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Summary of research achievements on campus

AND THE WINNERS ARE

College of Science Dean Paul Paulus received UT Arlington’s Distinguished Record of Research Achievement award in the spring. The honor recognizes research or creative accomplishment over an extended period. A psychology professor, Dr. Paulus primarily focuses on environmental psychology and group dynamics. Chemistry Professor Rasika Dias and electrical engineering Professor Wei-Jen Lee received the University’s Outstanding Research Achievement award. Dr. Dias’ research interests include homogeneous catalysis, luminescent materials, conducting polymers and bioinorganic chemistry. Dr. Lee is an authority on power systems and directs UT Arlington’s Energy Systems Research Center.

SENSE OF DISCOVERY

The National Science Foundation has awarded a $450,000 grant to UT Arlington computer science and engineering researchers to study wireless sensor networks. Under the direction of Assistant Professor Yonghe Liu, the project will investigate asynchronous wireless sensor network architecture for ultra energy efficiency and extended network life. Professors Sajal Das and Mohan Kumar are assisting. The architecture involves a sensor node that directly writes data into a special, reactive module (RFID tag-based) residing on the receiving node while its main platform is asleep. This way, individual sensors can schedule their own transmission without demanding any network-wide or local synchronization. Wireless sensor networks have potential applications in precision agriculture, environmental monitoring, border control and other areas.

SELECT SOCIETY

Anthropology Assistant Professor Christian Zlolniski has been appointed a fellow of the Society for Applied Anthropology. Dr. Zlolniski is a social anthropologist specializing in immigrant labor and how changes in the global economy affect immigrant workers. He wrote Janitors, Street Vendors and Activists: The Lives of Mexican Immigrants in Silicon Valley, published in 2006 by the University of California Press.

CAN-DO STUDENTS

A team of undergraduate aerospace engineering students won the international CanSat competition in June. The objective was to design, build and launch a space-type system capable of telemetry to a ground control station. The system must weigh a maximum of 500 grams and cost less than $1,000. Teams had to write a mission proposal, document design progress, launch their CanSat to an altitude of 2,000-3,000 feet, measure and send changes in its descent every five seconds, safely recover it (landing upright) and prepare and present a post-mission briefing.

A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP

Many of the estimated 12 million Americans who have obstructive sleep apnea are overweight. Kinesiology Assistant Professor Jennifer Blevins wants to know if there’s a link. A study conducted through the Exercise Science Research Lab, which Dr. Blevins directs, examines individuals ages 20 to 60 who are 25-35 pounds overweight, exercise fewer than two days a week and are free of cardiovascular or metabolic disease. Some of the subjects have been diagnosed with sleep apnea; others are at a moderate to high risk of developing it. Untreated, the disorder can cause high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, memory problems, weight gain, impotency and headaches. Blevins hopes the results will enable her and graduate research assistant Stacey Lueking to work with physicians to treat borderline individuals using only diet and exercise.

NO PLACE LIKE HOME

School of Urban and Public Affairs Dean Richard Cole studies the deconcentration of families living in public housing. In his recent research on post-Katrina New Orleans, almost three-quarters of African-American women surveyed said they are better off now than when they lived in the city. They have better educational and job opportunities, and they feel safer. But the research also shows that a significant majority of displaced residents want to return to New Orleans. “We don’t know whether that’s the particular attraction of New Orleans or if it’s just a common tendency for anyone to want to return to their roots,” Dr. Cole said.




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