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Wind-turbine Placement Produces Tenfold Power Increase

07-13-11

Field tests of John O. Dabiri, Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, and colleagues' vertical-axis wind turbines have shown that the power output of wind farms can be increased by an order of magnitude—at least tenfold— by optimizing the placement of turbines on a given plot of land. "Dabiri's bioinspired engineering research is challenging the status quo in wind-energy technology," says Ares Rosakis, Division Chair and Theodore von Kármán Professor of Aeronautics and Professor of Mechanical Engineering. "This exemplifies how Caltech engineers' innovative approaches are tackling our society's greatest problems." [Caltech Press Release] [Videos of Turbines]

Tags: energy research highlights GALCIT John Dabiri

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

Professor Dabiri Named to Ebony Magazine's 'Power 100' List

12-16-10

John O. Dabiri, Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, has been named to Ebony magazine's 'Power 100' list of the most influential black Americans. The list, in its 47th year, celebrates black trailblazers in fields such as business, science, technology, education and politics.

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John O. Dabiri Has Been Named a MacArthur Fellow

09-28-10

John O. Dabiri, Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, has been named a MacArthur Fellow. This unrestricted fellowship —also known as the "genius" grant— is awarded each year to individuals who show "exceptional creativity in their work and the prospect for still more in the future." Congratulations Professor Dabiri! [Caltech Press Release] [MacArthur Foundation]

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Establishing the Caltech Field Laboratory for Optimized Wind Energy (FLOWE)

05-17-10

John O. Dabiri, Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, has purchased two acres of land north of Los Angeles, where he is establishing the Caltech Field Laboratory for Optimized Wind Energy (FLOWE). The goal is "to extract significantly more wind energy from a given parcel of land than is currently possible... [by taking] advantage of constructive aerodynamic interference between closely spaced vertical-axis wind turbines." says Dabiri whose inspiration for this project came from observation of schooling fish. [Caltech Press Release]

Tags: research highlights GALCIT John Dabiri

Economist Article Draws on the Work of EAS Alumni and Faculty

12-02-09

A recent Economist article entitled "Lagrangian Coherent Structures: The skeleton of water" draws on the work of alumni George Haller (PhD '94 in Applied Mechanics) and Francois Lekien (PhD '03 in Control and Dynamical Systems), as well as John Dabiri, Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering and Jerrold Marsden, Carl F Braun Professor of Engineering, Control and Dynamical Systems, and Applied and Computational Mathematics. [Economist Article]

Tags: GALCIT John Dabiri CMS Jerrold Marsden alumni

John Dabiri, Beverley McKeon, and Joel Tropp Recieve PECASE Awards

11-30-09

John Dabiri, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, Beverley McKeon, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics, and Joel Tropp, Assistant Professor of Applied and  Computational Mathematics, will be recieving the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) at a special White House ceremony in January 2010. 

Tags: honors GALCIT John Dabiri CMS Beverley McKeon Joel Tropp PECASE

Professor Dabiri Featured in Rose Magazine

09-28-09

John O. Dabiri, Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, was featured in Rose magazine. [Rose Magazine Article]

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John Dabiri and Kakani Katija Link Tiny Sea Creatures to Large-scale Ocean Mixing

07-29-09

John Dabiri, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, and graduate student Kakani Katija have discovered a new mechanism that explains how some of the ocean's tiniest swimming animals can have a huge impact on large-scale ocean mixing. Dabiri describes, "we've been studying swimming animals for quite some time, the perspective we usually take is that of how the ocean—by its currents, temperature, and chemistry—is affecting the animals. But there have been increasing suggestions that the inverse is also important—how the animals themselves, via swimming, might impact the ocean environment." Ares Rosakis, the Theodore von Kármán Professor of Aeronautics and Mechanical Engineering and chair of the EAS Division described the research as, "truly reflective of the type of exciting, without-boundaries research at which Caltech engineering professors excel." [Caltech Press Release]

Tags: research highlights GALCIT John Dabiri

President Obama Presents Three EAS Faculty with the PECASE

07-10-09

In a special White House ceremony, President Obama will be presenting three EAS faculty: John Dabiri, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, Beverley McKeon, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics, and Joel Tropp, Assistant Professor of Applied and Computational Mathematics, with the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). "These extraordinarily gifted young scientists and engineers represent the best in our country," President Obama said. Dabiri,describes the idea behind his PECASE-winning research as "giving underwater vehicles the enhanced performance of fish (e.g. efficiency, stealth, and maneuverablity) without mimicking the shape and swimming motions of fish. Instead, we replicate the vortex dynamics in the wakes of swimming fish." His "bio-inspired systems" were used by Lydia Ruiz (PhD '09 Mechanical Engineering), to demonstrateincreases in vehicle propulsive efficiency of over 50 percent.

McKeon is receiving the PECASE for her research on fundamental questions in complex turbulent boundary layers. McKeon states that "the ultimate goal is to incorporate recent advances in the understanding of flow physics in order to develop low order models of flow over surfaces for Air Force applications". Tropp's PECASE-winning research "focuses on developing new algorithms for solving inverse problems, a basic challenge that arises throughout the mathematical sciences. Inverse problems also appear in medical imaging, in communication systems, in statistical data analysis, and a host of other areas." He uses tools from modern applied mathematics, such as optimization techniques and randomized algorithms to collect partial information about an object of interest, and incorporate additional background knowledge to develop a complete picture of the object.

Other researchers receiving the PECASE award this year are Joshua K. Willis from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the following Caltech Alumni Elizabeth Boon, (PhD '03 CCE), Markus J. Buehler, (Post doc in CCE) Michael J. Hochberg, (Ph.D. '06 EAS - Applied Physics), Justin K. Romberg, (Post doc in EAS - Applied and Computational Mathematics), Cecilia R. Aragon, (B.S. '82 PMA), Jason Graetz, (Ph.D. '03 EAS - Materials Science), and Ioannis Chasiotis, (Ph.D. '02 EAS - Aerospace). 

Tags: honors GALCIT John Dabiri CMS Beverley McKeon Joel Tropp alumni PECASE