Issuu on Google+


The University of Oklahoma College of Engineering

Summer 2012

Satisfying Curiosity OU Technology Goes to Mars

Summer 2012


Evolve University of Oklahoma College of Engineering


Thomas L. Landers, Ph.D., P.E. AT&T Chair


Karen Kelly and Robert H. Taylor

Design and Layout

Dylan Reif and Tim Kelly

Cover Photos: Front: Mars (Photo credit: NASA) Back: Outstanding students from the class of 2012 Evolve is published semi-annually by the University of Oklahoma College of Engineering Communications Office. For more information, contact: Karen Kelly Director of Communications 202 W. Boyd St., Rm. 104 Norman OK, 73019-1021 Phone: (405) 325-2621 This publication, printed by OU Printing Services, is issued by the University of Oklahoma College of Engineering. 5,000 copies have been prepared and distributed at no cost to the taxpayers of the State of Oklahoma. © 2012 University of Oklahoma. The University of Oklahoma in compliance with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, genetic information, sex, age, religion, disability, political beliefs, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices or procedures. This includes but is not limited to admissions, employment, financial aid and educational services. For questions regarding discrimination, sexual assault, sexual misconduct, or sexual harassment, please contact the Office(s) of Institutional Equity as may be applicable -- Norman campus at (405) 325-3546/3549, the Health Sciences Center at (405) 271-2110 or the OU-Tulsa Title IX Office at (918) 660-3107. Please see eoo.

2 Evolve

Welcome from the Dean One of my favorite events of the year is the College of Engineering’s convocation ceremony. It is the culmination of countless hours of effort by our students, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. It fills me, our staff and faculty with an immense sense of pride in all that these students have accomplished. Yet, this is truly the beginning of a new phase of their lives - a time filled with hope and expectations of a rewarding career. There are so many opportunities for our 273 bachelor’s, 126 master’s and 33 doctorate degree recipients. Some are choosing to pursue their graduate studies while others have accepted job offers in a wide range of fields, including energy, aerospace and defense, computer information technology, government and non-profit. Our faculty continue to garner prestigious recognition in the classroom and the lab, as noted in the Faculty Update section of Evolve. President David L. Boren joined us this spring as we dedicated our new solidstate electronics cleanroom on the fifth floor of Devon Energy Hall. This semester, the president also spoke as guest lecturer in Maj. Gen. Jerry Holmes’ Leadership course. Through this special section designated a Presidential Dream Course, more than 200 students had the privilege of hearing President Boren relate his leadership experiences as statesman and scholar. Our newest donor opportunity, the J.H. Felgar Society, continues to flourish as many alumni and friends have joined in providing much-needed support. Your generosity continues to help us reach new heights and accomplish great things. As you enjoy this summer edition of Evolve, I want to share with you the memorable words of our May Convocation speaker, Desiree Gaskin, a graduating senior from Lawton, majoring in electrical and computer engineering. “Live to be remembered — and never forget how you got to where you are. You can beat all odds. You can achieve anything — just remember the path you took to get there and the memories you made along the way. ... Fellow graduates and future leaders of tomorrow — a memory is what you make of it. What role will you play in determining how people remember you?” May we all take Desiree’s words to heart and live to be remembered.

Thomas L. Landers Dean and AT&T Chair

Table of Contents EVOLVE FEATURES Satisfying Curiosity Seeing the Symphony AME Honorary Degree Recipient

4 6 8

James L. Gallogly

Regents’ Alumni Award 10 Alan S. Armstrong

DGS Inductees


David R. Bert and Barney L. Capehart

SkyDance Bridge 12 Cruise Challenge 24

Inside every issue UPDATES

14 Student 15 New Alumni 18 Team 20 Faculty 22 Facility 25 Alumni & Friends 27 Research 29 Class Notes 30 In Memoriam Summer 2012


Satisfying Curiosity Rui Yang Led Research to Support Laser Used on Rover

Photo credit: NASA


ui Q. Yang is a professor and researcher in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. An inventor, former NASA engineer, published author and owner of four patents, Rui Q. Yang was considered to be the necessary link, connecting innovative ideas from original concept to useful technology, when he came to the University of Oklahoma in 2007. A renowned pioneer in laser technology, Yang joined the College of Engineering to broaden and enhance the existing strengths of the mid-infrared laser research and development program. At the time, the program, while already well-regarded throughout the world, was focused on the development of mid-infrared lasers based on a class of optoelectronic materials known as IVVI, or lead-salt, semiconductors. Yang brought expertise in an entirely different materials system, III-V semiconductors, and the lasers he worked on employed a

4 Evolve

different device structure and principle of operation.

“In these processes, we learn from and inspire each other, which helps us advance our knowledge and gain innovative ideas.”

- Rui Q. Yang

“We were extremely fortunate to be able to recruit Rui Yang to OU,” said Jim Sluss, director of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. “He had already achieved a high level of international acclaim for his pioneering work in interband cascade lasers and we felt he would make an excellent

addition to the faculty, allowing us to grow our capabilities in mid-infrared optoelectronic device research.” Yang devoted 18 years to developing an interband cascade laser, a laser that uses electrons in a cascade manner, much like a multiple-level waterfall gains additional energy as water falls down each level. He then worked at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, Calif., improving his technology to support missions to Mars. It was at JPL that he led the research and development of an interband cascade laser that is currently being used on NASA’s rover Curiosity, which landed on Mars Aug. 5. The laser detects molecular and elemental chemistry relevant to life, specifically methane, to determine present and past life on Mars.

“Interband cascade lasers are energyefficient mid-infrared semiconductor laser sources for chemical-sensing applications,” Yang said. “They can be used for homeland security to detect explosives, help detect pipeline leaks, and even aid in the discovery of hidden fields of oil and natural gas.” Currently, mid-infrared lasers for chemical sensing are mainly used in the development of research instruments, environmental monitoring and air quality control. “Working in a national research lab like NASA is much different than a university,” Yang said. “At OU I have more freedom and flexibilities. I’m able to work on new ideas from original concepts to working devices. We start with basic research and develop it into something that can be applied or useful.” Yang currently is working on interband cascade lasers for several applications

such as chemical sensing and free space optical communications, novel photodetectors for high-temperature operation and high-speed application, and photovoltaic devices that convert infrared light from heat sources into electricity, in collaboration with researchers at the OU engineering physics department and external institutions like Sandia National Laboratories and JPL. “I enjoy working with students and researchers to explore quantumengineered structures and devices in nanometer scale,” Yang said. “In these processes, we learn from and inspire each other, which helps us advance our knowledge and gain innovative ideas. These activities also help students connect or apply their knowledge to the real world and experience how innovative ideas could become reality.”

Summer 2012


Professor Rong Gan Tackles Hearing Loss

Rethinking Hearing Loss University faculty and researchers generally garner recognition for their work in the form of awards, research grants and attention within academic circles and industry insiders. But AME professor Rong Gan, Ph.D., gets an even higher honor – fan mail. When articles about Gan’s research on solutions for hearing loss appear in newspapers and magazines, letters pour in from across the country. Usually from someone concerned about an elderly

“I read about your research. I will drive my father or mother from any distance to see you. Please work me into your schedule.” Anonymous 6 Evolve

parent, nearly every letter reads something like this: “I read about your research. I will drive my father or mother from any distance to see you. Please work me into your schedule.” With research like Gan’s, the fan mail is no surprise. Her research measures sound and vibration transmission through the ear and is transforming hearing technology. Gan began her career as a traditional mechanical engineer, working in car manufacturing for years. It was that foundation that instilled in her the fundamentals of mechanical engineering, specifically those related to movement, because as her research proves, mechanical principles of movement are essential to the hearing process. Gan transplanted her mechanical engineering experience into the realm of biomedical engineering when Y.C. Fung, asked her to study under him through Michael Yen at the University of Memphis. Gan was intrigued by the prospect of helping people through the same discipline that helped her design cars.

By Sarah Warren

Harnessing the Mechanics of Hearing Years, post-doctoral research appointments and millions of dollars in grants later, Gan is a preeminent biomedical engineer with knowledge that includes pulmonary circulation and the respiratory system. Today, she and her team at the University of Oklahoma and the Hough Ear Institute in Oklahoma City research what was for years the great mystery of hearing – the symphonic relationship between sound’s movement through the ear and the inner ear’s subsequent movement with sound frequencies, which, working in harmony together, actually creates hearing. Gan developed a groundbreaking computer modeling program that creates 3-D computational models of the human ear for sound transmission. The program led to a new understanding of auditory frequencies, ear movement and functionality. The developments allowed her and her fellow researchers to literally view hearing and harness the mechanics of the ear. Gan and her team are preparing to license the software so other researchers can benefit from it.

This leap forward by Gan and her team led to developing hearing technology that does not simply amplify noise, but works in harmony with the movement of the ear and sound frequencies. The totally implantable hearing system (TIHS) is completely invisible from the outer ear, and it overcomes drawbacks of traditional hearing technology like unsatisfactory sound quality, undesired sound distortion, blocking of the external ear canal and acoustic feedback. The project has not been without difficulties.

Gen. Gan did return. When the Cultural Revolution ended in the mid ’70s, he was released. He resumed his quiet life in academia as a university vice president. Gen. Gan died in 2010, at the age of 97. After the dramatic twists of fate throughout his life, he is remembered as a national hero. Gan returned to her homeland to organize her father’s state funeral.

Gen. Gan’s legacy and love for education lives on in both America and China. After the Cultural Professor Gan’s father is pictured in the back row, center, in 1942 at the U.S. Army Revolution, Gan and her Command and General Staff College in Fort Leavenworth, Kan. siblings all came to the degree in mechanical engineering from The team continuously United States to finish the University of Cambridge and studied works to overcome three distinct project their educations. Today, Gan’s daughter, at military academies in the United States challenges: nephews and niece are all current or future and the United Kingdom. professors. Gen. Gan and his late wife left 1. Minimizing patient risk by their estate to an organization that helps When World War II broke out, he returned developing a system that can be educate poor children in China’s rural to China and was appointed a major surgically implanted with minimal villages. general. He was instrumental in protecting disruption to the nerves around the China’s borders from Japan, and by the ear while also being the right size for Rong Gan, like every faculty member at war’s end, was a national hero. the inner ear, and that has a lifetime the School of Aerospace and Mechanical of usefulness so it never has to be Engineering, brings a unique background In 1949 the war was long over and Gen. removed, and personal perspective to her research Gan settled in for a quiet life in higher and teaching. For Gan, that involves a education, but China’s Cultural Revolution family legacy that embraces and even 2. Ensuring the cost/benefit ratio is and its anti-intellectual views deterred comparable to traditional digital sacrifices for education, and the need to those plans. Because of his Western hearing aids, make a difference in the lives of people. education, Gen. Gan was deemed an 3. Enhancing the device’s efficiency so enemy of the people. Along with 550,000 As the fan mail suggests, Gan, like her others, he was given the distinction it can be used for both mild and father, is already a hero to many. of being a Rightest, which meant the profound hearing loss. government considered him at risk of having pro-capitalism, anti-communist TIHS is still in the early phases. While the views. Gen. Gan was imprisoned from team makes steady progress, the TIHS is 1955 to 1956, and again from not close to receiving approval from the 1969 to 1976. Federal Drug Administration, and is not ready for product testing. Gan faithfully responds to every email from those anxious to be in a TIHS trial with this information.

Hearing the Rest of the Story While Gan’s research is the stuff of dreams for many who suffer from hearing loss, her personal history is closer to the stuff of legend. Gan was born and raised in China. As a young man, her father, Yi Gan, left China to study in the West. He received both a bachelor’s and a master’s

“The suffering…” Gan said when sharing the dates of her father’s imprisonment. “He suffered so much.” During many of the years he was imprisoned, Gan and her family had no idea where her father had been taken, if he was still alive, and if he would return. Professor Gan with her father in 2006.

Summer 2012


Honorary Degree Recipient

James L. Gallogly University of Oklahoma Law graduate and CoE Board of Visitors member, honored for career filled with challenges By Karen Kelly


im Gallogly is no stranger to what it takes to be part of a winning team. He’s a Sooner after all and “challenges,” he will tell you, “are what Sooners are all about.” Not just on the football field but in the educational arena as well. As spectators, we often don’t see the preparation and hard work it takes to get to that winning season. But Gallogly understands what it takes because he’s seen the dedicated work ethic played out in his own family. One of 10 children, he and seven of his siblings followed in their father’s footsteps, obtaining their undergraduate degrees from the University of Colorado. Gallogly received a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Colorado in 1974 and a law degree from OU in 1977. He completed the Advanced Executive Program at the J. L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University in 1998. The road to higher education presented unique challenges, as Gallogly expressed at the May 11 Honorary Degree Luncheon. “The first week of law school was so difficult I wasn’t sure I was going to make it.” Gallogly said he had to study hard for the first time in his life. Again, he rose to the occasion, accepting this new challenge, and with law degree in hand, returned to Colorado to practice law in a private firm.

8 Evolve

While at OU, Gallogly had hoped to work for Phillips, which later became Chevron Phillips Chemical and ConocoPhillips, and he got that opportunity, spending nearly 30 years with the company. He remembers the late 90s in Bartlesville, Okla., when a few executives sat down in the president’s office facing a somber possibility. “This company may not survive,” they were told. “We’re not big enough to compete with the big boys.” And the truth of the matter was, according to Gallogly, small and mid-sized energy companies were being gobbled up left and right. Phillips didn’t have a good balance sheet, was heavily in debt, and had survived two takeover attempts, but as Gallogly related, “We had a very important choice to make. Were we going to surrender or were we going to turn this company into something very different and special?” Gallogly realized the impact this decision would have not only on individual employees and their families, but also the Bartlesville community and the state of Oklahoma. With a lot of hard work from each employee, the company turned around and grew to become one of the largest energy companies in the world. “It just goes to show what can happen when people get energized around a cause and decide they want to make something happen,” said Gallogly.

President David L. Boren congratulates Gallogly on receiving the Honorary Degree during OU’s commencement ceremony May 11.

As Gallogly made his remarks at the Honorary Degree Luncheon in the Molly Shi Boren Ballroom in Oklahoma Memorial Union on May 11. “She’s going to be a Sooner some day. This is her first indoctrination,” said Gallogly. “And while she won’t remember this moment, Grandpa will.” Gallogly serves on the board of directors of the American Chemistry Council and the Society

of Chemical Industry. He is active in higher education affairs, serving on the OU College of Engineering Board of Visitors, University of Colorado Engineering Advisory Council and University Cancer Foundation Board of Visitors at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. He also serves on the board of directors and executive committee at Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas. He is a member of the Colorado, Oklahoma and Texas bar associations.

After this impressive and successful career, retirement would seem a natural next step for this executive leader. But Gallogly wasn’t finished yet. “It’s always been about proving and doing the next thing,” he said. So when he learned that LyondellBasell, a company that was $24 billion in debt with 14,000 anxious employees uncertain about their future, he decided to put himself to the test once again, joining the firm in May of 2009. In just 18 months, Gallogly’s leadership helped the company exit Chapter 11 bankruptcy and become a company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. At the end of the third quarter of 2011, LyondellBasell had record earnings with more cash in the bank than debt. “Challenges are what Sooners are all about- whether it’s on the football field or up here at the podium with a future Sooner,” stated Gallogly, referring to his granddaughter, Ella.

Gallogly, holds his granddaughter, Ella, while visiting with a graduate prior to OU’s Commencement Ceremony on May 11.

Summer 2012


Regents’ Alumni Award Recipient

Alan S. Armstrong

Civil Engineering graduate recognized for outstanding contributions


Alan Armstrong with his wife, Shelly, and daughters (from left), sophomore Claire and senior Caitlyn, both industrial and systems engineering majors at OU, Gabrielle and son Jarret.

lan Armstrong was one of 11 exceptional University of Oklahoma alumni and friends recognized with Regents’ Alumni Awards for their dedication and service to OU in a ceremony on May 11. Presented by the OU Board of Regents and OU Alumni Association, the Regents’ Alumni Award honors the important roles of OU alumni and supporters to the life of the university. A committee formed by the Alumni Association selects the award recipients from nominations made by alumni, friends, and OU faculty and staff. Each year’s recipients receive a plaque and their names are engraved on a permanent plaque in Oklahoma Memorial Union. In January 2011, Armstrong became president and CEO of Williams, a 104-year-old, Tulsa-based company that today is a leading energy-infrastructure

10 Evolve

service provider in North America. A 1985 graduate of OU’s civil engineering program, he and his wife, Shelly, who earned a degree in communications from the OU College of Arts and Sciences in 1984, are energetic leaders in the OU College of Engineering.

In his role at Williams and as a board member of the company’s charitable foundation, Armstrong has ensured that OU and other state educational institutions receive funds to recruit, retain and graduate the next generation of engineers and business leaders.

Armstrong has supported the College of Engineering Development Office by engaging potential donors and with the lead gift to privately fund a new development officer position. In the Tulsa area, he has worked diligently to promote the university and recruit National Merit Scholars to OU. As chairman of the College of Engineering Board of Visitors, he has led support of the college through such initiatives as the founding of the Felgar Society, a new giving initiative for the college.

In addition to involvement in several professional associations, he serves on the board of directors for Junior Achievement, USA. Armstrong also is active in the Tulsa community, serving as a board member and past board chairman of Junior Achievement of Oklahoma. He is a member of the executive committee of the Tulsa Metro Chamber and a board member of Tulsa’s Future II Oversight Committee, Teach for America – Oklahoma and of the Oklahoma Business and Education Coalition.

DGS Members Inducted DGS Inductees

Bert and Capehart Two exceptional University of Oklahoma alumni were inducted into the College of Engineering’s Distinguished Graduates Society at the college’s Convocation Ceremony May 12 at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman. The College of Engineering Distinguished Graduates Society was established in 1990. Selection is based upon prominent and distinguished professional or technical achievement, notable public service and significant contributions to the engineering profession.

David Bert, P.E., is vice president of

Drilling-Eastern Division for Chesapeake Energy Corp. in Oklahoma City. Prior to joining Chesapeake in early 2008, Bert served in various drilling, completion, production and midstream operations capacities at BP, including wells team leader for Arkoma and Thunder Horse projects. Bert has more than 26 years of experience in the oil and gas industry, both domestic and international (North Sea, Vietnam, Canada). He started his career with Mobil Corp. in western Oklahoma, California and the Gulf of Mexico before moving to Amoco/BP and has held a wide variety of technical and leadership assignments with increasing responsibilities. Bert has responsibility for all Marcellus and Utica Shale drilling operations (35 rigs), drilling engineering and construction support activities within Chesapeake Appalachia, LLC. Bert graduated with a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from OU in 1985, a master of science degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Southern California in 1993 and is a licensed professional engineer. He serves as chair of the OU School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering’s Board of Advisors. He also is a member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, has authored numerous SPE technical papers, and has been awarded several patents for

Barney Capehart and David Bert

oil and gas well technology. Bert currently serves as the Marcellus Shale Coalition’s Technical Committee vice chair. He is an Eagle Scout. Bert and his wife, Susan, have two teenage daughters and reside in Edmond, Okla.

Barney Capehart, Ph.D., is a

professor emeritus of industrial and systems engineering at the University of Florida, Gainesville, where he taught for 32 years. His research and publication focus has been energy systems analysis. He is the co-author of 11 books on energy topics and has authored more than 50 energy research articles in scholarly journals. He worked with the Florida Legislature to write and pass the Florida Appliance Efficiency Act of 1987. He is given credit as the person most responsible for creating these appliance standards, which have saved Florida electric and water utility customers over $3 billion. Capehart graduated with his bachelor and master of science degrees in 1961 and 1962, respectively, in electrical engineering and doctoral degree in engineering in 1967, all from OU.

Capehart currently teaches energy management seminars across the country and around the world for the Association of Energy Engineers. He is a member of the Hall of Fame of the Association of Energy Engineers, is listed in Who’s Who in the World and in 1988 was awarded the Palladium Medal by the American Association of Engineering Societies for his work on energy systems analysis and appliance efficiency standards. He also is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, and the Institute of Industrial Engineers. He was the editor of the Encyclopedia of Energy Engineering and Technology (three volumes, 190 articles, July 2007). He served as lead author of the Guide to Energy Management, 7th Edition, 2011, which is the most widely used textbook in the United States for university, college and professional education courses in the field of energy management. If you would like to nominate a deserving CoE alumnus for DGS consideration, please contact Tricia Tramel by email at or by phone at (405) 325-4211.

Summer 2012


SkyDance Bridge An iconic bridge for Oklahoma City and the School of Civil Engineering and Environmental Science By Robert Knox

12 Evolve


here is a new 390-foot-long, 20-footwide pedestrian bridge spanning the recently opened Crosstown Expressway near Robinson Avenue in downtown Oklahoma City. SkyDance Bridge includes a dramatic interpretation of Oklahoma’s state bird, the scissor-tailed flycatcher, and rises 197 feet above the roadway. The bridge is a component of Oklahoma City’s Core to Shore redevelopment effort between the core of downtown and the shore of the Oklahoma River. The SkyDance Bridge was designed by SXL (Spatial Experiments Laboratory), an eight-member Oklahoma Citybased consortium led by Hans Butzer, AIA, associate professor of architecture and urban design at the University of Oklahoma College of Architecture. The lead structural engineer for SXL on this project is CEES’s own Chris Ramseyer, P.E., associate professor of civil engineering at the OU College of Engineering. Ramseyer also is director of the Donald G. Fears Structural Engineering Laboratory. When Ramseyer received an invitation in 2008 from the executive director of development for the College of Engineering to participate in the international competition to design the bridge, he knew that this was a once-in-alifetime opportunity to positively impact the city and state on a major project. SXL’s design was selected from an original field of 16 applicants and a final group of four that included the engineering company that designed the Beijing National Stadium (known as the “Bird’s Nest”) for the 2008 Olympics, a firm specializing internationally on the design of pedestrian bridges, as well as one of Oklahoma’s most renowned and prolific architectural firms.

Laurent Massenat, the other engineer in SXL, oversaw the business aspects of the partnership. Ramseyer created the three-dimensional analytical models for the SkyDance Bridge and designed all the elements of the sculpture. The architectural team within SXL was focused on the “visual mass” and “form” of SkyDance. Ramseyer personally laid out the location and orientation of all the interior (web) members of the truss structure that makes up the SkyDance Bridge. He performed the engineering design of the stainless steel “feathers” and designed the concretefilled steel tube baseplate system, both of which are based in part on research he had performed at the Donald G. Fears Structural Engineering Laboratory at OU several years earlier. “One could argue that the nature of this concept required that it be developed in 3D-heavy media. The bird alone screams three-dimensionality and all the assets that 3D modeling bring,” Butzer says. This type of structural modeling made the design challenging and the development of plans difficult. Due to the complexity of the feathers and substructure, a major portion of the design was conveyed to the fabricator, W&W Steel, using electronic files that allowed direct fabrication of elements via computer numerical control. Electronic files also were used to ensure extremely tight fabrication tolerances. A total of 10,640 holes, all at unique nonrepetitive locations, were lined up without the need to modify any of the holes.

“The competition required that the design evoke something about Oklahoma, and we knew the bridge would be a landmark for the city and state,” Butzer recalls. The concept for the structure was developed during the summer of 2008. The design evolved from Butzer’s recognition of the ability of scissortail flycatchers to effectively steer through Oklahoma winds and Ramseyer’s basic understanding of their habits from his hobby of bird watching and ornithology.

“Early in the competition, we established the priority that the project would reflect as much about Oklahoma as possible,” Butzer relates. “We knew the design would be inspired by something Oklahoman, but we also thought about how we could design it so that local companies would have a great shot at competitively bidding the project, keeping Oklahomans employed with great jobs about which they could be very proud. We were the only one of the four final teams that focused on this aspect of sustainability.” This portion of the design process was significantly improved by the fact that Ramseyer has taken his OU-CEES structural steel design course students to W&W Steel each year for the past 12 years and intimately understands their fabrication capabilities.

As lead engineer within SXL, Ramseyer focused on all engineering issues while

The materials for the bridge, from the steel beams to the 665 stainless steel feathers,

Students in Ramseyer’s steel design course visit W&W Steel while SkyDance Bridge is under construction.

were all made in Oklahoma. And every person involved was happy to play a role. From the design through the construction, the SkyDance Bridge also celebrates the real-world experiences it brings to OU architectural and engineering students. “A major focus for Hans and me from the beginning of this project was bringing this creative design experience into the classroom,” Ramseyer says. “For the past three years, we have been able to incorporate aspects of SkyDance into our classes at OU.” Ramseyer also was able to use the knowledge he gained, and significant portions of the design process designing SkyDance in the CEES 5020 Bridge Engineering graduate class that he developed. Ramseyer is “extremely proud to be part of the SXL team that developed the idea and made SkyDance a reality. Only time will tell if we have been successful in creating an ‘iconic’ structure that resonates with the citizens of Oklahoma City. “ The project continues to garner recognition. As noted in a June 18 news release from the City of Oklahoma City, “Oklahoma City SkyDance Bridge, a public artwork and pedestrian bridge commissioned by the City of Oklahoma City, has been named as one of the 50 best public art projects by the 2012 Public Art Network Year in Review by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education. The annual Year in Review program recognizes the most exemplary, innovative, permanent or temporary public art works created or debuted in the past year. The 2012 Year in Review awardees were chosen from more than 393 works from 147 cities across 40 states and three countries.”

Summer 2012


Student Update introduced us to the book, Who Moved My Cheese.

Gilman Awards

“If you want to be successful in business, you have to like change,” said Mike. He told us how he failed early in his career, but he did not give up and started over again.

Two OU College of Engineering students are among those who received Gilman Awards for the fall 2012 semester and 2012-2013 academic year. The Gilman Scholarship Program is a nationally competitive scholarship sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State.

This to me is a true success and passion, where you do not give up, even though you have failed badly and lost everything.

Maryam Sabeghi Entrepreneurship Trip to Austin

I am a senior studying mechanical engineering. Being a top student is a dream come true, just as important is being prepared to step into a company or business and use my academic knowledge. This semester, I was honored to be an Entrepreneurship Austin trip attendee along with 15 other students who were either business or engineering majors. This trip was four days long and arranged by the Price College of Business and the College of Engineering. In this trip, we visited many companies, some well-known, such as Dell, IBM and National Instruments, and other small, but magnificent companies like AcademicWorks, TVA Medical and Blue Avocado. This trip helped me to not only find my role models for my future career planning, but also improve my selfconfidence as a female engineer. I realized that engineering and business are tied into one another. Many engineers who hold top positions in big companies have great knowledge of marketing, business and financing. The most important question I had before going on this trip was, how did these people get to where they are now? Most of the company owners told us that they started from scratch and failed a couple of times before they got to where they are now. We were invited to the house of Mike McConnell, president of Jones Energy. He

14 Evolve

In another visit to AcademicWorks, the co-founders were four young engineers and businessmen. They described the first place where they started their company. It was very small and mice ran all over the place, and even then, the founders were kicked out and had to start over. I learned that I can be one of them if I am passionate about what I do. Nothing should stop me, not even an old office with mice running all over it, or even lack of money. As a female engineer, I have always wondered how to become successful and hold high positions in companies. I met very successful women who are great leaders and who motivated me to be one, too. Blue Avocado was founded and is led by three women. The company makes bags from recycled plastic bags. These businesswomen started the company and grew it to perfection. I also met an entrepreneur female, Carrie Arsenault, who established her company, Accountability Resources, ranked in the top five in the Austin Business Journal’s Best Places to Work. She is successful and a mother of two. Anyone would be proud to see these passionate and successful businesswomen and engineers who have transformed the characteristics of women in society. Being confident, determined, willing to try, fail, and try again are factors that they all emphasized as an important bridge to success. Phil Gilbert, IBM vice president of business process and decision management, told the female students, “We need more female engineers; we need you here.” I learned a lot in this trip and I was proud to attend as a mechanical engineering student.

Receiving the awards were Kyle Bohanan, chemical engineering, pre-medical and biomedical engineering major, and Craig Johnson, computer engineering major and zoology minor. Both are studying abroad in Arezzo, Italy this fall.

Brandon Engebretson Brandon Engebretson is a Robert Hughes Centennial Fellow and graduate student in the School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering. His research, supervised by his adviser Vassilios Sikavitsas, evaluates tendon tissue engineering for use as a potential alternative to traditional tendon grafts. Engebretson, together with other graduate students and researchers throughout the Oklahoma research community, presented his work at the first Oklahoma Skeletal Biology Symposium on May 21. His poster, titled “Tendon Tissue Engineering Utilizing Adult Stem Cells and the Human Umbilical Vein,” received an award for best poster presentation. The award included a grant that can be used for travel to a national conference to present his current and future work.

Student UPDATE

Students participating in the capstone team were, as pictured above from left, Brett Bone (AME), Austin McAnelly and Andrew Freeman (ISE), and Maryam Sabeghi (AME). Faculty sponsors were Zahed Siddique and Farrokh Mistree (AME) , and Jant Allen and Randa Shehab (ISE).

OU-AME/ISE Capstone Team A multidisciplinary capstone team of students from the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering and the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering combined their efforts recently to automate a manual assembly process. The OU-AME/ISE capstone team was invited to the 2012 Capstone Design Conference, held in Champaign-Urbana, Ill., May 30 to June 1. The team was awarded $900 to attend. The project, sponsored by Hitachi Computer Products, involved research of the automation process and a timed study of the manual powerpack assembly process. The manual process includes joining components, labeling and data collection. A projected automation roadmap was developed, including recommendations to Hitachi for hardware, cost and a production analysis. A detailed report including a blueprint for proposed hardware was recommended.

New Alumni UPDATE

Shohrab Hossain (center), at Graduate College reception at the National Weather Center with Graduate Dean T.H. Lee Williams and GSS Chair Kiersten Baughman.

Shohrab Hossain An OU computer science doctoral student was named the Overall Outstanding Graduate Student for the 2011-2012 academic year. The $250 award, sponsored by the OU Student Association Graduate Student Senate, recognizes superior performance in teaching, research and overall performance. Hossain hopes to defend his doctoral dissertation either this fall or in the spring of 2013. A 4.0 academic record, exceptional research efforts, involvement as both a teaching assistant and research assistant, and leadership in campus activities contributed to his recent recognition. He has served as the treasurer and Webmaster of the Student Association of Bangladesh and is the treasurer of the Computer Science Graduate Student Association. Supervised by Mohammed Atiquzzaman, Edith Kinney Gaylord Presidential Professor in the School of Computer Science, his research, conducted in the Telecommunications and Network Research Lab in Devon Energy Hall on the Norman campus, focuses on Internet Protocol mobility management and security and privacy issues of mobile networks. His research results have been published in four prestigious international journals including: Transactions on Mobile Computing, Journal of Telecommunication Systems, Journal of Communication Networks and Distributed Systems and the Journal of Networks.

Scott Lowe Scott Lowe, from Muskogee, Okla., graduated from OU in May with a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Physics. He has accepted a fellowship with Venture for America, an organization specializing in entrepreneurship that leads to building companies and creating jobs across the United States. After attending a five-week training institute at Brown University in Rhode Island, Lowe has been assigned to work as an analyst at a startup company, Digerati, located in downtown Detroit. The company specializes in process improvement through technology with past projects ranging from hospital workflow optimization to compiling and inventorying an extensive database of resources for entrepreneurs in Michigan. Lowe, who was actively involved in OU’s Center for the Creation of Economic Wealth, credits his experience with the center for his continued interest in the challenge that comes with seeing a startup company off the ground.

For more information on what students have accomplished, visit and click on In the News.

Summer 2012


New Alumni Update

TJ Moen By Kim Wolfinbarger What is 2 plus 2? TJ Moen knows the answer, and it’s not what you think. Following graduation, the industrial and systems engineering senior begins Harvard Business School’s 2+2 Program. TJ will spend two years working in a professional position and will then return to school as a Harvard MBA student.

Industrial and systems engineering, he says, helped him to “take an ambiguous beginning, break it into small pieces [to make it] manageable, and turn it into something tangible.” He used statistics to analyze CrowdStory’s usage patterns, and the developers modified the application to take advantage of actual use. The ergonomics course also helped him see the product from the user’s perspective. A process might make sense on paper, he says, but “will it work well for people in the long run? Once you start considering people, you have to start thinking about everything a little differently.” When asked where he’d like to be 10 years from now, TJ paused. “I’d like to have the experience of being in the Bay Area start-up scene for a few years. But most importantly, I’d like to be working with talented people who I really like, getting different perspectives, and working on something that matters.”

TJ’s goal is to lead a software company that can “make a meaningful impact on people’s lives.” Education, energy and health care are three big areas with opportunities for software-based solutions, and TJ believes that “ISE skills [can] create value through entrepreneurship and technology.” In 2010, TJ served as the team lead for the first Software Business Accelerator project at OU’s Center for the Creation of Economic Wealth. CCEW interns usually explore commercialization opportunities for products already invented or designed at the University of Oklahoma. The SoBA team, in contrast, had one semester to conceive, design, implement and deploy an original software application. CrowdStory, a location-based storytelling app for iOS, was launched at South by Southwest in Austin last April. The experience, says TJ, helped him understand what it means to create a software-based business. “I learned how to put people in positions where they will succeed, where they can bring their best to the table. It was a learn-on-the-fly leadership experience.”

16 Evolve

Brandon Smith

Brandon Smith, pictured above with his sister Kristen, a 2009 journalism graduate, is the recipient of the prestigious NIH National Institute of General Medical Sciences Medical Scientist Training Program grant. Smith, from Houston, graduated in May with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering, pre-med option. Smith has accepted the stipend and tuition allowance for up to eight years, at which time he will have completed a combined M.D.-Ph.D. degree. “In receiving this prestigious NIH Training grant, Brandon Smith has demonstrated his great personal talent and hard work and the excellence of OU’s undergraduate program in the medical sciences,” said OU President David L. Boren.

Raghav Pant Industrial and Systems Engineering Ph.D. graduate Raghav Pant has received a postdoctoral appointment with the Oxford School of Geography and the Environment. Working in the Infrastructure Transitions Research Consortium, Pant will study British national infrastructure systems and analyze their risk of failure due to the effects of climate change. Pant is working with Kash Barker, assistant professor in the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering, on measuring resilience and robust decision-making for disruptions in interdependent systems.

Smith will attend the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. After two years in Houston, he will attend Rice University for three to four years in pursuit of a doctorate in bioengineering, then transfer back to Baylor to complete his medical degree. From more than 180 fields, Smith has narrowed the field in which he hopes to specialize to cardiology or neurology.

Student UPDATE Outstanding College of Engineering Seniors Recognized in a ceremony in April

BLAKE EISNER Mechanical Engineering

ERIC LEVINE Electrical and Computer Engineering Accelerated

RICHARD MARTIN Aerospace Engineering

ALLISON QUIROGA Architectural Engineering

SETH ROSWURM Civil Engineering

RUTH SHIH Computer Science

MEGAN SALISBURY Environmental Engineering

EDDIE SHIMP Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering

Not pictured are Alexandria Valiton, Electrical and Computer Engineering; Oliver Li and T.J. Moen, Industrial and Systems Engineering; Curtis Doiron, Engineering Physics and Kyle Renevier, Civil Engineering and Environmental Science.

Oklahoma, of y it s er iv n U Dear

n Naylor and I a th a on J is e m My na Grace Hartman t a t en ud st de am a sixth gra would ll, Texas who a w k oc R in ry to. Elementa I am old enough en h w OU to love to go ng courses when ri ee n gi en do to I would like and is David Naylor d da y M e. er th I get ced me ed it and convin v lo e H e. er th let he went ng this letter to ti ri w m a I e. to go ther at I want to go th d n a , m a I o it. you know wh letter and like is th d a re u yo there. I hope go to OU. From left: David Naylor, B.S. Electrical Engr. (1994), Chase Knowles, B.S. Aerospace Engr. (2012) I can’t wait to and Design-Build-Fly Team Structures Lead, and Jonathan Naylor visit the ExxonMobil Lawrence Sincerely, G. Rawl Engineering Practice Facility last spring. onathan Naylor J Summer 2012 17

Team Update CONCRETE C A N O E

American Society of Civil Engineers’ Mid-Continent Conference, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, April 19-21 The ASCE conference included both regional concrete canoe and steel bridge competitions. This year, the canoe team honored Oklahoma’s rich, Native American heritage as their canoe and theme, Legend of the Thunderbird, was highlighted in all elements of the competition. 2012 Season Achievements: 1st: Final Product 1st: Paddling 1st: Coed Sprint Race 1st: Women’s Endurance Race and Sprint Race 2nd: Men’s Endurance Race and Men’s Sprint Race 6th: Technical Paper 4th Overall


AIAA Design/Build/Fly Competition Wichita, Kan., April 13-15 The Crimson Skies team had its best year yet. The team, despite the tornado that occurred on the test field this year in Wichita, Kan. that halted competition, managed to score two 6th place recognitions, with a combined 3rd place in the overall competition that included 75 teams from all over the United States and Canada. 6th: Mission 1 6th: Mission 2 3rd: Combined flight score 5th Overall


EV Grand Prix, Indianapolis, May 12 Sooner Electric Racing is a new competition team composed of engineering students from the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering. The team made its first competitive appearance at the Brickyard in Indianapolis against a list of national and international competitors, where they swept the design and outreach components contest. 1st: Design 1st: Outreach 4th: Endurance Race Recipient of the Stewards Award for good sportsmanship 3rd Overall

18 Evolve






SAE Baja Competition, Auburn and Opelika, Ala., April 19-22 Sooner Off Road is a relatively new team that is only in its third year of competition. The team attended two national and international SAE Baja competitions with more than 100 entered teams in each. The second competition was in Madison, Wis., June 11-14. 1st: Acceleration 1st: Maneuverability 2nd: Dynamic Events 4th: Hill Climb 5th: Suspension 11th: Endurance

8th Overall

Competition: ASME Human Powered Vehicle Challenge, Grove City, Pa., April 27-29 18th: Design 21st: Women’s Speed 13th: Men’s Speed 12th: Endurance

13th Overall

Formula SAE Challenge Lincoln, Neb., June 20-23 The Sooner Racing Team completed in the top half of the field of national and international competitors this year. The team completed the race in spite of an accident that destroyed their forward aero wing.

Team HeliOUs, Global Conference on Educational Robotics Honolulu, Hawaii, July 18-22 A new robotics team competing for the first time took two major awards in robotics competition in Hawaii with three autonomous robots, one of which was an autonomous flying robot. 2nd: Double Elimination 1st: Overall Judges’ Choice

Summer 2012


Faculty Update S.R. Gollahalli Named AIAA Fellow The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics recently announced that S.R. Gollahalli, AME professor, Lesch Centennial Chair and former AME director, was selected to become an AIAA Fellow in 2012. He was honored at a May gala in Washington, D.C. This distinction, among the highest honors that can be bestowed upon an aerospace professional, places Gollahalli in a small and elite group of aerospace professionals throughout the world selected for their notable and valuable contributions to the arts, sciences or technology of aeronautics and astronautics. “Sub Gollahalli is a wonderful ambassador for the engineering profession and the OU College of Engineering. His technical expertise in the field of combustion is vital to aerospace propulsion systems,” said Tom Landers, dean of the College of Engineering. “He led the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering during a very important period of research, teaching and technology innovation. His students are in many technical and managerial leadership positions around the world.” Gollahalli came to OU in 1976. He is an internationally recognized authority in the fields of energy and combustion, and from 2001-2009, he served two consecutive terms as AME director. In 1991, Gollahalli was named a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Among his notable achievements are the 2005 George Westinghouse Gold Medal by ASME for his lifetime contributions in power, and the 2001 Energy Systems Award from AIAA for distinguished contributions to education, research, professional service and advancement of the field of energy and combustion. He also is a recipient of the university’s top teaching award. In his role as a full-time teacher for 45 years, Gollahalli has mentored 80 graduate

20 Evolve

students and dozens of undergraduate students in his research lab. He also has mentored several post-doctoral fellows and junior faculty members, involving them in his research. “Dr. Gollahalli taught me not only combustion, but how to be a responsible researcher. Whatever success I have is because he trained me,” said Ahsan Choudhuri, chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas at El Paso, who studied under Gollahalli for his master’s and doctoral degrees. Gollahalli remains a favorite professor at AME, and continues to influence the field of combustion, clean energy and power, while also influencing the lives of his students.

Robert Knox Honored as Member of OU’s Quarter Century Club Robert Knox, director of the School of Civil Engineering and Environmental Science, recently was acknowledged as a member of the OU Quarter Century Club. The Club honors donors for their steadfast support of 25 years or more. Research Paper on Model Minority Stereotype Honored A research paper published in the July issue of the Journal of Engineering Education is being honored by the American Society for Engineering Education. The paper was written by Deborah Trytten, associate professor in the School of Computer Science; Anna Wong Lowe, adjunct professor of Communication Arts at Oklahoma Baptist University; and Susan Walden, research associate professor in the College of Engineering. The NSF supported research (DUE-0431642) was

conducted through the OU Research Institute for STEM Education. The paper, Asians are Good at Math. What an Awful Stereotype: The Model Minority Stereotype’s Impact on Asian American Engineering Students, was featured in the news headlines on the ASEE home page. The news story was posted under ASEE News, July 17, 2012, and highlighted the paper’s research findings. For example, Asian American engineering students, although generally ill-equipped to recognize and respond to incidents of racial discrimination and stereotyping, experienced these challenges to their education. The students felt pressured to represent many traits of the Model Minority Stereotype, even while proclaiming the United States as a color-blind meritocracy. The authors also noted that even proportional or over-representation does not protect minority students from the adverse effects of racially motivated attitudes and behaviors. Strategies to improve diversity in undergraduate engineering education need to include cultural changes in addition to recruiting and retention efforts toward reaching parity. ASEE also will feature this research paper in its member news magazine, Prism. The paper is scheduled to be the focus of the JEE Selects column in the October 2012 issue of the magazine. The paper is available at Recognized at April Faculty Tribute Fengchyuan Lai, School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering; David Schmidtke, School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering; and Tian-You Yu, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, were awarded Presidential Professorships at the April 5 Faculty Tribute. The Presidential Professorship Program is one of President Boren’s cornerstone initiatives to recognize and reward top faculty members.

Faculty UPDATE

The Faculty Awards Ceremony was held at the Sandy Bell Gallery of the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art April 5. Patent award recipients representing the College of Engineering are (from left): Sesh Commuri, Robert Huck, Monte Tull, Jim Sluss, Miguel Bagajewicz, Kianoosh Hatami, M. Cengiz Altan, Brian Grady, Daniel Resasco, and third from the right, Michael Santos and far right, Sridhar Radhakrishnan.

Recognized for 30 years of service were Joáo Cruz, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering; Jeffrey Harwell, School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering; and Musharraf Zaman, College of Engineering. Recognized for 20 years of service were Fengchyuan Lai, School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, and Deborah Trytten, School of Computer Science.

Sridhar Radhakrishnan Receives Innovator Award Sridhar Radhakrishnan,director of the School of Computer Science and pictured above at far right, received the innovator award at the Faculty Tribute Ceremony for his creation and support of the Software Business Accelerator within the Center for the Creation of Economic Wealth. Radhakrishnan provided an innovative vision – an organization focused on student development of commercially focused software applications, and during the past 18 months, helped nurture an organization that: • provided 44 students valuable realworld experience on multi-specialty teams

Robert Nairn Recipient of Norman Campus VPR Award for Outstanding Research Impact The 2012 Vice President for Research Award for Outstanding Research Impact was presented to Robert Nairn at the April Faculty Tribute Ceremony. The award, given annually to two faculty members on the Norman or Tulsa campuses, acknowledges those whose research, scholarship and/or works of creative activity and expression have made a notable impact on culture, individuals, communities, organizations, field(s) of inquiry, industry, education, etc.

• employed 25 software developer student interns • produced six new software products, including web-based, iPhone and iPad applications • was awarded a Journal Record ‘Innovator of the Year Award’ for 2011. The Software Business Accelerator is a true catalyst for software development in the state, providing real-world experiences for students, connecting faculty and community members with programming and business development resources, and providing resources for local businesses seeking to grow through software.

Patent Awards Spring 2012 School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering Levent Aktas M. Cengiz Altan School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering Walter Alvarez Miguel Bagajewicz Brian Grady Jeffrey Harwell Edgar O’Rear Daniel Resasco School of Civil Engineering and Environmental Science Kianoosh Hatami School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Anjan Ghosh Miguel Bagajewicz Robert Huck Erik Petrich James Sluss Monte Tull Homer L. Dodge Department of Physics and Astronomy Michael Santos

Summer 2012


Facility Snapshot

Clean Room Dedicated

The University of Oklahoma dedicated a new state-of-the-art facility for the College of Engineering in an April 12 ceremony held on the first-floor atrium of Devon Energy Hall. The dedication was followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the fifth floor. Guests at the dedication included OU President David L. Boren and members of the College of Engineering’s board of visitors and school advisory boards.

Jim Sluss, director of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, welcomed guests, providing an overview of the benefits the new clean room will provide to students, researchers and faculty members. President Boren welcomed attendees and participated in the ribbon cutting ceremony. The clean room facility will make possible new advancements by the College of Engineering’s research

team in thin-film technologies such as mid-infrared laser devices for applications in night vision, medical diagnoses and other important applications. Not only is this an incredible opportunity for students and faculty, it is yet another way the university is driving the economy of our state. Companies need to test new and promising nanostructured materials and semiconductor device technologies. The Devon Energy Hall Clean Room Facility, located on the fifth floor of Devon Energy Hall, provides 3,300 square feet of class 10,000 clean room space. [Note: The numbers classifying clean rooms refer to the number of particles measuring 0.5 microns in size or greater that are allowed in the room for each cubic foot of air, thus a class 10,000 clean room allows only 10,000 particles per cubic foot.]

From left: Daniel Pullin, Tom Landers, President David L. Boren, Jim Sluss and Kelvin Droegemeier.

22 Evolve


AME Shop By Billy Mays

AME Shop Supervisor One of the most popular labs at AME is the AME Shop. Facilitated by shop personnel Billy Mays and Greg Williams, the AME Shop not only provides students with hands-on engineering experience, but also supports AME’s teaching labs, class projects, capstone projects, faculty research initiatives and competitive teams. Billy Mays (left) and Greg Williams run the AME Shop.

We at the AME Machine Shop invite AME students to stop by and learn more about us. The AME Shop is a fully functional machine shop with a diversified group of equipment: manual lathes, manual mills, welding equipment, sheet metal equipment, a CNC lathe, mills and router, and other supporting equipment. We help students take their projects from computational simulations to a finished product, while creating handson, project-based learning opportunities. When students work with us, they have a safety net of experts standing by to help if they run into trouble, and we train students with the necessary safety and operation of the equipment they will use for building projects.

Students in Siddique’s precapstone course test their projects in the AME Shop.

Students who make use of the AME Shop during their time at AME graduate with a greater understanding of the design processes and have experience with manufacturing. Their

project completion times from computer to product are generally shorter, and once they start a job, their time between training and becoming a productive engineer is reduced. The AME Shop also supports experimental projects for undergraduates and graduate students, classroom projects, senior capstone projects, graduate research projects, faculty research, and AME’s four competitive teams – Design/ Build/Fly, Sooner Off-Road, Sooner Powered Vehicle and Sooner Racing Team. We help with everything from design challenges and equipment capabilities, material procurement, to the necessary cutters and tooling needed to successfully complete the project. We also help with a test run of the project. The AME machine shop is truly a hands-on shop for students.

Summer 2012


Cruise Challenge

Graduate UPDATE

Not all roads lead to a cruise, but this one did for five CoE graduates “You know what?” asked Quintin. “If you guys graduate in five years, I will take you on a cruise. One of the students caught on to it and said, ‘What!’ I said, I’m serious. I know you have a lot of hard work ahead and I know there will be challenges along the way, but get your degree and we’ll all go on a cruise together, and I’ll pay your way.” And that’s just what Quintin did. What makes this story so remarkable is that at the time the challenge was issued, Quintin was pursuing his master’s degree. In January 2012, the now Dr. Quintin Hughes fulfilled his promise to five recent graduates, who were able to take part in a cruise that departed from Galveston to ports of call that included Progresso, Yucatan and Cozumel. It all started at the inaugural offering of the AT&T sponsored Summer Bridge Camp in July 2007. The camp, intended to increase the success rate of at-risk underrepresented students, was a three-week residential experience (it now runs four weeks) that seeks to prepare incoming freshman students who have been accepted to the University of Oklahoma and declared engineering as their major, for the rigorous academic road ahead. Students attend morning and afternoon classes that include an introduction to engineering and calculus. The students not only boost their academic readiness, but they become better acquainted with each other, the staff of the Multicultural Engineering Program and the camp counselors, typically current undergraduate or graduate students. Thanks to Quintin’s challenge, these five students realized more than just a fun time on a cruise with friends. Because Quintin believed in them, they were able to believe in themselves and, ultimately, attain their undergraduate degrees. Two members of the summer camp’s team also on board included Elizabeth Cook and Teara Flagg, director and co-director of CoE’s Multicultural Engineering Program at the time. Where do they go from here? As Quintin would say: “There are no ceilings.” The sky truly is the limit.

The Fabulous Five

(Bottom row): Daniel Chargois,B.S. Mechanical Engineering, employed by ONEOK; (middle row) Darryl Blackburn, B.S. in Petroleum Engineering, enrolled in final semester of P.E.; Janae Branch, B.S. in Industrial and Systems Engineering, employed by Halliburton; Kesha Hawkins, B.S. in Industrial Engineering, employed by Frito Lay; DeShanna Braxton, B.S. in Computer Engineering, employed by Phillips 66 and (back row) benefactor and CoE Alumnus, Quintin Hughes.

24 Evolve

Meet Quintin Hughes Quintin was one of the two 2007 AT&T Summer Bridge Camp co-directors. At the time of the camp, he had completed his undergraduate degree in the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering and was working toward his master’s degree in the same discipline. Since that time, Quintin has obtained his doctorate in industrial and systems engineering. His thesis focused on undergraduate success in engineering and how community and black identity intersect to influence success. He currently serves as the GEAR UP Site Coordinator at Northeast Academy in Oklahoma City. He also is the director of No Ceilings ( org), a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to continue inspiring underrepresented students to rise to the challenge of a degree in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. There were 12 students in the first AT&T Summer Bridge Camp cohort. Out of the 12, seven have earned undergraduate degrees in engineering. Two students were unable to participate in the cruise. Desmond Harvey, co-director of the camp, also was unable to attend.

Alumni & FRIENDS 1




1) Martin Jischke, David Bert, Charles Bert and Tom Love at the May Distinguished Graduates Society luncheon 2) Roger Rowe visits Couch Restaurants during April’s Board of Visitors’ meeting 3) Professor Emeritus John Campbell and Tricia Tramel 4) Paul Massad, Tom Dugan and Dean Tom Landers 5) Myra and Lew Ward at the May Distinguished Graduates Society luncheon 6) Doug and Hilda Bourne with Neil Heeney at the April Felgar Society reception in Houston.


From your development team


Contact us

Great things are happening in the College of Engineering, thanks to YOU and your generous support. Thank you for investing in our students! We hope to see you on campus this fall. Be sure to visit our Engineering Open House on Saturday, Sept. 22. Please plan to stop by the ExxonMobil Lawrence G. Rawl Engineering Practice Facility. We will be there three hours before kick-off to welcome you and your family to campus. Now, more than ever, we need your help. To learn more about establishing a scholarship, supporting our programs or sharing your expertise as a board member or volunteer, please contact your engineering development team.

Jill Q. Hughes

Executive Director of Development (405) 325-5217

Brandon Brooks

Development Officer (405) 325-6971

Tricia Tramel

Director of the Annual Fund (405) 325-4211

Summer 2012


CoE Graduates Where are they now?

Total Number of Living Graduates — 17,334

List of States With Number of Graduates Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware District of Columbia Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine

26 Evolve

101 32 247 153 1,484 451 45 24 14 407 216 13 40 294 88 36 225 61 134 10

Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island

217 124 198 101 34 217 15 31 60 24 197 167 182 160 6 192 6,148 97 155 8

South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming

90 9 160 3,824 53 7 394 294 21 59 15

Research UPDATE Article on Wireless Coexistence Fat cells from liposuction used ranked third in 2011 for most to create viable blood vessels viewed with over 3,250 hits for use in heart bypass surgery Hazem Refai and his research team have developed an experimental coexistence test setup that serves as the foundation for developing a universal protocol to test medical device coexistence in the 2.4GHz Industrial, Scientific and Medical band. Wireless coexistence is widely known as the ability of one wireless system to perform an intended task in an environment shared with other systems successfully executing their intended tasks — whether or not the systems utilize the same set of rules. Experimental results have proven the setup practical, versatile and reproducible for 802.11b/g/n (WiFi), 802.15.4 (ZigBee), and 802.15.1 (Bluetooth). A research article describing this newly developed coexistence test protocol and the results from a case study were published in the September 2011 issue of Medical Electronics Design magazine. By the end of 2011, the “Wireless Medical Device Coexistence” article was ranked third most viewed, with over 3,250 hits. In 2011, Wi-Fi chipset shipments totaled more than 1 billion units. A rapidly increasing trend also is being reported for Bluetooth and Zigbee chipset production. Wi-Fi has now transitioned from a nice-to-have to a must-have feature in electronic devices, due primarily to its ability to provide necessary connectivity. To remain competitive, medical device manufacturers are progressively incorporating wireless technologies into their devices, many of which operate in the 2.4 GHz ISM band. Given that these devices operate in a variety of environments, it is becoming ever more possible for Radio Frequency wireless medical devices and other wireless systems operating in their vicinity to interfere with each other. This phenomenon increases the probability of collision among device transmissions, causing data packets transmitted by medical devices to be delayed or completely blocked, and potentially interfering with timely transmissions of critical data, perhaps adversely affecting patient outcomes. As such, wireless coexistence is a growing concern for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The MED coexistence article detailing the test setup and case study was coauthored by Nicholas LaSorte, a Ph.D. student in electrical engineering at OU-Tulsa. Contributing authors include Hazem Refai, professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering; Seth Seidman, research electrical engineer at the FDA; Donald Witters, chairman of the CDRH EMC and Wireless Group; and Jeffrey Silberberg, senior electronic engineer for CDRH, Office of Science and Engineering Laboratories, Division of Electrical and Software Engineering. The article can be read in its entirety by visiting

Matthias Nollert

Lead researcher and associate professor in the School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering, Matthias Nollert, together with his research team, graduate students Jaclyn Brennan and Julien Arrizabalaga, presented their results in New Orleans at the American Heart Association’s Basic Cardiovascular Sciences 2012 Scientific Sessions in July.

“People who get coronary artery bypass graft surgery are typically elderly, frequently diabetic and usually pretty sick,” Nollert related. “The more typical way for getting stem cells from adults for transplantation is to extract cells from the bone marrow.” Bypass graft surgery is an amazingly successful procedure. Nollert explained that in normal cases, doctors would take a vein from your leg or arm to use as a bypass around the blocked blood vessel in the heart. Out of all the patients showing up at the hospital with chest pain and cardiovascular problems, about a third need a bypass graft. Many cannot get the bypass graft surgery because of the poor state of their blood vessels. They end up having a different procedure, angioplasty, that is not as effective and within four to five years they return to the hospital with the same problem. “We could do angioplasty on them as well as liposuction, take their stem cells, spend four to six weeks growing a blood vessel from them, all the while the angioplasty is keeping them alive,” said Nollert. Weeks later, they would come back to the hospital and have a functional blood vessel that could be implanted.” Liposuction allows doctors to extract enough stem cells to generate viable blood vessels, a much more plentiful resource than bone marrow. In addition to providing a solution for patients in need of a bypass, fat stem cells could also help alleviate a complication that patients often suffer with bypass surgery. “About a third of the people that end up with complications after having bypass are re-hospitalized because of problems that occur at the donor site,” Nollert said. “By using a tissue engineered vessel, we could alleviate an enormous amount of pain and suffering. You can do liposuction, which is excess tissue as opposed to pulling out a blood vessel that you really need.” Nollert understands the complexity of the situation, explaining, “You need all your blood vessels, but you don’t need all your fat.”

Summer 2012


Summer Camps AT&T and BP Summer Camps provide inspiration for future engineers AT&T Summer Bridge Camp, June 30-July 26 Twenty-eight high school graduates and incoming freshman engineering students used the summer to get a head start on their college careers at the AT&T Summer Bridge Camp. “These students stand out as they already see the value in planning ahead and investing part of their summer to increase success in the classroom this fall,” said Tom Landers, dean of the College of Engineering. “Because engineering coursework can be a challenge, this program prepares incoming freshmen academically for the rewarding road ahead.”

Josiah Scott, incoming freshman from Wagoner, Okla., demonstrates his team’s Rube Goldberg project while Bryan Gonterman, president of AT&T Oklahoma, looks on.

Bridging the gap between high school and college, the four-week on-campus program is designed to help prepare African American, Hispanic/Latino, Alaskan Native/Pacific Islander, American Indian, first-generation college students or students from rural communities for their first year of engineering coursework. However, the program is not limited to underrepresented populations and all students are encouraged and welcome to apply. BP Engineering Academy, June 10-16 Twenty-nine young high school men entering ninth to 12th grades this fall, participated in the BP Engineering Academy. Students experienced hands-on exploration in engineering, math and science. The one-week residential, on-campus program exposes future students to what engineers do through interactive activities with OU’s top engineering faculty; exploring real-life applications in the various fields of engineering; access to our newest high-tech engineering facilities and laboratories. BP DEVAS, June 10-16 Twenty-two young high school women entering ninth to 12th grades this fall, attended the weeklong residential program sponsored by BP. The program lived up to its name - DEVAS, which stands for Discovering Engineering via Adventure in Science. Students were introduced to OU’s campus, learned about the various engineering disciplines, met other young women with the same interests, discovered engineering through the creation of imaginative and fun team projects, and interacted with female engineering professionals.

28 Evolve

A student participating in the BP Engineering Academy works on a group project with help from OU alumnus, Sean Awosanya.

Students participating in the BP DEVAS program tour a chemical engineering lab located in the Sarkeys Energy Center.

Class NOTES Faramarz Gordaninejad, M.S. Mechanical Engr. (1980); Ph.D. Mechanical Engr. (1983) The University of Nevada, Reno honored Mechanical Engineering Foundation Professor Gordaninejad, with the Regents’ Researcher Award in May. Gordaninejad has taught at the University of Nevada, Reno for 28 years and, according to their website, is a leading expert in the field of “smart fluids and flexible solids,” used in cars to increase safety and comfort. Ron Koepp, B.S. Aerospace, B.S. Aerospace Engr. (2001); M.S. Mechanical Engr. (2003) The Environmental Test Lab at Wichita State University’s National Institute for Aviation Research has hired Ron Koepp as a senior research engineer and manager. Koepp will be responsible for managing employees and programs in the Environmental Test Lab including vibration, temperature, temperature variation, humidity, altitude, bleed air, mass flow testing, hot fuel and the lab’s newest capability, explosion proofness.  Mary McInerny, B.S. Industrial Engr. (2008), MBA (2008) Mary McInerney recently was appointed as director of Supply Chain Management for FNALP company, Freudenberg Oil & Gas. Freudenberg Oil & Gas provides sealing solutions for the global upstream segment of the energy industry, which includes drilling and oil well production activities. McInerney is responsible for helping the company develop a comprehensive global supply chain strategy. She works with sales representatives, engineers and manufacturing plant personnel to evaluate and select vendors who can supply materials to help the company meet its customers’ requirements. Brandi McManus, B.S. Env. Engr (1999) Brandy McManus recently was promoted to senior vice president, Content and Communities, for Schneider Electric, a public company of 10,000 + employees in the Dallas/Fort Worth area serving the electrical/electronic manufacturing industry. In her new role, she will be responsibile for the development and distribution of a world-class content, with a particular focus on thought leadership materials, user-generated discussions and community-generated content. Mohammed Nasrullah, M.S. Mechanical Engr. (1979) Nasrullah, a member of the Advance Recycle Filter Tank Assembly team, received the Rotary National Award for Space Achievement team award for 2012. The three-year, $19.5 million project included team members at several sites. John O’Haver, Ph.D Chemical Engr. (1995) O’Haver earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in secondary education from the University of Oklahoma, then taught mathematics for 12 years at his alma mater, Del City High

School. After this “first career,” O’Haver returned to OU and completed his doctorate in chemical engineering. He then taught in Oklahoma for a year before going to Ole Miss. A professor of chemical engineering and associate dean of engineering at the University of Mississippi, O’Haver teaches courses to engineering students of all classifications. He also supervises outreach to middle school and high school students as director of the UM Center for Math and Science Education. Norman Love, Ph.D. Mechanical Engr. (2009) Norman Love, Ph.D., research assistant professor of mechanical Engineering, at the University of Texas at El Paso has been selected for the 2012 NASA Glenn Faculty Fellowship Program. As Faculty Fellow, Love will conduct research at the Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio from June 4 through August 10. The opportunity gives Professor Love access to some of the best equipment and facilities in the world and a chance to work alongside other leading research engineers and scientists. Esther Shaw, B.S. Civil Engr. (2003) Esther Shaw is the project manager in the Oklahoma City office at Lee Engineering. Previously, Shaw was a senior project engineer and the primary municipal division project manager with Cobb Engineering Company. She has served as a project manager for several ODOT and Oklahoma City roadway, water, sewer, and traffic projects. Thomas G. Sprehe, B.S. Civil Engr. (1980); M.S. Civil Engr. (1984) The Maryland section of the American Society of Civil Engineers recently presented Thomas G. Sprehe with a Certificate of Award as the 2012 Civil Engineer of the Year in recognition of his sustained and unusual engineering contributions to the advancement of the civil engineering profession and service to mankind. Tom Walker, B.S. Mechanical Engr. (1992) TechColumbus, an Ohio nonprofit providing consulting services to technology startups, has announced Tom Walker as their new CEO. Walker, one of the founders of Oklahoma’s i2E, short for “innovation to enterprise,” and CEO since 2007, brings similar economic development experience to TechColumbus, whose mission is to accelerate the advancement of Central Ohio’s innovation economy. Susan Williams, Ph.D. Chemical Engr. (1999) Susan Williams, associate professor in the department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, was one of three faculty members at the University of Kansas honored with the Environmental Test Lab at Wichita State University’s National Steeples Award in recognition of her significant service to the people of Kansas. Williams is the director of KU’s Biodiesel Initiative and an associate professor in the School of Engineering. She has worked in the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at KU since 1999 after earning her doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of Oklahoma.

Summer 2012


In Memoriam Merle L. “Dink” Dinkins, 87, of Shawnee, Okla., passed away on Feb. 12. Dinkins attended OU on a football scholarship and lettered in football in 1943 and 1944 (all conference). He was a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity. He served in the Navy in the Pacific in 1945 as assistant officer on a destroyer, then returned to OU in 1946 and 1947, lettering in football and graduating from OU in 1947 with a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering. Upon graduation, Dinkins worked as assistant plant engineer at Robberson Steel Co. in Oklahoma City in 1948 and moved to Shawnee in 1949 as chief engineer for Murphy Boiler & Piping Co. In 1970, Dinkins formed his own construction company, the Lamar Co., named after his son and daughter, Larry and Marsha. Dinkins then formed DEPCO Construction Co. and built water, sewage and pump plants throughout Oklahoma. Dinkins is survived by his wife, Betty; son, Larry; daughter and son-in-law, Marsha and John Waldo; six grandchildren, Jack, Emily, Andrew, Tim, Amber and Titus; and eight greatgrandchildren. James Wilson McCall, of Hillsborough, Calif., died on July 13 at the age of 59. McCall graduated from OU in 1974 with a Bachelor of arts degree in letters with honors, in history, philosophy and english. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and earned a juris doctorate from OU in 1977, where he was a member of the Law Review. In 1974, he attended Oxford University as a scholarship resident at University College in Economics. McCall earned his M.B.A. in 1984 from Harvard Business School and served as a member of the Faculty Judicial Review Board. McCall’s work experience included McKinsey, Goldman Sachs and Security Pacific/Bank of America Venture Capital Group. McCall joined Intel Corp. in Santa Clara, Calif., in 1997, where he remained to the present. He served as a mentor and volunteer to engineering entrepreneur students in Silicon Valley. McCall was a member of The Society of the Cincinnati, whose members are descendants of the officers who served in Gen. George Washington’s Revolutionary Army. Bob R. Moon, 81, of Hillsboro, Texas, passed away Aug. 10. He graduated from Capital Hill High School in Oklahoma City and attended OU on a track scholarship. After earning a mechanical engineering degree and working in the private sector for two years, he enrolled at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, graduating in 1960 with a Master of Divinity degree. In 1967, Bob answered a call to First Presbyterian Church in Hillsboro. For more than 31 years, he would serve as pastor until his retirement in 1999.

30 Evolve

His achievements and honors include being named the Texas Conference of Churches Rural Minister of the Year in 1998, Sam Walton Business Leaders of America Award in 1999, Community Builder Award by the Hillsboro Masonic Lodge in 2000 and Hillsboro Lions Club Citizen of the Year, also in 2000. More recently in 2005, the Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce also recognized him as Citizen of the Year. In 2011, Bob was inducted into the Hillsboro Chamber Hall of Fame commemorating his many years of service to his church and community. He is survived by his wife, Claire Moon, of Hillsboro; two children, Robert Scott Moon of South Carolina and Lisa Thompson and husband, Tommy, of Forsan; brother, Larry Moon and sister-in-law, Wanda Moon, both of Oklahoma City; four grandchildren, Haley and Dylan Moon of West, and Hannah and Hilary Thompson of Forsan; and a number of nieces, nephews and extended family. Morris (Mikilos) Roth, age 85, passed away Sept. 28, 2011. He was born March 9, 1926, in Mukachevo, Czechoslovakia to parents, Bernhardt and Maris Roth. Morris grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y., and served in the U.S. in World War II with the 10th Armored Division and earned the Bronze Star. After his military service, he graduated from the OU and worked as a mechanical engineer for Halliburton until his retirement. Roth is survived by his wife, Clarice, to whom he was married for 60 years and his five children — Maris Guerra and husband Ernesto; Deborah Roth and husband Nathaniel Stinson; Ben Roth and wife Barbara Michelato; David Roth; and Rebecca Morris and husband David; 14 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. Jack C. Zarrow passed away at the age of 86 on Feb. 2. Zarrow graduated from the University of Texas with a petroleum engineering degree in 1947. As president and CEO of all of the family’s non-pipe enterprises, Zarrow oversaw the Bigheart group of oil transportation companies, TK Valve & Manufacturing, Prime Actuator Control Systems and Zarrow Holding Co. Employing more than 1,000 people on four continents, the companies designed and manufactured high-tech equipment used by major oil companies worldwide. With his wife, Maxine, he founded the Maxine and Jack Zarrow Family Foundation, which provides funding primarily to Tulsaarea charities, especially those supporting the arts, children, mental health and Jewish concerns. Zarrow also co-founded and served as a trustee for the Zarrow Families Foundation, along with his brother, Henry. Zarrow served on the engineering advisory boards of OU and the University of Texas as well as several government task forces related to energy and engineering. Zarrow’s survivors include his wife, Maxine; his brother, Henry Zarrow; three children, Gail Richards, Kathy Zarrow and Scott Zarrow; four grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.

In MEMORIAM James "Jim" Brian Coulter, 56, passed away August 12. He earned a bachelor degree in civil engineering from OU in 1980. A lifelong Sooner, Jim loved college football. Jim enjoyed an exemplary professional career spanning more than three decades and was a registered professional engineer in Texas. His career culminated with the founding of Coulter Engineering in 2002, a successful engineering firm providing services throughout Central Texas.

Jim is survived by his parents James and Mary Coulter; his son, Matthew Coulter and wife Dana; his daughters Lauren Coulter and Laira Coulter; his sisters, Christine Coulter and Julie Coulter and husband, Paul Lorenz; his niece Krista Cundiff; his granddaughter, Campbell Coulter; and numerous other family members and friends. He was preceded in death by his infant son, Layton Coulter.

Open House

ExxonMobil Lawrence G. Rawl Engineering Practice Facility (Located at the corner of Jenkins Avenue and Felgar Street on the University of Oklahoma’s Norman campus)

Join us Saturday, Sept. 22 to explore where CoE students practice engineering. The REPF will be open three hours prior to kickoff for the OU vs. Kansas State game. For accommodations on the basis of disability, call the College of Engineering at (405) 325.9037.

Have you ever considered making a planned gift to OU? Through a planned or deferred gift, you can reach across generations to touch the future of the University of Oklahoma and its students. Planned gifts are as unique as each individual and may be tailored in a way that best serves your needs, objectives and wishes. Find helpful tools to calculate your planned giving goals at the OU Office of Gift and Estate Plannings’ website, For information on how to make a gift to the University of Oklahoma College of Engineering, contact Jill Q. Hughes at (405) 325-5217 or Summer 2012


University of Oklahoma College of Engineering 202 W. Boyd St. Carson Engineering Center, Room 107 Norman, OK 73019-1021 ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED

32 Evolve

Congratulations to the 2011-2012 College of Engineering graduates!

Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage

PAID University of Oklahoma

Evolve Summer 2012