Habib Dagher, director of the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center, was quoted in a Bloomberg Businessweek article about the offshore wind pilot project proposed by Maine Aqua Ventus, a consortium that includes UMaine and partner companies. In the article, “Floating wind farms venture farther out to sea,” Dagher said Maine Aqua Ventus companies will save tens of millions of dollars by using floating concrete platforms as opposed to renting barges and cranes to install fixed-foundation turbines. He said ideally the unit will be towed back to shore every 20 years to have a next-generation turbine installed.
WABI (Channel 5) reported the University of Maine Clean Snowmobile Team is preparing for the Society of Automotive Engineers Clean Snowmobile Challenge in April. The contest is an engineering design competition for university students that challenge them to re-engineer an existing snowmobile to reduce emissions and noise. The UMaine team is using compressed natural gas, which has less harmful emissions than gasoline, to power its snowmobile.
Alper Kiziltas, a doctoral student in the University of Maine’s School of Forest Resources, was named by the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) as the recipient of the 2013–2014 PerkinElmer Graduate Scholarship.
The PerkinElmer Instruments Co., in conjunction with the Composites Division of SPE, sponsors the annual $2,000 scholarship dedicated to the promotion and dissemination of information on the science, engineering fundamentals and applications of advanced polymer composite materials. This year, more than 40 applications were reviewed and judged by six members of the SPE Composites Division.
Kiziltas will accept the award in April during SPE’s annual technical conference — ANTEC 2014 — in Las Vegas. His research, as described in the winning abstract, will be presented at the conference.
Kiziltas conducts research at UMaine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center under the supervision of Douglas Gardner, professor of forest operations, bioproducts and bioenergy, and in collaboration with Hemant Pendse, department chair of chemical and biological engineering.
Kiziltas is currently working in composite material development and processing, including nanocomposites and reinforced engineering plastics for automotive applications. His particular interest lies in the development of sustainable composite materials sourced from recyclable materials such as bio-based resins, cellulose, discarded carpet fibers and natural fibers that serve as reinforcements for bio-based micro- and nanocomposites. His work is supported by UMaine’s Forest Bioproducts Research Institute (FBRI) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
“Alper’s research skills span over diverse fields such as nanomaterials, polymer processing, bio-based composites and sustainability. He is extremely innovative, unpretentious, collegial and cooperative,” says Gardner.
Kiziltas spent the 2013 summer and fall semesters working in plastics research at Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn, Mich. While at Ford, he studied ways to extend the use of soy in polyurethane flexible foams for seat cushions and seat backs as well as sustainable nylon composites for under-the-hood applications.
Kiziltas is the author of more than 10 publications in journals such as Applied Nanoscience and the Journal of Nanoparticle Research. He has presented results of his research in several national and international conferences and has won more than 15 awards including Automotive Composites Conference & Exhibition (ACCE) Graduate Scholarship Award from the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), the Dean’s Undergraduate Mentoring Award at UMaine’s 2013 Grad Expo, first place in the 2012–2013 SPE ACCE poster competition, and 2013 outstanding Ph.D. student in UMaine’s College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture.
A proposed offshore wind pilot project by Maine Aqua Ventus, which includes the University of Maine and partner companies, was mentioned in a Portland Press Herald article about businesses working to launch offshore wind energy facilities urging Congress to renew tax credits that would help kick-start an industry that could bring jobs to Maine and other coastal states. Doug Pfeister, president of the Offshore Wind Development Coalition, called the prototype floating wind turbine launched off the coast of Castine by UMaine and Cianbro last June “a great first step” for the offshore wind industry.
WVII (Channel 7) spoke with David Neivandt, a professor of chemical engineering at the University of Maine, about a new implant created through a collaboration between Eastern Maine Health Care Systems doctors and UMaine engineering students and researchers. The researchers said the implant has the potential to revolutionize the way doctors mount prosthetics and mend broken bones. Neivandt said the implant, which can be created using 3-D polymer printing, has a porous structure that cuts down on infection and decreases the need for antibiotics.
The University of Maine and its working relationship with Kepware was mentioned in the Mainebiz article “Little-known Portland software company Kepware surges in growth.” The company is tapping UMaine and other local universities to offer internships and scholarships that could lead to new employees, the article states. Kepware also recently donated $36,000 worth of its software licenses to UMaine so students can familiarize themselves with the software, as well as benefit from its application, according to the article.
Mainebiz published a Q&A with Carrie Enos, the University of Maine Pulp & Paper Foundation’s new president. In January, Enos formally took over leadership from Jack Healy, who is retiring in the spring. Enos graduated from UMaine in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering and has worked in the paper industry since 1997. She said she sees the appointment as her opportunity to give back to the foundation and industry.
It will be a homecoming for two University of Maine students when UMaine’s Concert Band performs a run-out concert Thursday, March 20, at Wagner Middle School in Winterport.
Aaron Beaulieu, a first-year mechanical engineering student, began playing the trumpet in the fifth grade. Jay Baines, a civil engineering major also in his first year at UMaine, began playing percussion at the same time. Both students have returned to the direction of their first teacher, Dana Ross, who conducts the UMaine Concert Band and is band and chorus director at Wagner Middle School.
“It’s safe to say that without him, I wouldn’t be where I am today in my music,” Baines said.
The Concert Band will perform at an afternoon assembly at the school and at a free public concert at 7 p.m. The performances will feature arrangements by Clare Grundman, Henry Fillmore and Frank Ticheli. Wagner’s band will join UMaine’s Concert Band for the finale.
The music program at Wagner includes more than 100 instrumentalists and almost 100 vocalists, out of a total student body of 220.
Ross is in his fourth year as conductor for the Concert Band, a nonauditioned group that performs both on and off campus in a variety of communities, especially public schools.
WVII (Channel 7) interviewed University of Maine mechanical engineering technology students who are working on a log hauler restoration as part of their capstone experience. The steam log hauler, located at Leonard’s Mills in Bradley, has been put together entirely by students. The Lombard Log Hauler Restoration Project is in its 30th year, and the current students hope to have the log hauler running on steam this spring.
Scott Dunning has been nominated to serve on the Efficiency Maine Trust Board. Efficiency Maine offers business and residential programs to help Mainers make energy improvements and save money.
Scott Dunning of Hampden is a professor of electrical engineering technology and director of the University of Maine School of Engineering Technology. Throughout his 21-year career at UMaine, he has taught a variety of courses in the areas of electrical engineering and power systems. His primary research interests are in the areas of energy efficiency.
Dunning became involved with the Association of Energy Engineers in the late 1990s, when he became an instructor for the Certified Energy Manager program. He is a registered professional engineer in the state of Maine. He is a senior member and past chair of the Maine Section of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.
All nominations are contingent upon Maine Senate confirmation after review by the Joint Standing Committee on Energy, Utilities and Technology.