Graduate Seminars

photo of students in a seminar classroom

April 30, 2021

Direct Simulation of Deformation Instabilities in Film-Substrate Structures Using Embedded Imperfections

Siavash Nikravesh, Ph.D. candidate, UNM Department of Mechanical Engineering

When: Friday, April 30, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

April 23, 2021

High-Fidelity Multidisciplinary Analysis and Optimization Framework for Rotorcraft Applications

Dr. Boris Diskin, National Institute of Aerospace

When: Friday, April 23, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

April 16, 2021

Verification and Validation with Uncertainty Quantification is the Scientific Method for Computational Science

Dr. William J. Rider, Sandia National Laboratories

When: Friday, April 16, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

April 9, 2021

Theoretical and Experimental Basis for the Super Dielectric Model of Dielectric Materials

Dr. Jonathan Phillips

When: Friday, April 9, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

April 2, 2021

Bioinspiration, Biomimetics and Drones

Dr. Mostafa Hassanalian, Assistant professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, New Mexico Tech

When: Friday, April 2, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

March 26, 2021

Machine learning boosted modeling and simulation of process, structure and property in additive manufacturing

Zhuo Wang, Ph.D. student at the University of Michigan-Dearborn

When: Friday, March 26, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

March 12, 2021

On importance of learning and questioning scientific dogmas with application to direct numerical simulations of incompressible turbulent flows

Professor Svetlana V. Poroseva, UNM Department of Mechanical Engineering

When: Friday, March 12, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

March 5, 2021

Liquid Cooling of IT Equipment

Dr. Jessica Gullbrand, Intel

When: Friday, March 5, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

February 26, 2021

Advanced Manufacturing and Materials Design: Research Opportunities in Mechanical Engineering at UNM

Dr. Pankaj Kumar, Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, UNM


Theory of Reinforcement Learning and Its Practice in Robotics and Assistive Devices

Dr. Ali Heydari, Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, UNM

When: Friday, February 26, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

February 19, 2021

High-pressure turbulent jet flows and non-dissipative methods for complex domains

Nek Sharan, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Los Alamos National Laboratory

When: Friday, February 19, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

February 12, 2021

Directed Energy: State-of-the-Art & Future Research Challenges

Dr. Nicholas J Morley, AFRL

When: Friday, February 12, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

February 5, 2021

Machine learning for combustion applications in the exascale era

Dr. Marc Henry de Frahan, NREL

When: Friday, February 5, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

January 29, 2021

LDRD-DR Project: Hot Smoke-Dust Signatures to Predict Nuclear Fallout and Winter

Dr. Eunmo Koo, Los Alamos National Lab

When: Friday, January 29, 2021, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

November 20, 2020

Modeling and Simulation of COVID-19 Spreading as Aerosol Transport in a Closed Environment: Classroom as an Example

Mohamed Abuhegazy, Ph.D. candidate, UNM Mechanical Engineering

When: Friday, November 20, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

November 13, 2020

Co-Simulation Approach for Dynamic Analysis of Power and Energy System

Dr. Mayank Panwar, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO

When: Friday, November 13, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

November 6, 2020

Modeling and Simulation of Turbulent Flows for Aerospace Applications

Dr. Brian R. Smith, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company

When: Friday, November 6, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

October 30, 2020

Modular Robotics for Autonomous In-Space Assembly

Dr. John R. Cooper, NASA Langley Research Center

When: Friday, October 30, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

October 23, 2020

Aeroacoustics of reconnecting vortices

Mr. Hamid Mohammad Mirzaie Daryan, University of Waterloo, Canada

When: Friday, October 23, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

October 16, 2020

Simulations of the Shock-Driven Kelvin-Helmholtz Instability with FIESTA

Brian Romero, Ph.D. candidate, UNM ME Department

When: Friday, October 16, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

October 9, 2020

Low-Speed Wind Tunnel Design and The Zia Initiative

Dr. Paul M. Delgado, Sandia National Laboratories

When: Friday, October 9, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

October 2, 2020

An Optimization Perspective on Trust and Trustworthiness in Autonomous Systems

Dr. Natalia Alexandrov, NASA Langley RC

When: Friday, October 2, 2020, 3:30 PM

Abstract: The application domain of the work described in this talk is the near-to-far-future airspace, where the projected density and heterogeneity of autonomous participants, including non-cooperative agents, combine to increase system complexity and uncertainty, with ensuing threats to safety. Given the increased complexity, control of airspace will have to transition to human-machine teams, with the ever-rising authority of autonomous systems (AS). The growing use of AS leads to a potential paradox: AS are meant to address system uncertainty; however, machine authority and human-machine interactions are themselves major sources of uncertainty in the system. Because trustworthiness and trust are connected to decision making, which, in turn, is an optimization problem, subject to expressed and unexpressed constraints, in this presentation, we examine the nature of the attendant optimization problems, discuss some approaches to solutions, as well as persistent gaps.

Biography: Dr. Natalia Alexandrov works at the NASA Langley Research Center. Her interests are in multidisciplinary methods for variable-fidelity modeling, problem synthesis, design optimization (MDO), and control of complex cyber-physical-human systems, including mechanical artifacts and heterogeneous adaptive systems, such as future transportation systems and biological systems; concepts of trust and trustworthiness in systems governed by autonomous computational intelligence, such as machine-learning-based decision making, and human-machine teams with a high degree of machine autonomy.

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

September 25, 2020

Grid integration of renewable energy resources – Challenges and how to address them

Dr. S M Shafiul Alam, Idaho National Laboratory

When: Friday, September 25, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

September 18, 2020

Deep Learning for Autonomous Systems at NASA Langley Research Center

James E. Ecker, NASA Langley Research Center

When: Friday, September 18, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

September 11, 2020

Leading-Order Analysis by Artificial Intelligence

Dr. Bryan Kaiser, Los Alamos National Lab

When: Friday, September 11, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

September 4, 2020

Talk title 1: Multidisciplinary Research Opportunities for BS, MS, and PhD students in Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems laboratory

Talk title 2: Motion Planning and Model Predictive Control at UNM

Nathan Jackson PhD, SMIEEE, Assistant Professor, The University of New Mexico and Claus Danielson, PhD, Assistant Professor, The University of New Mexico

When: Friday, September 4, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

August 28, 2020

Radiation Dosimetry of Inhaled Radioactive Aerosols: CFPD and MCNP Transport Simulations of Radionuclides in the Lung

Khaled Talaat, a Ph.D. candidate in the UNM Nuclear Engineering Department

When: Friday, August 28, 2020, 3:30 PM

This is a Zoom presentation and those outside of the UNM Mechanical Engineering Department who wish to attend should contact Professor Poroseva for the link:

March 6, 2020

Structural Optimization Subjected to Stochastic Dynamic Loading

Dr. Jiaqi Xu, Department of Civil, Construction & Environmental Engineering, The University of New Mexico

When: Friday, March 6, 2020, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Structural optimization has a long history of being applied in engineering design as an alternative to the traditional trial-and-error design method. Many of the lateral forces that must be considered in structural design (e.g., wind and earthquake) are stochastic in nature. Simplifying the random dynamic loading to be equivalent static loads is convenient; nevertheless, neglecting the stochastic dynamic nature of the lateral loads will result in sub-optimal designs. Dr. Xu proposed a method incorporating the stochastic character of the excitation into the optimization procedure directly, which can concurrently consider both structural safety and serviceability. The proposed optimization method in this thesis can be employed for structural optimization of both linear and nonlinear structures; subjected to both stationary and non-stationary stochastic dynamic loading; considering both single-variate and multi-variate stochastic process. Theoretical formulas were established and application process was proposed based on the state space equations for structural optimization subjected to stochastic dynamic loading. Generalized pattern search algorithm was employed to conduct structural optimization. Applicability and realizability of the proposed optimization method were verified via the illustrative examples of low-, mid-, high-, and super high-rise structures subjected to wind and seismic excitation. Besides linear elastic structures, the proposed optimization method can be also employed for nonlinear structures with hysteretic behavior, e.g. buckling restrained braced frame (BRBF).

About the Speaker

Jiaqi Xu is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Civil, Construction & Environmental Engineering at The University of New Mexico. She was a visiting Ph.D. student in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in 2014~2016. She received her Ph.D. degree at Tongji University in 2017. Utilizing her knowledge in structural optimization, she has worked on various research topics, including structural stiffness optimization, topology optimization, structural analysis, etc. Her ongoing research is focused on Augmented Reality (AR) applications for structural engineering and structural health monitoring.

February 21, 2020

Research Opportunities in Mechanical Engineering

Svetlana Porosova, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, UNM and Nathan Jackson, Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, UNM

When: Friday, February 21, 2020, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218

About the Speakers

Dr. Svetlana Poroseva is an associate professor at the Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of New Mexico. She has also the courtesy appointment at the UNM Department of Mathematics and Statistics and is affiliated with the UNM Centers for Advanced Research Computing and Emerging Energy Technologies. She holds Ph.D. degree in the fluid and plasma mechanics and M.S. degree in physics, both from the Novosibirsk State University in Russia. Prior joining UNM, she was affiliated with the Center for Turbulence Research at the Stanford University, Aerospace Engineering Department at the Texas A&M University, the Center for Advanced Power Systems and the School of Computational Science at the Florida State University, and Institutes of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics and Thermophysics at the Siberian Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences. Dr. Poroseva is an associate fellow of AIAA, a member of the AIAA Fluid Dynamics Technical Committee and the Turbulence Model Benchmarking Working Group. She is also a member of APS DFD and an honorary member of the Pi Tau Sigma Society. At UNM, she is the faculty advisor for the UNM AIAA Student Branch.

Dr. Nathan Jackson is an Assistant Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department at UNM. He received his Ph.D in Biomedical Engineering from Arizona State University. Prior to UNM he worked at a microelectronics research institute (Tyndall National Institute) located in Cork, Ireland as a Senior Researcher and head of the PiezoMEMS team. His research interests are in the area of novel microfabrication methods, MEMS, BioMEMS, piezoelectrics, smart materials, neural interfaces, advanced manufacturing, and flexible/stretchable materials/devices. He has developed MEMS devices for vibration energy harvesters, particle sensors, atomizers, acoustic resonators, robotics, tactile sensors, and ultrasound transducers. He a technical committee member for IEEE MEMS, SPIE Microtechnologies, E-MRS, and IEEE NANO conferences. He is a senior member of IEEE and has published more than 70 peer reviewed journal publications focused on MEMS and functional materials. He has 10 patents licensed to various companies, and he was a finalist for inventor of the year in Ireland in 2016.

February 14, 2020

Conjugated Polymer Composites for Biologically Inspired Sensing and Energy Storage/Conversion Systems

Michael Freund, Harry Shirreff Professor of Chemical Research, Dalhousie University

When: Friday, February 14, 2020, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Conjugated polymers are an exciting class of materials that hold great promise in emerging electronic, sensing and energy applications. The excitement surrounding the field has resulted from the tremendous possibilities presented by merging the vast knowledge base of synthetic organic chemistry and polymer science with critically important areas of electronic materials and solid-state physics. This rapidly growing field presents opportunities for revolutionizing material science and electronics in ways we are just beginning to imagine. This presentation will discuss the development of conjugated polymers for use in artificial photosynthesis and artificial olfaction, inspired by biological systems. In particular, recent developments in the design of membranes consisting of electronically and ionically conducting polymers will be discussed including their figures of merit and engineering challenges for use in coupling the absorption of light with the generation of solar fuels. In the area of artificial olfaction, the development of chemically diverse conjugated polymer sensing elements compatible with CMOS integrated circuits will be described.

About the Speaker

Dr. Freund was born in Gainesville Florida in 1964. He received a B.S. Degree in Chemistry from Florida Atlantic University in 1987. Dr. Freund received his Ph.D. in 1992 from the University of Florida. Subsequently, he became a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Chemistry at the California Institute of Technology where his research contributions helped to establish a multi-investigator interdisciplinary research program on the development olfactory-inspired sensor arrays. He began his academic career as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Lehigh University before moving back to Caltech as the Director of the Materials Science Center in the Beckman Institute. In 2002, he moved to the University of Manitoba where he attained the rank of Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Electronic Materials. During his thirteen years at the University of Manitoba he has been either lead or co-PI on projects securing over 30 million dollars in research and infrastructure funding through federal and regional funding sources, which he leveraged to establish the Manitoba Institute for Materials as Director. He recently joined the faculty at Dalhousie University where he is Harry Shirreff Professor of Chemical Research and Director of the Clean Technologies Research Institute. Dr. Freund has published over 110 articles with over 6000 citations and has been issued 28 US and 15 international patents.

February 7, 2020

Achieving Distributive Control for Soft and Musculoskeletal Robots

Dr. Ed Habtour, Soft & Compliant Robots, Sandia National Laboratories, Assistant Professor Candidate

When: Friday, February 7, 2020, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


The presentation describes the design, modeling, and development of dynamical structures with muscle-inspired materials which emulate the musculoskeletal behavior of biological systems. The goal is to expandboth the dynamics and materials design space beyond the traditional structural performance objectives, such as mass, strength and stiffness, in engineered systems. The presentation discusses a proposed design strategy for emulating living structures with dynamic functions, which consists of two main steps (i) geometrically modulating and segmenting materials to maximize range of motion; and (ii) enabling distributive actuation and sensing for the segmented elements with active soft materials (muscles). Theproposed design is intentionally activating nonlinearities to control the performance attributes of dynamical living structures. A new model is developed to gain insight into the connections in time-varying nonlinearities, such as geometric, material, kinematic, and force. Preliminary results, and control strategies are provided. Finally, the presentation outlines future research activities for: (i) discovering novel dynamic behaviors instigated by nonlinearities across the micro-to macro-scales; (ii) solving emerging challenges related to modeling, scaling, and controls; and (iii) transitioning to useful applications.

About the Speaker

Dr. Ed Habtour is a Principle Member at Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico, U.S.A. Prior to joining Sandia, Ed held technical positions at Swales Aerospace, Northrop Grumman, US Army Materiel System Activity Analysis and Army Research Laboratory (ARL). He was a visiting scientist at University of Twente, the Netherlands. His research focuses on identifying and studying innate nonlinear interactions in observed in dynamical systems. The overarching goal of the research is to engineer structures with distributive control and novel dynamics for applications in aerospace, robotics, and energy. Ed earned a BS in mechanical engineering from Utah State University, three MS degrees from Johns Hopkins, Purdue and University of Maryland (UMD), and a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from UMD. Ed is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Nondestructive Evaluation, Diagnostics & Prognostics, and has served in many international committees and panels. He has published over seventy journal and conference papers. He received several awards for his technical accomplishments including the US Dept. of the Army Commander’s Medal and Achievement Award, ARL Science Award, and IEEE Evans/P.K. McElroy Award.

January 31, 2020

Theory of Reinforcement Learning & Its Practice in Robotics & Assistive Devises

Dr. Ali Heydari, Robotics & Cyber-Physical Systems, Lyle School of Engineering, Southern Methodist University, Assistant Professor Candidate

When: Friday, January 31, 2020, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Control plays the role of enabler in mechanisms in which, a parameter “changes”. For decades, a controller design was deemed successful, when the desired motion/change was achieved. However, today, the standards are much higher. “Qualities” including low energy consumption for a better range, human friendliness for safe and efficient interactions, high accuracy and productivity, high robustness to uncertainties and imperfections, and small footprint on environment are important “requirements” now.

Adaptive Dynamic Programming (ADP), also called Reinforcement Learning (RL), has a great potential to win in these new domains. The reason is, ADP/RL is motivated by nature, that is, the perfect way humans learn to operate machinery and control mechanisms. As an “intelligent control” tool, however, ADP/RL has been subject to shortcomings both in terms of its “rigor” (guarantees of desired performance) and its “scalability” (possibility of extension to challenging problems, beyond toy examples). An overview of my past and future research activities on resolving these two deficiencies will be presented in the seminar. Moreover, applications of the developed methods in challenging problems in robotics will be briefly discussed, including human-machine interaction and co-design of robotic mechanisms and their controllers.

About the Speaker

Ali Heydari received his B.S. and M.S. degrees from Sharif University of Technology, Iran, in 2005 and 2008, respectively, and his Ph.D. degree from the Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, Missouri, in 2013. He is currently an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at the Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas. He is the first or sole author of more than 20 journal papers. His research is mainly focused on mathematical analysis of Adaptive Dynamic Programming (sponsored by the National Science Foundation) and also on its applications in robotics. He serves on the editorial boards of IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems and IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology. He is also a member of the Technical Committee on Aerospace Controls with the IEEE Control Systems Society and the Technical Committee on Adaptive Dynamic Programming and Reinforcement Learning with the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society.

December 06, 2019

Statistical Inference and Model Selection using Efficient Sampling Algorithms on Next-generation, Single Cell Gene Expression Data

Dr. Yen Ting Lin, Los Alamos National Laboratories

When: Friday, December 06, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


In this talk, I will first introduce an experimental technique—single-molecule RNA fluorescent in situ hybridization (sm RNA FISH)—which measures transcribed mRNA and the discrete state of activation in a single cell, and provides a “snapshot' of the stochastic process of gene expression. Then, I will discuss how we use a class of coarse-grained stochastic models, formulated as continuous-time and individual-based chemical reactions in a well-mixed environment, to infer kinetic properties of stochastic gene expression from the experimental data. I will present our developed accurate sampling procedure to efficiently solve the problem numerically (up to 1000-fold speed-up compared to conventional algorithms). The increased efficiency permits us to go beyond standard fitting procedures and enter to the realm of statistical inference. In the final part of the talk, I will present a high-level description of how we carry out the full-scale Bayesian analysis on our continuous-time probabilistic models using data from discrete-time observations. The outcome of the analysis, the uncertainty quantification of the parameters and model structures, will be presented.

Reference: Exact and efficient hybrid Monte Carlo algorithm for accelerated Bayesian inference of gene expression models from snapshots of single-cell transcripts, Journal of Chemical Physics 151, 024106 (2019)

About the Speaker

Yen Ting is a physicist interested in a diverse spectrum of problems in nonlinear dynamics, stochastic processes, and non-equilibrium statistical physics and their applications to biology, ecology, epidemiology, and fluid dynamics. Currently, he is a staff scientist at the Information Sciences Group, Computer, Computational and Statistical Sciences Division (CCS-3), Los Alamos National Laboratory.

November 22, 2019

A tour of Electromechanical Non‐linear Materials

Joe T. Evans, Jr., President, Radiant Technologies Albuquerque, New Mexico

When: Friday, November 22, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Advances in the well-being of human beings occur when new materials or their means of manufacturing arise. A new technology that may lay the foundation for a giant step forward is the piezoelectrically-driven machine large and small. Some machines are already well known: medical ultrasound, sonar, thermal security sensors, IR cameras, and knock sensors in an engine. Less well known but nevertheless ubiquitous are ferroelectric integrated circuit memories (FRAM) and piezoelectric inkjet printers. Far more complex piezoMEMS hover on the horizon, perhaps becoming as numerous microprocessors today. Mechanical engineers will be vital to the success of this technology. Joe Evans has worked in this field since the first FRAM was fabricated in Room O-29 in Farris Engineering Center here in Albuquerque in 1987. He will give a tour of the properties and applications of non-linear materials, especially those with electrical properties, and attempt to forecast the near future of this technology.

About the Speaker

Joe T. Evans, Jr. is the President of Radiant Technologies in Albuquerque. ( Radiant manufactures non-linear electrical test equipment for measuring dielectric, paraelectric, ferroelectric, piezoelectric, pyroelectric, magnetoelectric, and cryogenic properties of capacitors. The company also fabricates integrated thin-film piezoelectric and ferroelectric products, one of the first companies in the world to do so. The devices are embedded in the test equipment as reference devices for researchers. Joe earned a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering as a Distinguished Graduate from the United States Air Force Academy in 1976. After completing Undergraduate Pilot Training in Oklahoma, Joe served as a flight instructor in Oklahoma in the supersonic T-38 Talon. The US Air Force sponsored him at Stanford University, where he earned a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering. Joe was subsequently assigned to the Air Force Weapons Laboratory in Albuquerque, NM. He left the Air Force in 1984 and co-founded Krysalis Corporation, becoming the first to create thin ferroelectric films on silicon substrates and subsequently fabricating the world’s first fully functional CMOS ferroelectric random access memory in 1987. All commercial FRAMs to date use the architecture of that first ferroelectric IC. Joe co-founded Radiant Technologies, Inc. in 1988 where he continues to work on a variety of issues in ferroelectric materials including FRAM, ferroelectric-gate transistors, ferroelectric capacitor reliability, and piezoelectric MEMs. His present goal is to create a useful form factor for thin-ferroelectric-film capacitors so engineers can insert these devices into circuits and ICs.

November 15, 2019

Memristive circuits

Francesco Caravelli, Los Alamos National Laboratory

When: Friday, November 15, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Nanoscale components often exhibit memory, both quantum and classical. Resistors are no exception (already at the classical level) and the use of memristors for a variety of purposes is currently under scrutiny. Applications range from machine learning on chip to compact and passive memory devices using crossbar arrays. In this talk we discuss the nitty-gritty mathematical aspects of memristive circuits in the analog regime (no CMOS), their connection to the Ising model, and plausible future directions beyond crossbars.

November 8, 2019

Multifunctional Materials for Self‐Powered Sensing and Energy Harvesting

Donghyeon Ryu, Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, New Mexico Tech

When: Friday, November 8, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


In this seminar, the speaker will present his research effort to design multifunctional materials that help realize autonomous structural systems – for instance, autonomous damage detection, self-healing, and energy harvesting. Recently, mechano-luminescence-optoelectronic (MLO) composites were designed for realizing self-sustainable structural systems capable of self-powered sensing and energy harvesting. The self-sustainable structural systems, in which MLO composites are built, are envisioned to sense external stimuli to autonomously detect damage without human intervention. In addition, energy being dissipated in infrastructures could be harvested as a supplemental energy source for powering the sensor network as well as structural systems. The MLO composites are composed of two functional building blocks: 1) mechano-optoelectronic (MO) conjugated polymer and 2) mechano-luminescent (ML) phosphor. The functional building blocks are designed to attain target functionalities for scaling up from molecular to device scale. The MLO composites generate direct current (DC) through two-step mechanical-radiant-electrical energy conversion. It was shown that the DC varied its magnitude with tensile strain level and loading frequency. The generated DC can be used as a supplemental energy source. Potential applications of the MLO composites can be self-powered internet-of-things (IoT) sensors, sensing skin for non-contact diagnosis and prognosis, autonomous composites (AutoCom) for self-sustainable infrastructures, and wearable devices for monitoring human motions.

About the Speaker

Donghyeon Ryu, Ph.D., P.E., is an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at New Mexico Tech (August 2014 – present). He obtained a Ph.D. in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering in September 2014 and M.S. in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering in March 2014 from the University of California, Davis. Before then, he obtained M.S. (2008) and B.S. (2004) in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea. Dr. Ryu is active in research on multifunctional materials and nanocomposites for autonomous infrastructures, structural health monitoring, multi-modal sensors, and energy harvesting. His research has been funded by NASA, Office of Naval Research, Federal Aviation Administration, Los Alamos National Lab, among some others. He won three best paper awards from America Society of Mechanical Engineers, 9th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring, and 10th International Conference on DamageAssessment of Structures. He was an ASCE ExCEEd Teaching Workshop Fellow in 2018. He has edited 1 book series, authored 3 book chapters, 14 journal papers, and 26 conference papers.

November 1, 2019

Fluid mechanics and thermodynamics of fluids under extreme conditions

Daniel T. Banuti, Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, The University of New Mexico

When: Friday, November 1, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


In the pursuit of more efficient combustion systems, pressures in rocket engines, Diesel engines, and gas turbines have reached 'supercritical' conditions where our everyday experience with fluids, often divided into incompressible liquids and ideal gases, is no longer valid: instead, droplets no longer exist, and fluids are simultaneously more compressible than ideal gases and have a higher heat capacity than liquids. The talk will outline recent findings in supercritical fluids and their relevance for propulsion and sustainable energy. The new concepts of a distributed supercritical latent heat and 'pseudo-boiling' are discussed, and it will be shown how this insight allowed to finally explain an injection experiment after more than a decade. Supercritical conditions in energy systems are here and they are here to stay - now we need to find out how this affects next generation design.

About the Speaker

Dr. Banuti joined the faculty of The University of New Mexico in August 2019 after postdoctoral positions at Caltech / NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Stanford's Center for Turbulence Research (CTR). He held Research Scientist positions at the Silicon Valley CTR spin-off Cascade Technologies, and the German Aerospace Center (DLR), Institute of Aerodynamics and Flow Technology, Spacecraft Department in Göttingen, with a focus on numerical research on combustion and injection in rocket engines, and hypersonic flow / flow control.

October 18, 2019

Control Energy of Complex Networks

Isaac Klickstein, Ph.D. Candidate, Mechanical Engineering, The University of New Mexico

When: Friday, October 18, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Complex networks are everywhere from the electricity we use supplied by the power grid to the roads we drive on, from the social media we use every day to the neurons communicating in your head as you read this abstract. Our ability to describe these networks and model the dynamics that govern their behavior has improved greatly in recent years and so attention has turned to controlling, or influencing, them. The control energy, or control effort, required to perform a particular task or achieve a certain goal is an important quantity when designing a controller and recently, for complex networks, it has been shown to span many orders of magnitude. Analysis is performed on both network models and datasets from many scientific fields and some design problems are discussed that remain open. This presentation covers the span of my research into the underlying mechanisms that cause this large variation of control energy of complex networks using tools from control theory, optimal control, optimization, and statistical mechanics.

About the Speaker

Isaac Klickstein received his BSME from UNM in 2015, and was a member of the 2015 FSAE team. He is currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and is planning to defend his dissertation later this semester. He has published papers on controls and network science in journals such as Nature Communications and Physical Review Letters and has presented at conferences such as IEEE CDC 2018 and SIAM Dynamical Systems 2019. His interests include numerical optimization, software development, and automating anything.

October 4, 2019

Developing physically‐based micromechanical computational models to understand materials variability instructural applications

Hojun Lim, Department of Computational Materials and Data Science, Sandia National Laboratories

When: Friday, October 4, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Understanding mechanical behavior of polycrystalline metals using computational models requires physically-based, multi-scale materials models and quantitative validation with experiments. In addition, accurate representations of microstructures are critical in investigating process-structure-property (PSP) linkages and materials variability in performance. In this work, a meso-scale micromechanical model informed from atomistic simulations is used to predict plastic deformations of single-, multi- and poly-crystalline metals. Crystal plasticity-finite element (CP-FE) model is parameterized from molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and single crystal experiments, and used to investigate the effects of microstructural variability in local and global stress-strain responses. Heterogeneous deformations of BCC metals are quantitatively compared with various experiments. In addition, the results are used to parameterize continuum models of BCC metals and predict dynamic behaviors under extreme conditions. This framework provides an efficient and direct link from the fundamental dislocation physics to the continuum-scale plastic deformation of polycrystalline metals.

Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-mission laboratory managed and operated by National Technology and Engineering Solutions of Sandia, LLC., a wholly owned subsidiary of Honeywell International, Inc., for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration under contract DE-NA0003525.

About the Speaker

Dr. Hojun Lim is a Principal Member of Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories. He works in the field of Computational Materials Science, including multi-scale materials modeling, crystal plasticity, finite element method, and constitutive modeling, as well as mechanical properties and deformation theory of metals. He has a Ph.D. in Materials Science from The Ohio State University.

September 20, 2019

Controller Development for Cross-flow Hydrokinetic Turbines

Dr. Dominic Forbush, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM

When: Friday, September 20, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Cross-flow turbines, in which the axis of rotation is perpendicular to the direction of inflow, have advantages over axial-flow turbines in aquatic settings, but are not as well understood. The applicability of axial-flow controls research to cross-flow systems is limited because cross-flow turbines have unique dynamics and fewer means of control actuation. The objective is to develop and evaluate control algorithms that are broadly applicable to cross-flow turbines, specifically. Three power maximizing control laws were considered in simulation, experiment, and at field scale. While the laboratory and field-scale turbines were not directly geometrically or hydrodynamically scaled, they were morphologically similar (i.e., both were four-bladed helical turbines). Simulation was found to predict control behavior in both a time-resolved and statistical sense, and trends in controller performance were also observed at field-scale. The best-performing power maximizing controller is incorporated with a nonlinear rated power-tracking over-speed controller and a strategy to transition between the objectives proposed. The combined control law was evaluated in laboratory experiment on two cross-flow turbines, a four-bladed helical device and a turbine with two straight blades. For both turbines in all laboratory cases, constant power set points show <3% mean absolute percentage error. Error is shown to be the result of controller delay and unmitigated intra-cycle variations, particularly in the case of the straight bladed turbine. In developing and evaluating controllers, an emphasis is placed on simplicity: required sensing, the complexity of any necessary turbine characterization, and actuation requirements are all minimized to ensure that proposed controllers are broadly implementable on extant turbines. The potential costs and benefits of added system complexity can then be considered against this benchmark on a device-specific basis.

About the Speaker

Dominic is a post-doctoral researcher in the water power program at Sandia National Laboratories. His work focuses on broadly-applicable controller development approaches for wave energy devices including robust system identification techniques, power take-off design, and extreme event survival strategies. He is also involved in the development and support of the Wave Energy Convertor Simulator (WEC-Sim), an open-source block-library and support scripts that allows versatile time-domain modeling of complex wave energy devices in MATLAB/Simulink. Dominic received his Ph. D from the University of Washington (Seattle) in December 2018, and his dissertation work in the Marine Renewable Energy Laboratory focused on controller development for cross-flow hydrokinetic turbines, most notably involving a grid-connected deployment of the Ocean Renewable Power Company RivGen® device in a remote Alaskan village.

September 13, 2019

Adventures in Jet Aircraft Development

Bob Carlton, Desert Aerospace, LLC, Vertigo Airshows, Moriarty, NM

When: Friday, September 13, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218



Jet aircraft designer and professional airshow pilot, Bob Carlton, will take you on an adventure in the development of light jet aircraft. The presentation features technical discussion, photos, amazing videos and humorous stories from a lifetime of flying, and over a decade of designing, building and flying a series of unique jet aircraft. Bob also looks forward the future of aviation and aircraft we wouldn’t have even dreamed of a few years ago.

About the Speaker

Bob Carlton has worked in the areas of aerospace manufacturing and mechanical design for more than 35 years, including 28 years at Sandia National Laboratories. Bob has worked on numerous space-based guidance systems and aircraft-based stabilized gimbal systems. Bob was lead mechanical designer on several space and aircraft systems, including the General Atomics Lynx radar system.

September 6, 2019

In Situ Fracture Testing at the Nanoscales – Enabling Extreme Materials Design and Novel Functionalities for Next Generation Biomedical Stretchable/Wearable Devices

Prof. A. S. Budiman, Xtreme Materials Laboratory, Singapore University of Technology & Design (SUTD)

When: Friday, September 6, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Plastic deformation mechanisms in metal-metal nanolayer composites (nanolaminates) have been studied extensively during the last decade. Fracture mechanisms however have been less understood. It has been observed that, for the case of metal-metal nanolaminates with a semicoherent interface, such as Cu/Nb, low interface shear strength increases the interface barrier to dislocation crossing, which improves nanolaminate plasticity. In this study, we use Cu(63nm)/Nb(63nm) accumulative roll-bonded nanolaminates, which have a large anisotropy of the interface shear strength between rolling and transverse directions (RD and TD, respectively), to study the effect of interface shear strength on the failure in metal-metal nanolaminates with a semicoherent interface during in situ clamped beam bending. Further, finite element analysis is used to understand the observed behavior. The results show a substantial difference between the fracture behaviors along the RD and TD owing to differences in the interface shear strength and grain size. For the RD beams, the slip bands originate from the Nb layers at the notch/crack tip followed by crack propagation along these bands. For the TD beams, the crack propagation is inhibited by interface shear. We suggest that shear bands form subsequently through the beam and lead to the final beam failure. However, under the assumption of the presence of the grain boundaries near the stress concentration zone, the interface shear in the TD beams could be inhibited. In this case, the crack growth can be attributed to the formation of microcracks at grain boundaries beside the main crack. Comparison with similar Cu/Nb nanolayers produced via PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) will be provided and mechanisms associated with plasticity and fracture will be discussed. Such advances in in situ experimentation techniques have indeed led to both extreme materials design (with enhanced fracture properties) as well as novel functionalities, such as for emergent metallic stretchable conductor technologies for next generation flexible/wearable biomedical/healthcare devices.

About the Speaker

Arief Suriadi Budiman received his B.S. in mechanical engineering from Institute of Technology, Bandung (ITB), Indonesia, his M.EngSc in materials engineering from Monash Univ., Australia and his Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Stanford University. He used to work as a post-doc at Los Alamos National Laboratory, and is currently an Assistant Professor at Singapore University of Technology and Design. Dr. Budiman has authored over 80 refereed scientific papers, conference articles, books, book chapters and patents, and is a recipient of Materials Research Society (MRS) Graduate Silver Award, MRS Best Paper Award, and Los Alamos National Laboratory Director's Research Fellowship. He is currently leading a dynamic international group researching nanomaterials and nanomechanics with applications in the next-generation solar photovoltaics, energy storage systems, and flexible biomedical devices.

April 19, 2019

Toward Additively Manufactured Continuous Carbon Fiber Reinforced Thermoplastic Composites for High Value, Low Volume Production Applications

Nekoda van de Werken , Mechanical Engineering, The University of New Mexico

When: Friday, April 19, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Carbon fiber reinforced polymer composites (CFRPs) are exceptionally strong, stiff, and lightweight materials, though conventional composite manufacturing methods have many limitations. The anisotropic nature of fiber reinforced composites necessitates larger thicknesses for complex stress states, and tooling is required which is often expensive and limits geometric complexity. Recently, continuous fiber composites have begun to enter the space of polymer additive manufacturing (AM), which presents a suite of novel opportunities and challenges. Most notably, fused filament fabrication (FFF) of thermoplastic CFRPs allows for curved fiber paths that can be placed and oriented within a part to maximize performance. In the case of semicrystalline thermoplastics, however, the rapid melting and quenching constraint imposed by AM dictates the crystalline morphology of the polymer, which may need to be post-processed to optimize part properties. The primary focus of this study is to develop an appropriate modelling and design framework that maximizes the advantages of additive manufacturing for continuous fiber composites, and to investigate the process-structure-property relationships that relate to FFF of high-temperature semi-crystalline polymer composites. The crystalline morphology, fiber-matrix interfacial properties, and composite part properties as they related to the print thermal history and post-process annealing are currently under investigation.

About the Speaker

Nekoda van de Werken received his BSME and MSME from the University of New Mexico in 2014 and 2017, respectively. He is currently working toward his PhD in mechanical engineering at UNM with an expected graduation in Fall of 2019. His research interests are in the fields of polymer matrix composites, composite mechanics, nanomaterials and characterization. Work from his master’s and PhD research has been published in high impact composites journals (Composites Part A and Composites Part B), and he was awarded the New Mexico Space Grant Consortium Fellowship in 2017. He has performed research in collaboration with Los Alamos National Laboratories, Sandia National Laboratories, and the Air Force Research Laboratories during his time as a graduate student.

April 12, 2019

Hyperbolic Method for Diffusion/Viscous Terms

Dr. Hiroaki Nishikawa, National Institute of Aerospace, Hampton, Virginia

When: Friday, April 12, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


This talk will discuss the idea of hyperbolizing diffusion/viscous terms for constructing superior numerical algorithms for diffusion and the Navier-Stokes equations. Hyperbolization allows us not only to discretize second-order elliptic/parabolic equations by methods developed for hyperbolic systems (e.g., upwind schemes), but also to generate schemes with superior features: convergence acceleration, high-order/quality derivatives on irregular grids, suitable for fully adaptive unstructured grid simulations. Moreover, it is demonstrated that hyperbolization is useful also for deriving conventional diffusion/viscous schemes as well as constructing algorithms for computing gradients. This talk is intended to provide an overview of the development of the hyperbolic method, a unique and simple idea for generating useful numerical algorithms.

About the Speaker

Dr. Nishikawa is an Associate Research Fellow at National Institute of Aerospace. He earned Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering and Scientific Computing at the University of Michigan in 2001. He then worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan and joined National Institute of Aerospace in 2007. His area of expertise is the algorithm development for CFD, focusing on the hyperbolic Navier-Stokes method and related methods for unstructured-grid simulations. He is the author of a useful book on CFD: "I do like CFD, VOL.1" (

April 5, 2019

The Near Earth Asteroid (NEA) Scout Cubesat ­­— Attitude Determination and Control System

Brandon Stiltner, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Alabama

When: Friday, April 5, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


NEA Scout is a 6U cubesat with an 86 square-meter solar sail. NEA Scout will launch on Space Launch System (SLS) Exploration Mission 1 (EM-1). The spacecraft will rendezvous with an asteroid after a two-year journey, and will take high resolution images of the asteroid’s surface. The attitude control system consists of three major actuating subsystems: a Reaction Wheel (RW) control system, a cold-gas Reaction Control System (RCS), and an Active Mass Translator (AMT) system. The three subsystems allow for a wide range of spacecraft attitude control capabilities, needed for the different phases of NEA-Scouts mission. NEA Scout employs a solar sail for long-duration propulsion. Solar sails are large, flexible structures that typically have low bending-mode frequencies, so sail flex-avoidance is key for the ADCS. In this lecture, I’ll give an overview of the NEA Scout spacecraft, and then focus on the design of its ADCS.

About the Speaker

Brandon Stiltner is an Aerospace Engineer with over 10 years of experience from various domains of industry. He is currently employed with Jacobs Technology working as a contractor at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, AL. Brandon’s current role is a GN&C engineer working on the development of the Space Launch System (SLS) – NASA’s new rocket that will return men to the moon. In that role, he is a member of the Liftoff and Separation Dynamics team and analyzes various events including booster separation and payload jettisons. Prior to this role, Brandon was a control system design engineer for a Cubesat project called Near Earth Asteroid (NEA) Scout. NEA Scout is a 6U Cubesat that will use a solar sail for propulsion. Its mission is to rendezvous with a near Earth asteroid, collecting high resolution images of the asteroid’s surface while also allowing scientists to better classify its orbit. Prior to NASA, Brandon was a Missile Trajectory Analyst for the Missile Defense Agency (MDA). Prior to joining the space sector of industry, Brandon was an Unmanned Aircraft Design engineer where he designed, built, and flight tested several small UAVs. Brandon holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Aerospace Engineering from Virginia Tech and is a Certified Modeling and Simulation Professional Engineer.

March 29, 2019

Direct numerical simulations of incompressible spatially developing turbulent mixing layers

Juan D. Colmenares F., PhD Candidate, UNM Mechanical Engineering

When: Friday, March 29, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Turbulent mixing layers are a canonical free shear flow in which two parallel fluid streams of different velocities mix at their interface. Understanding spatial development of a turbulent mixing layer is essential for various engineering applications. However, multiple factors affect physics of this flow, making it difficult to reproduce results in experiments and simulations. The current study investigates sensitivity of direct numerical simulation (DNS) of such a flow to computational parameters. In particular, effects of the computational domain dimensions, grid refinement, thickness of the splitter plate, and the laminar boundary layer characteristics at the splitter plate trailing edge are considered. Flow conditions used in DNS are close to those from the experiments by Bell & Mehta (1990), where untripped boundary layers co-flowing on both sides of a splitter plate mix downstream of the plate. No artificial perturbations are used in simulations to trigger the flow transition to turbulence. DNS are conducted using the spectral-element method implemented in the open-source code Nek5000. Mean flow statistics obtained from DNS will be used for validation of high-order Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) closure models.

About the Speaker

Juan D. Colmenares F. is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of New Mexico, doing research in computational fluid dynamics (CFD). His dissertation work is focused on modeling a turbulent mixing layer using direct numerical simulations (DNS), contributing towards validation of high-order Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) closure models. This work has a potential impact on developing high-fidelity turbulence models, thus, benefitting aeronautics, aerospace, automotive and energy industries. He obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Los Andes (Colombia), where he developed an open-source code for aerodynamic analysis of lifting surface using the unsteady vortex-lattice method, which is currently being used in different projects.

March 22, 2019

The transition to turbulence in oscillating, Boussinesq flows near adiabatic, sloping boundaries in the abyssal ocean

Bryan Kaiser, PhD Candidate, Massachusetts Institute of Technology – Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

When: Friday, March 22, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Kaiser abstract

About the Speaker

Bryan Kaiser is a PhD candidate in Physical Oceanography in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (MIT-WHOI) Joint Program. His thesis work explores the role of abyssal turbulence in the upwelling branch of the global overturning circulation of the ocean, through stability analyses, direct numerical simulations, in-situ observations, and machine learning. He holds MSME (2014) and BSME (2013) degrees from UNM, and prior to his engineering education he worked at 516 ARTS in downtown Albuquerque. Next year he will be a postdoctoral researcher at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where he will research baroclinic instabilities in directdrive inertial confinement fusion and develop machine learning techniques for hydrodynamic stability estimation.

March 8, 2019

Electrical Energy Infrastructure of the Future

Amir Sajadi, Senior Engineer, Public Services Commission of Wisconsin

When: Friday, March 8, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


The future energy infrastructure will be composed of hundreds of thousands of controllable and uncontrollable components that function in numerous ways. It also will involve high proliferation of renewable energy resources, such as solar, wind, and energy storage systems that could be integrated into the transmission and distribution networks. This complex system will manifest a sophisticated dynamic behavior and broad limitations in its control and operation. Accordingly, implementing high degrees of visibility and controllability, further integration of communication and advanced control infrastructures, and engagement of consumers are pivotal. This is to pave the path for advancements in energy management systems and to ensure a reliable, stable and secure power delivery. Considering the above-mentioned issues, the central gravity of my research plan is to focus on planning, management, stability, dynamics, and control problems associated future energy infrastructure and electric grid modernization.

In this talk, I will present the findings from two projects. The first project focuses on transmission system planning for the integration of large renewable power plants. My work, with the GE, NREL, FirstEnergy, and PJM, produced the guideline for the US Department of Energy on transmission systems planning using the US Eastern Interconnection. This guideline includes a series of techniques to determine operational impacts of offshore wind generation on steady-state and dynamic stability of large-scale power systems. The second project relates to real-time operation and control of future power systems. A crucial operating constraint for power systems is transient system stability. My work developed a computational framework for identification of multidimensional transient stability boundaries as well as critical operating conditions in a high-dimensional space for operation and stability.

About the Speaker

Amir Sajadi is a Senior Engineer at the Public Services Commission of Wisconsin where he oversees the planning and operation of the regional electric transmission services and wholesale energy market. He is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Systems and Control Engineering at the Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, and an Honorary Fellow in the Power Systems Engineering Research Center (PSERC) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Wisconsin. The areas of his expertise include modelling, operation, stability, and control of electric energy and power systems including the integration of renewable energy sources, storage systems, and electric vehicles. Amir attended various international universities under an international consortium including: Warsaw University of Technology in Poland, RWTH Aachen University in Germany, Telecom ParisTech in France, and University of Waterloo in Canada. He graduated with a M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering in 2012 from the Warsaw University of Technology. Subsequently, he earned a Ph.D. in Systems and Control Engineering in 2016 from the Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio and then, between 2016 and 2018, he conducted his Postdoctoral research in Future Power Systems at the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom. Amir has authored approximately 40 international scientific and industrial publications and has spoken at leading power system conferences around the world. Currently, he is serving as the lead guest editor of the special issue of International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems on Recent Advancements in Electric Power System Development Planning with High-Penetration of Renewable Energy Resources and Dynamic Loads.

March 1, 2019

Title TBA

Kenneth M. Armijo, Senior Member of the Technical Staff, Concentrating Solar Energy Technologies Department, Sandia National Laboratories

When: Friday, March 1, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218

February 22, 2019

Model Fidelity Studies for Rapid Trajectory Optimization

Lisa Hood, Member of Technical Staff, Navigation, Guidance, & Control II Division, Sandia National Laboratories

When: Friday, February 22, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


The generation of optimal trajectories for test flights of hypersonic vehicles with highly non-linear dynamics and complicated physical and path constraints is often time consuming and sometimes intractable using high-fidelity, software-in-the-loop vehicle models. Practical use of hypersonic vehicles requires the ability to rapidly generate a feasible and robust optimal trajectory. We propose a solution that involves interaction between an optimizer using a low fidelity 3-DOF vehicle model and feedback from vehicle simulations of varying fidelities, with the goal of rapidly converging to a solution trajectory for a hypersonic vehicle mission. Further computational efficiency is sought using aerodynamic surrogate models in place of aerodynamic coefficient look-up tables. We address the need for rapidly converging optimization by considering how to choose the fidelity of the model used for optimization so that the resulting guidance solution is robust and feasible, but the computation time to generate it is minimized.

About the Speaker

Lisa Gammon Hood is a member of technical staff at Sandia National Laboratories, working in the Navigation, Guidance, & Control II division. Lisa received a Master's degree in aerospace engineering from Georgia Tech in 2018 and a Bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering from Georgia Tech in 2003. Lisa's current work focuses on trajectory optimization and conceptual design for hypersonic vehicles.

February 8, 2019

Toward a Distributed and Automated Control Framework in Power Systems

Dr. Ali Bidram, Assistant Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, The University of New Mexico

When: Friday, February 8, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Abstract Conventional electric power systems are facing continuous and rapid changes to alleviate environmental concerns, address governmental incentives, and respond to the consumer demands. The notion of the smart grid has emerged to introduce an intelligent electric network. Improved reliability and sustainability are among desired characteristics of smart grid affecting the distribution level. These attributes are mainly realized through microgrids which facilitate the effective integration of distributed generators (DG). Microgrids can operate in both grid-connected and islanded operating modes. Proper control of microgrid is a prerequisite for stable and economically efficient operation. Microgrid technical challenges are mainly realized through the hierarchical control structure, including primary, secondary, and tertiary control levels. Primary control level is locally implemented at each DG, while the secondary and tertiary control levels are conventionally implemented through a centralized control structure. The centralized structure requires a central controller which increases the reliability concerns by posing the single point of failure. Alternatively, the distributed control structure using the distributed cooperative control of multi-agent systems can be exploited to increase the secondary control reliability. The secondary control objectives are microgrid voltage and frequency, and DG active and reactive powers. Fully distributed control protocols can be implemented through distributed communication networks. Since the DG dynamics are nonlinear and non-identical, input-output feedback linearization can be used to transform the nonlinear dynamics of DGs to linear dynamics. The transformed dynamics of DGs are then being used in the design of distributed control protocols. In the distributed control structure, each DG only requires its own information and the information of its neighbors on the communication network. The distributed structure obviates the requirements for a central controller and complex communication network which, in turn, improves the system reliability.

About the Speaker

Dr. Michael Bilka received his PhD from the von Karman Institute and Vrije Universiteit Brussels in Belgium. From there he moved to the University of Notre Dame as a postdoctoral researcher. He then stayed on as Senior Scientist in the Notre Dame Turbomachinery laboratory and held a concurrent appointment as a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering. In 2017 he left Notre Dame to join Ball Aerospace in Albuquerque where he currently works as a Research Engineer in the Effects, Research and Analysis group. His research interests include high speed and high enthalpy flows, turbomachinery flows, flow induced sound and vibration and unsteady instrumentation development.

February 1, 2019

Unsteady measurement techniques with application to turbomachinery flows and sound generation

Dr. Michael Bilka, Research Engineer, Effects, Research and Analysis, Group Ball Aerospace

When: Friday, February 1, 2019, 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Where: MECH 218


Continued development of advanced simulation and design tools required increased fidelity measurements for verification and validation and detailed physical understanding. Many fluid flow problems of technological interest involve complex geometries and unsteady, turbulent flows. The development and validation of unsteady measurement techniques is needed to help further develop design and computational tools to advance quieter and more efficient technologies. In this talk the development of unsteady pressure and temperature instruments will be discussed. These techniques will be applied to turbomachinery and sound generating flows to help elucidate important flow f eatures that can lead to improved component efficiency and decreased sound generation.

About the Speaker

Dr. Bidram is currently an Assistant Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, USA. He has received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from Isfahan University of Technology, Iran, in 2008 and 2010, and Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Arlington, USA, in 2014. Before joining the University of New Mexico, he worked with Quanta Technology, LLC, and was involved in a wide range of projects in the electric power industry. He is an Associate Editor for the IEEE Transactions on Industry Applications. His areas of expertise lie within control and coordination of energy assets in power electronics-intensive energy distribution grids. Such research efforts have culminated in a book, several journal papers in top publication venues and articles in peer-reviewed conference proceedings, and technical reports. He has received the University of Texas at Arlington N. M. Stelmakh outstanding student research award, Quanta Technology Shooting Start award, and cover article of December 2014 in IEEE Control Systems.