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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
( December 9, 1997)
FIVE SDSM& T PROJECTS RECEIVE AGENDA FOR EXCELLENCE FUNDING
Five innovative projects at the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology ( SDSM& T) have been selected to receive funds totaling $ 70,000 from the Agenda for Excellence program. The projects will take SDSM& T’s academic and research programs to a new level of excellence. The combined overall budgets for the five projects total nearly $ 500,000.
“ We are leveraging for excellence through these awards,” said Dr. Richard J. Gowen, SDSM& T President. “ They greatly increase the amount available by matching funds from our corporate partners and other external funding sources.” The project descriptions are as follows:
1) Purchase of Atomic Force / Scanning Tunneling / Interfacial Force Microscopes: ($ 27,643/ Total project cost: $ 239,300) Faculty members involved with the project include Drs. Jon Kellar, Kenneth Han, Robb Winter, David Dixon, Andrew Rogerson, Lidvin Kjerengtroen, Robert Corey, Dan Heglund, and Ed Duke. The Agenda for Excellence funds of $ 27,643 will provide some of the matching money necessary to leverage the National Science Foundation funds to purchase these three microscopes. The purchase of this state- of- the- art equipment will enable these microscopes to be integrated into SDSM& T’s multi- disciplinary curricular and research activities.
The scanning tunneling microscope ( STM), whose inventors won a Nobel Prize, and the atomic force microscope ( ATM) provide the capabilities for atomic level imaging on both conducting and non- conducting surface materials. In addition, the interfacial force microscope ( IFM) will enable SDSM& T students and faculty to research nano- scale material property information, such as adhesion, lubricity, hardness and deformation behavior.
Dr. Robb Winter, SDSM& T Professor of Chemical Engineering and Michael Connell, SDSM& T undergraduate metallurgical engineering major, have spent six months at Sandia National Laboratories to receive training and conduct research using the STM, ATM and IFM microscopes. Upon his return from Sandia Laboratories, Dr. Winter will train interested faculty and students beginning in January 1998.
2) Acquisition of Enhanced Instrumentation for Dynamic Systems Analysis ($ 15,357/ Total project cost: $ 143,373.) Project faculty members include: Drs. Christopher Jenkins, Vojislav Kalanovic, Abul Hasan, and V. Ramakrishnan from the Departments of Mechanical, Electrical & Computer, and Civil & Environmental Engineering. This project helps to provide the necessary institutional matching funds required for the National Science Foundation grant to acquire an
Ometron VPI 4000 laser vibrometer. This is a world- class system that is available at only a
-- 2-- relatively few institutions in the world. The VPI 4000 system will support the Compliant Structures Laboratory ( ME), Artificial Neural Systems Laboratory ( ME), Civil Engineering Research ( CEE), CAMP and Industrial Outreach, and student learning.
3) Integration of Chemical Engineering Design Through Process Simulation ($ 12,000/ Total project cost: $ 83,000) The award for this project, spearheaded by Dr. James Munro, Chair of Chemistry & Chemical Engineering, provides the matching funds for a grant from the Dow Chemical Company. Dow’s grant will enable SDSM& T to integrate chemical engineering design and the use of a powerful state- of- the ASPEN process simulation system throughout all four years of the undergraduate curriculum and also the graduate level.
4) Enhancement of University’s Computing Resources and Quality of Instruction ($ 10,000/ Total project cost: $ 26,438) Under the leadership of Dr. Zbigniew Hladysz, Chair and Professor of Mining Engineering, this project will be used as matching monies for the external funding provided by Barrick Gold Strike and Maptek, Inc. that has enhanced SDSM& T’s reputation as one of the leading institutions worldwide in computerized mine design. This project enhances the computing resources of the Mining Engineering Department and improves the quality of instruction through purchasing two Silicon Graphics workstations and a large screen, high resolution projection system for the Mine Design Laboratory. The Vulcan virtual reality mining software donated by Maptek, Inc. is utilized by both undergraduate and graduate students in computerized mine design.
uman Factors/ Ergonomics Laboratory Development ($ 5,000/ Total project cost: $ 52,542) Authored by Dr. Carter Kerk, SDSM& T Assistant Professor of Industrial Engineering, this project will leverage a National Science Foundation grant to purchase equipment and software for the Human Factors and Ergonomics Laboratory in the Industrial Engineering Department. The equipment and software acquired through these funds will benefit SDSM& T through curriculum enrichment, laboratory development and emergence of a new research area. The research laboratory will have three primary focus areas— undergraduate research; applied, industry- oriented research; and theoretical, modeling- based research.
The Agenda for Excellence, established in 1988 and supported by a component of the student support fee and SDSM& T Foundation funds, provides a funding mechanism for meritorious projects which propel the university into new frontiers of excellence and learning. In accordance with SDSM& T’s mission statement, the Agenda for Excellence seeks to fund outstanding projects which display vision and innovation and develop centers of excellence which enhance our national reputation.
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