03/05/13 — A member of the Berkeley faculty for less than two years, mechanical engineer Reza Alam is already making waves. His efforts to “cloak” objects at sea could one day help shield oil drilling platforms, wind turbine towers or data-collecting buoys from rough seas. His inspiration came from beyond his field: “I was reading papers about electromagnetic cloaking and started thinking, can we do something similar in fluids?”
Devices & inventions
11/28/12 CBS This Morning — Personal robots that can bake cookies, shoot pool and -- in the hands of EECS professor Pieter Abbeel -- fold laundry are evidence of a new generation in artificial intelligence, jump-started by a Silicon Valley tech company's PR2 robots.
11/01/12 — Associate professors of civil and environmental engineering Raja Sengupta and Joan Walker created the Quantified Traveler app to quantify what influences travel behavior and to encourage more sustainable travel.
11/01/12 — Scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have discovered a novel way to create electrical energy with the tap of a finger.
11/01/12 — Director of the Brain-Machine Interface Systems Lab Jose Carmena discusses the future of meshing mind and machine.
11/01/12 — EECS grad Chun Ming Chin and his team at Translate Abroad have created a mobile app that makes translating Chinese characters as simple as taking a photo.
06/26/12 — Never mind the labyrinthine streets, chaotic traffic and unfamiliar food: If you talk to many foreign travelers to China, they'll tell you the most challenging part of a journey there is the language barrier. And it's not just the spoken language; the written characters of Chinese are equally confounding. With thousands of symbols making up the Chinese script, deciphering a street sign, menu or train ticket can be an onerous task for tourists.
05/17/12 — Nationwide, our network of more than 2.5 million miles of pipeline is aging. More than a third of the pipeline infrastructure is over 50 years old, and a reliable method to monitor corrosion hasn't really existed. Until now. Jerome Singer, professor emeritus of EECS and engineering science, and two Berkeley Engineering alums have developed a way to keep tabs on pipeline health by using an MRI machine similar to the ones used in hospitals. Their technology is called the Magnetic Response Imaging System (MRIS), and it will be able to look at the state of underground pipelines.
05/01/12 — Lina Nilsson, a post-doctoral researcher in bioengineering, addresses the needs of the world's underfunded scientists.
05/01/12 — Computers have gotten faster, but the transistor hasn't kept pace with the push for greater efficiency; EECS professor Sayeef Alahuddin and graduate student Asif Khan have demonstrated that transistors can indeed be green.
05/01/12 — In spring 2012, the Floating Sensor Network project, led by associate professor of EECS Alexandre Bayen, launched a flotilla of 100 robots down the Sacramento River to provide data on water movement and pollutant spread.
05/01/12 — Small and inexpensive wireless sensors placed throughout our physical world are capturing and transmitting streams of information about conditions in places, things and even our behavior.
05/01/12 — A small, roach-like robot with plastic wings borrowed from a toy is providing important insights into the natural history of flight.
05/01/12 — A new student group, Engineers Without Borders, is building a better world, one infrastructure project at a time.
04/17/12 — Electric motorcycles are quiet, and from a power perspective more efficient. Both traits are not lost on the rider. “If you get on these electric motorcycles the first thing you notice is a magic carpet ride feel,” says Abe Askenazi, B.S'92, M.S'94 ME. “It's almost like flying. It feels like you are on a glider and this thing is propelling you forward. You don't hear all of the drama of power production, you are just doing it.” Askenazi has traveled a long road to become the chief technology officer at Zero Motorcycles, one of the nation's leading electric motorcycle manufacturers.
03/19/12 — About 60 percent of the water used in California comes from Sierra Nevada snowmelt. Monthly measurements help water managers estimate the amount of water held in the snowpack and allow them to allocate the state's most precious resource. Now, the Sierra Nevada is going high tech. Wireless sensors developed by Steven Glaser, professor of civil and environmental engineering, are being tested in an ambitious pilot project at the UC Merced Sierra Nevada Research Institute.
03/19/12 — Most days (and nights), you'll find Ernest Ting-Ta Yen, a mechanical engineering Ph.D. student, immersed in the complexities of his microelectromechanical systems research. The aluminum nitride resonators he builds, aimed at new cell phones and communications applications, are designed to help shrink mobile devices while increasing functionality. Happen upon him in his graduate student office at midnight, though, and you'll hear lovely strains of music. Yen practices from midnight to 2 a.m., the only hours available to this busy researcher.
11/29/11 — In the fall of 2008, Jack Kang (B.S'04 EECS) was settling into a new marketing position at Marvell, a Santa Clara-based semiconductor company, when Microsoft came knocking with a mysterious assignment for the company. Working on an undisclosed product, the computing giant needed a team to design a complex chip for manufacture on a massive scale. “This project was very secretive,” recalls Kang. Many months into the development of a specialized microprocessor, he got his answer. The mystery chip was destined for Kinect, Microsoft's controller-free and immensely popular electronic game sensor device.
08/18/11 — Jillian Banfield studies very, very small things, but her work is vast in its scope and impact. So vast, in fact, that her discoveries have implications for space, the human body and nearly everything in between. Banfield, a biogeochemist, geomicrobiologist and professor of materials science and engineering, studies microbes-their function and potential both individually and in groups. “Microorganisms are essentially everywhere,” says Banfield, “and they carry out all the really essential transformations that drive earth's biogeochemical cycles.”
05/04/11 — To build a car powered completely by the sun, a team of Berkeley students is burning lots of midnight oil. A year-and-a-half in the making, a sleek vehicle called Impulse was unveiled at Cal Day and is on track to compete in the world's premier solar car race this October. Behind the effort is the 73-member crew of CalSol, the campus's student-run solar vehicle team. This fall, 15 to 20 students will withdraw from school for the semester to participate in CalSol's first-ever entry in the World Solar Challenge, an 1,800-mile road race across Australia.