“Scaling Down the Future: Nanoscale Technology,” featuring Todd Hastings of the UK College of Engineering’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, was featured on The Research Channel Wednesday, October 29. Hastings discussed UK’s efforts to scale down a variety of processes to occupy less space, as well as nanoscale materials and devices being developed for a broad range of uses, including biosensors. He described one machine that currently occupies a small room being recreated in a form that can be held in the palm of a hand.
Hastings and colleagues also discussrd the facilities and activities housed in UK’s Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CeNSE).
The University of Kentucky’s Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER) received $1.426 million in federal funds to support research on refining coal into liquid transportation fuels. The funding will help advance ongoing research into the Fischer-Tropsch method of converting coal into liquid fuels by allowing the center to build a “mini-refinery.”
The mini-refinery will help reduce costs of the process and help produce a more environment-friendly liquid fuel. The project will help manage and reduce carbon dioxide emissions from coal-to-liquid facilities and from use of the fuels.
The goal of the project is to develop facilities and personnel to sustain a coal synfuels industry in Kentucky.
The Center for Manufacturing’s Lean Systems Program received a $200,000 grant from Boeing in June to study and teach lean systems, concentrating primarily on lean principles and practices. You can read more about the research at http://www.mfg.uky.edu/news/research.html. The center also received a grant from the Office of the Provost to fund a new joint faculty position in sustainability between the center and the College of Design, School of Architecture. Go to http://www.mfg.uky.edu to learn more.
Dr. I.S. Jawahir, James F. Hardymon Chair in Manufacturing Systems, and professor, mechanical engineering and colleagues are currently busy with three sustainable manufacturing projects funded by the U.S. Department of Defense. “Model Based Manufacturing” is an effort devoted to increasing predictive abilities to help manufacturers increase efficiencies, lower costs and reduce energy use. The project team includes Dr. Keith Rouch, chair, mechanical engineering, Dr. Oscar Dillon, professor emeritus, mechanical engineering, Dr. Dusan Sekulic, professor, mechanical engineering, Dr. Fazleena Badurdeen, assistant professor, mechanical engineering and Dr. Marwan Khraisheh, Secat-J.G. Morris aluminum professor, mechanical engineering.
A second project, begun in late September, joins University of Kentucky with Boeing, General Electric, TRS Technologies and the Army Space and Missile Defense Command. The purpose of “The Next Generation Supply Chain Project” is to develop predictive performance models for improved process efficiency throughout the supply chain; at the same time, products will be studied from a sustainable point of view that focuses on the total product life-cycle, including re-use and remanufacturing.
The third project, “Risk Assessment for Next Generation Supply Chain Readiness (RANGER),” began in October with many of the same partners. Its focus will be to provide the Air Force with supply chain risk management better able to identify, assess and mitigate risk from a sustainability perspective. The latter two projects are multidisciplinary and include Dr. Tom Goldsby, associate professor and Dr. Deepak Iyengar, assistant professor from UK’s Gatton College of Business & Economics.