Professor Marco Gruteser Receives Peter D. Cherasia Faculty Scholar Award

Dean Tom Farris has announced that Professor Marco Gruteser was selected for the Peter D. Cherasia Faculty Scholar Award!

The Cherasia Award, established by Peter D. Cherasia, a Rutgers ECE alumnus, recognizes and fosters excellence in teaching and scholarly activity in highly quantitative and computational aspects of engineering research related to financial problems. The Award is for a three year term and includes $10,000 per year that can be used to support scholarly activity. The funding period begins with the current academic year and runs through the 2021.

Congratulations to Marco for this great and well deserved recognition of his work!

Waheed Bajwa receives DARPA Award

Congratulations to Associate Professor Waheed Bajwa for his new DARPA award for the project titled "Nonconvex Matrix Optimization: Geometry, Algorithms, and Distributed Implementations." This is an 18-month $1.21M collaborative effort between Rutgers University (Waheed Bajwa- PI) , Colorado School of Mines and University of Wisconsin. Rutgers' share of this award is $327,716.

As part of this project funded under the DARPA Lagrange Program, Waheed and his team will develop  theory and algorithms for  nonconvex matrix optimization problems that arise in machine learning for ultrahigh-dimensional data, particularly problems in civilian and military Internet-of-Things (IoT) systems. The theory and algorithms developed in this project will be applied to matrix optimization problems arising in machine learning contexts. However, they will also be broadly applicable to nonconvex optimization problems arising outside of machine learning. This project a collaboration between experts in several areas: optimization theory and algorithms; and applications in signal processing, information theory, and networks.

Congratulations Waheed!

Salim El Rouayheb wins 2018 Google Faculty Research Award

Congratulations to Assistant Professor Salim El Rouayheb for receiving the prestigious 2018 Google Faculty Research Award for his project titled "Towards efficient Single-Server Private Information Retrieval and Search." The Google Faculty Research Awards Program aims to recognize and support world-class faculty members pursuing cutting-edge research in areas of mutual interest to Google, with the goal of identifying and strengthening long-term collaborative relationships with faculty working on problems that will impact how future generations use technology. Google Faculty Research Awards are structured as seed funding to support one graduate student for one year and are awarded as an unrestricted gift. The award is highly competitive - only 15% of applicants receive funding - and each proposal goes through a rigorous Google-wide review process.

As part of this project, Dr. El Rouayheb has received a $ 89,096 award to study efficient single-server Private Information Retrieval (PIR) algorithms. PIR algorithms allow users to search an online search engine without revealing what they are searching for and thus protecting their privacy. This project addresses challenges in PIR by focusing on low-complexity single-server algorithms that leverage the users' previous queries and searches using tools from information theory and differential privacy. The obtained algorithms have the potential to be implemented in Google applications, such as Google Search and Google Drive, to provide desirable privacy guarantees without performance degradation.

Congratulations Salim!

Vishal Patel wins Award at the 2018 IAPR International Conference on Biometrics

Assistant Professor Vishal Patel and his collaborators Ester Gonzalez-Sosa, Ruben Vera-Rodriguez, and Julian Fierrez from Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, Spain have won the Honorable Mention Paper Award at the 2018 IAPR International Conference on Biometrics (ICB 2018) held in Gold Coast, Australia for their paper titled "Person recognition beyond the visible spectrum: combining body shape and texture from mmW images." In this paper, the authors study the problem of person recognition using millimeter wave (mmW) images.

ICB, technically co-sponsored by IAPR (Technical Committee on Biometrics – TC4, International Association for Pattern Recognition), IEEE (Biometrics Council), and APRS (Australian Pattern Recognition Society), is the premier forum for the presentation of new advances and research results in the field of biometrics.

Congratulations Vishal!

ECE Alumni Networking Event

Approximately 50 Electrical and Computer Engineering alumni, faculty, and friends attended the inaugural ECE Alumni Networking Event on April 25, 2018, in The Cove, Busch Campus Student Center. Congratulations to P.B. Ram Reddy, Ph.D., BS'73, recipient of this year's Outstanding Alumni Achievement Award. Please watch for news on upcoming events.

Capstone Expo Day 2018

The 2018 ECE Capstone Expo saw participation from over 250 students, as 68 student projects were demonstrated as part of the annual senior year showcase. Students work in teams to design unique and innovative product prototypes, demonstrating how technical knowledge can enable their imaginations. The design process incorporates standards and realistic design constraints: economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability.

The top ten projects were recognized by a panel of 30 judges, awarding the most impressive demonstrations of the day with cash prizes.

Top honors at the April 27 event were claimed by the group known as Dextera Dei with their demonstration of an EMG Controlled Prosthetic Hand with Bio-Feedback. The team made up of engineering students Sean Byju, Jesse Gatling, Jonathan Olcheski, and Alejandro Sanchez, and advised by ECE professor Laleh Najafizadeh and Li Zhu, was awarded a $600 cash prize.

The panel of judges included representatives from the electrical and computer engineering industry, including AT&T, Verizon, Microsoft, JP Morgan, and Qualcomm. Judges not only provided the  students  with professional insight and feedback, their involvement also offers networking opportunities.

Several companies also provided funding, including Siemens, Harris, 7x24 Exchange Metro New York Chapter, JP Morgan Chase, and ASCO Power Technology. Collectively, cash prices awarded totaled $3,000.

The top ten student project demonstrations and five other special category awards are as follows:

#1 place (awarded $600, sponsored by Siemens)

Project S18-68: Dextera Dei: EMG Controlled Prosthetic Hand with Bio-Feedback
Team members: Sean Byju, Jesse Gatling, Jonathan Olcheski, Alejandro Sanchez
Advisor: Laleh Najafizadeh and Li Zhu

#2 place (awarded $400, sponsored by JP Morgan Chase)

Project S18-65: SLAMid - Autonomous Simultaneous Localization and Mapping with Object Identification
Team members: Daniel Chen, Akhilesh Bondlela, Nicholas Grieco, Bhargav Tarpara
Advisors: Kristin Dana

#3 place (awarded $300, sponsored by Harris)

Project S18-63: Sky-Watch: A drone-based implementation of MARL to facilitate 3D reconstruction
Team members: Michael Collins, Gregory Mueller, Kevin Quizhpi, Omar Shaban, Shannon L. Sabino
Advisors: Dario Pompili, Manoj Viswambharan and Howard Cohan

#4 place ($100)

Project S18-27: PassMon
Team members: Shivani Patel, Akanksha Pathak, Srujana Sure, Lauren Williams
Advisors: Hana Godrich and Janne Lindqvist

#5 place ($100)

Project S18-35: EyeTouch: Portable Braille Converter
Team members: Pragathi Sudheer, Aisvarya Chandrasekar, Kara Greenwood, Khalid Akash
Advisor: Dario Pompili

#6 place ($100)

Project S18-61: Home Defender
Team members: Tyler George, Vincent Vigliotti, Christopher Stiles, Anthony Lau, Chris Czechowicz
Advisor: Hana Godrich

#7 place ($100)

Project S18-11: Configurable In-line
Team members: Brian Ellsworth, Alexandr Nazartsev, Arhum Siddiqi, James Taylor
Advisor: Predrag Spasojevic

#7 place ($100)

Project S18-13: Android Drone
Team members: Tim Gilligan, Ishan Patel, Jimmy Jorge, Ivan Konatar, Dhruv Mana
Advisor: Diez Gajic

#9 place ($100)

Project S18-14: Augmented Reality Exposure Therapy
Team members: Ashwin Kadaru, Frank Velazquez
Advisors: Deborah Silver

#10 place ($100)

Project S18-12: Good Samaritan: A Mobile Aid to Help Concerned Parents Monitor Their Young Children
Team members: Sumathi Arumugam, Neharika Bhandari, Ama Freeman, Raphaelle Marcial
Advisors: Marco Gruteser and Professor Hana Godrich

Best in Innovation Award (awarded $200, sponsored by 7x24 Exchange)

Project S18-14: Augmented Reality Exposure Therapy
Team members: Ashwin Kadaru, Frank Velazquez
Advisors: Deborah Silver

Best in Research Award (awarded $200, sponsored by Siemens)

Project S18-50: Sound Recovery from Perturbations of Common Objects
Team members: Sarah Pearson, Seyoung Kim, Bingqing Xiang, Hsinyo Yin
Advisor: Athina Petropulu

Best in Social Impact (awarded $200, sponsored by Harris)

Project S18-35: EyeTouch: Portable Braille Converter
Team members: Pragathi Sudheer, Aisvarya Chandrasekar, Kara Greenwood, Khalid Akash
Advisor: Dario Pompili

Students Favorite Award (awarded $200, sponsored by Siemens)

Project S18-42: Snap to Count
Team members: Katheryne Zak-Strzalka, Svikriti Kasichainula, Guy Rubinstein, Kristen Wong, Arthur Rafal
Advisor: Vishal M. Patel

Students Favorite Award (awarded $200, sponsored by Siemens)

Project S18-26: SolarSmarts
Team members: Mit Patel, Nill Patel, Prabhjot Singh, Raj Patel
Advisors: Hana Godrich

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