College of Engineering University of Wisconsin-Madison
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ME: The Mechanical Engineering Department Newsletter


The ME Newsletter
Fall-Winter 2006-2007

Featured articles

Making more functional biopolymers

GOOD SPORTS: Hamstring study may help injured athletes
stay healthy

Metal-embedding method helps tiny sensors function in extreme environments

Two ME faculty receive 2006 College of Engineering Awards

In Memoriam: Professor Emeritus Phil Myers

Two ME alums honored at Engineers' Day

Regular Features

Faculty News

Student News

Alumni News




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UW-Madison Hybrid Vehicle Team

The UW-Madison Hybrid Vehicle Team
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Up to the CHALLENGE: Hybrid Vehicle Team places second in competition

Decorative initial cap The UW-Madison Hybrid Vehicle Team placed second in the Challenge X: Crossover to Sustainable Mobility competition sponsored by General Motors and the U.S. Department of Energy. The competition, which challenged participants to revamp a Chevrolet Equinox to maintain its performance while enhancing its fuel efficiency by 50 percent and decrease its tailpipe emissions, was held in early June in Mesa, Arizona. The UW-Madison team received 10 individual awards and $6,000 in prize money. Team members and their second-place victory were featured in several newspapers.

The Milwaukee-based company Johnson Controls donated a turbo-charged hybrid battery pack to the UW Hybrid Vehicle Team for use in its latest competition vehicle.

Jiaqin Chen, a PhD student in computer science, along with Professor Vadim Shapiro, Assistant Professor Krishnan Suresh, and Associate Scientist Igor Tsukanov, won the Ford Best Paper Award and accompanying $1,000 prize for the paper, “Parametric and Topological Control in Shape Optimization.” The paper presents new ways to control shape, intuitive parameters, freeform boundaries and topology during shape optimization, all within a single computational framework. New methods of design can be developed with this control that blend geometry and mechanics.

Senior Ryan Hertel received a 2006 Meyerhoff Undergraduate Excellence Award for the College of Engineering. Hertel, who also is earning a business certificate, has served as a Child-Life volunteer at the UW-Children’s Hospital, worked as a campus guide for prospective students, and provided leadership to ASME as the programming officer. Hertel also interned with Affiliated Engineers in Madison and SC Johnson & Son. Following graduation he will work as an operations management trainee at Nestlé.

Kevin Eichinger

Senior Kevin Eichinger (pictured at left) finished his second Wisconsin Ironman triathlon in 12 hours and 53 minutes on Sept. 10, despite fighting cold, wind and rain. “Pain is temporary, quitting is forever. There isn’t another feeling like crossing that finish line!” Eichinger says.

Senior Silas Bernardoni was featured in the Oct. 3 issue of The Capital Times for his pumpkin-heaving trebuchet, a medieval catapult. After launching a pumpkin an impressive 640 feet in the regional competition, Bernardoni’s trebuchet won fifth place at the world championships in Delaware. “This was the atomic bomb of the Middle Ages,” Bernardoni said. He also captains the UW-Madison Trebuchet team.

Tim Shedd driving the Formula SAE vehicle

Assistant Professor Tim Shedd (right) drives the Formula SAE vehicle in an attempt to score the fastest faculty lap time. The Formula SAE team offered College of Engineering faculty and staff the opportunity to drive the 2006 vehicle at a thank-you event Oct. 8. The team finished third at the national competition in Detroit in May.

The UW-Madison Clean Snowmobile Team won the 2006 Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Clean Snowmobile Challenge held in Houghton, Michigan, on March 13-18, 2006. Under the guidance of Mechanical Engineering Faculty Associate Glenn Bower, the team not only won the overallcompetition, but also placed first in the emissions competition and in the design paper category; second in the fuel economy and rider comfort events; and third in the design presentation competition.


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Copyright 2006 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System

Date last modified: Monday, 27-November-2006 15:43:00 CDT
Date created: 27-November-2006



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