The University of Texas at Austin

News Releases

January 2014

UT Austin Engineers Build First Nonreciprocal Acoustic Circulator: A One-Way Sound Device

A team of researchers at The University of Texas at Austin’s Cockrell School of Engineering has built the first-ever circulator for sound. The team’s experiments successfully prove that the fundamental symmetry with which acoustic waves travel through air between two points in space (“if you can hear, you can also be heard”) can be broken by a compact and simple device.

Faculty Member to Receive Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers

Mattan Erez, an associate professor in the Cockrell School's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, is one of three faculty members from The University of Texas at Austin to be selected to receive Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers. This is the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their research careers.

December 2013

Researchers Design First Battery-Powered Invisibility Cloaking Device

Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have proposed the first design of a cloaking device that uses an external source of energy to significantly broaden its bandwidth of operation.

Andrea Alù, associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the Cockrell School of Engineering, and his team have proposed a design for an active cloak that draws energy from a battery, allowing objects to become undetectable to radio sensors over a greater range of frequencies.

Professor Receives IEEE Signal Processing Society Award

Alan Bovik, professor in the Cockrell School of Engineering’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, has received the IEEE Signal Processing Society's 2013 Society Award.

Chemical Engineering Chair Thomas Truskett Receives TAMEST Award

The Academy of Medicine, Engineering & Science of Texas (TAMEST) announces the recipients of the 2014 Edith and Peter O’Donnell Awards, which includes Thomas Truskett, chair of the Cockrell School of Engineering’s McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering.

U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz Visits UT Austin

On Thursday, Feb. 6, U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz visited with students and community members at UT Austin.

November 2013

Biomedical Engineer Named Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Mia K. Markey, associate professor in the Cockrell School of Engineering, has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Markey is one of three faculty members at The University of Texas at Austin that has been elected an AAAS fellow.

AAAS fellows are chosen annually by their peers to recognize their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications.

Indoor Air Quality Expert Named CAEE Department Chair

Richard L. Corsi has been named chair of the Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering (CAEE). He began his role leading the top-ranked department on Nov. 18.

UT Researchers Use Simple Scaling Theory to Better Predict Gas Production in Barnett Shale Wells

Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have developed a simple scaling theory to estimate gas production from hydraulically fractured wells in the Barnett Shale. The method is intended to help the energy industry accurately identify low- and high-producing horizontal wells, as well as accurately predict how long it will take for gas reserves to deplete in the wells.

Using historical data from horizontal wells in the Barnett Shale formation in North Texas, Tad Patzek, professor and chair in the Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering in the Cockrell School of Engineering; Michael Marder, professor of physics in the College of Natural Sciences; and Frank Male, a graduate student in physics, used a simple physics theory to model the rate at which production from the wells declines over time, known as the “decline curve.”

Cockrell School Named Partner in BSEE’s Ocean Energy Safety Institute

The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) announced a $5 million, five-year agreement to establish the Ocean Energy Safety Institute (Institute) in Texas. The University of Texas at Austin has been selected as one of three university partners in the Institute.

Cockrell School, BP Join in $4 Million Partnership to Support Leading-Edge Research

The Cockrell School of Engineering has joined in a $4 million strategic partnership with BP to support several leading-edge oil and gas industry research projects, with the potential for increased contributions as new studies are identified in the future.

Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering Department Honors its 2013 Distinguished Alumni

The Cockrell School's Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering honored six alumni at its fourth annual Distinguished Alumni reception on Nov. 1.

Alum and National Instruments CEO James Truchard Honored with Texas Exes' Distinguished Alumnus Award

James Truchard, who earned his Ph.D. from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 1974, was recognized by Texas Exes on Nov. 1 with the organization’s annual Distinguished Alumnus Award.

October 2013

ECE Assistant Professor Recognized as Young Innovator With Packard Fellowship

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation has selected the Cockrell School of Engineering's Zheng Wang as a 2013 Packard Fellow for Science and Engineering.

Wang is one of 16 of the nation’s most innovative young scientists and engineers receiving the Packard Fellowship this year. Each Packard fellow will receive a grant of $875,000 over five years to pursue research.

UT Austin Awarded $1.7 Million USDOT University Transportation Grant

The United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) has awarded The University of Texas at Austin $1.7 million in grants to advance cutting-edge research and educational programs that address critical transportation challenges facing the nation.

Austin will be used as a test site for many of the projects, which will use “big data” and innovative wireless technologies to address traffic congestion.

“These are complex societal challenges that require researchers from multiple fields to come together to harness the full potential of advances in technology. This grant makes that collaboration possible,” said Chandra Bhat, director of the university’s Center for Transportation Research.

Schlumberger Gives $500K for Student Organization Center Inside EERC

The Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin has received a $500,000 boost from longtime supporter Schlumberger Limited for the Engineering Education and Research Center (EERC), a project that will better prepare students to become 21st century engineers.

The Schlumberger Student Organization Center will house more than 80 student organizations, which are focused on providing community, services and educational programs outside of the classroom. The student center will provide more than 2,000 square feet of space to existing organizations, including the Society of Women Engineers, Student Engineering Council and the Texas Society of Professional Engineers.

CAEE Department Inducts 10 Distinguished Alumni into Academy

Ten alumni from the Cockrell School's Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering will be inducted into the department's Academy of Distinguished Alumni on Oct. 25. The 2013 honorees have been recognized for expertise in their fields, research and education advancements and strong leadership qualities.

Professors Advance Nanoparticle Research for Health Applications

For years, scientists have been working to fundamentally understand how nanoparticles move throughout the human body. One big unanswered question is how the shape of nanoparticles affects their entry into cells. Now researchers have discovered that under typical culture conditions, mammalian cells prefer disc-shaped nanoparticles over those shaped like rods.

Krishnendu Roy, who is now on faculty at the Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University, conducted this research at the Cockrell School of Engineering in collaboration with professors S.V. Sreenivasan and Li Shi of the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

September 2013

Heart Researcher Receives $6.6M NIH Grant to Model Heart Valve, Improve Surgical Outcomes

The National Institutes of Health is turning to researchers at The University of Texas at Austin to develop computer simulations to improve surgical repair of the heart’s mitral valve, one of the aging heart’s key points of failure.

The NIH has awarded a $6.6 million grant to professor Michael Sacks, director of the Center for Cardiovascular Simulation at the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences (ICES) to develop novel, detailed, computer simulations of normal (see ICES video) and diseased heart mitral valves.

Energy Expert Michael Webber Launches Online Course 'Energy 101'

This September, world-renowned Cockrell School of Engineering energy expert and mechanical engineering professor Michael Webber will begin teaching a crash course in energy, its technology and its affects on society to thousands of students all over the globe.

Webber’s “Energy 101: Energy Technology and Policy” is an online course designed to teach “energy fluency” to large numbers of interested students for free. Anyone with Internet access can sign up to learn about energy issues from Webber’s course, which starts Sept. 15.