Three men stand behind a small yellow underwater autonomous vehicle and pose with smiles for a photo.

Mapping the ocean floor leads Virginia Tech team to earn a slot in $7 million international competition

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Nineteen teams went in and only nine — including Virginia Tech’s own DEEP-X — came out of the first round of a global competition to build autonomous vehicles that can rapidly map the mostly unknown ocean floor. The DEEP-X team, led by Dan Stilwell, professor of electrical and computer engineering and director of the Virginia Tech Center for Marine Autonomy and Robotics, has earned …

A man wearing a white hard hat and a red sweater reaches toward the ceiling, where he adjusts orange wires linked to a data acquisition system.

Making buildings smarter, starting with Goodwin Hall

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There’s still much work to be done before our buildings are smart enough to talk to us. But from a lab located in the most accelerometer-instrumented building in the world, Rodrigo Sarlo is doing his part to get us there. Sarlo, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Virginia Tech, was recently awarded a research fellowship from …

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New Virginia Tech professor first to fully track behavior of carbon compound in air, changing future air research

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By being the first to fully track the changing chemistry of carbon molecules in the air, a Virginia Tech professor could change the way we study pollutants, smog, and emissions to the atmosphere. Gabriel Isaacman-VanWertz, lead scientist on a new study published in Nature Chemistry and assistant professor in the Charles Edward Via Jr. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has established …

A couple embraces and smiles at each other while standing in front of their white house with blue shutters.

Alumni couple whose wedding reception started with ‘Enter Sandman’ still show their alma mater love

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When Damien and Krystal McCants entered their wedding reception to “Enter Sandman,” the other Hokies in the chapel knew what to do: they just started jumping. At the May 2008 reception, the newly married couple cut a cake embellished with a sugary Virginia Tech athletic logo, drank from embossed Virginia Tech champagne flutes, and danced in a room filled with …

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$2 million gift endows department head chair in mechanical engineering

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Alumnus Nick Des Champs and wife Rebecca Des Champs of Las Vegas, Nevada have donated $2 million to establish a faculty chair in the Department of Mechanical Engineering within Virginia Tech’s College of Engineering. Des Champs’ gift creates a generous fund under the direction of Azim Eskandarian, who now holds the designation of Nicholas and Rebecca Des Champs Chair in …

Screenshot of the cover image of the magazine story on Dean Julia Ross, with a photo of Julia Ross smiling while sitting in a chair in an empty, airy hallway.

Meet the new dean (VT Engineer Magazine)

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Before Julia M. Ross became dean of the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech; before she became engineering dean at University of Maryland, Baltimore County; and before she pursed her Ph.D. and bachelor’s in chemical engineering, she was a girl inspired by astronaut Sally Ride. “I remember reading in magazines about her and her mission, and I thought that was the coolest thing,” Ross said. …

Screenshot of a cover image for a story in a digital magazine. In the photo, a young man tries on a black cloth glove, which is connected to wires. It's a close up shot, focused only on the lower torso and the black suit.

Alumnus propels research with donation of 16 motion capture suits (VT News, College of Engineering, VT Engineer Magazine)

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Studying balance and fall prevention. Developing more human-like robotic motion. Understanding human performance in simulated health care tasks. These are just a few of the ways Virginia Tech researchers plan to use 16 donated motion capture suits to study body motion and injury prevention, thanks to Jamie Marraccini (electrical engineering ’93), founder, CEO, and president of Inertial Labs. The suits …

Screenshot of a cover image for a digital magazine story. In the photo, two young women focused on in a crowd look attentively forward while watching an out-of-frame presenter.

Rolls-Royce inaugural Ph.D. Day opens doors for innovative, collaborative research (VT News, College of Engineering, VT Engineer Magazine)

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Rolls-Royce is more than just automobiles. That’s the message being spread by Joseph Krok, the university research liaison manager at Rolls-Royce. The company has, in recent years, turned its focus to aviation — specifically, aircraft engines. “As you can imagine, gas turbine engines are incredibly complex and highly technical,” said Krok, who acts as a connector between the London-based company …

Two young girls smile and laugh as they work on a small, robotic "robocraft" together while seated at a table.

Inspiring thousands of K-12 students to invent (VT Engineer Magazine)

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Crafts and tools line the walls inside brightly painted rooms at the end of the first floor hall in Virginia Tech’s Falls Church campus in the National Capital Region. It’s here in the Qualcomm Thinkabit Lab at Virginia Tech that, since 2016, more than 5,000 students and teachers, primarily from underserved and underrepresented communities in the D.C. area, have wired, …