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According to research in the Human Performance Laboratory of the Mechanical and Engineering Department (MIE), texting while driving makes it 20 times more likely you’ll crash. The research, recently covered in feature articles for the Greenfield Recorder and Hampshire Gazette, shows that most accidents attributed to texting drivers involve crashing into something directly ahead, such as a stopping car or a pedestrian in the roadway.

Jennifer Suglia Kramer, the administrative officer in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, has been chosen to receive a 2010 Chancellor’s Citation. The annual Chancellor's Citation Award recognizes and honors employees who have demonstrated exemplary and outstanding service to the university in one or more of the following ways: original contributions; attainment of high-priority objectives; service "beyond the call of duty"; significant improvements in productivity and/or operational savings.

Mechanical Engineering alumnus Mark Notkin (B.S. ’86) has brought off an enviable coup during an unenviable time in the stock market. Notkin was the manager of 2009’s best-performing high-yield-bond fund, Fidelity Capital & Income, according to a recent article in Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine (motto: “timely, trusted personal finance advice & business forecasts”). As the article reports, “From the time he took the fund’s helm in mid 2003 through January 14, it returned 9.6% annualized, beating more than 99% of its peers.”

The name of the sleek vehicle with the teardrop design is Vroom Vroom Carbon Fiber 1, or VV-CF1. It was reportedly named by the four-year-old son of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Professor David Schmidt, faculty advisor for the University of Massachusetts Amherst Supermileage Vehicle Team, which will compete in the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) national supermileage competition in Marshall, Michigan, this June 10 and 11.

Two engineering students led the UMass men's swimming team to its fourth-straight Atlantic-10 Championship on February 20 at the Flickinger Aquatics Center in Buffalo, N.Y.

 

Professor Joseph Goldstein, the distinguished professor in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department and former dean of the College of Engineering, has been named a Fellow in the Microscopy Society of America (MSA).

A scholarship created by the Conservation Services Group (CSG) of Westborough, Massachusetts, and the SunPower Foundation of San Jose, California, supports students whose education is directly related to energy efficiency, clean energy, and environmental protection. A total of three students, one each from the College of Engineering, the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and the Isenberg School of Management, are currently receiving $7,666 apiece from the fund.

Hari Balasubramanian, assistant professor in our Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, is working with emergency department directors and faculty at UMass Memorial Medical Center to identify bottlenecks, improve efficiency, and reduce patient waiting time in the emergency room.

Recently a team of students in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department (MIE) designed and built an invention that would wow any dog owner. It’s a sort of dog-operated fetch-o-matic. The machine hurls a ball and is then re-triggered each time the canine retrieves it and drops it in a funnel. MIE Head Donald Fisher uses this example to demonstrate the kind of clever idea that needs a place to incubate within a warm and welcoming space, where his students can gather, connect, brainstorm, and collaborate.

A long feature article and related editorial in Business West detailed the collaboration between the new Precision Manufacturing Regional Alliance Project (PMRAP) with two departments at UMass Amherst, including Professor Sundar Krishnamurty and other faculty members in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department. The collaboration fosters open dialogue designed to develop ways in which research at UMass Amherst can help area manufacturers create new products, develop more efficient processes, and use lighter, stronger materials.

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