Rural & Cold Weather Environment

Mobility can be severely impacted by rural or cold weather conditions. Dirt and gravel roads, or snow and ice can significantly affect the performance of a vehicle and its systems. Michigan’s Upper Peninsula provides a natural environment to experiment and test vehicles under the harshest conditions. Meet the researchers.

Timothy C. Havens

  • Director, Great Lakes Research Center
  • Director, Institute of Computing and Cybersystems
  • William and Gloria Jackson Professor

Links of Interest

Areas of Interest

  • Pattern Recognition and Machine Learning
  • Signal and Image Processing
  • Sensor and Data Fusion
  • Heterogeneous Data Mining
  • Explosive Hazard Detection


Bo Chen

  • Professor, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
  • Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

Areas of Expertise

  • Mechatronics and embedded systems
  • Agent Technology
  • Monitoring and control networks
  • Hybrid electric vehicles
  • Smart grid

Research Interests

  • Modeling and control of hybrid electric vehicles
  • EV-smart grid integration
  • Distributed monitoring and control
  • Battery control for HEV and energy storage systems
  • IC engine management systems
  • Sensor information fusion

Stephen A. Hackney

  • Professor, Materials Science and Engineering

Teaching Interests

  • Electron microscopy
  • Materials characterization
  • Thermodynamics and kinetics
  • Electronic materials
  • Senior design

Research Interests

  • Lithium ion batteries, ceramic battery materials
  • Surface and interface dynamics
  • Thin films and nanostructures
  • Thermodynamics
  • Magnetic materials
  • Diffusional instabilities and applications of electron microscopy
Erik Herbert
"You always have a choice and it always makes a difference."
—Rick Dunn

Erik G. Herbert

  • Assistant Professor, Materials Science and Engineering

Teaching Interests

  • Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering
  • Mechanical Behavior of Materials
  • Nanoindentation and Contact Mechanics

Research Interests

  • State-of-the-art ambient, non-ambient, in-operando and in-situ mechanical behavior of materials at nanometer and micrometer length scales
  • Development and implementation of novel small-scale mechanical testing methodologies for metals, ceramics, polymers, composites, semiconductors, biomaterials and structured devices
  • Mechanical characterization of unique materials & systems such as but not limited to bulk materials, individual phases, thin films, coatings, modified surfaces, micro-pillars, fibers, membranes, hydrogels, MEMS, microfluidic and micromachined devices
  • Small-scale mechanical testing in inert atmospheres and over the temperature range from -20 to 100 degrees C (to 1100 degrees C at the Joint Institute for Advanced Materials)
  • Measuring the components of the complex modulus of small volumes of viscoelastic solids
  • Predicting uniaxial stress-strain curves from nanoindentation data
  • High-speed property mapping of interfaces, multi-phase alloys and heat affected zones
  • Multi-axis contact experiments that enable manipulation of the state of stress
  • Measuring residual stress in free-standing thin films

Noise, Vibration, Harshness (NVH)

Andrew Barnard

  • Director, Great Lakes Research Center
  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering—Engineering Mechanics
  • Faculty Advisor, SENSE Enterprise

Areas of Expertise

  • Acoustics
  • Noise Control
  • Vibration
  • Real Time Control Systems
  • LabVIEW programming and instruction

Research Interests

  • Advanced Measurements and Signal Processing
  • Acoustic Intensity and Vector Sensors
  • Room Acoustics
  • Acoustic Material Characterization
  • Outdoor Sound Propagation
  • Physical Acoustics
  • NI LabVIEW Data Acquisition and Control
  • Microphones
  • Crowd Noise
  • Underwater Acoustics
  • Structural Acoustics
  • Array Signal Processing

Jason R. Blough

  • Distinguished Professor, Mechanical Engineering—Engineering Mechanics
  • Clean Snowmobile Team Faculty Advisor

Areas of Expertise

  • Vibrations
  • Unique Instrumentation/Data Acquisition
  • Digital Signal Processing
  • Noise Control

Research Interests

  • Dynamic Measurement Problems
  • Developing new digital signal processing algorithms to understand NVH type problems
  • Ways to improve the NVH characteristics of virtually any machine