Research Centers and Institutes

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Advanced Power Systems Research Center (APSRC)

Mission

To develop critical technologies for clean, efficient, and sustainable power systems.

Purpose

Advanced Power System Research Center is a multidisciplinary organization that will foster large, collaborative, research efforts in the areas of clean, efficient, and sustainable Power Systems technologies. This Center will develop both fundamental and applied knowledge that is required for the next generation of low-emission, high-efficiency vehicles. The Center will seek to bring together and coordinate a large number of Michigan Tech researchers already working in:

  • internal combustion engines,
  • spray formation,
  • combustion modeling,
  • combustion and mixture controls,
  • torque converters,
  • alternative fuels (including ethanol, bio-diesel, and hydrogen),
  • hybrid powertrains,
  • fuel cells, and
  • powertrain noise.

The result will be an interdisciplinary power systems research organization that will be responsive to the economic needs of the state and the energy needs of the nation.

Learn more about APSRC

Advanced Sustainable Iron and Steel Center (ASISC)

Mission

To support research, education, and outreach in all disciplines related to sustainable iron and steel production.

The Center for Advanced Sustainable Iron and Steel Making investigates and develops novel, advanced methods for producing the 130 million tons of iron and steel needed annually by the US in a sustainable, environmentally-acceptable manner.

Although primary iron manufacture is a multi-billion dollar industry in the US, research in this area is very limited. Yet, we find that the industry is still largely based on outdated technologies (oftentimes, more than a century old), and as a result many of the current practices are highly polluting and unsustainable. There is tremendous room for improvement, but only if completely new paradigms are developed for metals reduction that are not based on the unsustainable, polluting, energy-inefficient methods of the past.

Learn more about ASISC

Biotechnology Research Center (BRC)

"The Biotech Research Center fosters interdisciplinary research at Michigan Tech."

Biotechnology encompasses the applications of various science and engineering disciplines for industrial utilization of living organisms or their products. The mission of the Biotechnology Research Center (BRC) at Michigan Tech is to promote education and research in the areas of molecular biology, biochemistry, genetics, genomics, bioinformatics, human health, and biotechnology at both the graduate and undergraduate levels for the benefit of society and the environment.

The multidisciplinary nature of the BRC is reflected in the diverse expertise of the BRC faculty. Participation includes faculty from the Biology; Chemistry; Mathematics; Biomedical Engineering; Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Mechanics; and Forest Resources and Environmental Science departments. Faculty, staff, and students are open to collaborating on research projects and joining together for research symposiums, seminars, and conferences. Working together helps to achieve their common goal: the advancement of biotechnology.

Learn more about BRC

Paul & Susan Williams Center for Computer Systems Research(CCSR)

Mission Statement

The mission for CCSR is innovation in enabling computing technologies, concepts, methods, models, algorithms, and tools with a focus on computer systems. The CCSR supports the educational missions of the participating academic departments by funneling its research activities to innovative world-class educational programs for undergraduate and graduate students to expose them to the latest and exciting technological developments in computer systems. The CCSR fosters outreach activities to increase interest in computer science and engineering among K-12 students, teachers, and the community.

Description of Proposed Activities

CCSR has expertise in a wide range of ares, including, software engineering, programming languages, computer architecture and compilers, embedded systems, robotics and control, mobile and wireless ad-hoc networks, VLSI CAD, bioinformatics, artificial intelligence, algorithms, real-time digital information and multimedia processing, immersive virtual environments, high performance systems, and parallel processing.

The main research themes for CCSR are:

  • Research in real-time information processing, including complex electronic and computational architectures and systems that require real-time processing, multimedia processing, multi-dimensional information processing, architectures for low power and high performance embedded electronics systems, virtualization, cloud computing;
  • Investigation in computational sensing, involving research in replacing high-end sensors with low grade ones and providing compensation through complex DSP computational techniques;
  • Circuits and systems design and optimization research including VLSI systems, nanoelectronics, novel design techniques;
  • Research in embedded and distributed systems, including embedded and fault tolerant distributed systems, embedded control systems, distributed agent systems, mechatronics, and computer networking;
  • Outreach to the greater Michigan Tech community, the State, and the Nation to promote the reputation of Michigan Tech in computer systems research;
  • Regular dissemination of research results with sponsors and the appropriate technical communities by refereed archival publications and conference participation;
  • Interaction of the participating faculty with undergraduate students through the University's enterprise programs.
  • Investigate how to effectively use 3D computer graphics and immersive virtual environment technology to effectively convey information to users.

Center for Water and Society (CWS)

Mission

The mission of the Center for Water and Society (CWS) is to support research, education, and outreach in all disciplines at Michigan Technological University related to water issues. The goal is to establish Michigan Tech as a state, regional, national, and international leader in these disciplines and, in particular, in interdisciplinary approaches to solving water-related problems. The objectives of the CWS are:

  • to serve as a focal point for instructional and research activities in water-related fields and water-related outreach activities across the Michigan Tech campus;
  • to provide an organizational structure that supports continuing growth in water-related fields and outreach activities and encourage interdisciplinary projects;
  • to support interdisciplinary graduate and undergraduate education and research in water-related fields; and
  • to pursue external funding opportunities to support these objectives and to facilitate CWS-participating faculty to obtain external support.

Learn more about CWS

Computational Science and Engineering Research Institute (CSERI)

Mission

The Computational Science and Engineering Research Institute fosters computationally intensive research and graduate education in sciences and engineering. The Institute brings together faculty and students from across campus who have a common interest in and need for computational resources beyond those usually available in desktop workstations.

Learn more about CSERI

Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences Institute (EPSSI)

The Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences Institute (EPSSI) is aimed at facilitating and promoting research and education in remote sensing and related areas by bringing together individuals and groups separated by departmental and/or college boundaries.

Remote sensing comprises not just instrumentation or measurement tools, but represents a perspective that employs a broad morphology of disciplines and demands interdisciplinary breadth. For example, current members collaborate on projects spanning imaging science, atmospheric science, data/signal processing, data visualization, and remote sensing instrumentation. These are typically applied to a specific problem in earth system science, ecosystem studies, limnology/oceanography, global change, and a host of other areas. At least nine different departments currently have faculty members participating in EPSSI.

EPSSI's goals are to work by consensus to promote remote sensing and related topics on the Michigan Tech campus through:

  • interdisciplinary coursework and programs,
  • group funding efforts for equipment and research,
  • interdisciplinary seminars and short courses, and
  • development of a campus culture that actively supports trans-disciplinary activities.

Learn more about EPSSI

Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC)

Mission:

To be a leader in interdisciplinary aquatic science and engineering focused on the Laurentian Great Lakes Basin in its entirety through excellence in research education and outreach.

The vision of the Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC) is to become a world-class institute in interdisciplinary aquatic sciences, policy, engineering, and technology. We will develop unparalleled strength and expertise in four core areas: aquatic ecology and ecosystem dynamics, marine technology and engineering, aquatic resources, and human dimensions in education and outreach. Research at the GLRC will not only advance our knowledge in these four areas of focus but will also inform resource managers and the general public, enabling them to advance the sustainable use of freshwater resources.

Learn more about GLRC

Ecosystem Science Center (ESC)

Mission

To promote understanding of ecosystem function through education and research at Michigan Technological University.

The Ecosystem Science Center (ESC) is designed to advance our understanding of how ecosystems function and how human activities influence ecosystem processes. The Center's two main objectives are to:

  • foster ecosystem research and
  • educate graduate and undergraduate students in the area of ecosystem science.

These two objectives will be met through collaboration among faculty, staff, and students interested in ecosystem science.

Learn more about ESC

National Institute for Climatic Change Research (NICCR)

The National Institute for Climatic Change Research (NICCR) is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Office of Biological and Environmental Research (BER), which is part of the DOE's Office of Science. The goal of NICCR is to mobilize university researchers, from all regions of the country, in support of the climatic change research objectives of DOE/BER.

The NICCR will periodically solicit proposals for research projects to be funded by DOE through the four NICCR Regional Centers and one Coastal Center. The Midwestern Region housed at Michigan Technological University will support work in the following states: North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio. Research solicitations will be posted at http://niccr.mtu.edu/.

Scientific research topics being pursued by the NICCR are (a) the effects of potential climatic changes on important U.S. terrestrial ecosystems and (b) potential feedbacks from U.S. terrestrial ecosystems to the climatic system.

Learn more about NICCR

Institute for Leadership and Innovation (ILI)

Institute of Materials Processing (IMP)

The Institute of Materials Processing (IMP) is an innovative, nonprofit research facility. IMP focuses on the extraction, processing, recycling, and utilization of materials and resources. It conducts sponsored technology development, research, problem solving, training, and technology services for Michigan Technological University, the state of Michigan, other governmental units, and industry.

Materials studied include:

  • metallics,
  • ceramics,
  • polymers,
  • composites,
  • minerals,
  • and industrial processing wastes.

Expertise includes bench-top experimentation through process development, pilot plant scale-up, and commercialization.

Personnel at IMP work closely with Michigan Tech faculty members. Since the major focus of the Institute is accelerating technology transfer into the marketplace, most staff members are full-time, non-teaching research professionals. When necessary, the Institute can enter into confidentiality agreements with research sponsors and can undertake both proprietary and classified work. Cooperative development programs with other organizations are also strongly encouraged.

IMP can provide full or partial student support for advanced research in the materials and resource processing areas.

Learn more about IMP

Keweenaw Research Center (KRC)

Keweenaw Research Center (KRC) is a multidisciplinary research center wholly supported by external corporate and governmental agency funding. Research and development activities are primarily based on a broad spectrum of ground vehicle performance.

Typical activities include:

  • vehicle design and operation as an integrated system,
  • research in vehicle mobility,
  • material properties of tracked and wheeled vehicle components,
  • vehicle-terrain-human interactions, and
  • noise, vibration, and sound quality.

Computer-aided engineering and modeling are used extensively. KRC provides opportunities for undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty to perform research in several areas: composite materials, finite element methods, and vehicle dynamics modeling.

KRC maintains more than 740 acres of proving grounds, including many miles of prepared test tracks. Ride and handling loops, a circular track, an ice rink, a snow-packed area, and a rugged off-road obstacle course all provide the backdrop for research in vehicle mobility.

The Institute of Snow Research, an auxiliary component of KRC, is engaged in basic and applied research into snow, ice, and cold-environment engineering. Fundamental study of ice sintering, dynamic behavior of snow, and the mechanism of ice adhesion are examples of recent work. In addition, the Institute works in several areas related to snowmobile safety, including trail grooming and layout, trail safety signs, and the effects of snowmobile track studs on public road crossings.

Learn more about KRC

Michigan Tech Research Institute (MTRI)

Mission:

  • Be a recognized leader in the research, development, and use of information technology to support solution of critical problems in national security, infrastructure, bioinformatics, earth sciences, and environmental processes.
  • Be acknowledged nationally and internationally as an innovator for the marriage of phenomenological understanding and implementation of mathematically rigorous algorithms to build information from data in support of sponsor needs.
  • Provide visibility and outreach for Michigan Technological University in Southeastern Michigan.
  • Establish collaborations with Michigan Tech academic departments, institutes, and centers to increase funded contract revenues for all organizations involved.
  • Maintain a creative environment that rewards and encourages innovation.

MTRI is a recognized leader in the research, development, and practical application of sensor and information technology to solve critical problems in national security, protecting and evaluating critical infrastructure, bioinformatics, earth sciences, and environmental processes.

Learn more about MTRI

Michigan Tech Transportation Institute (MTTI)

Mission: The Michigan Tech Transportation Institute (MTTI) will provide the operating structure, resources, recognition, and leadership, in a collaborative environment, that supports research, education, and outreach leading to sustainable solutions for transportation.

MTTI is an umbrella organization bringing together the cross-disciplinary centers and principle investigators conducting transportation-related research and education initiatives that address national and global needs. Principal Investigators conduct transportation research under MTTI within six transportation-focused areas: 

  • Transportation Structures including bridges and pavements. Other related areas include geo-technical, construction, and nanotechnology related to sensors.
  • Transportation Materials including concrete, asphalt, steel, wood, and aggregates. Other related areas include construction, geo-technical, and nanotechnology related to sensors and materials.
  • Transportation Systems including waterways, traffic/safety, construction, rail, air, public transportation, freight, intelligent transportation systems, vehicle infrastructure integration, nanotechnology related to sensors, and radio frequency identification devices.
  • Environmental Aspects of Transportation including environmental impacts, energy, carbon dioxide and other pollutants, fugitive dust, wildlife, flora and fauna, and carbon credits.
  • Social Aspects of Transportation including policy, planning, human factors, history, economics, and archeology.
  • Transportation Technology Transfer including all outreach, management systems, and workforce development programs.

 

Learn more about MTTI

Multi-Scale Technologies Institute (MuSTI)

Multi-scale technologies are those that bring together functional elements to form systems where the relative size of components within the system spans from the nano through the micro and into the macro domain. The systems focus of the Multi-Scale Technologies Institute (MuSTI) emphasizes the challenges associated with integrating technologies that have relative feature sizes orders of magnitude apart and operating characteristics that are size dependent. This presents many problems that must be addressed by interdisciplinary teams of researchers using specialized equipment.

Research focuses on engineered systems and components such as nanoelectronics, nanosensors and systems, and associated materials. MuSTI is home to interdisciplinary nano- and micro-technologies education programs—such as an interdisciplinary minor in Nanoscale Science and Engineering. The establishment of MuSTI is based on Michigan Tech’s focus on applied research, established practices of interdisciplinary research, capabilities in testing, and strong engineering and science programs.

Learn more about MuSTI

Power and Energy Research Center (PERC)

Center for Fundamental and Applied Research in Nanostructured and Lightweight Materials (CNLM)

Sustainable Futures Institute (SFI)

Mission

To create and disseminate new scientific knowledge and engineering products in support of sustainability research and education.

The Sustainable Futures Institute (SFI) will assimilate the multiple skills and capabilities required to support a new metadiscipline of sustainability science, including:

  • the fundamental physics, chemistry, biology, and mathematics needed for environmental assessment;
  • ecological economics, including sustainability criteria in economic input-output analysis;
  • industrial ecology and design at the process, plant, firm, regional, national, and global scale;
  • information technology for real-time monitoring of processes, remote sensing of the environment, and geographical information systems;
  • human and environmental impact modeling and risk assessment;
  • social and behavioral research tools, and
  • professional and K-through-gray educational programs, including assessment of their impacts on choices made by design engineers, policy makers, and consumers.

By advancing this metadisciplinary endeavor, the Institute will combine information and insights across multiple disciplines and perspectives.

Learn more about SFI

Center for Environmentally Benign Functional Materials (CEBFM)

Mission

The mission of the Center for Environmentally Benign Functional Materials (CEBFM) is to increase and then sustain research activities surrounding the synthesis, characterization, and analysis of materials that are capable of performing multiple functions in a wide variety of applications.

CEBFM brings together researchers and will create a knowledge-base that can assist in further development of technologies for challenging applications critical to the growing technological needs of the US and the world. The Center will promote and foster an environment that will cross the traditional departmental and disciplinary boundaries to advance knowledge and support the overall mission of the University.

Learn more about CEBFM