The Golden Path Toward New Two-Dimensional Semiconductors

Two-dimensional (2D) semiconductors are promising for quantum computing and future electronics. Now, researchers can convert metallic gold into a semiconductor and customize the material atom-by-atom on boron nitride nanotubes.

Gold is a conductive material already widely used as interconnects in electronic devices. As electronics have gotten smaller and more powerful, the semiconducting materials involved have also shrunk. However, computers have gotten about as small as they can with existing designs — to break the barrier, researchers dive into the physics underlying quantum computing and the unusual behaviors of gold in quantum mechanics.

Researchers can convert gold into semiconducting quantum dots made of a single layer of atoms. Their energy gap, or bandgap, is formed by the quantum confinement — a quantum effect when materials behave like atoms as their sizes get so small approaching the molecular scale. These 2D gold quantum dots can be used for electronics with a bandgap that is tunable atom-by-atom.  

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Tech's Mechanical Engineering Program Ranked a 'Best Value'

The accredited degree program in Mechanical Engineering at Michigan Tech has been ranked a “Best Value for the Money” in the annual nationwide ranking of U.S. colleges and universities by College Factual.  Tech is also rated the number one best value school in Michigan for ME majors.

College Factual ranked mechanical engineering at Michigan Tech #26 out of 268 programs at colleges and universities in the United States reviewed as “Best for the Money.” This places Michigan Tech in the Top 10% of all such programs in the country reviewed by College Factual for value.

Additionally, Michigan Tech’s mechanical engineering program ranked #1 out of 12 colleges in Michigan for value. This makes Michigan Tech the best value school in the state for ME majors.

Michigan Tech has achieved this ranking two years in a row.

Based upon PayScale survey data, students graduating from Michigan Tech with accredited degrees in ME realize early-career earnings of $57,604 and mid-career earnings of $87,109.

William Predebon, chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics at Michigan Tech, said the College Factual ranking is indeed good news.

“The College Factual ranking is great news for the ME-EM Department and Michigan Tech. This is valuable information for both prospective and current students and their families. The educational experience provided by the faculty and staff through our hands-on curriculum is making a difference with our students.”

College Factual’s Best ME Schools for the Money Ranking takes into account the average yearly cost of the school, the average time students take to graduate, and the quality the school provides to students. This means schools who rank highly are offering a good value for the money for ME graduates.

College Factual, located in Troy, New York, is the leading source of data analytics and insights on college outcomes. It provides in-depth coverage for more than 2,500 colleges and universities and more than 350 college majors. These insights are available to students from more than 200 countries interested in pursuing accredited college degree programs in the United States.

MTTI Luncheon April 23 with MDOT Research Administration Director

At the invitation of the Michigan Tech Transportation Institute (MTTI), Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) Research Administration Director Carol Aldrich will visit the Michigan Tech campus on Tuesday, April 23. Also visiting will be Michael Townley, supervisor, project administration and Andre Clover, project manager.

In addition to facility tours and meetings with researchers, MTTI will host a luncheon for the guests with presentations and a Q&A session. The luncheon, scheduled for 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Memorial Union Building Ballroom A1, is open to all researchers interested in learning more about both MDOT and MTTI. 

For catering purposes, RSVP by 1 p.m. Wednesday (April 17) by using this form

New Interlibrary Loan System and Saving Your ILLiad History

A new interlibrary loan (ILL) system will be implemented for Michigan Tech students, faculty and staff the week of May 27. The new system will replace the ILLiad system currently in use. ILL users will see new request forms but most functionality will remain unchanged or improved.

One improvement is the new system’s automatic protection of your Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Closed or finished records are removed from the ILL system when they are a year old. This is similar to the PII protection system in MeLCat. As a result of this protection, closed or finished requests will not move from ILLiad to the new ILL system.

Patrons who wish to retain their ILLiad history are encouraged to do so before June 1. Instructions for saving your ILLiad history are posted on the library’s dedicated web page, Annual ILLiad Transaction History Removal. MeLCat resource sharing will remain available and unchanged by this new ILL service.

Any questions? Contact us at 7-3207 or

Family Fun Day Scheduled For May 11

The annual Family Fun Day is scheduled for Saturday, May 11 from 10:00 am to 3 p.m. This is a day where Michigan Tech employees and their families have free access to the SDC facilities and other campus amenities.

A flyer detailing the activities is available to view online. Be sure to note new and returning favorites. Register here before May 4.

Liabilities into Assets UPSH Event

The Social Sciences presents "Liabilities into Assets: Enhancing Electrical Grid and Community Resilience through Repurposing Decommissioned Mines into Underground Pump Storage Hydro-power Facilities (UPSH)" from noon to 2 p.m. Friday, April 26, in GLRC 202. 

This event will feature a collection of student posters and presentations exploring aspects of the adaptive reuse of abandoned mine sites for energy storage facilities. Please bring a lunch if you wish. 

Poster Presentations include: 

  • Kevin King — "The History of the Mather 'B' and Negaunee's Iron Mines"
  • María Gimenez Prades and Laura Grotjan — "Active Heritage: Where Industrial Archaeology meets Community"
  • Gideon Hoekstra — "Mining Archaeology and Evaluations of Significance at Heritage Mine Sites"
  • Paul Barnard — "Issues of Security, Risk, and Resiliency in the Adaptive Reuse of Heritage Mine Sites"

Presentations include:

  • Tanner Mahn and Dillon Hude — "Water Quality of Repurposed Mines into UPSH"
  • Madison Paul and Chris Rye — "UPSH as a Brownfield Site Development: Technical and Legal Implications"
  • Timothy Stone and Gavin Walters — "Russian Monotowns: Copper Country Cultural Parallels with Renewables"
  • Peter Dukes and David Rozinka — "Proposed Pump-Storage Facility at Negaunee Mine: Management of Runoff Water from Snow-Melt and Flooding"

The larger study is funded by a generous grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

MSE Seminar Tomorrow

The next Materials Science and Engineering seminar will take place at 11 a.m. tomorrow (April 16) in M&M 610. Ananyo Banerjee will present "Rails and Rail Welding: Materials Research Driving the Railroad Industry."

Banerjee is a principal investigator at Transportation Technology Center Inc. where he manages rail research projects and provides support on other track related projects. He holds a PhD in materials engineering and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering, both from Michigan Tech. He is a member of the American Society of Metals and an active member of the rail committee of the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-way Association (AREMA).

ME-EM Faculty Candidate Research Seminar Tomorrow

The next ME-EM faculty candidate research seminar will be held at 4 p.m. tomorrow (April 16) in R.L. Smith (MEEM) 406. Farhang Momeni will present, "Advanced Manufacturing of Multi-material Structures."

Momeni is a postdoctoral research fellow in mechanical engineering at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. His main research area is manufacturing and in this talk, he focuses on two manufacturing processes that create multi-material structures - 4D printing and friction stir welding.

Biomedical Engineering Seminars

There will be two Biomedical Engineering Seminars on the Michigan Tech campus this week.

Alex Zerbini will present a seminar titled, "Integrating Biology and Bioengineering to Improve Conservation of Marine Mammals: The Case of Electronic Tags for Whales." The seminar will take place at 3 p.m. tomorrow (April 16) in Fisher 326. 

Michigan Tech alumnus Hal Holmes '13, will present, "Conservation Engineering — DNA Screen Tools to Combat Timber and Wildlife Tracking," at 3 p.m. Thursday (April 18) in Fisher 325.

Medical Informatics Faculty Candidate Presentation Today

Sudip Vhaduri, PhD candidate in the Computer Science and Engineering Department at the University of Notre Dame and a candidate for the faculty position in the School of Technology's Medical Informatics program, will present “Empowering People Using Mobile Crowd Sensing and Computing" from 1 to 2 p.m. today (April 15) in Rekhi G006.

Vhaduri will present techniques to reliably discover spatio-temporal places of personal importance (POI), which fosters understanding of various spatio-temporal factors and their impacts on health behavior changes in order to predict future changes in health behavior as well as timely delivery of personalized mobile health interventions. He will also present some of his work on mobile health research and wearable device user authentication based on less-informative coarse-grained soft-biometric data. 

Job Posting

Job Posting for Monday, April 15, 2019

Staff and faculty job descriptions are available in Human Resources. For more information regarding staff positions, call 7-2280 or email

For more information regarding faculty positions, contact the academic department in which the position is posted.

Business Systems Analyst, Student Affairs Information Systems. Apply online.

Michigan Technological University is an Equal Opportunity Educational Institution/Equal Opportunity Employer, which includes providing equal opportunity for protected veterans and individuals with disabilities.


Tech Forward Public Presentation Wednesday

Plan to attend the culminating presentation of the Tech Forward campus conversations at 4 p.m. Wednesday (April 17) in the Rozsa Center. At the presentation, each of the nine initiative leaders will present their early vision and a brief overview of their initiative. Following the presentation, you will have the opportunity to offer input to the teams as they finalize their proposals at an optional reception. The event will be live streamed.


Environmental Engineering Graduate Seminar Today

The next Environmental Engineering Graduate Seminar takes place at 3 p.m. today (April 15) in GLRC 202. Daisuke Minakata (CEE) and graduate student Ryan Kibler will present, "Reverse Osmosis Membrane Technology for Direct Potable Reuse."


Nominations Sought for Michigan Tech Diversity Award

The Diversity Council is seeking nominations for faculty and staff deserving of the 2019 Michigan Tech Diversity Award. Nominations are due Friday, April 19. Nominees contribute to diversity and inclusion on campus through exemplary leadership and actions, valuing diversity and inclusion. More information on the award and nomination process can be found here.


Recycle Batteries at the Campus Store

The Campus Store recycles batteries. Bring in your used batteries and we will recycle them for you. We take AA, AAA, C, D and 9V.


Today is the Last Day to Send Out Tax Forms at the Campus Store

The last chance to send out tax forms at the Campus Store is noon today (April 15). Remember if you are sending it through USPS, it is cash or check only.


Online Learning Survey Request: Why Did You Choose Michigan Tech?

University Marketing and Communications is looking for current online learning students who have something positive to say about why they chose Michigan Tech and their specific academic major. Do you know students who fit the bill? If so, share with them the My Michigan Tech: Online Learner Testimonial Initiative survey.

The words of current students have the potential to help others decide on a particular major or learn about exciting opportunities unique to the Michigan Tech experience, including the online learning program. Please encourage your online students to participate. If you have any questions, email us at

On The Road

Carsten Kuelheim (SFRES) recently presented a seminar at the University of Minnesota, Duluth titled "Genes to Ecosystems: The problem of complex traits." He met with colleagues, graduate and undergraduate students for discussions and to plan future collaborative projects.

New Funding

Keat Ghee Ong (BioMed) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $14,000 research and development grant from the University of Oregon. 
The project is titled "Implementation of a Wireless Sensor System for Monitoring Mechanical Loadings at the Internal Fixation Plates of Rats with Segmented Bone Defects."
This is the first year of a potential three year grant totaling $54,000.

IT Connect

We Can Help

Michigan Tech IT wants you to have options when you need help with an IT-related issue:

  • Give us a call at 7-1111
  • Email to create a support ticket with an IT Team member
  • If you’re on campus, you can visit the Technical Assistance Center (TAC), our new space located next to the Library Help Desk

In addition, our online Knowledge Base (KB) has instant answers to common IT issues like printing, wireless, passwords and more. You can browse articles by category or search by keyword. For more information, visit our blog post on how to use the new KB.

We can help. Contact us at or call 7-1111.


VPA Student Receives Honor

A Michigan Tech student was recognized by the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF). As a result of eight regional festivals held in January and February, theatre students from around the country have been recognized for outstanding works. 

Makenzi Jo Wentala received a scholarship to the Stagecraft Institute of Las Vegas (SILV). Select students were awarded one-week or multi-week scholarships to the SILV. Summer master classes at the SILV include rigging, digital drafting SFX, automation and "Movers, Media and Rock-n-Roll."

In the News

Rolf Peterson (SFRES) was quoted in the story "Isle Royale wolf rescue faces longterm genetic challenge, researchers say," in Spartan News Room


Michigan Tech Women's Basketball player Cassidy Trotter was the subject of the story "Former Beaver Dam star Trotter has big year for Michigan Tech," in the Beaver Dam Daily Citizen.


The Michigan Tech news story "Industrial 3D Printing Goes Skateboarding," was picked up by several media outlets including Science DailyBioengineer and Scienmag.


Michigan Tech's Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC) was referenced in the column "Our greatest economic opportunity — water," in the Traverse City Record Eagle. The column, written by Casey Cowell, originally appeared in the Grand Traverse Business Magazine.


Michigan Tech was listed among "50 great colleges your kid can still get into for this fall," in Considerable. All the schools on the list appear on the best college lists in Money magazine or U.S. News.