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This fall I am teaching EGNR491 (Senior Projects), EGRS 430 (Systems Integration & Machine Vision), and EGNR261 & EGNR361 (Energy Systems & Sustainability and associated lab) here at LSSU. I will be serving as chair of the Senior Projects Faculty Board (SPFB) for the first time. The SPFB oversees the capstone projects of the two-course sequence (EGNR491 this fall and then EGNR495 in the spring). EGRS430 is really exciting to teach with all the advancements in vision-guided robotics, augmented reality, etc. Last, but certainly not least, I am enjoying teaching EGNR261 for the second time and integrating some of the experience I've gained over the past 5 years in working on photovoltaic projects that have been sponsored by 3M. I am also teaching the associated lab, EGNR361, for the first time. This class is usually the first students take in our new Sustainable Energy Concentration and is also fun because we get to take a number of field trips to see the wealth of alternative energy conversion systems around the Soo (e.g. the Cloverland hydro plant, Dr. Zimmerman's reed canary grass biomass system, etc.).
I really enjoy teaching/mentoring/guiding students here at LSSU and the people in the School of Engineering & Technology are great to work with. Prior to starting at LSSU in the fall of 2009, I spent three academic years teaching at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Before that, I received a B.S. degree in the field of Computer Engineering (CpE) and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in the field of Electrical Engineering (with concentrations in CpE) from Michigan Technological University.
Interesting News, Links, etc.
Disclaimer: Some of the links are external and do not necessarily reflect the views of LSSU. Also, if you ever find any broken ones, please let me know so I can fix them!
Click on the link icon (where possible) for more information.
- 9/19/14: Pages have now been created on our Engineering & Technology website for the Digital Concentration (for EEs) and Computer Engineering and our newly approved Sustainable Energy Concentration.
- 11/21/12: Here are some interesting post-Sandy solar-related articles (thanks Prof. McDonald for sharing!):
P.S. For the latter, I would doubt the price of the generator that was mentioned is for the generator that is shown. Something similar is manufactured here in the UP and generally those scale generators are more on the order of $1,000 - $4,000.
- 9/8/12: The Engineering House now as a Facebook page.
- 9/8/12: The South Hall Opportunity (SoHO--the renovation project) now has a new website. This renovation should be a great opportunity for our College of Business & Engineering (especially for our better half in Business!) and needs your help if you are able to contribute.
- 9/2/12: Some news on sleep and grades to sleep on...
- 8/16/12: An amazing piece of engineering (from http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap120731.html):
and an interesting related story.
The LSSU interdisciplinary, entrepreneurial team Superior AquaSystems earned a judge's award of $5,000 at the Michigan Clean Energy Venture Challenge. They are in the process of developing ultra-efficient micro-operation fish farms.
"Hook 'n Look," a program that gives viewers a "fish-eye view" of the lures used to catch fish, will broadcast an episode on Great Lakes salmon this weekend that includes a segment on the LSSU Aquatic Research Laboratory and its Atlantic salmon program. The show was filmed last summer.
Catch the show at 11:30 p.m. Friday, 11:30 a.m. Saturday or 7 a.m. on Sunday on The Outdoor Channel. Here is a preview:
LSSU Engineering crew cleans up Algonquin Trail after storm (Prof. Duesing shown below)
Senior Projects showcase partnerships with 3M, Nexteer, Little Traverse Conservancy, EOS. My team developed a LowX Concentrated Photovoltaic (CPV) system using 3M brand Cool Mirror Film as described in the following video:
Skate Fenders developed via PDC used in the NHL (9and10 News)
"Viral" tops Banished Word List (CNN)
The video for the Regional FIRST Competition is now available. Dr. Andrew Jones and several of the Engineering & Technology students helped mentor Team 1596 (Instigators) from Sault High:
Product Development Center (PDC) makes business easier for Marble Arms [Photo: LSSU/John Shibley]
New page added to help explain Computer Engineering and the Digital Systems Option
ECE student Jordan Gignac student helps out at this past weekend's FIRST Lego Competition at LSSU [Photo1:Mike McKee, Soo Evening News] while Andrew Jones takes input from the students. [Photo2: John Shibley, LSSU]
Today I learned that our twin city (Sault Ste. Marie, ON) is The Alternative Energy Capital of North America!
- EGNR101 Robot Competition from Fall 2009:
The fall semester concluded with a show-down between teams in EGNR101 - Introduction to Engineering.
Bon Soo button on sale ($5 til Dec. 31st) [Photo: SooToday]
LSSU Social Dancers dance with Tendercare residents [Photo:Mike McKee, Soo Evening News]
Soo earns silver level award from Promoting Active Communities (PAC)
St. Marys Paper (Soo, ON) Biomass Co-gen Plant announced (6 photos)
Upper Peninsula's Pictured Rocks National Park (definitely should go there while you're at LSSU IMHO!) featured in Kid Rock video
Improvements planned for Soo Locks Park
$1.325M granted in financial assistance to the SmartZone
30 MW more solar coming to sister Soo(, ON)
External news blurb from on the Product Development Center (PDC) at LSSU
This upcoming fall (2010), I will be teaching a course on Humans & Energy (HONR101). The course will focus on understanding resources and conversions of energy, exploring the impact on human life and vice versa via selected readings, discussion, and group projects. Topics will include:
-Energy Consumption & Conservation
-Social, Political, Financial, & Technical Aspects of Energy Systems
The course will include hands-on energy audits and hopefully at least one tour of a local renewable energy site (e.g. one of the hydro facilities, the wind farm, etc.).
It is an Honors class, but it is open to non Honors students with permission from the Honors Director (Dr. Jason Swedene).
An LSSU alum was recently named the general manager of Applied Manufacturing Technologies.
There are some great opportunities to see engineering in the Soo this weekend, including Engineer's Day at the locks, the bridge walk, and tours of the hydro-electric facility (and the Aquatic Research Laboratory)!
The solar panels and wind turbine have now been installed on the CAS building.
Construction has begun for 20 MW of solar in Sault, On.
LSSU now has a disc golf course (at least through the end of April).
There will be an EUP Farm Tour on April 24th as part of the Earth Day celebrations. The tour will leave by bus from LSSU's campus.
Happy Pi Day!
The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) mentored about 100 girl scouts as part of a science merit badge this past weekend.
The Sault High FIRST Robotics team competed last weekend in Traverse City and will again compete in Ann Arbor this upcoming weekend. SET students Jacob McClure, Dereck Wonnacott, and Zach Spurr are serving as mentors to the team. Dr. Andrew Jones also made the trip down to the event this past weekend.
Precision Edge has given LSSU engineering an endowed scholarship, out of which the first scholarships should be available this fall! Keep an eye on e-mails and the SET scholarship page for more details.
I would highly recommend checking out the Ashmun Creek Natural Area [Trail]. The signs are from the LSSU Biology Department via a grant from the Michigan Community Forestry Program.
The Norris Center will be undergoing an expansion and remodeling thanks to a $5 million donation. Full story and Project Website
Dr. Ron DeLap has been awarded a grant for the installation of a small solar system and wind turbine to be located on the CAS buildings. The two systems will be highly visible to the students and community and will serve as educational instruments in the School's Electrical and Computer Engineering degree programs. This is one of several steps the School is taking to become more involved in renewable energy education.
Eric Becks was named president and CEO of the (Sault Ste. Marie SmartZone).
Apparently there will be a marathon (The Chase) in the fall in the Soo starting at LSSU.
- SIFE Entrepreneurial Lecture 2/16 7pm Crow's Nest:
VIO Founder (See E&T "Events")
Primary Research Interests
I am currently pursuing several projects using 3M mirror films (e.g. 3M Brand Cool Mirror Film and 3M Brand Prestige Window Film) via a Technical Non-Tenured Faculty Grant sponsored by 3M. More information can be found in the following Poster (PDF).
In addition, an idea that was discussed as part of the grant--the construction of a residential Photovoltaic (PV) system using the Cool Mirror film--became a Senior Project that was pursued in 2010-2011 (scroll down to Team ISS) and then continued in 2011-2012 by Team International Solar Innovations (ISI). The current group of students, Team Helio-Tech, is pursuing a Building Integrated PhotoVoltaic (BIPV) vertical window module. All three groups have been senior students from the areas of mechanical, electrical, and computer engineering. The grant money, meanwhile, is being used to investigate smaller-scale mobile and low-cost applications.
My general areas of interest are:
- Reliability of Electrical Systems
- Renewable Energy Systems
- Energy Efficiency via Digital Control
- Distributed Control
- Primarily in Fault Tolerant and Safety-Critical Real-Time (including X-by-Wire) Systems
- Engineering Education (esp. wrt Energy)
- Introducing People to Engineering (ASEE Site)
- Fly-by-Feel Tactile Feedback Systems
Other Interests and Prior Research
- Modeling of the Human Body as a Fault Tolerant System
- Microcontroller and FPGA-based Applications
- Computer Networks
- Peer-to-Peer Applications using Epidemic-Style Protocols
For all the details of my background and work, please view my curriculum vitae (PDF).