UB students win Connecticut Space Grant Consortium Awards to work on NASA-related research and other work

Four University of Bridgeport (UB) students have been awarded funds from the Connecticut Space Grant Consortium to further their work designing labs, developing sound-recognition technology, pursing other research, and/or interning at United Technologies Corporation (UTC) and other leading companies in the state.

“We are thankful and thrilled that the Connecticut Space Grant Consortium has awarded UB students and organizations with these funds,” said Dr. Jani Macari Pallis, a professor at UB School of Engineering. “This support will truly assist our students in pursuing real-world applications in aviation and aerospace.”

  • Matthew Breland, an undergraduate majoring in computer engineering, won a $5,000 Space Grant for the spring 2012 semester. He and his faculty mentor, Dr. Hassan, from the University’s Electrical Engineering Department, are working on a project entitled, “High Efficiency Broadband Solar Cell for Aerospace Applications.” The research aims to develop an antenna for power-harvesting applications. Breland’s award includes a ten-week, part-time Industrial Internship, which has been forwarded to UTC and other Connecticut companies for their consideration, for the spring 2012 semester. The internship is capped at $2,600.
  • Manuel Curillo, an industrial design major, was awarded $5,000. He and Dr. Pallis, are developing new engineering curriculum and facilities to support NASA-sponsored student engineering competitions at the campus. In particular, they will design a small lab to emulate lunar and Martian surfaces.
  • Edwin Gravrand, who is majoring in computer engineering, was awarded $5,000. He and his faculty mentor, Dr. Buket Barkana of the Electrical Engineering Department, are investigating technology that recognizes environmental sounds and noise. Their research is entitled “Sounds of Contexts, Environment, and Noise Evaluator.”
  • Yasser Elleithy, a graduate student in Computer Science has been awarded a summer Industrial Internship for up to ten weeks, and is capped at $5,000.

In addition, UB’s campus chapters of the National Society of Black Engineers and the Society of Women Engineers received $500 each to co-host outreach activities to grow public awareness on campus and at several K-12 public schools about Connecticut’s and NASA’s space-related research.
Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, lgeary@bridgeport.edu