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Engineering

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  • With increasing obesity, fuel consumption becomes weighty matter

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Excess fuel consumption caused by excess driver and passenger weight has increased in the past two years, with no end in sight.

  • Why has it been so difficult to stabilize Japan's damaged nuclear reactors?

    A Minute With™... Rizwan Uddin, a professor of nuclear, plasma, and radiological engineering

  • What you need to know about the spike in Illinois electric rates

    George Gross is a professor of electrical and computer engineering and at the Institute of Government and Public Affairs. He discusses the higher electric rates that went into effect on January 1, 2007. He was interviewed by the News Bureau's business and law editor Mark Reutter.

  • What you need to know about the spike in Illinois electric rates

    A Minute With™... George Gross, a professor of electrical and computer engineering

  • What's in your landscape? Plants can alter West Nile virus risk

    A new study looks at how leaf litter in water influences the abundance of Culex pipiens mosquitoes, which can transmit West Nile virus to humans, domestic animals, birds and other wildlife.

  • What now with gerrymandering? Are algorithms part of the answer?

    The Supreme Court “punted” this week on the issue of partisan gerrymandering, but left the door open to future action. An Illinois professor hopes her research can be part of the solution.

  • What are the challenges of providing services for children with mental illnesses?

    Wynne Korr, dean of the School of Social Work at the University of Illinois, discusses the challenges of diagnosing and providing treatment for this vulnerable population in light of the state's financial problems

  • Ways to alleviate India's water shortages, even as global warming adds to pollution problems with the Ganges

    A Minute With™... Prasanta Kalita, a professor of agricultural and biological engineering

  • Vascular composites enable dynamic structural materials

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Taking their cue from biological circulatory systems, University of Illinois researchers have developed vascularized structural composites, creating materials that are lightweight and strong with potential for self-healing, self-cooling, metamaterials and more.

  • Using a little science in your March Madness picks

    A Minute With...bracketology expert Sheldon Jacobson

  • U. of I. team is top U.S. finisher in Solar Decathlon competition

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A team of students from the University of Illinois won second place today (Oct. 16) in the 2009 Solar Decathlon design competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy.

  • U. of I. students to build solar home for contest in Washington, D. C.

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is one of 20 universities selected to participate in the 2007 Solar Decathlon, a competition in which teams of students from colleges and universities in the United States, Europe and Canada compete to design, build and operate homes powered exclusively by solar energy.

  • U. of I. Engineering Open House to take place March 10-11

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Wild and wacky Rube Goldberg machines, "robot wars," and more than 160 fun-filled exhibits await visitors to "Beyond Imagination," the 86th annual Engineering Open House at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

  • U. of I. alumnus named Marshall Scholar

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – Jonathan Naber, of Waterloo, Ill., has been awarded a Marshall Scholarship. Each year, about 40 students from the United States are selected as Marshall Scholars for postgraduate study at a university in the United Kingdom. Naber is the third U. of I. student in the last six years awarded this honor. Naber graduated from Illinois in May 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in materials science and engineering.

  • Ultrathin LEDs create new classes of lighting and display systems

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new process for creating ultrathin, ultrasmall inorganic light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and assembling them into large arrays offers new classes of lighting and display systems with interesting properties, such as see-through construction and mechanical flexibility, that would be impossible to achieve with existing technologies.

  • Ultrasonic hammer sets off tiny explosions

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Giving new meaning to the term "sonic boom," University of Illinois chemists have used sound to trigger microscopic explosions.

  • Two U. of I. graduate students win Intel Ph.D. Fellowships

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Two graduate students at the University of Illinois have won Intel Ph.D. Fellowships for the 2013-14 academic year. Fifteen fellowships were awarded nationwide.

  • Tumor-targeting system uses cancer’s own mechanisms to betray its location

    By hijacking a cancer cell’s own metabolism, researchers have found a way to tag and target elusive cancers with small-molecule sugars. This opens treatment pathways for cancers that are not responsive to conventional targeted antibodies, such as triple-negative breast cancer.

  • Tiny swimming bio-bots boldly go where no bot has swum before

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The alien world of aquatic micro-organisms just got new residents: synthetic self-propelled swimming bio-bots.

  • Tiny superconductors withstand stronger magnetic fields

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Ultrathin superconducting wires can withstand stronger magnetic fields than larger wires made from the same material, researchers now report. This finding may be useful for technologies that employ superconducting magnets, such as magnetic resonance imaging.

  • Tiny laser gives big boost to high-speed data transmission

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - High-speed communication just got a turbo boost, thanks to a new laser technology developed at the University of Illinois that transmits error-free data over fiber optic networks at a blazing fast 40 gigabits per second - the fastest in the United States.

  • Tiny exports signal big shifts in cancer tissue, researchers find

    Microscopic shifts in metabolism and increases in tiny transport vesicles out of tumor cells preface larger changes to the tumor environment and could prepare the way for cancerous cells to spread and metastasize, University of Illinois researchers report.

  • Tiny electronic implants monitor brain injury, then melt away

    A new class of small, thin electronic sensors can monitor temperature and pressure within the skull – crucial health parameters after a brain injury or surgery – then melt away when they are no longer needed, eliminating the need for additional surgery to remove the monitors and reducing the risk of infection and hemorrhage.

  • Tiny drug-delivering capsules could sustain transplanted insulin-producing cells for diabetics

    A drug-carrying microsphere within a cell-bearing microcapsule could be the key to transplanting insulin-secreting pig pancreas cells into human patients whose own cells have been destroyed by type I diabetes.

  • Tiny aquariums put nanoparticle self-assembly on display

    Seeing is believing when it comes to nanoparticle self-assembly. A team of University of Illinois engineers is observing the interactions of colloidal gold nanoparticles inside tiny aquariumlike sample containers to gain more control over the self-assembly process of engineered materials.

  • Tiny antennas let long light waves see in infrared

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign researchers have developed arrays of tiny nano-antennas that can enable sensing of molecules that resonate in the infrared (IR) spectrum.

  • Three Illinois professors named Sloan Research Fellows

    Three Illinois scientists are among 126 recipients of the 2018 Sloan Research Fellowships from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. According to the foundation, the awards “honor early career scholars whose achievements mark them as among the very best scientific minds working today.” Winners receive a two-year $65,000 fellowship to further their research.

  • Three Illinois professors elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Three University of Illinois professors have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the longest-standing honorary societies in the nation. Tere R. O'Connor, a professor of dance; John A. Rogers, the Swanlund Chair of Materials Science and Engineering; and Wilfred A. van der Donk, the Richard E. Heckert Endowed Chair in Chemistry, will join other new members in an induction ceremony in October at the academy's headquarters in Cambridge, Mass.

  • These bots were made for walking: Cells power biological machines

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - They're soft, biocompatible, about 7 millimeters long - and, incredibly, able to walk by themselves. Miniature "bio-bots" developed at the University of Illinois are making tracks in synthetic biology.

  • The dark side of kerosene lamps: High black carbon emissions

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The small kerosene lamps that light millions of homes in developing countries have a dark side: black carbon - fine particles of soot released into the atmosphere.

  • Testing the water for bioenergy crops

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Many energy researchers and environmental advocates are excited about the prospect of gaining more efficient large-scale biofuel production by using large grasses like miscanthus or switchgrass rather than corn. They have investigated yields, land use, economics and more, but one key factor of agriculture has been overlooked: water.

  • Team finds link between stomach-cancer bug and cancer-promoting factor

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Researchers report that Helicobacter pylori, the only bacterium known to survive in the harsh environment of the human stomach, directly activates an enzyme in host cells that has been associated with several types of cancer, including gastric cancer.

  • Team finds a better way to grow motor neurons from stem cells

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Researchers report they can generate human motor neurons from stem cells much more quickly and efficiently than previous methods allowed. The finding, described in Nature Communications, will aid efforts to model human motor neuron development, and to understand and treat spinal cord injuries and motor neuron diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

  • Team designs a bandage that spurs, guides blood vessel growth

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Researchers have developed a bandage that stimulates and directs blood vessel growth on the surface of a wound. The bandage, called a "microvascular stamp," contains living cells that deliver growth factors to damaged tissues in a defined pattern. After a week, the pattern of the stamp "is written in blood vessels," the researchers report.

  • Surgical probe seeks out where cancer ends and healthy tissue begins

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – A new surgical tool that uses light to make sure surgeons removing cancerous tumors “got it all” was found to correlate well with traditional pathologists’ diagnoses in a clinical study, showing that the tool could soon enable reliable, real-time guidance for surgeons.

  • Study yields a new scale of earthquake understanding

    Nanoscale knowledge of the relationships between water, friction and mineral chemistry could lead to a better understanding of earthquake dynamics, researchers said in a new study. Engineers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign used microscopic friction measurements to confirm that, under the right conditions, some rocks can dissolve and may cause faults to slip. 

  • Study reveals how polymers relax after stressful processing

    The polymers that make up synthetic materials need time to de-stress after processing, researchers said. A new study has found that entangled, long-chain polymers in solutions relax at two different rates, marking an advancement in fundamental polymer physics. The findings will provide a better understanding of the physical properties of polymeric materials and critical new insight to how individual polymer molecules respond to high-stress processing conditions.

  • Study: Optimizing biofuel supply chain is a competitive game

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - As biofuel production has increased - particularly ethanol derived from corn - a hotly contested competition for feedstock supplies has emerged between the agricultural grain markets and biofuel refineries. This competition has sparked concern for the more fundamental issue of allocating limited farmland resources, which has far-reaching implications for food security, energy security and environmental sustainability.

  • Study looking at lighter, cooler equipment to reduce firefighter injuries, deaths

    Firefighters battling wildfires like those devastating Southern California, or even a smaller structural fire, have to endure temperatures in the hundreds of degrees. A study at the Illinois Fire Service Institute on the U. of I.'s Urbana campus is examining an enhanced version of personal protective equipment that is lighter, less restrictive and uses a firefighter's exhaled breath to cool the body and help combat heat stress, which researchers believe contributes to many of the on-the-job deaths and injuries firefighters suffer each year.

  • Study: Human wastewater valuable to global agriculture, economics

    It may seem off-putting to some, but human waste is full of nutrients that can be recycled into valuable products that could promote agricultural sustainability and better economic independence for some developing countries.

  • Study: Higher mass transit use associated with lower obesity rates

    Healthy mass transit systems could contribute to healthier communities, according to a new study by University of Illinois researchers that determined higher mass transit use was correlated with lower obesity rates in counties across the United States.

  • Study: Groundwater from aquifers important factor in food security

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Thirsty cities, fields and livestock drink deeply from aquifers, natural sources of groundwater. But a study of three of the most-tapped aquifers in the United States shows that overdrawing from these resources could lead to difficult choices affecting not only domestic food security but also international markets.

  • Study finds emissions from widely used cookstoves vary with use

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The smoke rising from a cookstove fills the air with the tantalizing aroma of dinner - and a cloud of pollutants and particles that threaten both health and the environment. How families in developing countries use their cookstoves has a big effect on emissions from those stoves, and laboratory emission tests don't accurately reflect real-world operations, according to a study by University of Illinois researchers.

  • Study estimates land available for biofuel crops

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Using detailed land analysis, Illinois researchers have found that biofuel crops cultivated on available land could produce up to half of the world's current fuel consumption - without affecting food crops or pastureland.

  • Study: Cell-phone bans while driving have more impact in dense, urban areas

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new study analyzing the impact of hand-held cell phone legislation on driving safety concludes that usage-ban laws had more of an impact in densely populated urban areas with a higher number of licensed drivers than in rural areas where there are fewer licensed drivers, according to a University of Illinois researcher.

  • Study: Biomarkers as predictive of sepsis as lengthy patient monitoring

    One measurement of key biomarkers in blood that characterize sepsis can give physicians as much information as hours of monitoring symptoms, a new study found.

  • Structural, regulatory and human error were factors in Washington highway bridge collapse

    When an important bridge collapsed on Interstate 5 near Mount Vernon, Washington, in 2013, questions were raised about how such a catastrophic failure could occur. A new analysis by a team of civil engineering faculty at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign outlines the many factors that led to the collapse, as well as steps that transportation departments can take to prevent such accidents on other bridges of similar design.

  • Stretchable balloon electronics get to the heart of cardiac medicine

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Cardiologists may soon be able to place sensitive electronics inside their patients' hearts with minimal invasiveness, enabling more sophisticated and efficient diagnosis and treatment of arrhythmias.

  • Stemlike cells at tumor perimeter promote new blood vessels to feed tumor growth

    Stemlike cells at the edge of melanoma tumors secrete factors to promote blood-vessel growth, allowing the cancer to grow and spread.

  • Stem cells from muscle could address diabetes-related circulation problems

    Stem cells taken from muscle tissue could promote better blood flow in patients with diabetes who develop peripheral artery disease, a painful complication that can require surgery or lead to amputation.