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2016 MSE Outstanding Senior

Congratulations to Ms. Priya Venkatraman, who has been named the Outstanding Senior for the Department of Materials Science and Engineering for 2016. Priya models exemplary skills in leadership and service. She is co-founder and president of BioactiVT, the biomedical engineering design team that won second place in the Engineering World Health design competition last fall. She is also president and founder of the first undergraduate biomedical organization at Virginia Tech. Priya is a member of Professor Johan Foster’s Advanced Materials Group in MSE where she is engaged in undergraduate research in the area of anti-bacterial scaffolds.  She has participated in internships at Adolphe Merkle Institute in Switzerland and the National Centre of Biological Science at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research in India. She also serves as a student ambassador for MSE. Priya is interested in pursuing research and development in materials science and biomedical engineering.

Yanxi Li Receives GEMS Sapphire Award

Mr. Yanxi Li, a Ph.D. candidate in Virginia Tech's MSE department, has been awarded the Graduate Excellence in Materials Science (GEMS) Sapphire Award given by the American Ceramics Society (ACerS).

Yanxi is advised by Prof. Dwight Viehland and co-advised by Dr. Jiefang Li. His research is focused on epitaxial growth and characterization of multifunctional solid oxide thin film materials with magnetoelectric and multiferroic properties.

This GEMS award, organized annually by the Basic Science Division of ACerS, recognizes the outstanding achievements of graduate students in materials science and engineering. It is based on the quality of student's research, the academic and scientific accomplishments of the student, as well as the overall quality of the student's oral presentation at the Materials Science & Technology Conference, held this year on October 4-8 in Columbus, Ohio.

College of Engineering Spotlight on New Faculty 

Carolina Tallon and Hang Yu will join the MSE faculty in January.

Virginia Tech students win second place for medical prototype

Engineering World Health is a non-profit educational organization whose mission is to create a global network of engineers and engineering students around the world who improve healthcare in low-resource environments. The Engineering World Health Design Competition challenges students to create innovative designs of medical equipment appropriate to very low resource areas. Plenty of hospitals in Africa, Latin America and Asia operate without steady electrical power under hot and dusty conditions with unclean water, all of which can contaminate and render equipment unusable. Many Engineering World Health chapters around the globe enter the annual design competition, which focuses exclusively on designing and building instruments that are low-cost and functional in these environments.

BioactiVT won second place for creating a low-cost, thermoelectrically generated pulse oximeter for use in developing nations.  MSE student, Priya Venkatraman, is a co-founder of BioactiVT and is President of the current team.  Read more here .

Virginia Tech Honors Paul Huffman, Jr. for Career Achievements

April 22, 2015 - Paul Huffman, Jr., a 1978 MSE graduate and MSE Advisory Board member, is a 2015 inductee into the College of Engineering Academy of Engineering Excellence, joining an elite group of 135 individuals out of more than 60,000 living engineering alumni. The Academy was founded in 1999 by F. William Stephenson, past dean of the college of engineering, and the College's Advisory Board. Inductees are Virginia Tech engineering graduates who have made continuous and admirable engineering or leadership contributions during their careers.

Paul is the founder and President of Dominion Metallurgical (DOMET) located in Roanoke, Virginia. As a member of MSE's advisory board, he played a key role in fund-raising efforts to establish VT FIRE and the Kroehling Advanced Materials Foundry. He also designed and constructed the Skipper II cannon at no charge, following in his father's footsteps. Paul Huffman, Sr., cast the first Skipper, also at no charge.

Check out the latest edition of Exploring Materials

Click on picture to view the pdf file.

Virginia Tech students and alumni enter TMS Bladesmithing Competition

A new Bladesmithing competition was featured at the annual TMS meeting and exhibition held in Orlando, Florida, March 15-19, 2015. A team of Virginia Tech students and alumni entered the competition with a bronze sword cast at the Kroehling Advanced Materials Foundry. Team members were Adam Humphrys (B.S. MSE 2012,  employed at Domet, Inc.); Peter Kim (B.S. MSE 2012, current MSE graduate student); Christian Birkett (B.S. MSE 2012, current graduate student in ISE); and Cameron Crowell, senior, MSE. To construct their sword, they first created a wooden pattern, then a nobake sand mold. They cast it in bronze and then performed forging work and polishing. The handle and pommel are made of cedar, designed and constructed by Adam Humphrys. The design for the blade was based on a Bronze Age sword found in the Thames River in London called the Limehouse sword, believed to date back to the 12th century BC. This type of blade was common in northwestern Europe and England. Sponsors for their entry were Dominion Metallurgical (Domet) in Roanoke and the AFS Piedmont Chapter. The team presented the sword to Dr. David Clark on March 25, 2015. It will be displayed in the MSE office.  Another MSE team also entered the competition, seniors Matt Antonelli and Drew Stutts.  Nice work guys! Click here to view a YouTube video of the construction process.

Engineering Now, 2014

MSE doctoral student, Rachel Umbel, appears in the 2014 edition of Engineering Now, which is the annual report of the College of Engineering. Click the photo to view the full article. View the full annual report.

Virginia Tech Research Magazine, Summer 2014

Nice article in the summer 2014 edition of Virginia Tech Research. Offers great example of how the Kroehling Advanced Materials Foundry and VT-FIRE are helping to foster cooperation between departments. Click photo to view full article. View the full magazine.


Dwight D. Viehland named Jack E. Cowling Professor of Engineering: A member of the Virginia Tech community since 2001, Professor Viehland is an experimental solid state scientist investigating phase transitions in ceramics and physical phenomena like ferroelectricity, piezoelectricity, magnetostriction, and magnetoelectricity. Read the full story here.

AFS-Piedmont Pledges Continued Support for VT FIRE

On June 27, 2013, Paul Huffman and Greg Southerland, representatives of the American Foundry Society - Piedmont Chapter, presented a $24,000 check to COE Dean Benson as a first installment of their new $40,000 pledge  in support of VT FIRE and the foundry at Virginia Tech. The AFS-Piedmont Chapter initially kicked off the VT FIRE project back when the foundry was still in the planning stages with a $45,000 pledge, which was fulfilled in 2012.  Pictured below, left to right: David Clark, MSE Head; Greg Southerland, AFS-Piedmont Chair; Dick Benson, VT Engineering Dean; Paul Huffman, AFS-Piedmont Education Chair; and Alan Druschitz, Director, VT FIRE. For more photos, visit VT FIRE news.





MSE SHOWCASE - Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Invited Seminar Speaker, February 5, 2016

Prof. David Green, University of Virginia

David Green is an Associate Professor in Chemical Engineering at UVA. The overarching theme of his studies is to elucidate and quantify how polymers at interfaces control the actions of nanoparticles and polymer droplets in polymer solutions, melts, and blends with applications towards all facets of nanotechnology. He received his PhD at the University of Maryland at College Park (UMCP) in ChemE, his MS at UMCP in CEE, and his BS from Boston University in ME. Dr. Green has won a number of awards including a Sloan PhD Fellowship, NSF International Postdoctoral Fellowship, and an NSF CAREER Award.

AIST Scholarship Recipients - Monday, January 25, 2016
Four MSE undergrads are among this year's AIST Scholarship winners. Congratulations to Joseph Ogea, Mattie LaPrada, Mackenzie Jones, and Zachary Corey. These students will participate in paid summer internships in the steel industry and each will receive a $6000 one-year scholarship for 2016-2017. 
Austin Scherbarth, MSE, 1 of 3 COE Sudents Awarded Rolls-Royce Fellowships - Monday, January 25, 2016

MSE graduate student, Austin Scherbarth, received one of three Rolls-Royce Fellowships. this doctoral award comes with an annual $30K stipend, full tuition and fees, health insurance, and an annual travel budget of $2500.  Congratulations Austin!

Dr. Gary Pickrell publishes book with Dr. Gurbinder Kaur - Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Congratulations to Dr. Gurbinder Kaur and Dr. Gary Pickrell on the publication of Modern Physics:  McGraw Hill Education (India) Private Limited, 2014. Click the picture to read more.

Johan Foster's Work Recognized - Friday, February 27, 2015
Materials Views recognized work by Dr. Johan Foster and co-author Dr. Mehdi Jorfi published in the Journal of Applied Polymer Science. The article notes that reports on biomedical materials based on nanocellulose are growing in prominence. "In light of this progress, two up and coming young researchers present a new review of nanocellulose's biomedical applications." Read more at Materials Views
Faculty Search - Advanced Manufacturing - Tuesday, February 03, 2015
The MSE Department seeks applications to fill a tenure-track faculty position in the area of advanced manufacturing of materials. Click here to read the full advertisement. 
AMA Adhesive & Sealant Student Award - Tuesday, December 30, 2014

MSE graduate student Rose Roberts received a 2014/15 Adhesive Manufacturers Association (AMA) Adhesive and Sealant Scholarship. The award is based on a nomination from her advisor, Prof. Johan Foster, and her research on "Facile Approach PVAc Based Reversible Adhesives." Rose received a tuition scholarship for the 2015 spring semester. Congratulations!

Dr. Kathy Lu publishes new book - Friday, December 19, 2014

Congratulations to Prof. Kathy Lu on the publication of Materials in Energy Conversion, Harvesting, and Storage. Click the picture to read more.

Maureen Julian Foundations of Crystallography published - Monday, October 06, 2014

Congratulations to MSE Adjunct Professor, Maureen Julian, on the publication of the 2nd edition of Foundations of Crystallography with Computer Applications.

MSE student among 3 awarded Rolls-Royce Fellowships - Tuesday, September 23, 2014

MSE grad student Austin Scherbarth is one of three COE students to receive a 2015 Rolls-Royce Fellowhsip. This doctoral award comes with an annual $30K stipend, full and tuition and fees, health insurance, and annual travel budget of $2500. Congratulations Austin!

FOUNDRY M&T Hall of Honor Recognizes Dr. Alan Druschitz - Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Dr. Alan Druschitz is the latest metalcaster enrolled in the FM&T Hall of Honor. His career in research, manufacturing, design, and in education has been guided by practicality and inspired by insights and discoveries, and in that way his experience parallels the progress and transformation in the metalcasting industry over the past four decades. Read the full story HERE.

MSE Graduate Student Published in Physical Review Letters - Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Rachel Byer joined the MSE graduate program fall 2013. Her paper, written with her Bucknell advisor and others, has been published in Physical Review Letters and is an "Editors' Suggestion," listed on the main page of the website. Read more about her publication HERE. Also, Bucknell University featured Rachel and her professor, Wendelin Wright, in a nice article that you can read HERE
Exploring Materials Spring 2014 - Tuesday, June 10, 2014
MIT Sloan Fellow - Monday, April 28, 2014

Jeff Schultz (MSE '99) has been accepted into the MIT Sloan Fellows in Innovation and Global Leadership program. He is a 2015 MBA candidate in the MIT Sloan School of Management. Jeff is the Chief Technology Officer at Aeroprobe Corp. in Blacksburg, Va. 
YOU MAY HAVE TO SAVE A LIFE ONE DAY! - Monday, July 09, 2012

 This short video will show you how to be the one to save someone's life someday instead of being a by-stander and watching them die.  I encourage all of you to watch it.  Let's everyone in MSE take care of each other!

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