holder of the Charles P. Reames Chair in Electrical Engineering,
were among 67 new members elected to the NAE this month. NAE membership
is among the highest professional distinctions that can be awarded to
an engineer in the U.S.
||UCLA Engineer to Receive NAS Award
C. Liao, the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation Professor of Chemical
Engineering, has received the 2014 National Academy of Sciences Award
for the Industrial Application of Science. He was among 15 individuals
recognized by the academy last month for major contributions in the
physical, biological and medical sciences.
|Two Young Faculty Receive NSF CAREER Awards
professors Robert Candler, of electrical engineering, and Tyson Condie,
of computer science, have each received a Faculty Early Career
Development (CAREER) award from the National Science Foundation. It is
the organization's most prestigious award in support of junior faculty.
||20 Years Later, UCLA Researchers Lead the Charge in Seismic Studies
full-time faculty members in UCLA's Civil and Environmental Engineering
Department, along with dozens of postdoctoral and graduate students,
adjunct professors and lecturers, are conducting studies that are
helping us to better understand and better prepare for earthquakes.
||UCLA Researchers Improve Process for Manufacturing Highly Efficient Solar Cells
engineers have invented a new process for manufacturing highly
efficient photovoltaic materials that shows promise for low-cost
industrial production. The new process uses so-called perovskite
materials, which in the past few years have significantly advanced
scientists' efforts to create the next generation of solar cells.
||UCLA Team Develops Rapid Smartphone-Based Mercury Testing and Mapping
team of UCLA Engineering researchers has developed a smartphone
attachment and application to test water for the presence of mercury, a
toxic heavy metal.
||Materials Science Professor Named IEEE Fellow
Xie, professor of materials science and engineering, was elected as a
Fellow of IEEE. He was recognized "for contributions to strained-silicon
materials and devices."
||Four Faculty Members Elected as SPIE Fellows
UCLA Engineering faculty members were elected as fellows of SPIE, the
international society for optics and photonics: Bahram Jalali, the
Northrop Grumman Professor of Opto-Electronics; Christopher Lynch,
professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering; C. Kumar Patel,
distinguished professor of electrical engineering and physics; and Yang
Yang, the Carol and Lawrence E. Tannas Jr. Professor of Engineering.
||Professor Named Materials Research Society Fellow
Ghoniem, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and materials science and engineering, was selected as a 2014 Materials
Research Society (MRS) Fellow.
||CS Professor Receives Computer Vision Test-of-Time Prize
Terzopoulos, Chancellor's Professor of Computer Science (with coauthors
Michel Kass and Andrew Witkin), received the International Conference on
Computer Vision Test-of-Time Helmholtz Prize.
||EE Team Receives Best Paper Award
scholar Mohammad Asghari and Professor Bahram Jalali won the Best Paper
Award at the 2013 IEEE International Symposium on Signal Processing and
||EE Department Names Inaugural Distinguished Alumnus Award Recipient
M. Madni '69, MS '72, an adjunct professor of electrical engineering,
was recognized by the department for visionary leadership and pioneering
contributions to the electrical sciences and engineering. Madni was the
2004 UCLA Engineering Alumnus of the Year.
||Changing People's Lives — One Groundbreaking Material at a Time
Kaner, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, and materials science
and engineering, presented the 115th UCLA Faculty Lecture earlier this
month. It was titled "A Quest for New Materials: Superhard Metals,
Conducting Polymers, and Graphene."
||Q&A: John Villasenor, UCLA Professor at the Intersection of Technology and Policy
In a Q&A, UCLA Today
recently asked John Villasenor, professor in electrical engineering and
public policy, how he became an expert in the public policy aspects of
technology and why engineers should be part of that conversation.
| Quanta Magazine
Perfecting the Art of Sensible Nonsense
new cryptographic scheme obfuscates computer programs by transforming
them into something akin to a jigsaw puzzle in which random elements
make each individual piece look meaningless. Amit Sahai, professor of
computer science, is featured. The article was also republished in Wired.
The Associated Press
Buildings Vulnerable 20 Years after L.A. earthquake
Stewart, professor and chair of the Civil and Environmental Engineering
Department, was quoted in an Associated Press article about the 20th
anniversary of the Northridge Earthquake.
The Los Angeles Times
UC Quake Researchers Give L.A. List of Old Concrete Buildings
University of California released to Los Angeles city officials a list
of about 1,500 old concrete buildings that are potentially at risk of
collapse during an earthquake. Stewart, a co-principal investigator on
the National Science Foundation-funded study, was quoted.
KPCC 89.3 FM
Researchers Give LA Addresses for Concrete Buildings that could be at Risk in a Quake
89.3 FM aired a story on University of California research team giving a
list to city officials of older concrete buildings in Los Angeles could
be vulnerable to collapse in an earthquake. John Wallace, professor of
civil and environmental engineering, was interviewed in the story.
U.S. Crypto Researchers to NSA: If You Must Track, Track Responsibly
NBC News.com reported on an open letter signed by more than 50 academic cryptographers, including Amit Sahai, professor
of computer science, condemning the widespread collection of digital
data by the U.S government and National Security Agency.
Phone Device Detects Mercury
journal's research highlights section featured a smartphone attachment
can detect low levels of mercury in water samples, opening the door to
on-site, low-cost environmental monitoring. The device, developed by
Aydogan Ozcan and his UCLA colleagues, can measure inorganic mercury at
levels of 3.5 parts per billion (p.p.b.) — good enough to detect the
maximum acceptable level of 6 p.p.b. advised by the World Health
KCBS Channel 2
Alleviating Drought With Seawater
Cohen, professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, was
interviewed on KCBS-Channel 2 about efforts to create viable large-scale
desalination plants in California.
UCLA Online Engineering Program Ranked Number Two
UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science’s online
master’s program was rated as the No. 2 online engineering program in
the country in a U.S. News & World Report ranking released last month.
Bioengineering Major Gets New Curriculum for Fall 2014
undergraduate bioengineering curriculum will offer students more
flexibility and opportunities to take bioengineering electives starting
in fall 2014. The curriculum changes aim to allow students to enroll in
more classes focused on bioengineering rather than classes in related
fields such as chemistry or life science.
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