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Ohio State ADVANCE

Ohio Water Resources Center Funds Dr. Perena Gouma

Posted: April 5, 2019

The work of Dr. Pelagia-Iren (Perena) Gouma, Orton Chair in Ceramic Engineering and Professor of both (1) Materials Science and Engineering and (2) Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, has been highlighted in the latest issue of the Ohio Water Resources Center (WRC) newsletter. Dr. Gouma and her team at Ohio State have made significant advancements in remediating effluents (wastewater) from unconventional energy sources such as hydraulic fracturing. Fracking activity continues to support Ohio’s economy and the need for finding economic ways to remediate and reuse produced water from fracking is emerging. Dr. Gouma’s work that is highlighted here may provide a sustainable, natural option for filtering toxic contaminants and potentially radionuclides from fracking wastewater. It also has a significant potential to find additional uses in water filtration and re-use.

Congratulations to Dr. Perena Gouma and her team for their dedication to research and the advancements in materials science.

The original story is below.

Ohio WRC Research Highlight

Composite Membranes for Produced Water Clean-up

Within Ohio, hydraulic fracturing, or fracking continues to be a common method for energy production in which oil or gas is extracted from rock and shale formations by drilling and injecting high-pressure water and chemicals into wells. This process uses millions of gallons of water and leaves the wastewater produced filled with salts, proprietary industrial chemicals, radionuclides, and toxic metals. The Ohio WRC is funding Dr. Pelagia-Iren Goumaand her team at the Ohio State University to study innovative water treatment technologies that can make removal of metals and radionuclides from fracking wastewater cost effective and scalable. Dr Gouma and her team focus on filtration using cellulose acetate-amyloid fibril mats, a natural biomaterial that they derive from wheat proteins, to efficiently remove specific contaminants.

Through our seed funding, Dr. Gouma and her team have reached three major breakthroughs. Firstly, they have come up with a cost effective way to scale the production of amyloid fibrils from common plant proteins. Next, they have successfully managed to encapsulate amyloid fibrils into non-woven mats of cellulose acetate via a single step process of electrospinning. Lastly, they have successfully utilized the electrospun mats to treat produced water. We at the Ohio WRC are excited to see what the future holds for this innovative and revolutionary technology. Due to the affordable nature of the membrane constituents and the potential for it to efficiently remove toxic metals and radionuclides via filtration, this technology could be of significant use in addressing water pollution issues, such as fracking wastewater.

Find out more about Dr. Gouma’s research by visiting her website. If you’d like to find out more about other Ohio WRC research projects, visit: https://wrc.osu.edu/past.

Category : General

2019 REACH Participant Perena Gouma Named a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society

Posted: March 27, 2019

Perena Gouma, PhD, the Edward Orton, Jr. Chair in Ceramic Engineering and Professor in the Departments of Materials Science and Engineering and Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering has been named a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society (ACerS). Members of the Society shall prove qualified for elevation to the grade of Fellow by reason of outstanding contributions to the ceramic arts or sciences; through broad and productive scholarship in ceramic science and technology, by conspicuous achievement in ceramic industry or by outstanding service to the Society.

Professor Gouma will be inducted at the ACerS Honors and Awards Banquet at the 121st ACerS Annual Meeting on Monday, September 30, 2019 in Portland, Oregon.


Category : General

Celebrating International Women’s Day with REACH Innovators!

Posted: March 8, 2019






Category : General

2019 REACH Participant Jenny Barker Named as a President’s Postdoctoral Scholar

Posted: March 5, 2019

The Ohio State University has named 10 young researchers as the 2019 cohort of President’s Postdoctoral Scholars. The recipients were selected from a diverse and highly competitive pool of national and international applicants. The cohort’s research ranges from applying tissue engineering methodology to improve plastic surgery patient’s outcomes, to using novel mass spectrometry-based approaches to study histone proteins, to analyzing farmers’ livelihood strategies using social science theories, to examining the inflammatory mediators of stress exposure and neurodevelopment in preterm infants. Meet the scholars at research.osu.edu.

The President’s Postdoctoral Scholars Program, supported by the Office of the President, was launched in January 2018 to recognize outstanding young researchers at the university and aid in the recruitment of highly qualified postdoctoral trainees who will become leaders in their fields.

2019 REACH Participant Jenny Barker has been named one of the President’s Postdoctoral Scholars.

Jenny Barker
Faculty Mentor: Christopher Breuer, Pediatric Surgery
Jenny earned her BS from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and her MD and PhD from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. She is a resident in the Integrated Plastic Surgery Residency Program at Ohio State. Jenny is currently in the midst of a three-year research sabbatical being performed at the Center for Regenerative Medicine at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. She would like to focus on applying tissue engineering methodology to improve the outcomes of plastic surgery patients. Her long-term career objective is to be a surgeon-scientist focused on translational research in the field of wound healing.

Category : General

First Ohio State woman inducted into National Academy of Engineering

Posted: February 11, 2019

An Ohio State University engineering professor has become the first woman from the university to be named to the National Academy of Engineering.

Dorota Grejner-Brzezinska, associate dean for research in Ohio State’s College of Engineering, was one of 86 new members to receive the honor this year. Grejner-Brzezinska is also a professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering.

The Academy cited Grejner-Brzezinska’s contributions to “geodetic science and satellite navigation, including integration with artificial intelligence.”

“Dorota is both an extraordinary scholar and a consummate research leader,” said David B. Williams, dean of the Ohio State College of Engineering. “We are honored to have her in the College of Engineering and thoroughly delighted that her international research leadership has been recognized by the Academy.”

She is the 13th faculty member from Ohio State to be elected to the NAE. Election to the academy is one of the highest professional distinctions an engineer can receive, and honors those who have made outstanding contributions to “engineering research, practice or education,” and to “the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology, making major advancements in traditional fields of engineering or developing/implementing innovative approaches to engineering education.”

Grejner-Brzezinska’s early research helped build more reliable GPS navigation, adding to the body of work that would eventually allow for navigation systems to be built into today’s smartphones. In recent years, she and her research teams have built navigation systems that rely on artificial intelligence and image-based navigation rather than satellite systems alone, allowing for autonomous vehicle navigation and navigation and positioning in confined environments, where GPS signals are not available.

Grejner-Brzezinska came to Ohio State more than 20 years ago as a Fulbright Scholar from Poland intent on studying geodetic science, which, among other things, focuses on the size and shape of the Earth and the estimation of spatial coordinates—two keys to creating reliable global positioning systems. She went on to earn a Ph.D. and become a faculty member at the College of Engineering. She served as chair of the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering for four years prior to becoming the associate dean for research in 2017. She also served as President of the Institute of Navigation (ION). She is an ION Fellow and a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Navigation.

She said she hopes her award inspires young female engineers.

“I have been there—not thinking that I can make it,” she said. “But what I can tell you is that some of my best students have always been women. And it means a lot to me to show the younger women that we can do it.

“And I hope this will be empowering to women, to say to themselves that they can do it because they are smart and there is really no limit to their talent and imagination. I would say to them: ‘You are all doing the right thing. Just trust your abilities and trust your work.’”

Grejner-Brzezinska and her class will be formally inducted at a ceremony during the academy’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C., on Oct.

Written by: Laura Arenschield, 614-292-9475; Arenschield.2@osu.edu
Category : General

Today’s Faculty Research Lecture Canceled

Posted: February 5, 2019

The February Faculty Research Lecture featuring Claudia Buchmann, PhD has been canceled. Please visit our website for future dates and speakers.

Category : General

Former REACH Participant Vanessa Chen wins CAREER award for real-time machine learning and cybersecurity

Posted: January 31, 2019

At The Ohio State University, electrical and computer engineering assistant professor Vanessa Chen said smart technology is poised for another breakthrough. Her theory is to convert data into meaningful information and protect it from cyberattack in real time.

One day, every device must automatically be capable of performing its own cybersecurity and machine learning to support big data analysis. Chen said it is making the protection of internet-connected systems, including hardware, software and data, from cyberattacks detrimental.

The National Science Foundation just named Chen among the prestigious 2019 Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award winners. Her research proposal, “Bio-Inspired Sensory Interfaces Incorporating Embedded Classification and Encryption,” earned $500,000 in new funding over the next five years from its Electrical, Communications and Cyber Systems (ECCS) program.

“Ubiquitous sensing and computing, leading to rapid growth of big data analysis, will potentially transform the world,” Chen said. “Now, people are trying to turn everything into smart devices.”

The motivation to provide such real-time security within every smart device, she said, is because each one is under threat of malicious attacks by transmitting unencrypted data. Applications sending steady information for continuous health or weather monitoring, for example, are particularly vulnerable.

“The attacker may be able to record the confidential and private information or change the results to broadcast a fake national disaster alert. So, it’s critical to protect the wireless data,” Chen said.

The technological drawback for this, however, is the energy required to perform complex machine learning and encryption algorithms.

“It’s hard to use the energy from the environment to power the device, because it would require a large and stable power source like a battery,” Chen said.

Instead, she is working to develop a more energy-efficient circuit architecture to embed into energy-constrained edge devices, performing classification and encryption. An edge device is any piece of hardware that controls data flow at the boundary between two networks, such as routers, routing switches, integrated access devices (IADs), multiplexers, metropolitan area networks (MAN) and wide area networks (WAN).

“We can have a sensor that can extract and encrypt critical features in situ and then only send low-volume ciphered messages to the central device, so the transmission energy can be highly decreased to enable continuous monitoring,” she said.

As the director of the Energy-Efficient Circuits and Systems Lab at Ohio State Chen mentors roughly half a dozen graduate students in the realms of low-power cognitive interfaces for world-to-information computing. Lab work spans the design of wireless transceivers, analog neural networks as well as hardware-based cybersecurity.

One of her students, Jack Hsueh, is focused on low-power and secure sensory interfaces for next-generation Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices. He became the first Ohio State student to win the prestigious ISSCC Analog Devices Outstanding Student Designer Award in 2018.

From a design standpoint, Chen’s CAREER research embraces machine learning and cybersecurity through the concept of randomness.

According to the proposal abstract, data is automatically classified and encrypted within the sensors, changed unpredictably into deterministic noise for transmission.

“The pipeline chaotic system can be trained with time-varying maps to enhance the strength of the security without creating observable patterns to counter side-channel attacks,” Chen said. “This ensures data integrity and basic authentication for multi-layer security schemes from the edge sensors to the cloud while classification algorithms are performed locally in sensors to achieve rapid analysis and data reduction for wireless communications.”

The transmitted data from the device becomes unclonable, she saids, ensuring complete security.

Article by Ryan Horns, ECE/IMR Communications Specialist

Category : General