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Photos by John Nienhuis

Engineering Hall is a powerful new instrument for reinventing engineering instruction and addressing global challenges.

John Nienhuis


A new platform for transformation

Retooling our college to educate creative thinkers, problem-solvers, designers and innovators

We know that today’s engineers, grounded in the strong foundation of theory and knowledge that has been the hallmark of a Marquette engineering education for more than 100 years, must also be creative thinkers, problem-solvers, communicators, designers and innovators. It is their ideas, their discoveries that can help us address real-world problems — the global challenges of clean water, energy efficiency, healthy children and families, safe and sustainable infrastructures. That’s why our profession must reimagine and reinvent engineering education. And the College of Engineering’s magnificent new home — Engineering Hall — is helping us do that here at Marquette. Engineering Hall is a living laboratory. Every detail of the building was explicitly designed to show engineering on display and to foster the generation of creative ideas. But Engineering Hall is more than just a building. It’s a platform for the transformation that is taking place inside the building. That transformation begins with our talented and dedicated faculty, whose research and teaching you will read about in this and future issues of Marquette Engineer. This transformation becomes a reality through our students. That’s why our strategy for resource development must continue to have three priorities — the building, faculty support and student scholarships. And the transformation won’t be fully realized without further advances on all three fronts, most visibly the completion of Engineering Hall in the coming years to bring the entire college under one roof. I invite you to come visit us to see our new building but, more important, to see engineering education being transformed and our students in action. And I hope you see our drive for excellence reflected in the following pages, along with our firm commitment to a mission of making a difference in the world through engineering. Dr. Robert H. Bishop, P.E. OPUS Dean, College of Engineering Marquette University

1 // Dean’s Message

Marquette University College of Engineering Olin Engineering Center 1515 W. Wisconsin Ave. P.O. Box 1881 Milwaukee, Wis. 53201-1881


Engineer Magazine 2011

414.288.6000 OPUS Dean of Engineering Robert H. Bishop, Ph.D., P.E. Executive Associate Dean Michael S. Switzenbaum, Ph.D. Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs J. Christopher Perez, M.S., M.B.A. Associate Dean for Enrollment Management Jon K. Jensen, Ph.D. Assistant Dean and Director of Engineering Cooperative Education Susan J. Michaelson, M.A. Chair of Biomedical Engineering Kristina M. Ropella, Ph.D. Chair of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering Christopher M. Foley, Ph.D., P.E. Chair of Electrical and Computer Engineering Edwin E. Yaz, Ph.D., P.E. Chair of Mechanical Engineering Kyuil (Kyle) Kim, Ph.D., P.E.

Marquette Engineer is published for alumni, colleagues and friends of the college. Feedback and story ideas are appreciated. Editor Jessica Bulgrin Editorial Team Becky Dubin Jenkins Stephen Filmanowicz Mary Pat Pfeil Matt Wessel Interim Art Director Jennifer Cooley - Core Creative

01 // Dean’s message: A new platform for transformation 03 // Illuminator of innovation

An educational instrument tuned to the needs of the 21st century, the College of Engineering’s new home opens up the learning process and creates a dynamic setting for finding solutions to global problems.

Plus, an update on the floors still being finished and the equally impressive work still ahead (page 8) and scenes from the building’s opening celebration (page 9)

11 // Research profiles: advancing engineering knowledge, addressing world challenges

Dr. Taly Gilat-Schmidt: sharper imaging, safer patients Dr. Chung Hoon-Lee: going boldly into the tiniest frontier Dr. Philip Voglewede: powering up hope for better- performing prosthetics Dr. Stephen Heinrich: sensors and sensibility

15 // A race for mobility

Children with orthopaedic disabilities are benefiting

from novel treatments and devices, thanks to the Marquette-based Tech4POD partnership.

17 // Laboratory on four wheels The solution-by-solution story of the determined student-faculty effort that created Marquette’s new all-electric safety shuttle

21 // Nuts & Bolts The latest news in brief from the College of Engineering

25 // Wonder women The iHeels program introduces girls ages 6 through 18 to the fun, challenge and excitement of engineering.

November 2011 // 2

Dan Johnson

John Nienhuis

John Nienhuis



3 // Illuminator of Innovation

of innovation An educational instrument tuned to the needs of the 21st century, Marquette’s new Engineering Hall opens up the learning process and creates a dynamic setting for finding solutions to global problems. In the twilight, Engineering Hall is transfixing, crystalline, alive with activity, glowing from within. It is a citadel of glass, nearly transparent, embodying a primary principle that guided its design — engineering on display. Dr. Robert H. Bishop, OPUS Dean of the College of Engineering, explains: “When people are standing at the bus stop out in front of the building, I want them to see engineers doing what they do, but, as important, I want the engineering faculty and students to be able to look out and see the world that they are helping. That transparency will guide us and keep us connected.” The 115,000-square-foot Engineering Hall is the first phase of a planned 250,000-square-foot facility. “The building is great. It’s beautiful,” says Dr. Michael Switzenbaum,

executive associate dean, “ ... but what I’m really excited about is the position it places the college in ... ready to serve the needs of students for the next 50 or 100 years.” The $50 million for the existing 115,000 square feet, the technology, the labs and all equipment were bought without borrowing and without bonds. When the balance of the building is completed, the entire project will represent a $100 million investment in 21st-century engineering education. In Bishop’s mind, it’s worth every penny because, “I personally think that engineers are going to save the world.” Today’s headlines warn us of hardships ahead — from shortages of fresh water to global competition for finite

John Nienhuis

Night time is the right time to see Engineering Hall at work, facilitating collaborative learning (middle photo), while daytime sends light streaming into the Engineering Materials and Structures Testing Laboratory with its 30-foot-high ceiling, 10-ton crane, strong wall and strong floor (this page). At far left, lockers of every shape and size hold student projects and students use abundant flexible space to their advantage. November 2011 // 4

In 2005, a retreat was held for the entire engineering faculty and staff, some students, some alumni, and friends of the college. Led by the college’s dean emeritus, Dr. Stan Jaskolski, the group began to articulate a vision for the new building. As the conversation evolved, there was excitement about the concept of teaching-research houses, with offices, labs and classrooms grouped by emphasis.

John Nienhuis

It would be a comfortable place, inviting to students, dotted with commons spaces for grads and undergrads together. K-12 outreach would be highlighted. There would be room enough for discovery learning — that is, learning through action and application. Switzenbaum also remembers an emphasis on sustainability that grew into a commitment to make this a green building. “It’ll be a LEED building,” he says, referring to the nation’s premier green building rating system, administered by the United States Green Building Council. “It would really be hypocritical not to when we’re teaching our students that they need to think about sustainability and long-term viability.” After all, the building would need to have a useful life of 100 years.

energy supplies. As problems mount, the need for effective, creative problem-solvers will grow. Science and society will demand more engineers, says Bishop, but we can’t simply spin the wheels of traditional education faster. Times have changed. Engineering has changed. It’s complex, interdisciplinary and systemsbased. Work is collaborative. Our body of knowledge has ballooned, yet there is a demand for it to be easily searchable and sortable and available instantly to the nearest laptop or smartphone. For engineering to play the pivotal role Bishop envisions for it, engineering education and the spaces that house it need to be rethought, too.

5 // Illuminator of Innovation

“How can we know what’s going to be needed in 100 years?” asks Switzenbaum. “Twenty years ago, could you have imagined what we’re doing now?” So flexibility was built in. There are few load-bearing interior walls, no furniture bolted to the floor. Power and utilities are supplied from above and below. Almost the entire interior could be swept away and reconfigured if necessary. There’s WiFi everywhere in the hall, but there are also conduits for cable, just in case. “That should cover us, but who knows?” Switzenbaum continues. “I’d love it if one of our students found a better way to transfer data and made us look dumb. That’s what we want to inspire students to do.” Realization of the design fell to OPUS Architects and Engineers, a Minneapolis design/build firm working with University Architect Tom Ganey. “Tom is a visionary architect,” Bishop says. “He was able to provide us with guidance.” The OPUS team, led by Terry Helland, embraced the collaborative and innovative spirit this project required. “Because of their training, engineers inherently have a much better understanding of design processes, systems and elements,” said Helland of working with

For engineering to play the pivotal role Bishop envisions for it, engineering education and the spaces that house it need to be rethought, too.

Marquette faculty. “It was enjoyable. All the partners challenged each other. The result was a building that clearly reflects the original vision.” Engineering Hall is a study in materials, from the cool gloss of stained and polished concrete to the warm accents of reclaimed wood. All is revealed. The truth about poured concrete in a steel-framed building is it cracks. In most buildings, these inevitable cracks are hidden. Not here. There are no floor coverings or drop ceilings. The fireproofing is exposed. The climate control system is labeled. Structural supports are revealed. The building itself is a teaching tool — more engineering on display. A four-story central stairway seems to draw in and distribute natural light to every corner. It feels airy and open. There is comfortable furniture everywhere — tables, chairs and sofas — most not more than a power cord away from an AC outlet. The hallways have a coffee shop look and feel. “Where do ideas come from?” asks Bishop. “They often come from intellectual collisions.” Engineers who study fluids, whether civil, mechanical or biomedical, could have a lot to share, but they might never meet. Those happy collisions are encouraged by physical spaces designed into Engineering Hall. In nearly every corner there are “nodes,” areas that naturally encourage meeting and collaboration. On the walls are big flat-screen displays where students can work together on projects and presentations. Many walls are also whiteboards inviting the capture of fleeting thoughts.

Engineering Hall is a study in materials, from the cool gloss of stained and polished concrete to the warm accents of reclaimed wood. All is revealed ... The building itself is a teaching tool – more engineering on display. “Space at any university is more precious than gold,” says Dave Newman, manager of the building’s Engineering Materials and Structures Testing Laboratory. Looking down on this huge new space, he adds, “You could put five of my old labs in here.” At the east end of the lab is a monstrous strong wall. “We can push with 175,000 pounds at the top,” he says, tossing out the big numbers with pride. “We can pull with 350,000 pounds per insert on the floor. Between those two, we can fixture structures and apply incredible force. We never had even close to that ability in the past.” That keeps important structural testing and lab work on campus within reach of professors and even undergrads. “That door is designed to get a 75-foot beam in here,” Newman offers. “You can bring a tractor-trailer in, and I can pick off the beam with my crane.” With 10 tons of steel dangling above, Newman can even measure deflection with strain gauges permanently wired into the crane rail. “This whole building is an instrument.”

Passers-by on Wisconsin Avenue can look in on the laboratories where students are encouraged to transform ideas from CAD screen to real thing. Discovery learning is a hands-on process, so there’s a well-equipped tool crib and machine shop where even undergrads (with the proper training) can get oil beneath their fingernails. Unlike the cramped confines of Haggerty and Olin, there’s plenty of storage for works in progress.

John Nienhuis

“This is the most wired building on campus,” says Dr. Mark Federle, McShane Chair of Construction Engineering and Management, pointing to the glass-walled Innovation Lab, “and this is the most technologically advanced classroom.“ There are monitors all around. We can stream video anywhere, post it on YouTube if we’d like.”

Tom Silman, mechanical services supervisor, works with students in the Jaskolski Discovery Learning Laboratory (above), named by Drs. Robert and Patricia Kern to honor Dean Emeritus Dr. Stan Jaskolski, who retired in 2010. At left, the main lobby is just steps from the corner of 16th Street and Wisconsin Avenue.

November 2011 // 6

Tomorrow’s engineering education must be holistic and complete — an education for the whole person.

Right now, only the lower two floors of Engineering Hall are open and in use; the remaining floors will be occupied by next summer. Each floor has a theme. The second floor is devoted to sensors, nanoscale devices and controls, the third to health and human performance, the fourth to water and water quality. The building is not constructed around engineering departments but rather around engineering challenges and Marquette’s specialties.

The hope is that by laying out the college’s strategic interests and demonstrating a commitment to rethinking engineering education in America, Engineering Hall will become a catalyst for growth. It seems to be working. At 338 students, the college’s 2011 freshman class is the largest in a decade. As planned, the glass walls of Engineering Hall are providing an important and enticing window to the future of engineering — engineering on display.

John Nienhuis

That means encouraging cross-pollination across engineering disciplines and other branches of science altogether because it’s unlikely that any one branch will straighten out our tangled global troubles. For example, clean water isn’t just about engineering. It’s about chemistry, computer controls, biology, energy and business. Engineers must understand everything from ethics to culture to politics and budgets. Tomorrow’s engineering education must be holistic and complete — an education for the whole person.

John Nienhuis

It’s true. Not just in the high-bay EMST lab but everywhere in Engineering Hall. There’s an array of 130 sensors welded to beams, embedded in footings, and mounted in pipes and ducts. The building is constantly supplying information about itself for the benefit of faculty and students. Water usage, temperatures, energy consumption, vibration — all these measurements and many more will be available on a 65-inch LCD touchscreen monitor mounted near the first-floor elevators and remotely on the Internet, anywhere in the world. Readings from strain gauges in steel braces and anemometers on the upper floors, taken together, can reveal the building’s load and deflection in a storm. “It’s one thing to teach wind shear,” says Switzenbaum. “It’s another to be able to see it on display.”

At left, a project for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation tests the durability of a joint on a 2,000-pound steel highway sign post by vibrating it two times per second around the clock with an agitator in the Engineering Materials and Structural Testing Laboratory. Above, students can check out an array of tools from the tool crib. 7 // Illuminator of Innovation

Dan Johnson

... and there’s plenty more to come The lower level and first floor of Engineering Hall are buzzing with teaching and research activity, but that’s just the beginning of the story. Floors 2, 3 and 4 are due for occupancy by August 2012. And the completion of Engineering Hall is still ahead. Upper floors While providing more settings for “engineering on display,” floors 2 through 4 will bring to fruition the building’s distinctive “house concept.” Laboratories, faculty offices, classrooms and student study nodes will bring together people and resources from multiple disciplines — engineering as well as science, nursing, business and communication — to promote solutions

to global challenges (and to familiarize students with the role of engineers as real-world problem-solvers). Floor 2 is dedicated to the design, fabrication, characterization and evaluation of sensors, sensor controls and nanoscale devices. Sensors are crucial to the design and maintenance of all engineering systems — everything from the check-engine light in a car to blood-sugar monitors to potential new uses as early warning devices to protect against terrorist threats. Floor 3 will provide resources and opportunities for students, faculty, clinicians and industry partners to address human performance and health care. Laboratories devoted to areas such as medical imaging, bioinstrumentation and embedded system designs will allow teams of investigators from multiple disciplines to study form and function of the human body using state-of-the art technologies and to design diagnostic, therapeutic and assistive technologies. Floor 4 is dedicated to water and water quality — an enormous worldwide challenge in the 21st century. Solutions involve water engineering, allocation of scarce water resources and other issues vital to sustaining life. This will be the home of the college’s Center for Water Quality. Engineering Hall — more to be done The College of Engineering’s physical needs won’t be met, explains Bishop, until Engineering Hall is completed, bringing the entire college under one roof. “Though we are well on our way, we have much yet to do,” he says. “Marquette is large enough to offer multiple engineering disciplines and small enough to allow for us all to be in a single building where those important intellectual collisions can occur — and where our students can thrive.” To supplement Engineering Hall’s current 115,000 square feet and reach the 250,000 square feet needed to house the entire college, an additional 135,000-squarefoot section of the building is planned at an estimated cost of $50 million. If you wish to support the reimagining and reinvention of engineering education that is occurring in Engineering Hall at Marquette’s College of Engineering, please contact Carrie O’Connor at 414.288.4707 or

On Oct. 7, 2011, hundreds of alumni, faculty, students and friends were on campus for a day of celebration and tours of the college’s new home. Visitors had the opportunity to tour the first two floors of Engineering Hall and soak in the building’s state-ofthe-art labs and unique design. The day also marked the unveiling of a donor wall (pictured below) that recognizes the generous benefactors who are helping to make Engineering Hall a reality.

Celebrating Engineering Hall

9 // Illuminator of Innovation

Photos by Ben Smidt


A building as change agent

It’s no longer enough to be just trained. Today’s engineers must also be creative thinkers, problemsolvers, communicators, designers and innovators. This is our vision for all Marquette engineers. And Engineering Hall gives our students the tools they need to tackle the challenges of tomorrow.

Scan the QR code to the left with your smart phone to watch the video. Or visit

November 2011 // 10


By Charles Nevsimal


Say what you will about the controversial TSA pat-downs travelers endure on their way through airport security. The one thing you can’t say is, “These pat-downs contribute to cancer.” The jury is still out, however, when it comes to Backscatter Scanners, the so-called “naked” scanners whose ubiquity in airports is growing exponentially. But if Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering Dr. Taly Gilat-Schmidt has anything to say about it, that jury might not be out for long. Her research in Backscatter Scanner radiation is about to culminate in a paper that will reveal results. Security scanners aren’t her main focus, however. “Most of my research is in the area of medical imaging systems,” says Gilat-Schmidt, “a field whose many benefits are countered by certain design tradeoffs. For instance, in medical imaging, rendering a crisper, cleaner image usually means more radiation and a potentially longer scan time.”

Photos by Ben Smidt

Much of Gilat-Schmidt’s research involves developing novel methods to “break” or improve these tradeoffs, such as new X-ray detector technology, innovative reconstruction algorithms (the math that morphs data acquired by scans into images) and improvements to the way imaging systems acquire data.

11 // Research Features

“I’m interested in how images are formed and how to design better systems,” says Gilat-Schmidt, whose fascination with imaging took flight when, as an undergrad, a professor shuttled a small group of students to a radiology conference held annually in Chicago. With two football field-sized exhibition floors of medical imaging equipment, she was hooked.

Today, Gilat-Schmidt leads her own students to that very conference every year while leading them in the lab on a daily basis. One study she and her team are working on attempts to quantify the feasibility and potential radiation dose reduction of tilting the CT gantry during cardiac CT scans to reduce irradiation of the breast. Its tissue is highly radiosensitive because of its frontal location on the body and because it is unshielded by other organs.

“ ”

I’m interested in how images are formed and how to design better systems. The study is in the preliminary feasibility phase, so Gilat-Schmidt’s team is using computer software to simulate CT scans and track the transport of X-ray photons through patient models derived from actual CT scans.

“While waiting for Institutional Review Board approval, we decided to use the same simulations to quantify the radiation dose of Backscatter Scanners,” she says.

Which lands us squarely back at the airport and that forked path that leads to the “naked” scanner or its alternative: the friendly TSA worker wearing light blue surgical gloves. The tradeoff? A possible dose of radiation or a too-close-forcomfort experience. Your choice might be a little easier — and safer, too — once Gilat-Schmidt publishes that paper disclosing her results.


At approximately 1/3000th the diameter of a human hair, the light-emitting diodes Dr. Chung Hoon Lee has created in his lab on the third floor of Haggerty Hall are among the smallest LED light sources in the world. What are the possible uses of such a microscopic light source? Certainly not lighting football fields or parking lots. In fact, it would take nearly 1 billion of these devices to generate as much light as a typical children’s nightlight.

By Stephen Filmanowicz

Not a problem. As light sources get smaller and less bright, their potential as transmitters of computer signals grows. In fact, if Lee, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, can just get his nanodevice to emit even less light — by pulsing on so briefly that it emits as little as one photon at a time — it could begin generating serious interest as a quantum-computing alternative to the transistors on the highest-powered chips from Intel and other manufacturers. The LEDs are just one application of the work that is the main focus of Lee’s research, the creation of nanostructures featuring metal-coated silicon arms that form a tiny gap (between two and 10 nanometers wide) through which he can pass an electric current. When electroflourescent zinc oxide molecules bridge the gap, Lee has his tiny light source. The gaps in his nanostructure are small enough to hold a single DNA molecule or a single ball-shaped cluster of carbon molecules known as C60. And because DNA and C60 are among the most closely studied materials these days, interest will be high when Lee runs an electrical charge through the gap and studies the conductivity of these materials in their most basic form. He’s currently working with research partners at North Carolina State University and Cornell to acquire those materials and prepare for the tests. Though Lee isn’t the first scientist to create such nanoplatforms, his have decided advantages over predecessors. Because the nanostructure arms are suspended, whatever happens in the gap between them is free from interference from the base layer, or substrate, below. They can be created with everyday optical lithography machinery, compared with the $5 million electron beam lithography equipment used to create many previous nanogaps. And perhaps best of all, Lee’s platforms can be created — and located — with great predictability. That removes one of the more vexing aspects of conducting research at the nanoscale — the tendency of a tiny particle or structure being sought to be as elusive as a stray meteor in a vast galaxy. With the progress he and his research partners are making, Lee says such challenges are more than manageable. And the potential payoff in knowledge gained looks huge. “Think of the human body, for example. You can try to understand it as a single object or you can look closer and see individual organs and cells. You see how liver cells differ from heart cells and how they function differently,” he explains. “The same principle applies with nanotechnology. If you want to understand something, it really helps to understand it as a molecule. That’s the single building block.”

“ ” You learn more about something as you look at it in its smallest form.

Typical human hair


500 nm

November 2011 // 12


By Stephen Filmanowicz


Dr. Phil Voglewede was just months into his first faculty appointment in the early days of the Iraq War when he and a colleague first wondered whether engineers had a role to play in improving prosthetics for the war’s many amputees. Now, as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Marquette, Voglewede is on his way to answering that question, leading a federally funded interdisciplinary research team in creating a promising motorized prosthetic ankle and foot. From its earliest phases, Voglewede’s project has revealed the promise and challenges involved in pursuing natural human motion through engineering. Then, as now, the most common prostheses — passive devices that fix the foot and ankle at a 90-degree angle — offered minimal range of motion and limited thrust (springing back to form after flexing slightly under the user’s weight). They have the benefit, however, of being lightweight and affordable.

“ ”

Photos by Dan Johnson

We’re dealing with something that can be directly applicable to people’s lives.

13 // Research Features

Early discoveries revealed that mechanisms familiar to any engineer could, at least in theory, contribute positively to prosthetic performance. A standard four-bar linkage like those found in classroom door closers closely matched the interplay of foot and ankle. A torsion spring could help supply thrust for walking. A motor could provide the extra lift required for inclines or stairs.

As these basic components became part of the team’s concept design, each added bulk and weight, however — dealbreakers if not managed carefully. “You’re only dealing with so much real estate ... and so much weight and so much power you can put on there,” explains Voglewede. “Then you have all the constraints of the practical. ...Will this work in the rain? Those are tremendous constraints that you don’t typically get in robotic applications.” Voglewede and his team have come a long way from a working model that tested well in terms of force and motion but tipped the scales at 10 pounds and was scaled more for Bigfoot than a human. After retooling made possible by a $390,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health in 2009, its replacement is appropriately human-scaled and weighs about 5 pounds. It also has a backpack power source and sensors that cue the release of force. Due soon for testing on amputees, the device is a focal point of a growing collaborative team at Marquette and the Medical College of Wisconsin. Included in that group is Marquette mechanical engineering professor Dr. Joseph Schimmels, a specialist in spring design, who is working on potential breakthrough ideas that could yield the power of a motorized ankle using only springs that harness and redirect energy generated as part of the walking process (including the heel strike). “It’s not like we’re doing nanotechnology,” concludes Voglewede, “but this is to me just as exciting because we’re dealing with something that can be directly applicable to people’s lives and so fundamental to engineering, something within very strict constraints. To me, that’s the beauty of engineering, working within the constraints.”


By Charles Nevsimal

When it comes to life, Dr. Stephen Heinrich, professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering, prefers to turn autopilot off. Whether by indulging in 19th-century French literature, 1950s jazz or long contemplative walks, slowing down from the warp-speed tendencies of our culture is integral to Heinrich’s day. Taking time to reflect ... consider ... plan. “I have come to appreciate the importance of intention,” says Heinrich, whose research in theoretical and applied mechanics has become an incarnation of intention in the past 25 years. Heinrich and his team are working to develop an effective solution for detecting air pollutants, water toxins and blood-borne disease markers using microcantilever beams as chemical sensors. “Think of a diving board,” he says. “A tiny diving board, several thousandths of a millimeter in size. That’s the scale of the structures we study.” Here’s how they work: The microcantilever — fabricated from silicon or a polymer — is coated with a chemically sensitive layer that will absorb certain target substances if they are present in the surrounding air or liquid. The amount absorbed, dependent upon the substance’s concentration, is measured by comparing the difference in the microcantilever’s mass before and immediately after the sample is collected. Any increase in mass denotes a corresponding concentration of the target substance. Says Heinrich: “A slight increase in mass is recognizable as a shift in natural frequency. After the microcantilever is put into a resonant vibrational state using various actuation methods, the frequency shift may be monitored and the associated mass increase and ambient concentration determined — if the underlying mechanics are fully understood.” By measuring the shift, Heinrich and his team can deduce chemical concentrations in gas and liquid environments. “My involvement,” he says, “is understanding how the device’s design and the environmental properties affect the microcantilever’s vibrational response through theoretical modeling: structural mechanics, fluid mechanics, mathematics — the areas in which my professional passion lies.” What does Heinrich’s research mean for the world? It could make it a safer place to live. “As an example,” he says, “chemical sensing devices such as these could be deployed to help monitor water distribution systems or large transportation networks like New York City’s subway system, thereby ensuring rapid responses to environmental hazards or providing safeguards against terrorist acts.” A safer place to live means a better place to slow down, which means more time to enjoy life’s finer intricacies: a Chet Baker solo ... a fine Bordeaux ... enjoying the Brewers. More time to pursue excellence in research and teaching at Marquette. For Stephen Heinrich, a dream come true.


Chemically sensitive microbeams may be a more sound solution for detecting environmental toxins and disease markers.

November 2011 // 14

Dan Johnson

Shriner’s Hospital photo

mobility A RACE FOR

Children with orthopaedic disabilities are benefiting from novel treatments and devices thanks to the Marquette-based Tech4POD partnership. By April Beane

It was a child with cerebral palsy who set Dr. Gerald Harris on his career path. Harris was a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy who had just served five years in the Marines when an interest in pursuing a graduate degree in the then-emerging field of biomedical engineering brought him to Marquette in the mid-1970s. Using his background in mechanical engineering, he soon realized he could develop assistive devices to help children with mobility issues. “I was working with these children, and my heart went out to them. Surgeons were telling me I could make a difference,” he recalls. “You think about it from the perspective of what the patients need. And the more you know about technology, the more you’re increasing the probability that you’ll form a linkage between technology and improved care.” For more than three decades, Harris has made pediatric orthopaedic research his life’s work. After a stint at Shriner’s Hospital for Children in Chicago, he returned to Marquette in 1987 15 // Tech4Pod

Dr. Gerald Harris

and now is a professor of biomedical engineering and directs the university’s Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation Engineering Center. Harris is the principal investigator on a $4.75 million federal grant that funds a newly designated national Rehabilitation Engineering Resource Center headquartered at Marquette. The center focuses on addressing the needs of children with cerebral palsy, clubfoot, spina bifida, spinal cord injury, brittle bone disease, and other conditions that cause mobility and manipulation problems. The partnership, called Tech4POD, includes the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin and Shriner’s Hospital in Chicago, both places where Harris has done extensive research and holds joint appointments, as well as the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, Milwaukee School of Engineering and Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.

The engineer-clinician connection The collaboration is critical, according to Dr. Peter Smith, an orthopaedic surgeon at Shriner’s. “Engineers need the clinicians. That’s

what makes our relationship unique,” he says. “(Harris) is always getting information from us regarding what patients’ needs are to improve the care. That’s the basis for his research.” The Tech4POD grant, which includes four research and four development projects, will involve 1,500 patients during a five-year period. “Some of the processes we use have never been definitively studied or applied to patients,” Harris says. “We want to design better devices and improved protocols that will help alert doctors, therapists, caregivers and family members of joint (or bone) overload concerns. The intent is to have an impact in modifying activities and treatments to improve functional activities and quality of life.” Those devices will include the development of an elliptical machine to improve neuromuscular control and stability in children. Other development projects are a novel pediatric robotic gait trainer; a biplanar (3-D) fluoroscopic imaging system that will allow researchers to see the internal motion of the bones inside the foot; and a customized

orthotic (brace) based on sensor technologies to treat pediatric flat foot. (See the accompanying sidebar, “Tech4Pod at a glance,” for a description of all eight projects.) Tech4POD’s well-established collaboration of respected researchers and clinical practitioners makes for an unusually large and productive clustering of research and development projects. “All of those involved in Tech4Pod are individually recognized for the work they are doing,” Harris says. “It’s a long line of accomplishments. So people in the field trust us. If this group does a study, they know it’s reliable.”

Tech4POD’s well-established collaboration of researchers and clinical practitioners makes for an unusually large and productive R&D cluster. Patient-centered problem-solving Smith says almost all of the patient population at Shriner’s, which specializes in the treatment of pediatric orthopaedic conditions, is affected by this research. “We have several thousand active patients and more than 15,000 clinic visits each year,” he says. “(This research) helps the entire hospital, not just those kids who participate.” Smaller but significant numbers of Milwaukee-area children also participate in Tech4Pod studies. The research and development projects under the grant will directly help patients such as 12-year-old Grace Doyle from Byron, Ill. In many ways, she is a typical seventh-grader who likes country music, loves books by Kate Klise and has a part in her middle school play, Ugly Duckling. But Grace has osteogenesis imperfecta, or brittle bone disease, a genetic disorder characterized by fragile bones. She endured three fractures before she was 2 and broke her wrist once simply by squeezing a tube of toothpaste. In addition to receiving her clinical care at Shriner’s, Grace participates in studies that track long-term patient outcomes. “It makes me feel good that by participating in the studies I can help other people,” she says. “I want to show that even though you

have (osteogenesis impefecta), you can still do whatever you want to do. You’re a normal kid. You just have to do things more carefully.” The first research project under Tech4Pod looks at predicting the probability of a bone fracture, information that could significantly help children. “We have new technology to look at crack propagation right now,” says Harris. “What if you could predict a fracture ahead of time and intervene?” The project also looks at modification of activities and the timely use of assistance devices such as crutches, walkers and wheelchairs. “Once our database is big enough, an OI patient will come into the gait lab and we’ll do an analysis and use that to determine the probability of a fracture — determine where the patient is on a fracture scale. We could give that information to the clinician to improve care.” According to Harris, the same information provided to a surgeon could lead to an early intervention to realign the bones. “The combination of material information with functional activity information and finite modeling — to give an ultimate estimate on when a bone would fracture — is unique and it’s what we’re doing right now,” he says.

Sharing the information, winning the race The sharing of information between researchers and clinicians is one of the main components of the Tech4Pod grant and one of the most intriguing parts for Harris. “We have just as much in the training and dissemination part of this grant as we do in the R’s and D’s,” says Harris. The training system is online at to educate patients and their parents and include them in the design and development process. The team will also provide researchers, engineers and clinicians with information and demonstration videos about the new studies and methods of care as they become available. “With a child, it’s a race. Our knowledge and clinical applications with their maturation,” says Harris. “The more you do to win the race, the more function they have when they mature — to develop more normal gait patterns, to develop more normal muscle function, to train and strengthen. And that means they can do more of things that they want to do. “The more you’re involved in it, the less satisfied you are,” he says. “You’re always wondering what more could we have done to provide more function.” And that question is what will keep Harris looking for new ways to use technology to improve the clinical care of these children.

Tech4Pod at a glance Tech4Pod’s eight groundbreaking research and development projects, funded by a $4.75 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education, are aimed at improving the care and quality of life of children with orthopaedic disabilities. Research projects R1: Nano- and microstructural characterization of tissue from children with osteogenesis imperfecta and severe clubfoot deformity, enabling researchers to recommend activity modifications, design better devices to absorb forces and prevent fractures, better direct surgeons about high load areas, and assess the efficacy of casting options in infants. R2: Diffusion tensor imaging to determine changes in brain activity from surgery and robotic-assisted therapy, supporting restoration of upper- and lower-limb function in children with cerebral palsy. R3: The use of home-based robot-guided therapy with teleassessment and interactive game elements in the rehabilitation of joint impairments in children with cerebral palsy. R4: Advanced mobility modeling of upper and lower extremities to determine the relationship between internal joint forces, assistive devices, ankle implants and longer-term tissue level effects as they relate to pain and function in children with orthopaedic disabilities. Development projects D1: A pivoting-sliding elliptical motion system with an interactive gaming element to improve off-axis neuromuscular control in children with orthopaedic disabilities. D2: Three-dimensional pediatric roboticassisted gait training — incorporating a less restrictive, more affordable cable system — to improve locomotor function in children with cerebral palsy. D3: A biplanar fluoroscopic system for dynamic in vivo foot and ankle motion analysis, supporting better-fitting and more effective shoes and braces customized for individual patient’s needs. D4: The use of three-dimensional fluoroscopy in creating customized, pressure-validated braces for children with flatfoot. Training and dissemination Activities include online training, distribution of publications, educational courses, conference workshops, symposia and presentations, newsletters, accessible registries, and state-of-the-art information for clinicians, parents, participants, other health care professionals and researchers. Read more at November 2011 // 16

By Mary Pat Pfeil

LABORATORY ON FOUR WHEELS Behind the all-electric van providing student rides at Marquette is the story of a determined student-faculty team.

It started with a simple premise: Turn a gas-powered van from the university’s student transportation fleet into an all-electric vehicle. Nearly four years and thousands of hours later, powered by the creativity and hard work of 41 different students, two faculty advisers from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (Associate Professor Susan Riedel and Professor George Corliss), and dozens of faculty and industry mentors, Marquette’s eLIMO is now a licensed Wisconsin vehicle, part of a fleet providing safe rides for students from 5 p.m. to 3 a.m. nightly. In its off hours, the eLIMO recharges at a station located in a university parking structure.

17 // Laboratory on Four Wheels

Excerpted from student entries in the project’s blog and annual progress reports, this series of text snapshots reveals how Marquette’s efficient “plug-in” became a reality.

The evolution

Feb. 24, 2008 We have been working hard to determine the best way to design this project. We have ordered the appropriate motor and controller from Azure Dynamics. The automotive department at Milwaukee Area Technical College will help us remove the gas combustion pieces, as well as help us prepare the vehicle for installation of the electric motor and controller. April 21, 2008 Many of our current team members plan to keep working on the project over the summer to ensure the vehicle is in proper shape for the next group of students. Also on tap this summer is to determine a strategy on batteries, the last major component of the project. The only work before we get the wheels spinning consists of getting the spline and shaft welded together. Fall 2008 The first task of the new team is to complete the new electric drive train, including manufacturing an intermediate driveshaft to connect the electric motor to the original driveshaft. April 25, 2009 The van was able to move while being attached to a power source. This is an amazing achievement.

Photos by Ben Smidt

Oct. 26, 2009 The 2009–10 team went to MATC to continue working on the project. The drive shaft was reinstalled since being removed during storage over the summer. Also, the motor controller and its mountings were prepared to have the motor controller firmly installed. Nov. 7, 2009 With the holes drilled and the spacers purchased, we were able to mount the motor controller so it will experience a reduced level of vibrations. Also, we learned how to connect the power supply system together so we will be able to test the eLIMO with the tethered power sources in the future. Finally, we were able to connect the power to the motor controller so we can talk to it with the computer software. Dec. 12, 2009 We were able to wire the motor controller to the ignition key. Now the motor controller will be turned on and off with the ignition switch. March 30, 2009 An initial set of 12 batteries has been purchased for the testing and construction of a battery management system. An additional ride in a current LIMO van was conducted to gather additional data and refine the energy calculations. ... The on-board portable generator idea has been dropped due to logistical concerns and liability issues. ... The problems of power steering and air-conditioning compressor power are issues that might be addressed by a later team. Heating, however, has been solved, with a high-voltage heating core that will be able to supply the system with heat for the cabin. April 21, 2009 On Saturday, April 18, we activated the motor, which sent power through the well-machined and operationally sound intermediate driveshaft, through the rear differential with modified gear ratio and out to the wheels. We ran the wheels free, with regenerative braking and without.

November 2011 // 18

Andy Sovol, Eng ’08, Grad ’10, shows Dr. George Corliss wiring for the gas pedal.

Students work to check functionality of the motor controller.

May 1, 2010 There was significant progress made toward installing the air conditioner, as well as the battery carriages. After designing five battery carriages to hold all of the batteries, two were able to be installed. Nov. 20, 2010 The team worked on the new AC/ heating unit and is now 95 percent complete with the installation. The control switches were taken off the unit itself, and we wired the switches through the firewall so the driver can control the unit ... The one remaining task for the AC/heater is to have it charged with refrigerant. The team also spent some time troubleshooting the motor controller. The team was able to communicate with the motor controller but still did not have any luck getting the motor to spin up. The team plans on making contact with the motor controller vendor to have some questions answered. ... The team also took out the battery carriage frames that were installed last year so they can be outfitted with additional hardware to support the specific batteries that were purchased this year. Dec. 18, 2010 The team is happy to report that the HVAC system in the front of the vehicle is now operational. The main purpose of this system is to provide

19 // Laboratory on Four Wheels

windshield defrosting capabilities. ... The team is now on semester break, but the work does not stop here. Over break, the new battery carriages will be built in anticipation of installation in mid- to late January when classes resume. Jan. 9, 2011 The eLIMO team is back at work, finalizing parts to be ordered for the new battery carriages. The team has also received the DC-DC converter and charger from our vendor. Since no alternator exists in an all-electric vehicle, the DC-DC converters are needed to take the high voltage from the main vehicle batteries and step it down to 12 volts for the vehicle subsystems like the lights and the HVAC unit that was previously installed. Feb. 1, 2011 One big step the team has taken early this semester was to secure shop space on Marquette’s campus. While MATC South was a good place for the team to work, the logistics of only being able to work on weekends for a max of 24 hours per semester were not ideal. Editor’s note: The new Engineering Hall provides space for projects such as the eLIMO. Feb. 3, 2011 Since the project began, the question has always been how to provide power to the vehicle. Well, today, batteries from Valence Technology have arrived. Within the next few weeks, these batteries will be tested and installed into battery carriages. Feb. 10, 2011 The team has completed installation work on the devices that take high voltage from the batteries and convert it into the 12 volts used by the regular vehicle systems. The team also has created a basic graphical user interface that will display all the necessary information to the driver. Feb. 20, 2011 The two main battery carriages were installed. After the original installation, the carriages were removed to be painted and will not be installed until the team is confident in the performance of the batteries. The new vehicle

wiring is about 75 percent complete. All highvoltage lines have now been run and are waiting to be connected to the battery system this week. The charger has been integrated into the vehicle and will be one of the first items tested when the batteries are connected. Also, all the control lines that switch on and off the high voltage to the vehicle have been installed. Feb. 27, 2011 After almost four years of hard work from at least 40 different students and a number of Marquette faculty members, help from MATC, MUSG, the National Wildlife Federation, the Wisconsin Office of Energy Independence (now the State Energy Office) and Wisconsin Clean Cities, the eLIMO now runs on its own! The team’s primary focus now shifts to the user interface. While our team has been working on this problem since the beginning of the year, actual testing could not be done until power was applied to the van. April 27, 2011 The eLIMO’s user interface was finished yesterday evening. Displayed on a seven-inch LCD monitor embedded in the dashboard are a digital speedometer, odometer and battery charge gauge. Also included with the UI are several warning indicators to detect events of component overheating and/or low battery charge and display them accordingly. The interface was coded using the C and Java programming languages. May 4, 2011 The eLIMO has now been successfully insured by Marquette and re-registered by the state of Wisconsin. June 5, 2011 The team and the university have many high hopes for the van. We hope that by taking passengers around, more students will begin thinking about electric vehicles as a greener alternative to gasoline vehicles. The van will also be used as a recruitment tool at local high schools.

June 24, 2011 We drove from Marquette to Waukesha and back. We drove 40 miles on 70 percent of the van’s charge in 1 hour, 48 minutes. It seems 50 miles on 90 percent charge is likely, but these were nearly ideal conditions of temperature, only one passenger and not as much stopping as a real LIMO route. We fit with traffic on a variety of well-traveled roads. It handles and rides as one expects from a big van. Brakes and power steering performed as expected. Professor George Corliss’ takeaway from the first eLIMO ride: “This drive was personally VERY satisfying. We drove a BIG van 40 miles with 30 percent reserve charge remaining. The Chevy Volt claims to go 40 miles on pure electricity. Now, when I finish (if ever) bragging about this project, there is no need to add, ‘ ... for a student project.’ Its performance is impressive. Period.” Fall 2011 The eLIMO now is part of a 16-vehicle fleet providing more than 300,000 rides annually for Marquette students. Sources: and emails from Dr. George Corliss, Greg Novak and Edward Speck-Kern


For student team members, the project’s payoff was more than academic. On team spirit “The eLIMO team will be in complete full force this coming year with THREE senior design projects, fully manned. In fact, we had more interest for the projects than we could have for practicality’s sake! These projects will include the vehicle team, a charging station for the 16th Street Parking Structure, and the user interface and controls. It is VERY exciting to have had so much interest for this project, as it simply goes to show you the desire that many on campus have to make this vehicle a huge success.” Greg Novak, Eng ’08 2007–08 and 2008–09 eLIMO teams, Aug. 28, 2008

On perseverance “The team has hit some setbacks, but the eLIMO project continues to progress! The teams, with faculty assistance, continue to generate solutions for problems associated with replacing an eight-cylinder gas engine with an electric motor. ... The team plans to test the van with power from a 480 V wall supply. Enthusiasm is high.” Edward Speck-Kern, Eng ’09 2008-09 eLIMO team, March 30, 2009

On collaboration “We had four electrical engineers, one computer engineer, one mechanical engineer, one computer science major and an IT/finance major working on the project this year. The technical work included designing the power system and creating a user interface for the driver to monitor power, speed, and odometer readings from the power and motor systems. I think the biggest benefit that most of the team members, both past and present, gained was learning how to interact with people from all different types of disciplines and not just the people that were within their area of study.” James Lubow, Eng ’11 2010–11 eLIMO team, June 17, 2011


Scott Sullivan, Bus Ad ’12, shows the DC-DC converters that step down the 340V current used by the motor to 14V used by headlights, radio and other standard vehicle systems.

Ryan Agnew Aaron Baska Daniel Chrostowski Dex Delfrate Douglas Ellett Alex Felhofer Jason Havlovick Derek Heiser Erik Henderson Douglas Hesebeck Matthew Keup Patrick Kortendick Christina Kostecki Brian Krische

Greg Lesher Ruben Loweree James Lubow David Meus John Miles Greg Novak Allen O’Connor Richard Roemer Michael Sagan Robert Sanchez Michal Schmitt Nick Schretter Andy Sovol Edward Speck-Kern

Joe St. Marie Russell Steinbrenner Scott Sullivan Justin Thompto Jeff Turnbull Victor Urbinatti Nick Voelz Thomas Walsh Matthew Webber Ryan Wellman Ping-Shing Wong Dustin Zawalich Patrick Zirbel

November 2011 // 20

NUTS &BOLTS Former UPS executive endows chair in electrical engineering A generous $5 million gift from a former UPS research executive is allowing the College of Engineering to add an endowed chair, the Lafferty Chair in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, which will enable the hiring of a top-notch new faculty member. V. Clayton and Beverly Lafferty are 1950 graduates of the colleges of Engineering and Arts and Sciences, respectively. Clay, 85, grew up in Iowa and spent much of his professional career as head of research and development at United Parcel Service. He holds several patents and created the hub system used to support the company’s package delivery and logistics business. He also developed the prototype for the smart pad used by the company for tracking and delivery confirmation. “We’re proud of our Marquette educations,” Beverly says. “When we were able to begin contributing financially, we agreed education was one priority.” She says the gifts honor their parents who “didn’t have much money but put a great deal of emphasis on education.” “The search for the Lafferty Chair is already under way, with a focus on a scholar and educator with an international reputation and expertise in smart sensor systems,” reports OPUS Dean of Engineering Dr. Robert H. Bishop. “Strengthening the

21 // News

already-strong research capacity in smart sensor systems will have a significant impact on a broad range of practical applications that are already subjects of research in Marquette’s College of Engineering, including homeland security, health care, the environment and transportation. Bishop praised the Laffertys for understanding “the full scope of the college’s mission — research, a strong faculty, student support, and a facility that encourages innovation and learning.” Their generosity extends to all aspects of the college’s transformation and includes a scholarship fund, named in honor of Clay Lafferty’s parents, Elizabeth and Ray. In recognition of their contribution toward Engineering Hall, the building’s Micro Sensors Research Laboratory will be named in honor of them. The Lafferty chair is the fourth in a series of the college’s endowed chairs, with plans for additional endowments in the future.

Delphi unit, Applied Power and Boeing. If you want to find the two people at Marquette least likely to miss a beat in explaining how a mill differs from a lathe, they’re your guys. Find their story at

Jaskolski, Farrell among Alumni Award honorees OPUS Dean Emeritus Dr. Stanley Jaskolski, Eng ’62, Grad ’64, ’67, received the All-University Merit Award, and Michael Farrell, Eng ’70, and Donna Behm Farrell, Arts ’70, received the All-University Service to Marquette Award at the 2011 Alumni National Awards Weekend. The 2011 College of Engineering Alumni Award recipients were: Distinguished Alumnus of the Year Award:  James Grotelueschen, Eng ’73, Grad ’74

Old-school shop guys Who are two of the coolest characters — and ultra-handiest guys — at Marquette? Ray Hamilton and Dave Gibas are the connection between the college’s sparkling new high-tech home and the once-ubiquitous shop floors of industrial Milwaukee. Hamilton and Gibas are the know-how behind the college’s machine shop and rapid prototyping laboratory, where course assignments and faculty research projects take shape in aluminum, brass, plastic and steel. Each has decades of experience on the shop floors of companies such as GM’s

Professional Achievement Award:    Edmund Steinike, Eng ’85 Entrepreneurial Award:   Francis Luecke, Eng ’67 Service to Marquette Award:   Dr. Janis Orlowski, M.A.C.P., Eng ’78

These outstanding recipients have distinguished themselves in such a way that their peers suggested them for national alumni awards. We all take pride in their accomplishments.

Luminaries of Marquette engineering We asked you, our alumni and friends, to identify and honor the college’s most distinguished alumni: the Luminaries who have transformed technology, industry, education and everyday life with their innovations, accomplishments and leadership. A selection committee composed of 10 alumni, faculty and staff was charged with the difficult task of selecting the Luminaries of Marquette Engineering from a pool of more than 300 nominations. After much deliberation, 39 individuals were selected. Meet these remarkable engineers at

Designing solutions Senior engineering students are required to take a capstone design course, traditionally known as Senior Design. For each project, a multidisciplinary team of students tackles a real-world problem and develops a solution. Project ideas come from industry, faculty and students. Teams analyze, study, experiment, build, create, test, write and present a final product to students, faculty and industry sponsors.

The 2011–12 seniors are working on 33 different projects, including the redesign of a thermal shutoff valve, development of a CubeSat satellite and design of various assistive technologies. Approximately 30 percent of the projects involve technology for others. The capstone design course serves as a career dress rehearsal for future engineers. For details of the most recent projects, visit

Marquette’s Honduran water effort named Engineers Without Borders Premier Project The water distribution system in the community of Joyas de Carballo, Honduras, was old, poorly maintained and in need of repair. Members of the community suffered from parasitic and bacterial illnesses that resulted from dirty water and poor hygiene and sanitation practices. Since 2008, Marquette’s student chapter of Engineers Without Borders USA has been working with the community to address this issue by developing a clean, accessible, potable water source and an education program on health and sanitation. For this, the chapter received the 2011 Premier Project Award at the EWB-USA 2011 International Conference. “The EWB-USA Marquette University Honduras Project team’s new water supply system greatly enhanced the community’s


Young Alumni of the Year Award: Stephanie Goplin Olsson, P.E., P.T.O.E., Eng ’00

access to clean, safe, reliable water,” said Cathy Leslie, executive director of Engineers Without Borders USA.

“The project included train-the-trainer education for the community to ensure that safe handwashing and sanitation practices continue on after the chapter leaves.” To carry their partnership with Joyas de Carballo forward, the Marquette team is evaluating the water distribution system and assessing other community needs.

Electrifying EWB results in Guatemala In neighboring Guatemala, another Marquette EWB team continues work on the community electrification project in Nueva Providencia. During a recent trip, team members wired five homes, two churches, and the community kitchen and mill. Most families in the community earn less than $5 a week. Subsistence farming is common, meaning that most children do not attend school past the age of 12. The addition of power in the village provides many new opportunities. New microeconomic options, such as oxygenated fish tanks for tilapia farming and sanitary steam-cleaned fruit canning operations, become a possibility.  Students will have easier access to computers, and lighting will allow them to study after dark. In January 2012, the Marquette team will return to Nueva Providencia to continue work on the electrification project.

Learn more about the EWB chapter and other projects at

November 2011 // 22

NUTS &BOLTS Meet the class of 2015

The largest freshman class in a decade – 338 students – moved onto campus and is on its way to becoming Marquette engineers. Let us introduce them:

Students exercise Co-op engineering option More than three-quarters — 77 percent — of 2011 graduating seniors had Co-op engineering or intern positions during their time at Marquette, reports Sue Michaelson, assistant dean and director of the engineering Co-op program. This fact speaks to the continued success of the college’s 92-year-old Co-op program, even during the current economic rollercoaster ride. Apple, Caterpillar and SanDisk Corp., among others, recently joined the ranks of companies providing Co-op positions to engineering students.

64 women 274 men 75 legacy students 61 first in the family to attend college 101 biomedical engineering 60 civil, construction and environmental engineering 40 electrical engineering 86 mechanical engineering 51 undecided/non-degree 29 different states/U.S. territories 8 international students — from Canada, China, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Panama and Saudi Arabia 8 percent of the class attended at least one engineering academy class for K-12 students before coming to Marquette

All sophomore engineering students are enrolled in Professional Development for Engineers to prepare them for their internship and Co-op job searches. Faculty, staff, Co-op students and industry professionals join forces to cover the wide variety of topics helpful to budding professional engineers — résumés and cover letters, professional ethics, job search techniques, and work/life balance, to name a few.

And several of these students have logged hundreds of hours of service work before coming to Marquette.

Riedel honored

23 // News

Co-op and professional engineering job opportunities are on the increase, according to Michaelson, especially in the manufacturing sector. The future looks bright for Marquette engineers.

Dr. Susan Riedel, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, received the Rev. John P. Raynor, S.J.,

Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence. “She’s a pioneer in pushing the envelope in engineering education, experimenting with alternative teaching methodologies, questioning pedagogy and rigorously assessing student learning,” said a nominator. “Students learn in many different ways and at many different rates, so it is crucial for me to connect with the learning styles of the students, make my expectations clear and provide different opportunities for them to demonstrate mastery of the course material,” she says. “I continually attempt to draw connections among the different areas of engineering to illustrate the common features they all share.”

Outstanding teacher and researcher awards Dr. Philip Voglewede, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, received the 2011 Outstanding Teacher Award for the College of Engineering, a repeat of the award he won in 2009. Recipients are selected through balloting of senior-standing students. Voglewede’s research focuses on how to engineer specific motions, with one particular project aiming to give amputees a superior prosthetic ankle. (See article on page 13.) Dr. Fabien Josse, professor of electrical and computer engineering, received the college’s 2011 Outstanding Researcher Award, recognizing excellence in research by a faculty member in the last five years. His current research interests concentrate on sensors, particularly chemical and biochemical sensors.

Dr. Margaret Mathison joined the faculty this fall as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering. She completed her bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at Iowa State University and her doctoral degree in mechanical engineering at Purdue University. Her teaching and research interests are in building energy efficiency.

was chair of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, a post he held twice (from 1993–2002 and 2007–11). Dr. Christopher Foley, professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering, became chair of the newly named Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering on July 1.

Schmit promoted Dr. Brian Schmit, Eng ’88, associate professor of biomedical engineering and co-director of the Falk Neurorehabilitation Engineering Research Center, was promoted to professor of biomedical engineering effective in fall 2011. Schmit joined the college’s faculty in 2000. She entered the direct Ph.D. program at Purdue immediately after her undergraduate work and pursued her interest in the thermal sciences through research at the Ray W. Herrick Laboratories under the guidance of Drs. James Braun and Eckhard Groll. Mathison has published three archival journal papers, three conference papers and a newsletter article based on her research.

Wenzel retires, Foley named chair Dr. Thomas H. Wenzel, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, began his career at Marquette in 1975 and retired at the end of June. At the time, he

His research is dedicated to advancing knowledge in neural engineering and rehabilitation of those with neural disabilities. Specific interests include spinal cord injury, human neurophysiology, neurorehabilitation, instrumentation and biomechanics. The Falk Neurorehabilitation Engineering Research Center investigates optimal intervention strategies for movement therapy. R&D activities range from basic science, such as neuromuscular adaptive mechanisms, to the development and evaluation of innovative therapeutic intervention strategies.


Welcoming Mathison

November 2011 // 24

Photos by Ben Smidt



By Andrew Brodzeller

Nearly 80 curious young ladies from across the greater Milwaukee area had their fill of hands-on engineering activities at an iHeels session in July. The girls were grouped by age (ages 6-11 in the morning and ages 12-18 in the afternoon) and given a chance to experience engineering in action. The iHeels program — Inspiring Hands-on Engineering Experiences with Ladies of STEM — offers sessions throughout the year and aims to introduce young ladies to the fun, challenge and excitement of engineering. From creating circuits to designing and testing pasta bridges, from building LEGO robots to mixing hand lotions, iHeels provides insights into engineering many of these young women would never otherwise have. To learn more about the iHeels program and all of the college’s K–12 outreach programs, visit

Non-profit Org. U.S. Postage


Milwaukee, WI Permit No. 628

Marquette University College of Engineering

P.O. Box 1881, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53201-1881 USA

r e - e n g i n e e r e d. r e - w i r e d. r e - i M a g i n e d. r e a l ly. Visit Marquette’s new engineering Hall and see how we’re transforming engineering education for today’s world and tomorrow’s challenges. Tours are available at 3:30 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month. To sign up for a public tour or to schedule a personal tour, please contact Jennifer McCollum at or 414.288.0211.

Marquette Engineer