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Largest Biochemical Circuit Built Out of Small Synthetic DNA Molecules

06-02-11

Lulu Qian, Senior Postdoctoral Scholar in Bioengineering, and colleagues including Erik Winfree, Professor of Computer Science, Computation and Neural Systems, and Bioengineering, have built the most complex biochemical circuit ever created from scratch made with DNA-based devices in a test tube that are analogous to the electronic transistors on a computer chip."We're trying to borrow the ideas that have had huge success in the electronic world, such as abstract representations of computing operations, programming languages, and compilers, and apply them to the biomolecular world," says Dr. Qian. [Caltech Press Release]

Tags: EE research highlights health CMS Erik Winfree Lulu Qian postdocs

Stimulating Electrode Array Assists Paraplegic Man to Stand and Move Legs Voluntarily

05-20-11

Joel W. Burdick, Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Bioengineering, and colleagues including Yu-Chong Tai, Professor of Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering, have used a stimulating electrode array to assist a paralyzed man to stand, step on a treadmill with assistance, and, over time, to regain voluntary movements of his limbs. Using a combination of experimentation, computational models of the array and spinal cord, and machine-learning algorithms, Professor Burdick and his colleagues are now trying to optimize the stimulation pattern to achieve the best effects, and to improve the design of the electrode array. Further advances in the technology should lead to better control of the stepping and standing processes. [Caltech Press Release]

Tags: EE research highlights MedE health Yu-Chong Tai MCE Joel Burdick

Undergraduate Receives Fulbright to Study Biophysics of RNA in Denmark

05-13-11

Pradeep Ramesh, a senior undergraduate student working with Rob Phillips, Professor of Biophysics and Biology, has received a Fulbright fellowship to work in an experimental Biophysics lab at the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen under the guidance of Professor Lene B. Oddershede. He plans to study the collision and queuing of RNA polymerases during transcription using optical tweezers and atomic-force microscopes.  

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Tags: honors Pradeep Ramesh Rob Phillips

Professor Greer Receives DOE Early Career Research Award

05-06-11

Julia R. Greer, Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Mechanics, has received a five-year award from the Department of Energy Office of Science's Early Career Research Program for her proposal entitled “Investigation of radiation damage tolerance in interfaceā€containing metallic nano structures”. These research awards provide incentives for exceptional researchers, during the crucial early career years, to focus on research areas that are a high priority for the Department of Energy and the Nation. [Caltech Feature]

Tags: APhMS honors MCE Julia Greer DOE Career DOE

Professor Blanquart Receives DOE Early Career Research Award

05-06-11

Guillaume Blanquart, Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering, has received a five-year award from the Department of Energy Office of Science's Early Career Research Program. Professor Blanquart received the award for his proposal entitled “Towards Predictive Simulations of Soot Formation: From Surrogate to Turbulence”. The Career awards are designed to bolster USA's scientific workforce by providing support to exceptional researchers during the crucial early career years, when many scientists do their most formative work. [Caltech Feature]  

Tags: honors MCE Guillaume Blanquart DOE Career DOE

Professor Greer Receives 2011 TMS Young Leader Professional Development Award

04-08-11

Julia R. Greer, Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Mechanics, is one of ten, and the only female, to receive the 2011 TMS Young Leader Professional Development Award. This award gives young members of the Minerals, Metals, & Materials Society (TMS) the opportunity to advance in the field of Materials Science through interaction with TMS division leaders, and participation in the decision-making and long range planning of the society. Congratulations Professor Greer! [The Young Leader Newsletter]

Tags: APhMS honors MCE Julia Greer

How an Idea Becomes a Business

03-29-11

Students in Ken Pickar's course Entrepreneurial Development (E 102) have the opportunity to identify a technology currently under study at Caltech and develop a business plan for it. The ideas used by the students this year included a solid-state memory technology developed by Jehoshua (Shuki) Bruck, Gordon and Betty Moore Professor of Computation and Neural Systems and Electrical Engineering. In this business plan the students proposed targeting Netflix and other high-volume streaming content providers. Another team pinpointed a new market for the vertical wind turbines of John O. Dabiri, Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering. A third team pitched a noninvasive method for breaking up arterial plaques using the concentrated-acoustic-pulse technology developed by Chiara Daraio, Professor of Aeronautics and Applied Physics. [Caltech Feature]

Tags: APhMS EE research highlights Chiara Daraio GALCIT Jehoshua Bruck John Dabiri Ken Pickar

Caltech Engineering Ranks High on U.S. News Best Grad Schools List

03-15-11

Caltech continues to rate among America's top graduate engineering programs, according to the 2012 U.S. News & World Report list of the best grad schools. U.S. News surveyed administrators at more than 1,200 programs and 13,000 academics and professionals to determine the rankings, which place Caltech among the top five schools in the country in several engineering programs, including first in Aeronautical Engineering, fourth in Mechanical Engineering, and fifth in Electrical Engineering. Overall, the engineering graduate program was rated seventh in the nation. The program, which is among the nation's smallest, was singled out as being the most selective, admitting only 9 percent of prospective students. "Given our minute size, these rankings are great," said Chair Ares Rosakis. 

Tags: EE GALCIT MCE Graduate school rankings

Guoan Zheng Wins $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Caltech Student Prize

03-11-11

Guoan Zheng, a graduate student in Electrical Engineering working with Professor Changhuei Yang, is the winner of this year's $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Caltech Student Prize.  He was awarded the prize for his innovative development of an on-chip, inexpensive microscopy imaging technology with many potential applications, including improved diagnostics for malaria and other blood-borne diseases in the developing world. [Press Coverage]

Tags: EE honors Changhuei Yang health Lemelson Guoan Zheng

Wendian "Leo" Shi Wins $10,000 Caltech Finalist Prize in Innovation

03-11-11

Wendian "Leo" Shi , a graduate student in Electrical Engineering working with Professor Yu-Chong Tai, is the winner of the $10,000 Caltech finalist prize in innovation generously donated by alumnus Michael W. Hunkapiller.  Shi received the prize for the invention of the "µCyto," a portable lab-on-a-chip system for determining white blood cell counts for point-of-care diagnostics. [Press Coverage]

Tags: EE honors Yu-Chong Tai Michael Hunkapiller Wendian Leo Shi Babak Hassibi