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renegade Penn’s Electric Dragster

UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA

Spring 2011


CONTENT Penn Engineering Board of Overseers From the Dean

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In the Zone with Guitar Hero Expert Chris Chike

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Naturally Inspired Materials The Man with a Plan Penn’s Dean of Admissions Eric J. Furda

Mr. Andrew S. Rachleff, W’80 [Board Chair] Partner Benchmark Capital Menlo Park, CA The Honorable Harold Berger, EE’48, L’51 Managing Partner Berger and Montague, P.C. Philadelphia, PA

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Mr. David J. Berkman, W’83 Managing Partner Liberty Associated Partners, L.P. Bala Cynwyd, PA

Renegade 14 Electric Dragster Builds New Skills Pursuing the Infinite Promise of the Infinitesimally Small

18

Zach Ives: Engineering New Realms of the Networked Economy

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Mr. Dennis “Chip” Brady, C’94, W’94 Partner, LSN Partners, LLC Miami, FL Dr. Katherine D. Crothall, EE’71 Principal Liberty Venture Partners, Inc. Philadelphia, PA Penn Engineering Spring 2011

Fear is a Four-letter Word

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Gateway to Innovation The Singh Center for Nanotechnology

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Peter Detkin Protecting the Entrepreneurs

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School News

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Pop Quiz with Sandra Rathman

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University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering and Applied Science 123 Towne Building 220 South 33rd Street Philadelphia, PA 19104-6391 Email alumni@seas.upenn.edu Phone 215-898-6564 / Fax 215-573-2131 www.seas.upenn.edu Eduardo D. Glandt / Dean George W. Hain III / Vice Dean, External Affairs Development and Alumni Relations Joan S. Gocke / Director of Communications Editor Contributing Writers Amy Biemiller Amy Calhoun Jessica Stein Diamond Janet Falon Jon Hurdle Patricia Hutchings Olivia Loskoski Janelle Weaver

Dr. George H. Heilmeier, EE’58 Chairman Emeritus Telcordia Technologies, Inc. Dallas, TX Dr. John F. Lehman, Jr., GR’74 Chairman and Founding Partner J. F. Lehman & Company New York, NY Mr. Ryan D. Limaye, ENG‘93, W‘93, WG‘93 Managing Director & Head Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. San Francisco, CA Dr. David M. Magerman, C’90, ENG’90 President and Founder Kohelet Foundation Gladwyne, PA Mr. Sean C. McDonald, ChE’82 President, CEO Precision Therapeutics Pittsburgh, PA

Mr. Peter N. Detkin, Esq., EE’82, L’85 Co-Founder, Vice-Chairman Intellectual Ventures Palo Alto, CA

Mr. Hital R. Meswani, ENG’90, W’90 Executive Director and Member of the Board Reliance Industries Limited Mumbai, India

Mr. Richard D. Forman, EE’87, W’87 Managing Partner Health Venture Group New York, NY

Mr. Rajeev Misra, ME’85, GEN’86 Global Head of Credit UBS Investment Bank London, UK

Mr. C. Michael Gooden, GEE’78 Chairman and CEO Integrated Systems Analysts Inc. Alexandria, VA

Mr. Ofer Nemirovsky, EE’79, W’79 Managing Director HarbourVest Partners, LLC Boston, MA

Mr. Paul S. Greenberg, EE’83, WG’87 Principal Trilogy Capital LLC Greenwich, CT

Mr. Mitchell I. Quain, EE’73, parent [Board Chair Emeritus] Partner One Equity Partners New York, NY

Mr. Alex Haidas, C’93, ENG’93, WG’98 Portfolio Manager Credaris (CPM Advisers Limited) London, UK

Mr. Allie P. Rogers, ENG’87, W’87 Co-Founder Triple Point Technology, Inc. Westport, CT

Mr. Jeffrey M. Rosenbluth, ENG’84 Private Investor Sands Point, NY Ms. Suzanne B. Rowland, ChE’83 VP Business Excellence Tyco Flow Control Princeton, NJ Mr. Theodore E. Schlein, C’86 Managing Partner Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers Menlo Park, CA Dr. Krishna P. Singh, MS’69, Ph.D.’72 President and CEO Holtec International Marlton, NJ Dr. Rajendra Singh, parent Chairman and CEO Telcom Ventures LLC Alexandria, VA Ms. Juliet Sjöborg, EE’85 WG’92 Director Plena Group London, UK Mr. Robert M. Stavis, EAS’84, W’84 Partner Bessemer Venture Larchmont, NY Mr. Harlan M. Stone, C’80 President and Chief Operating Officer Halstead International Norwalk, CT Mr. Frederick J. Warren, ME’60, WG’61 Founder Sage Venture Partners, LLC Winter Park, FL Ms. Sarah Keil Wolf, EE’86, W’86 Retired Investment Banker Bear Stearns and Company Scarsdale, NY Dr. Michael D. Zisman, GEE’73, GR’77 Managing Director, Operations Internet Capital Group Wayne, PA

University of Pennsylvania Nondiscrimination Statement

Design Kelsh Wilson Design

The University of Pennsylvania values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds. The University of Pennsylvania does not discriminate

Photography Kelsh Wilson Design Felice Macera

the administration of educational policies, programs or activities; admissions policies; scholarship and loan awards; athletic, or other University administered programs or

on the basis of race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, or status as a Vietnam Era Veteran or disabled veteran in employment. Questions or complaints regarding this policy should be directed to: Executive Director, Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Programs, Sansom Place East, 3600 Chestnut Street, Suite 228, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6106 or by phone at (215) 898-6993 (Voice) or (215) 898-7803 (TDD).


FROM THE DEAN

Dean Eduardo D. Glandt

The Stars are Aligned It’s been just over fifty years since Richard Feinman, one of the smartest scientists of the 20th century, gave a famous speech entitled, “There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom.”

the region and to science, and made it a Penn priority. And we are forever indebted to visionary and innovator Kris Singh, who provided the naming gift for this facility.

In that speech, Feinman floated a revolutionary idea: it should be possible, “in principle,” to make nanoscale machines that “arrange the atoms the way we want,” and perform chemical synthesis by mechanical manipulation. He was indeed a visionary! In our lifetime, we are unlocking the science of nanotechnology, a frontier as exciting as outer space, yet this one will have an even larger and more immediate impact on our lives.

We have located the state-of–the-art facility at a strategic point within Penn’s science precinct. The Singh Center will serve as a bridge to the East Campus and, above all, as a gateway to the University, a visual marker of “arrival to campus.” The design team of Weiss/Manfredi gave us a functional and exquisite design, very clear and very robust.

On February 17, Penn Engineering and its partners broke ground on the Singh Center for Nanotechnology. That was a day that many of us have been awaiting for years! The groundbreaking was made possible by the strategic thinking of the University leadership and the generosity of countless alumni and friends who recognized the importance of this facility to the campus, to

Our engineers and scientists are eager and ready to walk into the Singh Center to realize Feinman’s dream. This is now our dream, to start training students and creating revolutionary new materials, prototypes of medical devices and energy and security systems. The stars are aligned indeed and we are very lucky. I hope you can feel the buzz coming from Penn Engineering. It’s the buzz of history being made.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EvM_aBmLDZU

In the Zone with Guitar Hero Expert Chris Chike By Patricia Hutchings

Chris Chike, a self-described die-hard video “gamer” and one-time Guinness World Record holder for Guitar Hero, brings to the Penn campus a unique and dynamic skill set. And with his earliest childhood memories populated with Super Nintendo characters and his future aspirations focused on designing and implementing video gaming technology not-yetimagined, this sophomore’s Computer and Information Science major at Penn Engineering is the perfect fit. Chike, a Midwesterner, says he intentionally pushed himself outside of his comfort zone when including Penn among his college application choices, and he seems to have easily absorbed any culture shock this East Coast urban university may have thrown his way.

Chike is the youngest of four children and traveled the farthest from home for college. His grandparents recommended Penn and his parents, both engineers, endorsed the idea. When accepted, he enrolled without hesitation. At about the same time he was starting to consider academic life after high school, Chike was at the top of his Guitar Hero game. He had found his passion in music-based video competition and had quickly excelled at a game in which players gain points by pressing buttons in time to pop and rock tunes on a guitarshaped controller. By 2008, Chike was racking up and posting unbelievably high scores for advanced Guitar Hero songs.

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Emerging Victorious from the Fire and Flames It wasn’t long before his YouTube-documented gaming exploits got the attention of the Guinness Book of World Records, and he was invited to prove his prowess on a famously difficult seven-and-one-half minute “power metal” song called “Through the Fire and Flames.” In a one-shot solo exhibition in New York City, Chike “played” the 3,722-note rock extravaganza with 97 percent accuracy. To his surprise, his record-winning performance was broadcast on ESPN that same day, and he was bombarded with text messages from friends attesting to his newfound fame. Curiously, Chike is not a musician, and a “real” guitar holds little magic for him. He explains that it is the

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rhythm underlying the melodies that drives him and informs his talent for the game. While dexterity and concentration are key to his extraordinary performance, he often loses himself in the beat. When it’s all working together, he’s “in the zone.” Innate ability does not, of course, rule out the need to practice and at his peak while a senior in high school, Chike was spending five or more hours a day perfecting his game. But what about hanging out with friends and life on the other side of the computer screen?

Checking in with the ‘Real World’ Media theorists and social scientists often discuss the correlation between hard-core video gaming and anti-social behavior, and Chike confesses to having


Chris Chike intuitively understood that the “rush” and intense mental stimulation he experienced as a Guitar Hero was best tempered by “real” connections with friends and family.

routinely performed “sanity checks” to ensure that his well-rounded personality remained intact. He intuitively understood that the “rush” and intense mental stimulation he experienced as a Guitar Hero was best tempered by “real” connections with friends and family. His high school GPA was a couple hundredths shy of perfect, he was competitive in the triple jump as a member of the track team and played soccer: proof positive that, even as an unusually accomplished and dedicated gamer, his time was not entirely spent in darkened isolation. Now in his second year at Penn, Chike’s gaming fame seems to him a thing of a somewhat distant past. A world record is an outstanding accomplishment, but Chike seems to have left any bragging rights about his reign back in Rochester, Minnesota.

What’s Past is Prologue “Video games define my life,” Chike willingly admits, but he is looking forward, not back. Chike is carefully shaping his avocation into a vocation, and applying his intense focus and drive to his programming studies and research. Through leadership training internships at GE, he is developing skills as a computer and information technology project manager. It is Chike’s belief that excellence in any endeavor is possible only when one’s heart is in one’s work. It is not difficult to envision a future video gaming world enlivened by his creative dreams and heartfelt rhythmic imaginings.

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The way that minuscule patterns in nature give rise to unique attributes, such as stickiness and water resistance, has always fascinated Shu Yang, associate professor of Materials Science and Engineering.

Naturally Inspired Materials By Janelle Weaver

Geckos can climb walls because of millions of tiny pillars on their toe pads, and lotus leaves stay dry, thanks to microscopic bumps dotting their surface. The way that minuscule patterns in nature give rise to unique attributes, such as stickiness and water resistance, has always fascinated Shu Yang, associate professor of Materials Science and Engineering. As a high school student in China, Yang applied to colleges with the goal of learning about polymers—large molecules that make up everything from Styrofoam to rubber. After her undergraduate education, she merged her background in materials science and chemistry with engineering to work on practical applications. During her doctoral training in chemistry and materials science at Cornell University,

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Yang developed environmentally friendly adhesives and coatings for computer chips, and for four years while working at Bell Labs, she extended her research on polymers to optical communications. Yang came to Penn in 2004 not only because of its long-standing reputation in materials science and engineering, but also to enhance the caliber of her research by collaborating with scientists across disciplines. One such collaboration was made with Douglas H. Smith, the Director of the Center for Brain Injury and Repair and professor of Neurosurgery at Penn. Smith was searching for an objective way to measure explosions during conflict and to assess soldiers’ risk for subsequent traumatic brain injury (TBI), which sometimes occurs without overt symptoms.


Flying Colors Inspired by crystal-like structures that make butterfly wings shimmer, Yang devised an inexpensive, durable and power-free patch that signals the presence and strength of blasts by changing colors. Made of threedimensional arrays of crystals that reflect different wavelengths of light, the shiny badge is strong and porous, similar to bone. Because it’s only a few millimeters wide and a few microns thick, it’s easy to carry on a helmet or uniform. In the lab, Yang showed that the patch can detect ultrasonic waves and explosions in a shock tube. Heat and vibrations forced the layers to erode and collapse and the pores to widen or contract, causing the reflective properties to change. Low-energy blasts transformed stickers, for example, from red-orange to yellow-blue, while greater forces and repeated insults

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Yang envisions a day when soldiers will wear multiple stickers that register either single or cumulative explosions.

turned them white or gray. Yang envisions a day when soldiers will wear multiple stickers that register either single or cumulative explosions. To this end, she is teaming up with Daniel Gianola, Skirkanich Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, who studies how materials deform and degrade in extreme situations and uses this knowledge to create resilient materials. They will try to predict the effect of explosions on the mechanical behavior and color change of the crystals so they can tune them to sense blasts of varying intensities. Next, Yang plans to use the badge to determine the pressure thresholds necessary to trigger TBI. This information could be used to design better helmets and body armor that can withstand these forces. She also hopes the technique will warn soldiers when it’s too risky for them to return to combat and convince them to seek medical attention. “I want my research to have an impact outside the lab,” she says. “I think we can use these materials to actually save people’s lives.”

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Spreading Wings Since arriving at Penn, Yang has earned several prestigious accolades. In 2004, she was listed among the World’s 100 Top Young Innovators in Technology Review, and two years later she received an NSF CAREER Award. Last year, she accepted the NSF’s Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation award for a proposal to construct an environmentally responsive skin for buildings to improve their energy efficiency. Yang urges the next generation of scientists to set high goals. “I encourage my students to go beyond what they learn in the classroom, not to simply swallow the material, but to digest it and think about different applications,” she says. Pausing to reflect on her own experience of fashioning a medical tool from objects she had worked with for years, she adds, “You never know. You may end up with something better than what you originally thought about.”


Shu Yang, Associate Professor of Materials Science and Engineering

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The Man with a Plan Penn’s Dean of Admissions Eric J. Furda By Amy Calhoun

You’ve seen the headlines and heard the dire predictions: engineers are in short supply, and American high school students are falling behind in math and science. According to a recent report from the Department of Defense, the significant national decline in the number of U.S. college graduates with science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) degrees threatens our national security. Although such trends are pervasive and persistent, there are ways to improve the future for Penn Engineering and our country. Fortunately, Dean of Admissions Eric J. Furda has a plan to increase the number and quality of applicants to Penn Engineering. In his three-year tenure as dean, there have been dramatic increases in engineering applications and a renewed passion for the Penn Engineering mission.

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Launching a Career Furda graduated from Penn in 1987 with a B.A. in International Relations. Upon graduation, he began his career in Penn admissions where he served as regional director until 1991. Furda then joined the Columbia University admissions office where he led the admissions effort on behalf of the engineering school, and merged the admissions processes of Columbia College with the School of Engineering and Applied Science. In 1995, Furda was named executive director of admissions at Columbia, a position he held until 2004, when he became Columbia’s vice president for alumni relations. Along the way, Furda also earned an M.A. in Education from Columbia Teachers College. In July of 2008, Furda returned to Penn as dean of admissions. Furda’s experience at Columbia taught him a great deal about how to recruit the best and the brightest students to the field of engineering. He and his staff began highlighting the benefits of an engineering education for students, and just as importantly, for counselors


As Dean of Admissions, Eric J. Furda has seen dramatic increases in engineering applications and a renewed passion for the Penn Engineering mission.

and parents. Under his direction, Columbia’s engineering applications rose 67 percent. Furda has already exceeded that number in his time at Penn. “The engineering school’s undergraduate applicant numbers remained fairly flat between the years 2000 to 2006, at under 3,000 applicants a year,” according to Furda. He continues, “We saw a slight increase over the last few years, but in 2011 we received nearly 6,000 applications to Penn Engineering, which is an 85 percent increase over the last three years.”

The Economy & Admissions Trends Part of the increase, Furda recognizes, is due to the economy’s influence on admissions trends. The availability and quality of jobs for engineering graduates directly impacts the pool of potential applicants. Furda explains, “One result of the financial meltdown of 2008 is that many highly talented, quantitatively skilled students are now looking beyond Wall Street and are drawn to other science and technology fields.” Furda continues, “Companies such as Microsoft, Google, and Facebook have made Penn Engineering n 11


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Penn’s Office of Admissions works diligently to broadcast the strengths of Penn Engineering. “The opportunities for undergraduate research,” notes Furda, “as well as our impressive level of student-faculty interaction, make Penn Engineering unique.”

degrees in computer science, systems engineering, computer graphics and the new Market and Social Systems Engineering program more appealing and relevant to applicants. Likewise, growth in the number of jobs and increased funding for research in the life sciences has yielded more applications to Penn’s top-rated Bioengineering department. Couple these factors with Penn’s stature as a leading research university, and you can see that Penn Engineering is ripe for growth.”

Telling the Penn Story The University’s Office of Admissions works diligently to broadcast the strengths of Penn Engineering. “The opportunities for undergraduate research,” notes Furda, “as well as our impressive level of SPRING 2011 n 12

student-faculty interaction, make Penn Engineering unique.” Penn admissions officers also note that the flexibility of the Penn Engineering curriculum, which allows engineers to take advantage of course offerings from all of the undergraduate schools at Penn, is a major draw for many applicants. “Whether we are visiting a high school, inviting students to an open house on the campus or sending materials to top engineering prospects,” Furda notes, “we want to raise the awareness of Penn Engineering among students, counselors, and teachers. We also emphasize the significant support offered to Penn students through our no-loan financial aid packages.”


Penn Engineering’s Bright Future Those who know Furda will tell you that he is obsessed with drawing more students to science, technology, engineering and mathematics. “As someone who graduated with a degree in International Relations and interested in the rise and fall of nations, I am passionate and practical about the need to educate our children to enrich their lives and to safeguard against the tyranny of lost hope,” says Furda. “The key to improved standards of living are directly tied to the competitiveness of a nation’s intellectual capital, particularly in STEM fields. But education is not an end in itself. As Benjamin Franklin stated, ‘the great aim and end of all learning is service to society.’ We need Penn Engineers to be the leaders who will create jobs and technologies that will make the world a more humane place.”

Clearly Furda is on a mission: to better the lives of students by giving access to all that Penn has to offer. In return, he asks them to take that knowledge and make meaningful contributions to the world. “This,” says Furda, “is the generation that can achieve success for themselves, and for society as a whole. As Franklin believed, ‘you can do well by doing good,’ and Penn Engineering is the perfect place to get started.”

Alumni with family and friends interested in Penn Engineering’s undergraduate program should contact Ellen Eckert, Associate Director for Undergraduate Admissions and Advising at eckertel@seas.upenn.edu or 215-898-4813.

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Renegade Electric Dragster Builds New Skills By Jon Hurdle

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The low-slung, carbon-fiber-bodied vehicle is the creation of Penn Electric Racing, a student group that has spent five years building the vehicle and is now looking forward to its first run this spring.

In the dusty basement of the Towne Building on Penn’s campus, a shiny black vehicle sits amid the tools, spares and work benches of a mechanic’s shop. It’s Renegade, an electric car designed not for the limited ranges and low speeds commonly associated with such vehicles, but for the full-on sport of drag racing. The low-slung, carbon-fiber-bodied vehicle is the creation of the Penn Electric Racing Team, a student group that has spent five years building the vehicle and is now

Explosive Speed The new team wanted to show that electric cars don’t have to be boring, utilitarian vehicles like golf carts, but can have the explosive speed and power needed for drag racing. “We went for a drag racer because it would show the power that you could get from an electric vehicle,” says team captain William Price, a Mechanical Engineering major.

looking forward to its first run this spring in Odenton,

Renegade, powered by 23 lead-acid batteries, is

Maryland, against other electric dragsters.

distinguished from other electric dragsters by having

The team built the car from scratch, using its members’ skills to design, weld, and fabricate the chassis, body, and power train; machine its components; and install electrical systems that together are expected to propel the vehicle down a drag strip at between 85 and 110 miles per hour. The team evolved from Penn Solar Racing, which competed in the intercollegiate Solar Challenge and established a distinguished record in

two 11-inch brushed DC electric motors that operate in tandem to supply acceleration and speed in the correct sequence. The motors operate initially in series, supplying full current but only half the voltage to produce the full torque needed for dramatic acceleration. At a flip of the driver’s switch, the motors change to run in parallel, giving full voltage but half the current, and enabling the car to reach its top speed.

solar car construction and competition. Since 2006, the

Renegade has cost about $80,000, most of which has

team has shifted its focus to all-electric cars because

come from the School of Engineering and Applied

they can be built less expensively with more power,

Science, assisted by in-kind donations such as carbon

while retaining the zero-tailpipe-emissions feature of

fiber from Cytec Industries Ltd., and batteries from

a solar car. Vehicles like Renegade are seen as a more

Exide Battery Corporation.

practical proposition for a Penn Engineering project and for the car market as a whole.

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Members of the Penn Electric Racing Team give President Amy Gutmann a turn at the wheel in Renegade.

The Racing Team Most team members are engineering students but some come from other disciplines, and even students with no prior knowledge of electric cars are welcome to join, says Price. Sabrina Robinson, an International Relations major from the School of Arts and Sciences, reports that the team has shown her how to use Matlab, a programming language for engineering disciplines, and SolidWorks, a computer-assisted drawing program used to design the body of the Renegade. Robinson also helped to

The team is divided into mechanical, electrical, and business/outreach units. Each unit has sub-specialties, and those are further divided into specific areas of operation. The energy storage group, for example, includes units working on thermodynamics, electrical, and structural areas. The structural design project is led by Justin Yim, one of three freshmen managing units of the energy storage group. Yim says he sees the position as an opportunity to learn a technical discipline outside of his academic focus of mechanical engineering.

fabricate the vehicle’s body, a painstaking nine-month

The active membership of the team has recently quad-

process involving building multiple layers of carbon

rupled to about 40, and provides engineering students

fiber over a machined-foam template.

with valuable, work-related experience not usually found in the classroom. Price, a native South African, credits his work with the team for his summer 2011

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www.seas.upenn.edu/~electric

The team built the car from scratch, using its members’ skills to design, weld, and fabricate the chassis, body, and power train; machine its components; and install electrical systems that together are expected to propel the vehicle down a drag strip at between 85 and 110 miles per hour.

internship with Tesla Motors, an electric car maker in

“This stuff under the hood isn’t so mysterious,” he says.

Palo Alto, California. The company was more interested

“You can figure it out. The ability to go into something

in Price’s team leadership and strong practical portfolio

you have never seen before and make a contribution in

than in his GPA, he notes.

short order is a valuable skill.”

Life Skills

After five years’ work on Renegade, the expertise

The team also provides life skills that students don’t

generations of students if it’s not recorded. But that

usually experience through the academic curriculum,

information is now being stored in an internal wiki.

says Robert Jeffcoat, advisor and adjunct professor

These resources will feed plans for the team’s next

in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and

project, a street-legal electric car with a self-built

Applied Mechanics. Participation teaches skills such as

battery pack and, Price hopes, in-wheel motors. That

teamwork and budgeting but also enhances students’

information will be used by future racing teams in their

job prospects by building confidence in dealing with

own learning process. “The whole point is that you can

unfamiliar subjects, states Jeffcoat. He ensures that

teach anybody anything,” he says. “By the end of the

the team is working safely and within budget, but

year, a lot of these people are going to be doing things

otherwise leaves the students to run their own projects.

that they couldn’t have expected at the start.”

accumulated by the Racing Team may be lost to future

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Pursuing the Infinite Promise of the Infinitesimally Small By Jessica Stein Diamond

Imagine the economic and environmental benefits of new nanomaterials that could generate energy from waste heat typically lost by cars, electronics, power plants and factories. And consider how the economy could be transformed via yet-to-be-invented nanoscale materials with optimized electrical, magnetic, optical or thermal properties. Tantalizing goals like these remain elusive. While scientists could conduct millions of possible nanoscale experiments, what they lack, in layman’s terms, are guidelines for recipes, ingredients and preparations that would yield optimal results. That’s where Penn Engineering’s Jennifer R. Lukes is making her mark as a leader in atomistic computer modeling, which validates and advances the emerging principles of nanoscale science with vast quantities of data. While she specializes in thermal transport research, Lukes’ computer simulations identify potentially fruitful experiments for scientists and engineers looking to exploit many different useful properties that emerge in materials 100 nanometers or smaller—literally at the scale of individual atoms.

A Virtual Foundry “We can model thousands of variations in experimental design and materials, like a combinatorial problem, to identify good candidate structures that are likely to obtain a desired thermal, electrical, magnetic or material strength capability,” says Lukes, associate professor and graduate group chair in the department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics. “Pinpointing promising combinations of particle sizes, structures and arrangements of atoms worth developing in the lab offers experimentalists huge time and cost savings.” Her methodology is a virtual foundry of experimental design leads, strengthening nanoscale research collaborations on campus at an optimal time. Construction of Penn’s new Krishna P. Singh Center for Nanotechnology began in February. This teaching and shared research facility will feature vibration- and dust-free lab space with powerful instrumentation for atomic scale imaging, compositional analysis of nanoscale materials, and fabrication of nanoscale materials. The Singh Center will be a regional resource, accessible via a ‘scientific concierge,’ for area academic and industrial scientists.

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“Much of the Philadelphia region’s scientific infrastructure serves biotechnology and medical research,” says Lukes. “The Singh Center will be a launching ground for another realm of innovation that will draw talent to the Penn campus. We’re poised to become a regional center for academic and industrial nanotechnology and nanomaterial innovation.”

properties. And Lukes is investigating ways to address the severe thermal issues in advanced electronics, radar, and other systems by probing, at the atomic scale, the cooling performance of tiny carbon nanotube heat sinks and boiling fluorocarbon liquids.

As she wrangles complex data from computer ‘experiments’ on arcane-sounding materials such as carbon nanotubes, superlattices, nanowires, and ultra thin films, Lukes envisions how insights obtained about the unique properties of nanomaterials might make a difference in the world. Working with collaborators, she is exploring ways to develop metamaterials with specific electrical, magnetic, optical and thermal

“At the nanoscale, the physical properties of materials are no longer what they are in the textbook,” says Lukes, whose approach to modeling the unique thermal properties that emerge at the nanoscale may well appear in chapters of future textbooks.

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All Bets Are Off at the Nanoscale

According to Vaclav Vitek, Materials Science and Engineering professor and member of the National Academy of Engineering, “Lukes’ work connecting


“Don’t work in the middle. Work at the extremes.” This advice from Jennifer R. Lukes’ Ph.D. advisor Chang-Lin Tien, the former Chancellor at U.C. Berkeley, inspired her earliest breakthroughs in characterizing materials with very high and very low thermal conductivities. Her publications in this area, which have been cited more than 400 times in the past decade, have provided clear insight into the unusual thermal properties of nanostructures.

the theory with the computer modeling and experimental data is successful and valuable because you can’t fully understand what’s going on at the nanoscale if you just do the experiments. Computer models tuned with experimental data reveal the underlying mechanisms and make it possible to generalize with different materials, both at the nanoscale and larger. Because the number of particles involved is not so large, you can do more precise calculations.”

in her life: she had completed a B.S. from Rice University and was working in the oil and gas industry in Texas but missed the intellectual ferment of academia. To her surprise, one of her Rice professors actually called her mother and spoke to her at length to persuade her that Lukes should apply to graduate school. Today, she says, “I make a point of talking to the very talented undergraduates to encourage the pursuit of an engineering Ph.D.”

Among the advantages of Lukes’ approach, adds Vitek, is that her research identifies ways to design materials with particle patterns that can be self-organized for particularly desirable characteristics.

An enthusiastic participant in initiatives to strengthen interest in science and engineering among minorities, she says, “Just to plant the seed in young people’s minds that people who look like me are doing this kind of work is fantastic.”

Lukes is mindful of her responsibility to the next generation of engineers. She recalls a pivotal moment

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Zach Ives

Engineering New Realms of the Networked Economy By Jessica Stein Diamond

“I can’t think of a better place to innovate than at the cutting edge of the networked economy,” says Zachary G. Ives, undergraduate curriculum chair of Penn Engineering’s new Rajendra and Neera Singh Program in Market and Social Systems Engineering (MKSE). “The whole economy is being driven by networked technology. It’s the most fruitful place to be creative— particularly now that all communication, with the exception of face-to-face, is converging on the Internet. You need a lot of rigor to understand the tools of the field, but then you need to go way beyond,” says Ives, associate professor and Markowitz Faculty Fellow in Computer and Information Science (CIS). While Penn’s new major in Market and Social Systems Engineering may well launch another Mark Zuckerberg, its scope is far beyond social networking. The Singh Program is the world’s first undergraduate engineering curriculum for the networked economy, and is designed to train technology leaders who will shape globally interdependent markets, businesses and organizations. “This highly competitive program appeals to students of the networked age for whom everything is interactive and dynamic on the Internet all the time,” says Ives, a member of the Singh Program’s leadership team working with faculty and industry to continually refine and expand the program’s core engineering courses and technical electives. “We’re thinking about ways to engage interest and spark innovation. Virtually every engineering challenge in this emerging field requires collaboration and creativity.”

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Real-World Relevance The Singh Program in Market and Social Systems Engineering limits admission to 20 freshmen annually, and will welcome its first official class of undergraduates this fall. In the meantime, Ives, winner of Penn’s Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching in 2010, is applying his innovative approach to engineering education to the program’s curriculum. Interactive online course content helps students apply engineering theory to real-world challenges, and creatively approach problems by asking ‘what if ’ questions. Assignments link engineering principles to practical challenges, helping students develop broadly useful critical analysis, design, and troubleshooting skills. From Ives’ perspective, this is a more effective approach to engineering education than what he refers to as ‘toy problems’ (simplified assignments with recipe-oriented solutions). Ives cites two examples of his approach from Market and Social Systems on the Internet, a new course he piloted and co-taught this spring with CIS Professor Sampath Kannan. While studying social networks, students were asked to build a friend recommender in Java, using visual tools and anonymized data from a real social network. Another assignment was developed days after The New York Times reported that retailer J. C. Penney had benefited from frowned-upon search engine optimization techniques during the 2010 holiday shopping season. According to the Times article, the retailer earned lucrative top Google search


“The whole economy is being driven by networked technology. It’s the most fruitful place to be creative—particularly now that all communication, with the exception of face-to-face, is converging on the Internet.

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“Showing how the theory informs the practice is really important,” says Ives. “Until recently, we’ve tended to focus on building systems and machines. But the reality of the networked economy is that engineers are increasingly faced with large numbers of both automated systems and humans; we need to structure how they interact.”

rankings in many product categories by using link-selling intermediaries – violating Google’s optimization guidelines. Google has since ‘corrected’ J.C. Penney’s search rankings, but remains vulnerable to similar attacks. Ives asked students to use their knowledge of pageranking algorithms to examine this vulnerability: students received an offline snapshot of Internet pages, and were tasked with creating the right set of links to make a particular page receive a top search score.

Speed of Light Too Slow The Market and Social Systems on the Internet class also covers how to create networked systems that are reliable and fast despite the inherent constraints of the Internet. Statistically, a small percent of computers in a network of thousands will crash during any computation. Moreover, the laws of physics are a barrier to instantaneous synchronization of computers worldwide via satellite and undersea cable. “The speed of light is actually annoyingly slow for what we’d like,” says Ives. Students learn protocols and systems needed to handle related lags and crashes.

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“Showing how the theory informs the practice is really important,” says Ives. “Until recently, we’ve tended to focus on building systems and machines. But the reality of the networked economy is that engineers are increasingly faced with large numbers of both automated systems and humans; we need to structure how they interact.” Ives plans to continually refine the Singh Program’s curriculum based on feedback from students, faculty, alumni, and employers. “This is a dynamic field that’s constantly changing,” he says. “The program will reflect where the field is moving.” “What engineering should really encourage is an attitude of ‘Can I think about problems differently, see problems nobody saw before, come up with insights nobody had before, and use these insights to make the world a better place?’” says Ives. He adds, fittingly, as one of the forces shaping the new Singh Program in Market and Social Systems Engineering, “It’s all about creating things that didn’t exist before.”


T h e F u t u r e S t a r ts N o w

Please join the many individuals who have helped to shape the character of Penn Engineering through a planned gift. A planned gift can ensure that your philanthropy not only maximizes the benefit of available tax incentives, but creates a lasting legacy, ensuring that you make a difference in areas important to you and for future generations. Estate gifts Bequests by will or living trust are the simplest way to make a planned gift to Penn Engineering. Penn’s Office of Gift Planning helps donors tailor bequests and structure gifts of stock, real estate, and life insurance to maximize tax savings. Retirement Plan Assets Designating Penn Engineering as a beneficiary of your 401(k), IRA, or other retirement plan is an easy way to include the School in your estate plans. Life Income Gifts Charitable Gift Annuities and Charitable Remainder Trusts allow you to support Penn Engineering while lifetime payments help maintain your long-term financial goals.

Your gift qualifies you for membership in the Harrison Society To learn more about supporting Penn Engineering please contact: Colleen Becht Rotindo 215-898-6564 crotindo@seas.upenn.edu http://www.seas.upenn.edu/giving/planned-giving.php

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Entrepreneurs’ Corner

Fear

“When I was at Penn, I could never have imagined starting all these ventures,” Kaplan reminisces. “My years at Penn proved to be a formative experience.”

is a Four-letter Word By Amy Biemiller Successful entrepreneurs understand that triumph comes only after you accept the possibility of failure, according to Jerry Kaplan (CIS’79). Kaplan, CEO of Winster.com, the social collaborative gaming website, knows about success and about facing the prospect of failure. Long considered a “serial entrepreneur,” Kaplan has developed one creative idea after another into prosperous ventures, all while accepting the possibility of failure. “Fear of failure is one of the greatest impediments to success for any entrepreneur,” Kaplan states. “It’s that fear which can keep you from exploring a new idea to its fullest. If you believe in the commercial viability of your idea, you should not be afraid to take on that risk,” he notes. Kaplan, like most entrepreneurs, defines success differently from members of the corporate world. “The corporate scorecard for success is about making money and having revenue exceed expenses,” he explains. “Of course that is important, but as an entrepreneur it’s also important that the venture creates employment and provides a valuable service that improves life for your customers,” he says. By all accounts, Winster.com, Kaplan’s newest endeavor, scores high in these objectives. More than three million people have registered to play on the site, forging friendships by collaborating—rather than competing—to win prizes. And while Winster is a leader in the synchronous games category, it also performs a social service by providing companionship and support to people who are physically or socially isolated. Winster serves as an emotional lifeline for people who are at home due to illness or while caring

for elderly relatives or small children. It has even been instrumental in a marriage proposal. Winster is only the latest in a long line of Kaplan’s entrepreneurial endeavors. In 1987 he co-founded GO Corporation, which developed PenPoint, an operating system for pen-based technologies such as PDA devices and tablet computers. In 1994 he initiated the pre-eBay auction site Onsale.com and a year later wrote the best-seller Startup: A Silicon Valley Adventure. From there he served as CEO of Egghead.com, the online computer retailer. “When I was at Penn I could never have imagined starting all these ventures,” Kaplan reminisces. “My years at Penn proved to be a formative experience.” Key to his success has been Dr. Aravind Joshi, who was the chair of the Computer and Information Science department when Kaplan was undertaking his Ph.D. thesis. “Dr. Joshi is a dedicated educator who encouraged independent but disciplined thinking and was particularly instrumental in helping me develop entrepreneurial skills,” says Kaplan, who has since shown his esteem by endowing a scholarly chair in Dr. Joshi’s name. “He empowered me to take intellectual risks and explore new ideas in a safe environment,” he says. That environment was Kaplan’s proving ground, where he learned the difference between fear and caution, a distinction that has proved fundamental in building his entrepreneurial success. Kaplan notes, “When you try something and it doesn’t work, you accept that failure and move on. You should use what you learn to guide your future actions, not to avoid them.”

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Gateway to Innovation

Groundbreaking for the Krishna P. Singh Center for Nanotechnology

Penn President Amy Gutmann joined University Trustees, Eduardo Glandt, dean of Penn Engineering and Rebecca Bushnell, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) in a groundbreaking ceremony for the Krishna P. Singh Center for Nanotechnology on Thursday, February 17. The facility will serve as a new gateway into Penn’s physical campus and will place the University at the forefront of the emerging and vital field of nanoscience. The $80 million Singh Center, named for Penn alumnus, University Trustee and Engineering Overseer Krishna P. Singh, will be located at the eastern edge of campus on the 3200 block of Walnut Street, creating an eye-catching entrance into Penn from Center City

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Philadelphia. The state-of-the-art facility, developed jointly by Penn Engineering and SAS, manifests Penn’s commitment to interdisciplinary learning and research, and is the first building at the University to integrate knowledge across two schools.

Building the Future “We are pleased that Kris has so generously contributed to making Penn a leader in nanotechnology,” said Glandt. “Those who know him understand that this is a gift from the heart. His wise counsel and investment in the future of Penn Engineering will leave an indelible mark.”


“We are pleased that Kris has so generously contributed to making Penn a leader in nanotechnology,” said Glandt. “Those who know him understand that this is a gift from the heart. His wise counsel and investment in the future of Penn Engineering will leave an indelible mark.”

Major leadership gifts have also been given in support of the new building by David and Debra Magerman and the Frank and Denise Quattrone Foundation. David Magerman (ENG’90, C’90), a Penn Engineering Overseer, is president and founder of the Kohelet Foundation, a private foundation which encourages the development of Jewish identity. Frank Quattrone (W’77) is chief executive officer and founder of Qatalyst Group, a technology-focused independent investment bank. The 100,000 square-foot, L-shaped facility is being designed by the New York-based architectural firm Weiss/Manfredi, and construction will be managed by the Gilbane Building Company headquartered in Rhode Island. The Singh Center will include microscopy

laboratories, optics labs and 10,000 square feet of environmentally controlled clean rooms. The structure’s exterior will feature walls of glass and steel and is expected to be one of the largest nanotechnology centers in the region. Completion of the Singh Center is slated for spring of 2013.

Beyond the Laboratory In addition to the laboratory spaces, the building will also feature a courtyard, public galleria, a forum space and high-profile conference rooms. The building is targeting LEED Silver Certification, a “green” building program for energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity

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Krishna P. Singh: Pioneer and Visionary to their impacts. Three of these efforts will include a “green roof” to capture 90 percent of storm water runoff, the diversion of construction waste from landfills and the optimization of the building’s energy performance to at least 17.5 percent beyond industry requirements. “We are thrilled to be taking this important step toward providing our faculty with access to state-ofthe-art resources, and even more thrilled with the opportunities that the Singh Center will create for scientists from Penn Engineering, SAS, and elsewhere to collaborate,” said Bushnell. Glandt noted that the Center will serve as a regional hub of multidisciplinary fundamental and translational research, education and innovation. “This facility,” he stated, “will allow researchers in academia and business to venture into this transformative technology. This is an area that is very facilities-intensive, and you are only as good as your microscope.”

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Krishna P. Singh (MS’69, Ph.D.’72), a Penn alumnus, University Trustee and Engineering Overseer, is founder, president and chief executive officer of Holtec International, an energy-technology company based in Marlton, N.J. An innovator in nuclear power plant technology, Singh provided the $20 million naming gift for the Center. “My vision has always been to help Penn and the region to develop a leadership role in nanotechnology,” stated Singh. “It has an enormous future.” Holtec International is a global supplier of equipment and systems for the nuclear, solar, geothermal and fossil power generation sectors of the energy industry. The company is recognized as the world leader in the technologies to manage used nuclear fuel discharged from nuclear reactors and as a provider of capital equipment and services to commercial power plants.


rat Peter Detkin has spent most of his career working with visionaries and pioneering inventors, helping them

realize and then protect their ideas either in startups or established businesses.

Protecting the Entrepreneurs By Janet Falon

Peter Detkin has one piece of advice for Penn Engineering students: “Don’t think you’re going to work for one or two employers for the rest of your life. If you want a good job, you have to invent it.” This is how people think in Silicon Valley, he adds, and it remains the hub of ground-breaking innovation.

competition policy. Detkin loved working at Intel and is proud to own an autographed copy of Moore’s law, created by Intel co-founder Gordon E. Moore. Moore’s law is a prediction that the number of transistors on a chip will double about every two years, and it “drives Silicon Valley,” Detkin says.

Detkin knows what he is talking about; he has spent most of his career working with visionaries and pioneering inventors, helping them realize and then protect their ideas either in startups or established businesses. What has to be protected, he explains, is how something works, rather than how it is made: the idea, rather than the execution; the recipe, not the actual cooking.

Tectonic Shift

For eight years Detkin worked at Intel, a Silicon Valley mainstay, as vice president and assistant general counsel, responsible for the patent and licensing departments and managing the litigation and

Detkin relocated to Silicon Valley only two years into his career, eager to play a meaningful part in the hotbed of invention. Before Intel, he was an intellectual property partner at Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich and Rosati in Palo Alto, where he was the first patent lawyer and the basis of the firm’s highly successful intellectual property practice. While working with a software copyright issue, he litigated a case that made its way up to the Supreme Court.

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At the forefront of intellectual property law, Detkin has seen the tectonic shift in how patent law is practiced, from a cottage industry of boutique firms to its integration into the companies that are creating the new technologies. “A good executive in Silicon Valley has to understand intellectual property,” he says.

In 2002 Detkin helped found Intellectual Ventures, in Bellevue, Washington. The company’s mission is to energize and streamline an invention economy that will drive innovation around the world. As vice-chairman, he focuses on intellectual property and invention, and

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is proud to be affiliated with projects that range from a new type of antenna to nuclear power.

Detkin’s comfort with the entrepreneurial spirit may be genetic, although he has taken it in a different direction than his father, who worked in importing and exporting costume jewelry. “My father introduced ‘puka’ beads to the United States,” he says, referring to shell-like beads popular in the 1970s. “And ‘mood rings’ paid for my education at Penn.”


rat Peter Detkin has one piece of advice for Penn Engineering students: “Don’t think you’re going to work for one or two employers for the rest of your life. If you want a good job, you have to invent it.”

A Better Fit

Graduating with a degree in Electrical Engineering and Systems in 1982, Detkin has fond memories of studying antenna design at Penn Engineering with Dr. Dwight D. Jaggard. After deciding that law was a better fit than an engineering career, Detkin focused on patent law thanks to a summer job after his first year of law school at a firm where he worked with a patent law luminary.

Detkin recently endowed a laboratory at Penn Engineering. He jokes that it is an appropriate gift. While working in the electrical engineering laboratory as a freshman, he crossed two wires and received such a strong electrical shock that he kicked his legs forward while on his castor-rolling chair, causing him to propel himself backwards until he hit the rear wall behind him. Obviously, judging from his track record, Detkin survived intact.

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SCHOOL NEWS

New Faculty

Ertugrul Cubukcu Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering

Christopher Fang-Yen Assistant Professor of Bioengineering

Ph.D. in Applied Physics from Harvard University

Ph.D. in Physics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley

Postdoctoral Fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University

Dr. Cubukcu’s research lies at the interface of engineering, physics and material science in the areas of nanophotonics and nanotechnology. He and his lab are developing novel nanophotonic devices based on optical nanoantennas to break the diffraction limit of light, which is dictated by the laws of physics.

Dr. Fang-Yen’s research explores how neural circuits generate behavior, using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a model. This 1 mm-long roundworm possesses a stereotyped nervous system containing only 302 neurons, yet exhibits an interesting behavioral repertoire.

This fundamental limit needs to be overcome in order to investigate the optical properties of matter on the nanoscale. Due to the interaction of light with conduction electrons in a metal nanoparticle, optical antennas offer confinement of light on the nanometer scale along with the enhancement of local electric fields. These nanoantenna-based photonic devices may have far-reaching and unpredictable implications, from superdense optical storage to superhigh-resolution optical microscopes.

Adopting a quantitative approach in which the worm’s sensory inputs and motor outputs are measured to define the algorithms underlying specific behaviors, Dr. Fang-Yen then manipulates the neural circuits using tools from physics, biology, and engineering to dissect their function. His current work includes developing innovative optical methods for monitoring and manipulating neural activity in freely moving animals, and applying these techniques to decode the neural bases of locomotory and feeding behaviors.

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Honors and Awards The CAREER Award is the National Science Foundation’s most prestigious award in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations. Competition for CAREER Awards is fierce, and only 10-15 percent of applications are funded. We note with pride the award-winning research of the following recipients: Daniel Gianola, Skirkanich Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, for research in “Mechanics of Ultra-strength Nanomaterials: Revealing Deformation Mechanisms.” Andreas Haeberlen, Raj and Neera Singh Assistant Professor of Computer and Information Science, for research in “Evidence in Federated Distributed Systems.” Daeyeon Lee, Assistant Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, for research in “Understanding Electronic Interactions in Non-polar Media for Generation of Nanostructured Thin Films.” Casim Sarkar, Assistant Professor of Bioengineering, for research in “Engineering Biomolecules and Cells for Oral Protein Delivery.” Jason A. Burdick, Associate Professor of Bioengineering, is a recipient of the Edward C. Nagy New Investigator Award from the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB). Burdick is one of eight new investigators, chosen from a list of over 100, who have demonstrated outstanding, fresh and innovative work in their fields. The award is named after Mr. Edward Nagy who was one of the driving forces in enacting legislation to create the NIBIB in 2000. Nader Engheta, H. Nedwell Ramsey Professor of Electrical and Systems Engineering, has been elected Fellow of the International Society for Optical Engineering for “pioneering contributions to the fields of metamaterials, plasmonic nano-optics, biologically inspired optical imaging, and electrodynamics.”

Susan B. Davidson, Weiss Professor and Chair of the Department of Computer and Information Science, has been elected to the Computing Research Association (CRA) Board of Directors. The Computing Research Association seeks to strengthen research and advanced education in computing and allied fields. Davidson is Founder and Chair of Advancing Women in Engineering (AWE) and was Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Center for Bioinformatics. She has also been instrumental in establishing degree programs in bioinformatics and computational biology at the undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral levels. Davidson’s goal as a CRA Board member is to strengthen the interdisciplinary impact and diversity of computer science. The Rajendra and Neera Singh Program in Market and Social Systems Engineering (MKSE) has received a $650,000 research grant from Google for the proposal “Enabling the Next Generation of Highly Dynamic, Inter-Domain Data-Centric Markets and Systems.” The proposal will address the idea that Internet services, whether search engines, social networks, location-based services, recommendation systems, or ad placement services, currently operate over static “snapshots” of the world, not considering the dynamic changes that are happening even as the computations are occurring. The issues of how to handle dynamic information and relationships, how to handle the very large-scale processing of historical and live data, and how to support access, control, and privacy of data across and within Internet domains, are at the core of the planned research in Market and Social Systems Engineering. Efforts will include a combination of research conducted by faculty, Ph.D. students, and postdoctoral researchers, as well as activities involving undergraduate students in the Singh Program. Undergraduate students will participate in designing data-centric experiments that evaluate hypotheses; testbeds that aid in the teaching of key material; the development of data-centric programs; and evaluations of different algorithms and mechanisms.

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SCHOOL NEWS

Honors and Awards continued

Penn Engineering Teaching Awards

Noam Lior, Professor in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics and colleague Na Zhang, Ph.D., received the ASME Society’s Obert Award for their paper “Use of Low/Mid-Temperature Solar Heat for Thermochemical Upgrading of Energy, With Application to a Novel Chemically-Recuperated Gas-Turbine Power Generation (SOLRGT) System.”

The recipients of the annual Penn Engineering Teaching and Advising Awards are selected directly by students after thoughtful consideration. The School is filled with gifted educators who inspire students with their dedication and excellence.

George Pappas, Deputy Dean for Research and Joseph Moore Professor of Electrical and Systems Engineering, is the recipient of the 2010 Antonio Ruberti Young Researcher Prize awarded by the IEEE Control Systems Society for contributions in systems and control.

Special Lecture George H. Heilmeier Faculty Award for Excellence in Research Christopher S. Chen, Skirkanich Professor of Innovation in Bioengineering, and founding director of the Center for Engineering Cells and Regeneration, has been selected as the 2011 recipient of the George H. Heilmeier Faculty Award for Excellence in Research for his “fundamental contributions in the study and design of cellular microenvironment.” Dr. Chen’s seminar, “Engineered Microenvironments and the Regulation of Cell Function,” was presented on April 7, 2011. The Heilmeier Faculty Award was established by Penn Engineering for the purpose of recognizing excellence in scholarly activities of the faculty. Named in honor of George H. Heilmeier, the award recognizes his extraordinary research career, his leadership in technical innovation and public service, and his loyal and steadfast support of Penn Engineering.

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Matthew Lazzara, Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, has been awarded the S. Reid Warren Jr. Award, which is presented annually by the undergraduate student body and the Engineering Alumni Society in recognition of outstanding service in stimulating and guiding the intellectual and professional development of undergraduate students. One student noted, “Dr. Lazzara goes above and beyond his duties and is always willing to offer academic and career-related advice to students. Getting the chance to work with Dr. Lazzara has inspired me to apply to graduate school for chemical engineering.” Gershon Buchsbaum, Professor in the Department of Bioengineering, has been awarded the Ford Motor Company Award for Faculty Advising. The award recognizes dedication to helping students realize their educational, career and personal goals. One student wrote, “Dr. Buchsbaum always has my best interests in mind even if it isn’t the usual path in Penn Engineering or if it requires more time on his part. He takes my lofty goals into serious consideration and does everything on his part to help me achieve them.” Michael Rizk, Lecturer in the Department of Bioengineering, has been awarded the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Lecturer and Practice Professor Track. The award recognizes outstanding teaching ability, dedication to innovative undergraduate instruction, and exemplary service to the School in consistently inspiring students in the engineering and scientific profession. A student writes, “Dr. Rizk has made a difference in my academic career in the way I approach engineering and scientific problems. Because of him, I have developed a passion to understand why I answer a problem in a certain way, whether it’s a research-based Senior Design objective or a coding problem in an academic class.”


in memorium

Penn Legend Britton Chance Dies at 97 Britton Chance, the Eldridge Reeves Johnson Professor Emeritus of Biophysics, Physical Chemistry, and Radiologic Physics, died at the age of 97 on November 16, 2010. The fifth-generation Penn alumnus amassed three degrees at the university and taught here for more than 30 years. His inventions led to core insights into how living organisms produce and manage cellular energy, and he developed approaches for detecting cancer and assessing brain function by applying optical imaging techniques to the field of biomedicine. Born on July 24, 1913, in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, Chance revealed his ingenuity early on. When he was 13, he built his first radio transmitter, and about five years later, he created an automatic ship steering instrument that was subsequently installed in refrigerator ships and oil tankers. Chance then obtained his bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Penn in 1935, followed by a master’s degree the next year and a doctorate in physical chemistry in 1940. A few years later, he received a second Ph.D. in biology and physiology from the University of Cambridge.

The fifth-generation Penn alumnus amassed three degrees at the university and taught here for more than 30 years. In his 20s, as a graduate student at Penn, he devised the stopped flow apparatus, which allowed scientists to study rapidly interacting chemicals in a solution. He used the device to prove that enzymes form brief associations with other molecules, called enzyme-substrate complexes, to speed chemical reactions. During World War II, Chance helped to design radar systems for accurate bombing and submarine detection. This work, performed in the Radiation Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, earned him the President’s Certificate of Merit in 1950. After the war, he went to the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm as a Guggenheim Fellow to examine the role of enzymes in cellular respiration.

As a professor at Penn from 1949 to 1983, Chance invented an optical device called the dual wavelength spectrophotometer, which he used to identify fundamental metabolic steps that take place in cellular powerhouses known as mitochondria. He also became chair of the department of Biophysics and Physical Biochemistry and director of the Johnson Foundation for Medical Physics, where the Stellar-Chance Laboratories are in part named for him. Even in retirement, Chance continued to make discoveries and publish papers. Most notably, he established ways of using noninvasive imaging tools to locate breast tumors, measure neural activity and diagnose cancer and brain conditions. Chance’s honors include the 1952 Olympic gold medal for sailing, membership in the National Academy of Sciences and the 1974 National Medal of Science. He is survived by wife Shoko Nioka, a biochemist he married early last year; 11 children; five stepchildren; 20 grandchildren; and eight step-grandchildren.

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POP QUIZ www.seas.upenn.edu

Sandra Rathman Sandy Rathman, Director of Faculty Affairs, works closely with the Dean to manage all faculty administrative matters for the School. What do you see as the role of the Faculty Director? The overarching responsibility of my job is supporting the School’s efforts to recruit and retain faculty of the highest academic caliber. That means wearing many hats—overseeing dossier preparations for new hires, reappointments and promotions, and shepherding the cases through the various School and University approval processes. I staff school-wide faculty committees and I have the dual role of serving as both an advocate for the Dean and for the faculty. My job is all things faculty, all the time!

What do you like most about your job? There are certainly very few dull moments. The job presents a richness of opportunities that I love. I’ve worked with nearly all the faculty at one time or another through their service on various school committees. I particularly enjoy getting to know new faculty and their families during the recruitment process and helping to solve real estate and child care issues when I can. It is rewarding to watch new, young faculty as they grow academically and progress through the ranks.

Is there anything you have found surprising about engineering? I have been amazed by the breadth of engineering endeavors at the School. Before coming to Penn, I worked in Princeton at a civil engineering firm for ten years and I was quite naive about what engineering really entailed. I thought of engineering only on the macro level and had no idea the breadth of engineering at the micro and now the nano levels. I have a natural curiosity and am an avid reader, so this job literally gives me the chance to learn something new every day.

At the end of the day, what brings you back for more? I sometimes think of myself as the “faculty wrangler,” herding, lassoing and caring for the faculty. I am sure that some can attest to being cajoled or gently coerced into serving on committees. I hope that what comes through in the end is that I truly care about the faculty and the School.

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CONTENT Penn Engineering Board of Overseers From the Dean

1

In the Zone with Guitar Hero Expert Chris Chike

2

Naturally Inspired Materials The Man with a Plan Penn’s Dean of Admissions Eric J. Furda

Mr. Andrew S. Rachleff, W’80 [Board Chair] Partner Benchmark Capital Menlo Park, CA The Honorable Harold Berger, EE’48, L’51 Managing Partner Berger and Montague, P.C. Philadelphia, PA

6 10

Mr. David J. Berkman, W’83 Managing Partner Liberty Associated Partners, L.P. Bala Cynwyd, PA

Renegade 14 Electric Dragster Builds New Skills Pursuing the Infinite Promise of the Infinitesimally Small

18

Zach Ives: Engineering New Realms of the Networked Economy

22

Mr. Dennis “Chip” Brady, C’94, W’94 Partner, LSN Partners, LLC Miami, FL Dr. Katherine D. Crothall, EE’71 Principal Liberty Venture Partners, Inc. Philadelphia, PA Penn Engineering Spring 2011

Fear is a Four-letter Word

26

Gateway to Innovation The Singh Center for Nanotechnology

28

Peter Detkin Protecting the Entrepreneurs

31

School News

34

Pop Quiz with Sandra Rathman

38

University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering and Applied Science 123 Towne Building 220 South 33rd Street Philadelphia, PA 19104-6391 Email alumni@seas.upenn.edu Phone 215-898-6564 / Fax 215-573-2131 www.seas.upenn.edu Eduardo D. Glandt / Dean George W. Hain III / Vice Dean, External Affairs Development and Alumni Relations Joan S. Gocke / Director of Communications Editor Contributing Writers Amy Biemiller Amy Calhoun Jessica Stein Diamond Janet Falon Jon Hurdle Patricia Hutchings Olivia Loskoski Janelle Weaver

Dr. George H. Heilmeier, EE’58 Chairman Emeritus Telcordia Technologies, Inc. Dallas, TX Dr. John F. Lehman, Jr., GR’74 Chairman and Founding Partner J. F. Lehman & Company New York, NY Mr. Ryan D. Limaye, ENG‘93, W‘93, WG‘93 Managing Director & Head Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. San Francisco, CA Dr. David M. Magerman, C’90, ENG’90 President and Founder Kohelet Foundation Gladwyne, PA Mr. Sean C. McDonald, ChE’82 President, CEO Precision Therapeutics Pittsburgh, PA

Mr. Peter N. Detkin, Esq., EE’82, L’85 Co-Founder, Vice-Chairman Intellectual Ventures Palo Alto, CA

Mr. Hital R. Meswani, ENG’90, W’90 Executive Director and Member of the Board Reliance Industries Limited Mumbai, India

Mr. Richard D. Forman, EE’87, W’87 Managing Partner Health Venture Group New York, NY

Mr. Rajeev Misra, ME’85, GEN’86 Global Head of Credit UBS Investment Bank London, UK

Mr. C. Michael Gooden, GEE’78 Chairman and CEO Integrated Systems Analysts Inc. Alexandria, VA

Mr. Ofer Nemirovsky, EE’79, W’79 Managing Director HarbourVest Partners, LLC Boston, MA

Mr. Paul S. Greenberg, EE’83, WG’87 Principal Trilogy Capital LLC Greenwich, CT

Mr. Mitchell I. Quain, EE’73, parent [Board Chair Emeritus] Partner One Equity Partners New York, NY

Mr. Alex Haidas, C’93, ENG’93, WG’98 Portfolio Manager Credaris (CPM Advisers Limited) London, UK

Mr. Allie P. Rogers, ENG’87, W’87 Co-Founder Triple Point Technology, Inc. Westport, CT

Mr. Jeffrey M. Rosenbluth, ENG’84 Private Investor Sands Point, NY Ms. Suzanne B. Rowland, ChE’83 VP Business Excellence Tyco Flow Control Princeton, NJ Mr. Theodore E. Schlein, C’86 Managing Partner Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers Menlo Park, CA Dr. Krishna P. Singh, MS’69, Ph.D.’72 President and CEO Holtec International Marlton, NJ Dr. Rajendra Singh, parent Chairman and CEO Telcom Ventures LLC Alexandria, VA Ms. Juliet Sjöborg, EE’85 WG’92 Director Plena Group London, UK Mr. Robert M. Stavis, EAS’84, W’84 Partner Bessemer Venture Larchmont, NY Mr. Harlan M. Stone, C’80 President and Chief Operating Officer Halstead International Norwalk, CT Mr. Frederick J. Warren, ME’60, WG’61 Founder Sage Venture Partners, LLC Winter Park, FL Ms. Sarah Keil Wolf, EE’86, W’86 Retired Investment Banker Bear Stearns and Company Scarsdale, NY Dr. Michael D. Zisman, GEE’73, GR’77 Managing Director, Operations Internet Capital Group Wayne, PA

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renegade Penn’s Electric Dragster

UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA

Spring 2011

Penn Engineering Magazine: Spring 2011  

"Penn's Electric Dragster: Renegade"

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