Jacobs School News Archive


Machine learning enhances non-verbal communication in online classrooms

Machine learning enhances non-verbal communication in online classrooms

June 21, 2021

Researchers in the Center for Research on Entertainment and Learning at UC San Diego have developed a system to analyze and track eye movements to enhance teaching in tomorrow’s virtual classrooms – and perhaps future virtual concert halls. Full Story


Bio-inspired hydrogel protects the heart from post-op adhesions

June 18, 2021

A hydrogel that forms a barrier to keep heart tissue from adhering to surrounding tissue after surgery was developed and successfully tested in rodents by a team of University of California San Diego researchers. The team of engineers, scientists and physicians also conducted a pilot study on porcine hearts, with promising results. They describe their work in the June 18, 2021 issue of Nature Communications.   Full Story


'It Feels Like I'm Talking into a Void': How Do We Improve the Virtual Classroom?

'It Feels Like I'm Talking into a Void': How Do We Improve the Virtual Classroom?

June 17, 2021

Researchers in the UC San Diego Department of Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) wanted to look beyond the anecdotal evidence to better understand where remote education fell short and how we might improve it. In a study presented at the Association for Computing Machinery’s Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI), the team examined faculty and student attitudes towards virtual classrooms and proposed several technological refinements that could improve their experience, such as flexible distribution of student video feeds and enhanced chat functions.   Full Story


AI predicts how patients with viral infections, including COVID-19, will fare

June 17, 2021

Debashis Sahoo, a professor in the UC San Diego Department of Computer Science and Engineering and of pediatrics at UC San Diego School of Medicine, along with other researchers at the School of Medicine have used an artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm to sift through terabytes of gene expression data — which genes are “on” or “off” during infection — to look for shared patterns in patients with past pandemic viral infections, including SARS, MERS and swine flu. Full Story


Researchers translate a bird's brain activity into song

Researchers translate a bird's brain activity into song

June 16, 2021

It is possible to re-create a bird’s song by reading only its brain activity, shows a first proof-of-concept study from the University of California San Diego. The study is an early step toward building vocal prostheses for humans who have lost the ability to speak.  Full Story


Genetically engineered nanoparticle delivers dexamethasone directly to inflamed lungs

Genetically engineered nanoparticle delivers dexamethasone directly to inflamed lungs

June 16, 2021

Nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego have developed immune cell-mimicking nanoparticles that target inflammation in the lungs and deliver drugs directly where they’re needed. As a proof of concept, the researchers filled the nanoparticles with the drug dexamethasone and administered them to mice with inflamed lung tissue.  Full Story


Titans of industry, academia team up to advance engineering in medicine

Titans of industry, academia team up to advance engineering in medicine

June 10, 2021

As the silos that once separated engineering and medicine continue to dissolve, there is a growing need on campus for facilities where engineers, physicians and medical researchers can work in the same physical research ecosystems. Pioneering bioengineer, professor Shu Chien, and his wife K.C., joined forces with Peter Farrell, founder of medical device company ResMed, to support this vision. Full Story


World's largest outdoor earthquake simulator undergoes major upgrade

World's largest outdoor earthquake simulator undergoes major upgrade

June 9, 2021

A major upgrade to the world’s largest outdoor earthquake simulator reached a milestone mid-April when the facility’s floor--all 300,000 lbs of it--was put back into place. When completed this fall, the simulator will have the ability to reproduce multi-dimensional earthquake motions with unprecedented accuracy to make structures and their residents safer during strong shakes.   Full Story


Students thrive in program focused on diversifying undergraduate engineering at UC San Diego

Students thrive in program focused on diversifying undergraduate engineering at UC San Diego

June 9, 2021

Among the more than 1,400 undergraduate engineering and computer science students earning bachelor’s degrees from the University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering this year, are Xavier Perez, Yoon Jung Choi, and Armando Godoy-Velasquez, who are all members of the first cohort of ACES Scholars. Full Story


Super productive 3D bioprinter could help speed up drug development

Super productive 3D bioprinter could help speed up drug development

June 8, 2021

A new 3D bioprinter developed by UC San Diego nanoengineers operates at record speed—it can print a 96-well array of living human tissue samples within 30 minutes. The technology could help accelerate high-throughput preclinical drug screening and make it less costly. Full Story


Class of 2021 students honored at Ring Ceremony

Class of 2021 students honored at Ring Ceremony

June 8, 2021

In addition to UC San Diego’s commencement ceremonies, the Jacobs School of Engineering will honor the class of 2021 at its annual Ring Ceremony on Saturday, June 12. Six students who have made significant contributions to their department and the Jacobs School community, will be honored with Awards of Excellence. Full Story


Stabilizing gassy electrolytes could make ultra-low temperature batteries safer

Stabilizing gassy electrolytes could make ultra-low temperature batteries safer

June 7, 2021

A new technology could dramatically improve the safety and performance of lithium-ion batteries that operate with gas electrolytes at ultra-low temperatures. By keeping electrolytes from vaporizing, the technology can prevent pressure buildup inside the battery that leads to swelling and explosions. Full Story


NASA's Perseverance inspires UC San Diego's Yonder Dynamics

NASA's Perseverance inspires UC San Diego's Yonder Dynamics

June 3, 2021

NASA's latest feat, the landing of its rover Perseverence on Mars, was particularly exciting for the Yonder Dynamics student robotics team at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego, which builds a Mars rover of their own each year in a bid to compete in the international University Rover Challenge (URC) hosted by The Mars Society. Full Story


Light-shrinking material lets ordinary microscope see in super resolution

Light-shrinking material lets ordinary microscope see in super resolution

June 1, 2021

UC San Diego engineers developed a technology that turns a conventional light microscope into what's called a super-resolution microscope. It improves the microscope's resolution (from 200 nm to 40 nm) so that it can be used to directly observe finer structures and details in living cells. Full Story


A 'self-stirring' pill enhances drug bioavailability

A 'self-stirring' pill enhances drug bioavailability

May 28, 2021

From modifying the structure of drug molecules to developing sophisticated formulation systems, researchers are exploring new and innovative ways to safely enhance drug bioavailability. UC San Diego researchers report the development of a chemically-powered microstirring pill that could enhance drug uptake in the body. Full Story


Thin, large-area device converts infrared light into images

Thin, large-area device converts infrared light into images

May 27, 2021

An infrared imager developed by UC San Diego engineers could be used to see through smog and fog; easily locate blood vessels on a patient; and see through silicon wafers to inspect the quality of electronic boards. It is also slim, compact and less costly to fabricate than similar technologies. Full Story


Sustainable method to 3D print steel wins big at Triton Innovation Challenge

Sustainable method to 3D print steel wins big at Triton Innovation Challenge

May 26, 2021

A startup developing a 3D printing technique that can manufacture steel cheaper than existing methods, with no carbon emissions and minimal wasted scrap metal, earned the $7,000 Grand Prize at the Triton Innovation Challenge. Full Story


Improved maps for self-driving vehicles win Research Expo 2021

Improved maps for self-driving vehicles win Research Expo 2021

May 25, 2021

From monitoring the structural integrity of airplane wings, to improving lithographic 3D printing processes, to creating better maps for self-driving cars, this year’s Research Expo symposium showcased the depth and breadth of work done by graduate engineering and computer science students at the University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.   Full Story


Undergraduate researchers earn Goldwater Scholarship

Undergraduate researchers earn Goldwater Scholarship

May 13, 2021

Three UC San Diego undergraduate students with impressive academic and research credentials were selected to receive the Goldwater Scholarship, designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue research careers in the fields of the natural sciences, engineering and mathematics.  Full Story


Bioengineering student earns Strauss Scholarship

Bioengineering student earns Strauss Scholarship

May 13, 2021

UC San Diego bioengineering undergraduate Zina Patel was selected to receive the $15,000 Strauss Scholarship, awarded to outstanding students developing social change or public service projects. Full Story


Personalized sweat sensor reliably monitors blood glucose without finger pricks

Personalized sweat sensor reliably monitors blood glucose without finger pricks

May 10, 2021

UC San Diego engineers developed a device that could make it more convenient for people with diabetes to measure their blood glucose. The device can measure glucose in sweat with the touch of a fingertip, and then a personalized algorithm provides an accurate estimate of blood glucose levels. Full Story


This system helps robots better navigate emergency rooms

This system helps robots better navigate emergency rooms

May 10, 2021

Computer scientists at the University of California San Diego have developed a more accurate navigation system that will allow robots to better negotiate busy clinical environments in general and emergency departments more specifically.  The researchers have also developed a dataset of open source videos to help train robotic navigation systems in the future.    Full Story


Programs help Jacobs School undergraduates make the most of research experiences

Programs help Jacobs School undergraduates make the most of research experiences

May 6, 2021

University of California San Diego engineering and computer science undergraduates broaden their understanding of what it means to study engineering and computer science by getting involved in research. Full Story


We need to build more EV fast-charging stations, researchers say

We need to build more EV fast-charging stations, researchers say

May 5, 2021

A team of engineers recommends expanding fast-charging stations for electric vehicles as campuses and businesses start planning for a post-pandemic world. The recommendation is based on a study of charging patterns for electric vehicles on the University of California San Diego campus from early January to late May of 2020, after the university moved most of its operations online. Researchers say the findings can be applied to a broader range of settings.    Full Story


The Wave Beneath Their Wings

The Wave Beneath Their Wings

April 30, 2021

It’s a common sight: pelicans gliding along the waves, right by the shore. These birds make this kind of surfing look effortless, but actually the physics involved that give them a big boost are not simple.  Researchers at the University of California San Diego have recently developed a theoretical model that describes how the ocean, the wind and the birds in flight interact in a recent paper in Movement Ecology.   Full Story


Computer Scientists Discover Vulnerability Affecting Computers Globally

Computer Scientists Discover Vulnerability Affecting Computers Globally

April 30, 2021

UC San Diego computer scientists teamed up with the University of Virginia School of Engineering computer science researchers to uncover a line of attack that breaks current Spectre defenses. This means that billions of computers and other devices across the globe are just as vulnerable today as they were when Spectre was first announced. Full Story


Building a voice assistant for older adults

Building a voice assistant for older adults

April 28, 2021

Computer scientists at the University of California San Diego received an Amazon Research Award to develop a voice assistant to better communicate with older adults. Their initial goal is to create a system capable of understanding and answering the medical questions of adults over age 65. Full Story


UC San Diego joins Bytecode alliance to build safer software foundations for the Internet

UC San Diego joins Bytecode alliance to build safer software foundations for the Internet

April 28, 2021

The University of California San Diego has joined The Bytecode Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating new software foundations and building on standards such as WebAssembly and WebAssembly System Interface (WASI). UC San Diego is part of a cross-industry collaboration alongside other new members Arm, DFINITY Foundation, Embark Studios, Google and Shopify to support the alliance, which was incorporated by Fastly, Intel, Mozilla and Microsoft.     Full Story


Neural implant monitors multiple brain areas at once, provides new neuroscience insights

Neural implant monitors multiple brain areas at once, provides new neuroscience insights

April 27, 2021

How do different parts of the brain communicate with each other during learning and memory formation? A study by researchers at UC San Diego takes a first step at answering this fundamental neuroscience question, thanks to a neural implant that monitors multiple brain regions at the same time. Full Story


From self-driving cars, to drones, to healthcare robotics: UC San Diego at ICRA 2021 preview

From self-driving cars, to drones, to healthcare robotics: UC San Diego at ICRA 2021 preview

April 26, 2021

A record number of papers from robotics faculty at the University of California San Diego were accepted to the 2021 International Conference on Robotics and Automation taking place in Xi’an.China, May 30 to June 5. Full Story


Three from UC San Diego Elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Three from UC San Diego Elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

April 23, 2021

Three members of the University of California San Diego community, including two professors and one professor emeritus, have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences—one of the oldest and most esteemed honorary societies in the nation. Ananda Goldrath, Eileen Myles and Stefan Savage are among the Academy’s 2021 class of 252 members. They join fellow 2021 classmates who are artists, scholars, scientists and leaders in the public, non-profit and private sectors, including: civil rights lawyer and scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw; computer scientist Fei-Fei Li; composer, songwriter, and performer Robbie Robertson; and media entrepreneur and philanthropist Oprah Winfrey.  Full Story


Combining nanomaterials in 3D to build next-generation imaging devices

Combining nanomaterials in 3D to build next-generation imaging devices

April 12, 2021

UC San Diego nanoengineering professor Oscar Vazquez-Mena is taking nanomaterials to the next dimension. By integrating different nanoscale materials together in 3D, he is creating a new generation of devices for environmental monitoring, energy harvesting and biomedical applications. Vazquez-Mena recently received a CAREER Award through the NSF to develop devices that can "see" wavelengths of light that are invisible to the human eye, such as IR and UV light. He also received a DARPA Director's Fellowship to develop a material that can let ultrasound through the skull and do non-invasive imaging and stimulation of the human brain. Full Story


Understudied Mutations Have Big Impact on Gene Expression

Understudied Mutations Have Big Impact on Gene Expression

April 9, 2021

An international team of researchers led by computer scientists at the University of California San Diego have identified 163 variable number tandem repeats (VNTRs) that actively regulate gene expression. In a paper published in Nature Communications this week, the researchers provide new insights into this understudied mechanism, how it may drive disease and other traits and could ultimately impact patient care. Full Story


Diversifying the ranks of engineering faculty

Diversifying the ranks of engineering faculty

April 5, 2021

UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering partners with University of Michigan on program to address the lack of diversity in academia. Full Story


UC San Diego Engineering Ranks #9 in U.S. News and World Report Best Engineering Schools Rankings

UC San Diego Engineering Ranks #9 in U.S. News and World Report Best Engineering Schools Rankings

March 30, 2021

For the second year in a row, the University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering has ranked #9 in the nation in the influential U.S. News & World Report Rankings of Best Engineering Schools.    Full Story


New ways of looking inside living cells

New ways of looking inside living cells

March 29, 2021

From developing new imaging platforms, to asking new biological questions, and developing new disease diagnostics, UC San Diego bioengineering professor Lingyan Shi is pushing the boundaries of what's possible when we look inside living cells. Full Story


Robot, heal thyself

Robot, heal thyself

March 26, 2021

Living tissue can heal itself from many injuries, but giving similar abilities to artificial systems, such as robots, has been extremely challenging. Now, researchers at the University of California San Diego reporting in Nano Letters have developed small, swimming robots that can magnetically heal themselves on-the-fly after breaking into two or three pieces. The strategy could someday be used to make hardier devices for environmental or industrial clean up, the researchers say.  Full Story


Coronavirus circulated undetected months before first COVID-19 cases in Wuhan, China

Coronavirus circulated undetected months before first COVID-19 cases in Wuhan, China

March 24, 2021

Using molecular dating tools and epidemiological simulations, bioinformaticians and computer scientists at the University of California San Diego, with colleagues at the University of Arizona and Illumina, Inc., estimate that the SARS-CoV-2 virus was likely circulating undetected for at most two months before the first human cases of COVID-19 were described in Wuhan, China, in late-December 2019.   Full Story


Why Commercialization of Carbon Capture and Sequestration has Failed and How it Can Work

Why Commercialization of Carbon Capture and Sequestration has Failed and How it Can Work

March 22, 2021

There are 12 essential attributes that explain why commercial carbon capture and sequestration projects succeed or fail in the U.S., University of California San Diego researchers say in a recent study published in Environmental Research Letters.    Full Story


Artificial neuron device could shrink energy use and size of neural network hardware

Artificial neuron device could shrink energy use and size of neural network hardware

March 18, 2021

Neural network training could one day require less computing power and hardware, thanks to a new nanodevice that can run neural network computations using 100 to 1000 times less energy and area than existing CMOS-based hardware. Full Story


How to speed up muscle repair

How to speed up muscle repair

March 17, 2021

By studying how different pluripotent stem cell lines build muscle, researchers have for the first time discovered how epigenetic mechanisms can be triggered to accelerate muscle cell growth, providing new insights for developing therapies for muscle disease, injury and atrophy. Full Story


Defending human-robot teams against adversaries goal of computer science grant

March 17, 2021

UC San Diego computer science professor Kamalika Chaudhuri is part of a multi-university team that has won a prestigious US Department of Defense Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) Award to develop rigorous methods for robust human-machine collaboration against adversaries.    Full Story


Writing a New Chapter on Innovation

Writing a New Chapter on Innovation

March 17, 2021

The University of California San Diego is the first University of California campus to establish a chapter of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI), a move that will help the campus build and sustain a more robust innovation ecosystem. Full Story


Structural engineers get hands-on experience with composite materials

Structural engineers get hands-on experience with composite materials

March 11, 2021

Structural engineering students at the Jacobs School got hands-on experience designing, manufacturing and analyzing structures made from composite materials through the Design of Composite Structures course, held in-person thanks to UC San Diego’s Return to Learn policies.   Full Story


Computer science student brings Black beauty products to UC San Diego

Computer science student brings Black beauty products to UC San Diego

March 11, 2021

Math-computer science student Jaida Day launched her Black Beauty Near You business with a goal of making Black hair and skin care products more accessible to UC San Diego students. Full Story


With gene therapy, scientists develop opioid-free solution for chronic pain

With gene therapy, scientists develop opioid-free solution for chronic pain

March 10, 2021

A gene therapy for chronic pain could offer a safer, non-addictive alternative to opioids. By temporarily repressing a gene involved in sensing pain, the treatment increased pain tolerance in mice, lowered their sensitivity to pain and provided months of pain relief without causing numbness. Full Story


'Wearable microgrid' uses the human body to sustainably power small gadgets

'Wearable microgrid' uses the human body to sustainably power small gadgets

March 9, 2021

This shirt harvests and stores energy from the human body to power small electronics. UC San Diego nanoengineers call it a "wearable microgrid"—it combines energy from the wearer's sweat and movement to provide renewable power for wearable devices. Full Story


Adhesion, contractility enable metastatic cells to go against the grain

Adhesion, contractility enable metastatic cells to go against the grain

March 9, 2021

Bioengineers at the University of California San Diego and San Diego State University have discovered a key feature that allows cancer cells to break from typical cell behavior and migrate away from the stiffer tissue in a tumor, shedding light on the process of metastasis and offering possible new targets for cancer therapies.  Full Story


Three-layered masks most effective against large respiratory droplets

Three-layered masks most effective against large respiratory droplets

March 5, 2021

Researchers have shown that three-layered surgical masks are more effective than single or double-layered masks at stopping large droplets from a cough or sneeze from penetrating through the mask. Full Story


Coronavirus-like particles could ensure reliability of simpler, faster COVID-19 tests

Coronavirus-like particles could ensure reliability of simpler, faster COVID-19 tests

March 2, 2021

Rapid COVID-19 tests are on the rise to deliver results faster to more people, and scientists need an easy, foolproof way to know that these tests work correctly and the results can be trusted. Nanoparticles that pass detection as the novel coronavirus could be just the ticket. Such coronavirus-like nanoparticles, developed by nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego, would serve as something called a positive control for COVID-19 tests. Full Story


Meet computer scientist Kristen Vaccaro and the science of social media

Meet computer scientist Kristen Vaccaro and the science of social media

March 2, 2021

New assistant professor Kristen Vaccaro came to UC San Diego’s Computer Science and Engineering Department from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where she recently earned her Ph.D. After spending several years in chilly Illinois, she’s pleased to be wintering in San Diego. Full Story


Weakness is strength for this low-temperature battery

Weakness is strength for this low-temperature battery

February 25, 2021

Nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego have discovered new fundamental insights for developing lithium metal batteries that perform well at ultra-low temperatures; mainly, that the weaker the electrolyte holds on to lithium ions, the better. By using such a weakly binding electrolyte, the researchers developed a lithium metal battery that can be repeatedly recharged at temperatures as low as -60 degrees Celsius—a first in the field. Full Story


Human-centered mobility and transportation options for disadvantaged communities is the goal of new partnership

Human-centered mobility and transportation options for disadvantaged communities is the goal of new partnership

February 24, 2021

The University of California San Diego is teaming up with several community-based organizations and the San Diego Association of Governments to improve access to transportation for the county’s low-income and underserved neighborhoods. The team is adopting a human-centered design approach to their work to try and repair the harm done by car-oriented transportation policies of the past.    Full Story


Computer scientist studies the importance of extra-chromosomal DNA

Computer scientist studies the importance of extra-chromosomal DNA

February 23, 2021

Cancer is a genetic disease that can lay waste to DNA. In many cases, error correction mechanisms mutate, removing the quality control circuits that maintain genes, setting the stage for more mutations. Full Story


New material is next step toward stable high-voltage long-life solid-state sodium-ion batteries

New material is next step toward stable high-voltage long-life solid-state sodium-ion batteries

February 23, 2021

A team of researchers designed and manufactured a new sodium-ion conductor for solid-state sodium-ion batteries that is stable when incorporated into higher-voltage oxide cathodes. This new solid electrolyte could dramatically improve the efficiency and lifespan of this class of batteries. A proof of concept battery built with the new material lasted over 1000 cycles while retaining 89.3% of its capacity--a performance unmatched by other solid-state sodium batteries to date.    Full Story


Tracking melting points above 4000 degrees Celsius

Tracking melting points above 4000 degrees Celsius

February 23, 2021

A materials engineer at the University of California San Diego is leading the development of a new research platform for studying high-performance materials, in particular new materials that melt above 4000 degrees Celsius (C). Full Story


Engineer inducted into prestigious biomedical institution

Engineer inducted into prestigious biomedical institution

February 22, 2021

Padmini Rangamani, a professor at the Jacobs School of Engineering, has been inducted into the College of Fellows of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). She was recognized for outstanding contributions to multiscale computational modeling of cellular mechanobiology including spatial signal transduction and membrane trafficking processes.   Full Story


This robot doesn't need any electronics

This robot doesn't need any electronics

February 17, 2021

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have created a four-legged soft robot that doesn’t need any electronics to work. The robot only needs a constant source of pressurized air for all its functions, including its controls and locomotion systems. The team, led by Michael T. Tolley, a professor of mechanical engineering at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego, details its findings in the Feb. 17, 2021 issue of the journal Science Robotics.   Full Story


New skin patch brings us closer to wearable, all-in-one health monitor

New skin patch brings us closer to wearable, all-in-one health monitor

February 15, 2021

UC San Diego engineers have developed a soft, stretchy skin patch that can be worn on the neck to continuously track blood pressure and heart rate while measuring the wearer’s levels of glucose as well as lactate, alcohol or caffeine. It performs as well as commercial monitoring devices such as a blood pressure cuff, blood lactate meter, glucometer and breathalyzer.  Full Story


Engineers earn NASA grant to enable flying taxis

Engineers earn NASA grant to enable flying taxis

February 12, 2021

A futuristic system of flying taxis and shuttles is one step closer to reality thanks to a team of engineers led by UC San Diego. They received a $5.8 million grant from NASA to create computational design tools that will help US companies develop more efficient air taxi designs. Full Story


In Memoriam: Juan C. Lasheras, Distinguished Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Professor

In Memoriam: Juan C. Lasheras, Distinguished Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Professor

February 9, 2021

Juan C. Lasheras, University of California San Diego distinguished professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and Bioengineering, passed away on February 1, 2021 after a brief battle with cancer. He was 69 years old.   Full Story


Deepfake detectors can be defeated, computer scientists show for the first time

Deepfake detectors can be defeated, computer scientists show for the first time

February 8, 2021

Systems designed to detect deepfakes --videos that manipulate real-life footage via artificial intelligence--can be deceived, computer scientists showed for the first time at the WACV 2021 conference which took place online Jan. 5 to 9, 2021.   Full Story


Music and computer science professor studies the sounds of COVID

Music and computer science professor studies the sounds of COVID

February 5, 2021

In a research paper on “Robust Detection of COVID-19 in Cough Sounds,” published in SN Computer Science, UC San Diego music and computer science professor Shlomo Dubnov and colleagues spell out initial results of their work analyzing samples of coughs and utterances from patients diagnosed with the SARS-Cov2 virus against a control group of healthy subjects. Full Story


Lightening the data center energy load

Lightening the data center energy load

February 3, 2021

Electrical engineers and computer scientists at UC San Diego are on the front lines of global efforts to reduce the energy used by data centers. The team has been awarded $7.5 million from ARPA-E and the California Energy Commission to advance nation-wide efforts to double data center energy efficiency in the next decade through deployment of new photonic —light based—network topologies. Full Story


Islands without structure inside metal alloys could lead to tougher materials for transportation, energy and defense

Islands without structure inside metal alloys could lead to tougher materials for transportation, energy and defense

January 29, 2021

An international team of researchers produced islands of amorphous, non-crystalline material inside a class of new metal alloys known as high-entropy alloys. This discovery opens the door to applications in everything from landing gears, to pipelines, to automobiles. The new materials could make these lighter, safer, and more energy efficient.   Full Story


A call to end funding discrimination against Black scientists in the United States

A call to end funding discrimination against Black scientists in the United States

January 26, 2021

Representatives from a network of women deans, chairs and distinguished faculty in biomedical engineering are calling upon the National Institutes of Health and other funding agencies to address disparities in allocating support to Black researchers.  The group made the call to action in the Jan. 26, 2021 issue of the journal Cell.    Full Story


The Spectacular Synthesis of Spider Silk

The Spectacular Synthesis of Spider Silk

January 26, 2021

For David Breslauer, a UC San Diego bioengineering alumnus and co-founder and chief scientific officer at Bolt Threads, a bioengineering company in Emeryville, Calif., the potential of the spider and the mushroom represent not just another way to make apparel, but a way to bring greater sustainability to the clothing industry. Full Story


Ten suggestions for female faculty and staff during the pandemic

Ten suggestions for female faculty and staff during the pandemic

January 21, 2021

“Ten simple rules for women principal investigators during a pandemic,” was published recently in PLOS Computational Biology.  It’s perhaps important to note that despite its title, the article is careful to say that the cardinal rule is that there are no rules. So all 10 points outlined are in fact suggestions. Also despite its title, Rangamani says most of the 10 points outlined in the publication can apply to all caregivers juggling work and caregiving during the pandemic.    Full Story


UC San Diego Alumnus at Helm of Company Behind First At-Home COVID Test

UC San Diego Alumnus at Helm of Company Behind First At-Home COVID Test

January 21, 2021

In November 2020, Lucira Health received emergency use authorization for the first rapid at-home COVID-19 test from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Erik Engelson, a UC San Diego bioengineering and microbiology alumnus, is president and CEO of Lucira Health. He spoke about the process of getting the COVID-19 test kit through FDA emergency use authorization, his time at UC San Diego, and advice for students, in this Q&A. Full Story


Making masks smarter and safer against COVID-19

Making masks smarter and safer against COVID-19

January 21, 2021

A new tool for monitoring COVID-19 may one day be right under your nose. Researchers at the University of California San Diego are developing a color-changing test strip that can be stuck on a mask and used to detect SARS-CoV-2 in a person’s breath or saliva. The project is aimed at providing simple, affordable and reliable surveillance for COVID-19 infections that can be done daily and easily implemented in resource-poor settings. Full Story


Five UC San Diego teams receive $100,000 to support groundbreaking research

Five UC San Diego teams receive $100,000 to support groundbreaking research

January 19, 2021

The Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship (QIF) recognizes creative Ph.D. students, providing them with funding, mentoring and other resources to pursue innovative research. This year, five UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering teams were awarded fellowships – four from Computer Science and Engineering and one from Electrical and Computer Engineering.   Full Story


Computer scientist named inaugural holder of the Halicioglu Endowed Chair in Memory Systems

Computer scientist named inaugural holder of the Halicioglu Endowed Chair in Memory Systems

January 15, 2021

January 15, 2021: UC San Diego Computer Science and Engineering Professor Steven Swanson is building computer systems that explore how new memory technologies will impact the future of computing. In recognition of his impressive body of research to create software to support persistent memory, Swanson was recently named the inaugural holder of the HalıcıoÄŸlu Chair in Memory Systems at UC San Diego. The $1 million chair is part of a larger $18.5 million gift made in 2013 to the department by CSE alumnus Taner HalıcıoÄŸlu ’96. The chair provides a dedicated source of funds, in perpetuity, for the chair holder’s scholarly activities as well as support for graduate students. Full Story


New Method Makes Better Predictions of Material Properties Using Low Quality Data

New Method Makes Better Predictions of Material Properties Using Low Quality Data

January 14, 2021

By combining large amounts of low-fidelity data with smaller quantities of high-fidelity data, nanoengineers at UC San Diego have developed a machine learning method to more accurately predict the properties of new materials including, for the first time, disordered materials. Full Story


Study Finds Neglected Mutations May Play Important Role in Autism Spectrum Disorder

January 13, 2021

Mutations that occur in certain DNA regions, called tandem repeats, may play a significant role in autism spectrum disorders, according to research led by Melissa Gymrek, assistant professor in the UC San Diego Department of Computer Science and Engineering and School of Medicine. The study, which was published in Nature on Jan. 13, was co-authored by UCLA professor of human genetics Kirk Lohmueller and highlights the contributions these understudied mutations can make to disease.   Full Story


UC San Diego professor Bernhard O. Palsson named Y.C. Fung Endowed Chair in Bioengineering

January 13, 2021

University of California San Diego professor Bernhard O. Palsson  has been named the Y.C. Fung Endowed Chair in Bioengineering at the Jacobs School of Engineering. Palsson is also a professor of pediatrics, and Director of the Center for Biosustainability.  Palsson’s research focuses on developing experimental and computational models of the red blood cell, E. coli, CHO cells, and several human pathogens to establish their systems biology. His Systems Biology Research Group leverages high-power computing to build interactive databases of biological information and is increasingly focused on Genome Design and Engineering. Full Story


Remembering UC San Diego engineering professor Siavouche Nemat-Nasser

Remembering UC San Diego engineering professor Siavouche Nemat-Nasser

January 13, 2021

University of California San Diego engineering professor emeritus Siavouche "Sia" Nemat-Nasser passed away on January 4, 2021 due to complications of acute myeloid leukemia (AML). He was 84 years old. Professor Nemat-Nasser was a Distinguished Professor of Mechanics and Materials in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. He officially retired from UC San Diego in 2019 but remained active as a researcher through his Center of Excellence for Advanced Materials (CEAM). Full Story


$1.2 Million Grant Funds a New Generation of Healthcare Telemanipulation Robots

$1.2 Million Grant Funds a New Generation of Healthcare Telemanipulation Robots

January 12, 2021

Researchers at UC San Diego, UCLA, UC Irvine and San Diego State University have been awarded a $1.2 million UC Multicampus Research Programs and Initiatives (MRPI) grant to develop an advanced class of mobile telemanipulation robots. These easy-to-operate, low-cost  robots called UC Iris will be used to grasp objects, open doors and perform other tasks to advance telehealth, allowing healthcare workers to safely conduct remote exams and providing quarantined Californians a safe way to interact outside their homes.   Full Story


Ocean acidification is transforming California mussel shells

Ocean acidification is transforming California mussel shells

January 11, 2021

Comparing new data with samples collected in the 1950s, UC San Diego researchers found that ocean acidification is transforming the composition of California mussel shells from mostly the mineral aragonite to the mineral calcite. Full Story


Moving forward, looking back

Moving forward, looking back

December 23, 2020

As we look back at 2020 and move forward in 2021, there are two high-level moves we are also making. These moves are designed to ensure the Jacobs School emerges more ready than ever to confront the challenges, injustices, and societal and innovation needs laid bare by the pandemic. Full Story


Jacobs School alumni kickstart Dean's Scholars of Excellence program

Jacobs School alumni kickstart Dean's Scholars of Excellence program

December 15, 2020

Education is the great equalizer. Jacobs School of Engineering alumni Mary Bui-Pham and Dan Pham have seen this play out in their own lives, and have donated the funds to endow a scholarship supporting students with outstanding academic merit, including students who have made or show potential to contribute to diversity, equity and inclusion; first generation; and low-income engineering students. Their gift launched the larger Jacobs School of Engineering Dean’s Scholars of Excellence program, a school-wide scholarship program meant to advance equal access to a Jacobs School education. Full Story


UC San Diego Celebrates 25 Years of Wireless Research Leadership

UC San Diego Celebrates 25 Years of Wireless Research Leadership

December 15, 2020

The University of California San Diego Center for Wireless Communications (CWC) is celebrating 25 years of partnering with industry to push the bounds of wireless technologies while training the wireless workforce of the future.  Full Story


Major Upgrade Under Way at the World's Largest Outdoor Shake Table

Major Upgrade Under Way at the World's Largest Outdoor Shake Table

December 14, 2020

Earlier this year in San Diego, two giant cranes lifted the 330,000 lb. steel  floor, or platen, off the world’s largest outdoor shake table, revealing a complex network of pipes, wires and catwalks. This was the first step in a major $16.3 million upgrade to the seismic simulator funded by the National Science Foundation. Over the next 10 months, the facility will undergo major construction. When completed in October 2021, the shake table will be able to reproduce multi-dimensional earthquake motions with unprecedented accuracy.   Full Story


A smart ring shows it's possible to detect fever before you feel it

A smart ring shows it's possible to detect fever before you feel it

December 14, 2020

Temperature data collected by wearable devices worn on the finger can be reliably used to detect the onset of fevers, a leading symptom of both COVID-19 and the flu, according to a team of researchers from the University of California San Diego, UC San Francisco and MIT Lincoln Lab.     Full Story


Passing of Shao-chi Lin, Professor Emeritus of Engineering at UC San Diego

Passing of Shao-chi Lin, Professor Emeritus of Engineering at UC San Diego

December 11, 2020

Shao-chi Lin, Professor Emeritus of Engineering at the University of California San Diego, died on October 8, 2020 at the age of 95. He is remembered by former students and colleagues as a talented and caring teacher, mentor and researcher; and an active member of the campus community.   Full Story


This flexible and rechargeable battery is 10 times more powerful than state of the art

This flexible and rechargeable battery is 10 times more powerful than state of the art

December 10, 2020

A team of researchers has developed a flexible, rechargeable silver oxide-zinc battery with a five to 10 times greater areal energy density than state of the art. The battery also is easier to manufacture; while most flexible batteries need to be manufactured in sterile conditions, under vacuum, this one can be screen printed in normal lab conditions. The device can be used in flexible, stretchable electronics for wearables as well as soft robotics. Full Story


Finding Worth in Waste: How Wastewater Monitoring Helps Reduce the Spread of SARS-CoV-2 at UC San Diego

Finding Worth in Waste: How Wastewater Monitoring Helps Reduce the Spread of SARS-CoV-2 at UC San Diego

December 10, 2020

Early detection is one of the keys to reducing the spread of SARS-CoV-2 - the virus that causes COVID-19 - and a wastewater monitoring system developed by the UC San Diego Center for Microbiome Innovation (CMI) is proving to be an invaluable tool.   Full Story


Windmill kit provides introduction to structures and design

Windmill kit provides introduction to structures and design

December 10, 2020

This fall, students in the Introduction to Structures and Design course at the Jacobs School of Engineering were able to get hands-on experience designing aerodynamic, efficient and earthquake-safe structures even during a quarter of hybrid in-person and remote learning.  Full Story


Researchers discover a new superhighway system in the Solar System

December 9, 2020

Researchers have discovered a new superhighway network to travel through the Solar System much faster than was previously possible. Such routes can drive comets and asteroids near Jupiter to Neptune’s distance  in under a decade and to 100 astronomical units in less than a century. Accordingly, they could be used to send spacecraft to the far reaches of our planetary system relatively fast, and to monitor and understand near-Earth objects that might collide with our planet.   Full Story


10 Jacobs School Faculty Named in 2020 List of Highly Cited Researchers

10 Jacobs School Faculty Named in 2020 List of Highly Cited Researchers

December 8, 2020

Ten professors at the University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering are among the world’s most influential researchers in their fields, according to a new research citation report from the Web of Science Group. The professors, Ludmil Alexandrov, Trey Ideker, Rob Knight, Nathan E. Lewis, Prashant Mali, Ying Shirley Meng, Bernhard O. Palsson, Joseph Wang, Kun Zhang and Liangfang Zhang, are amone 52 professors and researchers at UC San Diego named in the prestigious list of Highly Cited Researchers in 2020. Full Story


UC San Diego nanoengineer Liangfang Zhang inducted into National Academy of Inventors

UC San Diego nanoengineer Liangfang Zhang inducted into National Academy of Inventors

December 8, 2020

Liangfang Zhang, professor of nanoengineering and director of the chemical engineering program at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, has been named a 2020 fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI). Zhang is recognized for his revolutionary work in the field of nanomedicine, which focuses on nanomaterials for medical applications. He invented a way to make nanoparticles perform therapeutic tasks in the body without being rejected by the immune system. Full Story


Electrical engineer selected to lead Intel AI project

Electrical engineer selected to lead Intel AI project

December 7, 2020

Farinaz Koushanfar, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, has been selected by Intel to lead one of nine inaugural research projects for the Private AI Collaborative Research Institute. Full Story


Virus-like probes could help make rapid COVID-19 testing more accurate, reliable

Virus-like probes could help make rapid COVID-19 testing more accurate, reliable

November 30, 2020

Nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego have developed new and improved probes, known as positive controls, that could make it easier to validate rapid, point-of-care diagnostic tests for COVID-19 across the globe. The advance could help expand testing to low-resource, underserved areas. Full Story


CleaNN: unsupervised, embedded defense against neural Trojan attacks

CleaNN: unsupervised, embedded defense against neural Trojan attacks

November 25, 2020

Engineers at UC San Diego have developed a new defense against neural network Trojan attacks on autonomous devices such as cars, drones, or security cameras. Their algorithm and hardware co-designed solution is the first end-to-end framework that enables the online real time mitigation of these Trojan attacks for embedded deep neural network algorithms. Full Story


Alumni-led Lucira Health earns 1st FDA authorization for at-home COVID test

Alumni-led Lucira Health earns 1st FDA authorization for at-home COVID test

November 18, 2020

On Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration gave emergency use authorization to the first rapid at-home COVID-19 test, developed by Lucira Health. Erik Engelson, a UC San Diego bioengineering and microbiology alumnus, is president and CEO of Lucira Health Full Story


Upgraded radar can enable self-driving cars to see clearly no matter the weather

Upgraded radar can enable self-driving cars to see clearly no matter the weather

November 17, 2020

A new kind of radar could make it possible for self-driving cars to navigate safely in bad weather. Electrical engineers at the University of California San Diego developed a clever way to improve the imaging capability of existing radar sensors so that they accurately predict the shape and size of objects in the scene. The system worked well when tested at night and in foggy conditions. Full Story


Neurons stripped of their identity are hallmark of Alzheimer's disease, study finds

Neurons stripped of their identity are hallmark of Alzheimer's disease, study finds

November 13, 2020

Researchers at the University of California San Diego have identified new mechanisms in neurons that cause Alzheimer’s disease. In particular, they discovered that changes in the structure of chromatin, the tightly coiled form of DNA, trigger neurons to lose their specialized function and revert to an earlier cell state. This results in the loss of synaptic connections, an effect associated with memory loss and dementia. Full Story


Environmentally friendly method could lower costs to recycle lithium-ion batteries

Environmentally friendly method could lower costs to recycle lithium-ion batteries

November 12, 2020

A new process for restoring spent cathodes to mint condition could make it more economical to recycle lithium-ion batteries. The process, developed by nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego, is more environmentally friendly than today’s methods; it uses greener ingredients, consumes 80 to 90% less energy, and emits about 75% less greenhouse gases. Full Story


Veterans Day 2020 at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering

Veterans Day 2020 at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering

November 10, 2020

In recognition of Veterans Day, the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering is sharing the stories of two student veterans (electrical engineer Jack Bae and aerospace engineer Jeffrey Sei), while building for the future.  Full Story


IROS 2020: Autonomous mail delivery, robots practicing bartending, and more

IROS 2020: Autonomous mail delivery, robots practicing bartending, and more

November 5, 2020

From autonomous vehicles to robots practicing bartending and insect-like robots, engineers at the University of California San Diego are showcasing a broad range of pacers at IROS 2020, which is being held virtually from Oct. 25 to Nov. 25.    Full Story


Eyes on Wildfire

Eyes on Wildfire

November 5, 2020

As California reacts to a record-breaking 2020 fire season, a backcountry observation network has reached a milestone of installing more than 610 cameras across the state. The AlertWildfire network has become a vital firefighting tool helping first responders confirm and monitor wildfires from ignition through containment. Full Story


'Monster tumors' could offer new glimpse at human development

'Monster tumors' could offer new glimpse at human development

November 4, 2020

Finding just the right model to study human development—from the early embryonic stage onward—has been a challenge for scientists over the last decade. Now, bioengineers at the University of California San Diego have homed in on an unusual candidate: teratomas. Full Story


Infection by Confection: COVID-19 and the Risk of Trick-or-Treating

Infection by Confection: COVID-19 and the Risk of Trick-or-Treating

October 30, 2020

Like a specter, the question looms: How risky is trick-or-treating with SARS-Cov-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in the air — and possibly on the candy?  In a study published Oct. 30, 2020 in the journal mSystems, researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine and San Diego State University analyzed the viral load on Halloween candy handled by patients with COVID-19.    Full Story


Energizing Plastics Renewability, Recycling Efforts

Energizing Plastics Renewability, Recycling Efforts

October 30, 2020

The U.S. Department of Energy has awarded UC San Diego nanoengineering professor Jon Pokorski $2 million in funding to develop a new kind of biodegradable plastic—one filled with bacterial spores that will aid in breaking down the material at the end of its life-cycle. Co-leading the project will be UC San Diego bioengineer Adam Feist. Full Story


UC San Diego COVID-19 Forecast Now Part of CDC Model

UC San Diego COVID-19 Forecast Now Part of CDC Model

October 30, 2020

A computational model that forecasts the number of COVID-19 deaths in the United States as a whole and in each state, which was developed by a team of researchers from the University of California San Diego and Northeastern University, is now part of the national mortality forecast issued by the Centers for Disease Control.   Full Story


$39 Million to better integrate renewables into power grid

$39 Million to better integrate renewables into power grid

October 28, 2020

The National Science Foundation has awarded $39 million to a team of engineers and computer scientists at the University of California San Diego to build a first-of-its-kind testbed to better understand how to integrate distributed energy sources such as solar panels, wind turbines, smart buildings and electric vehicle batteries into the power grid. The goal is to make the testbed available to outside research teams and industry by 2025.    Full Story


Designing batteries for easier recycling could avert a looming e-waste crisis

Designing batteries for easier recycling could avert a looming e-waste crisis

October 26, 2020

As concern mounts over the impacts of climate change, many experts are calling for greater use of electricity as a substitute for fossil fuels. Powered by advancements in battery technology, the number of plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles on U.S. roads is increasing. This, coupled with a growing volume of battery-powered phones, watches, laptops, wearable devices and other consumer technologies, leave us wondering: What will happen to all these batteries once they wear out? Full Story


Start-up receives up to $15 M to develop nanoparticle therapy for sepsis licensed from UC San Diego

Start-up receives up to $15 M to develop nanoparticle therapy for sepsis licensed from UC San Diego

October 21, 2020

San Diego-based Cellics Therapeutics, which was co-founded by UC San Diego nanoengineering Professor Liangfang Zhang, has received an award of up to $15 M from Boston-based accelerator CARB-X to develop a macrophage cellular nanosponge—nanoparticles cloaked in the cell membranes of macrophages—designed to treat sepsis. Full Story


UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep Khosla honored for technical and administrative achievements

UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep Khosla honored for technical and administrative achievements

October 16, 2020

Pradeep K. Khosla, Chancellor of the University of California San Diego, is being honored by the Indo American Press Club for his contributions as both an engineering innovator and a university administrator. Full Story


We are building a more inclusive and equitable community at the Jacobs School of Engineering

We are building a more inclusive and equitable community at the Jacobs School of Engineering

October 13, 2020

Diversity is essential to innovation. The UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering has launched a Student and Faculty Racial Equity Task Force and is building on campus-wide initiatives as it works to ensure that all engineering and computer science students, faculty and staff can thrive and innovate.   Full Story


Introducing the 2020 Jacobs School Racial Equity Fellows

Introducing the 2020 Jacobs School Racial Equity Fellows

October 13, 2020

Four engineering students with a demonstrated commitment to racial equity have been selected as the inaugural cohort of the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Racial Equity Fellows. These students, representing undergraduate and graduate perspectives from four different engineering departments, will serve as student advocates on the recently launched Jacobs School Student and Faculty Racial Equity Task Force. Full Story


Celebrating 10 years of IDEA Engineering Student Center success

Celebrating 10 years of IDEA Engineering Student Center success

October 13, 2020

This fall marks the 10th year of the IDEA Engineering Student Center, one of the cornerstones of student life at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. In the past decade, the IDEA—Inclusion, Diversity, Excellence, Achievement—Engineering Student Center has supported thousands of students through to graduation through its various programs, including summer prep and mentorship programs, peer-led engineering learning communities, support for student diversity organizations, and more.  Full Story


Broadening horizons in a pandemic

Broadening horizons in a pandemic

October 12, 2020

More than 1,200 students from around the world were able to gain experience, advice and insight into their field this summer thanks to the expansion of two previously in-person only summer research programs at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.  Full Story


UC San Diego Launches Institute for Materials Discovery and Design

UC San Diego Launches Institute for Materials Discovery and Design

October 9, 2020

Climate change, public health and equal access to food and water are some of the biggest challenges facing humanity--and materials science can help provide solutions for them all. That was the message researchers shared during the launch of the Institute for Materials Discovery and Design (IMDD) at the University of California San Diego, held virtually Sept. 29.   Full Story


Two UC San Diego Researchers Receive NIH High-Risk, High-Reward Awards

Two UC San Diego Researchers Receive NIH High-Risk, High-Reward Awards

October 6, 2020

Two University of California San Diego researchers have received prestigious awards through the 2020 National Institutes of Health (NIH) High-Risk, High-Reward Research Program, including Duygu Kuzum, a professor of electrical and computer engineering. Full Story


This 'squidbot' jets around and takes pics of coral and fish

This 'squidbot' jets around and takes pics of coral and fish

October 5, 2020

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have built a squid-like robot that can swim untethered, propelling itself by generating jets of water. The robot carries its own power source inside its body. It can also carry a sensor, such as a camera, for underwater exploration. Full Story


UC San Diego COVID-19 Forecast Now Part of CDC Model

UC San Diego COVID-19 Forecast Now Part of CDC Model

October 2, 2020

A computational model that forecasts the number of COVID-19 deaths in the United States as a whole and in each state, which was developed by a team of researchers from the University of California San Diego and Northeastern University, is now part of the national mortality forecast issued by the Centers for Disease Control.   Full Story


DeepMind Gift Will Give a Boost to Machine Learning Graduate Students and Diversity Efforts at UC San Diego CSE

DeepMind Gift Will Give a Boost to Machine Learning Graduate Students and Diversity Efforts at UC San Diego CSE

October 2, 2020

UC San Diego Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) graduate students who are studying machine learning will receive additional support thanks to a generous gift from DeepMind, a London-based company leading artificial intelligence research and how it’s applied in the real world. UC San Diego alumnus Oriol Vinyals (M.A. ’09) is a principal scientist for the company. The gift, which contributes to the Campaign for UC San Diego, will also be used to enhance the department’s efforts to increase diversity.    Full Story


Researchers identify new factors for inflammation after a heart attack

Researchers identify new factors for inflammation after a heart attack

September 30, 2020

A team of engineers and physicians at University of California San Diego and Massachusetts General Hospital published new work Sept. 25 in Science Immunology that provides new comprehensive single-cell datasets defining the immune response to a heart attack, from its origins in the bone marrow and its translational potential in the blood, to its diversification and regulation within the heart. They also discovered new immune cell types and regulatory mechanisms.    Full Story


Material scientists learn how to make liquid crystal shape-shift

Material scientists learn how to make liquid crystal shape-shift

September 24, 2020

A new 3D-printing method will make it easier to manufacture and control the shape of soft robots, artificial muscles and wearable devices. Researchers at UC San Diego show that by controlling the printing temperature of liquid crystal elastomer, or LCE, they can control the material’s degree of stiffness and ability to contract--also known as degree of actuation.  What’s more, they are able to change the stiffness of different areas in the same material by exposing it to heat. Full Story


Robots to Help  Children Touch the Outside World

Robots to Help Children Touch the Outside World

September 24, 2020

A team of University of California researchers is working to improve telepresence robots and the algorithms that drive them to help children with disabilities stay connected to their classmates, teachers and communities. The effort is funded by a $1 million grant from the National Robotics Initiative at the National Science Foundation.   Full Story


Engineering graduate students honored as Siebel Scholars

Engineering graduate students honored as Siebel Scholars

September 23, 2020

Five Jacobs School of Engineering graduate students pioneering tools to treat rare genetic disorders, studying microbes in cancer, developing noninvasive wearable biosensors, studying the physical principles underlying cell membrane deformation, and developing noninvasive methods for evaluating cardiovascular function, have been named 2021 Siebel Scholars. Full Story


Making space weather forecasts faster and better

Making space weather forecasts faster and better

September 16, 2020

 To improve the ability to forecast space weather, a multidisciplinary team of researchers, including Professor Boris Kramer at the University of California San Diego, received $3.1 million from the National Science Foundation. The researchers, led by Professor Richard Linares at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, will also work on speeding up the forecasting abilities that are currently available. Full Story


Add human-genome produced RNA to the list of cell surface molecules

Add human-genome produced RNA to the list of cell surface molecules

September 10, 2020

Bioengineers at UC San Diego have shown that human-genome produced RNA is present on the surface of human cells, suggesting a more expanded role for RNA in cell-to-cell and cell-to-environment interactions than previously thought.  Full Story


UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Hires 24 Faculty in Fall 2020

UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Hires 24 Faculty in Fall 2020

September 8, 2020

The University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering is proud to introduce the 24 new professors hired in Fall 2020. These professors are among the more than 130 faculty who have joined the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering in the last seven years. Full Story



Eight teams of engineers and physicians work to tackle COVID-19 related challenges

Eight teams of engineers and physicians work to tackle COVID-19 related challenges

August 20, 2020

The Galvanizing Engineering in Medicine program at UC San Diego is supporting eight COVID-19 related projects in early stages with microgrants. The program is a collaboration between the Altman Clinical and Translational Research Institute and the Institute of Engineering in Medicine launched in 2013 to bring engineers and clinicians together to develop innovative technologies and solve challenging problems in medical care.  Full Story


UC San Diego named 4th best public research university in prestigious global rankings

UC San Diego named 4th best public research university in prestigious global rankings

August 17, 2020

Shanghai rankings celebrate campus as a world-renowned research powerhouse. Full Story


Extrachromosomal DNA is common in human cancer and drives poor patient outcomes

Extrachromosomal DNA is common in human cancer and drives poor patient outcomes

August 16, 2020

The multiplication of genes located in extrachromosomal DNA that have the potential to cause cancer drives poor patient outcomes across many cancer types, according to a Nature Genetics study published Aug. 17, 2020 by a team of researchers including Professors Vineet Bafna and Dr.Paul Mischel of the University of California San Diego  and Professor Roel Verhaak of Jackson Laboratories.  Full Story


CMI Researcher Receives $7.3M DOE Grant to Address National Crop Productivity Through Soil Microbes

August 14, 2020

UC San Diego Center for Microbiome Innovation (CMI) Faculty Member Karsten Zengler and a team of researchers have been awarded a $7.3 million grant over a five-year period from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) with a goal of making bioenergy feedstock crops more productive and resilient. Full Story


UC San Diego engineers selected for DARPA Secure Silicon program

UC San Diego engineers selected for DARPA Secure Silicon program

August 13, 2020

Engineers at UC San Diego have been selected by DARPA to participate in the Automatic Implementation of Secure Silicon (AISS) program to increase the security of our nation’s semiconductor supply chain.  Full Story


Nanoengineers, radiologists work toward immunotherapy for liver cancer

Nanoengineers, radiologists work toward immunotherapy for liver cancer

August 13, 2020

A team of nanoengineers and interventional radiologists at UC San Diego and the VA San Diego Healthcare System received a $575,000 grant from the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) to develop a new method to treat liver cancer by combining ablation—a treatment to destroy tumors—with an immunotherapy derived from a plant virus. Full Story


Flipping a metabolic switch to slow tumor growth

Flipping a metabolic switch to slow tumor growth

August 11, 2020

The enzyme serine palmitoyl-transferase can be used as a metabolically responsive “switch” that decreases tumor growth, according to a new study by a team of San Diego scientists, who published their findings Aug. 12 in the journal Nature. By restricting the dietary amino acids serine and glycine, or pharmacologically targeting the serine synthesis enzyme phosphoglycerate dehydrogenase, the team induced tumor cells to produce a toxic lipid that slows cancer progression in mice. Further research is needed to determine how this approach might be translated to patients.  Full Story


Nanoengineering and chemical engineering at UC San Diego in the spotlight

Nanoengineering and chemical engineering at UC San Diego in the spotlight

August 10, 2020

A creative group of faculty, students and staff within the University of California San Diego are taking innovative approaches to develop breakthroughs in nanomedicine, flexible electronics, and energy storage. Together, this group makes up the Department of NanoEngineering and the Chemical Engineering Program at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. A virtual issue of the journal ACS Nano highlights the wide ranging research, educational and workforce-development contributions of this extraordinary group.  Full Story


Engineer Earns Presidential Award for Improving Underrepresented Student Access to STEM Experiences

Engineer Earns Presidential Award for Improving Underrepresented Student Access to STEM Experiences

August 7, 2020

Olivia Graeve, a UC San Diego professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, has received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring from the White House. The award was created in 1995 to honor extraordinary individuals whose efforts have helped provide underrepresented groups with access to opportunities in STEM. Full Story


Biomedical Engineering Society earns Outstanding Chapter Award

Biomedical Engineering Society earns Outstanding Chapter Award

July 31, 2020

UC San Diego's chapter of the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) was recognized with the Chapter Outstanding Achievement Award for their 2019-2020 efforts. This is the second time the undergraduate BMES chapter received this prestigious award, after earning the honor in 2017. Full Story


New fabrication method brings single-crystal perovskite devices closer to viability

New fabrication method brings single-crystal perovskite devices closer to viability

July 29, 2020

Nanoengineers at UC San Diego developed a new method to fabricate perovskites as single-crystal thin films, which are more efficient for use in solar cells and optical devices than the current state-of-the-art polycrystalline forms of the material. Researchers in Professor Sheng Xu’s lab published their findings on July 29 in Nature. Full Story


Computer Scientist Receives NSF Grant to Identify Antibody Responses Against SARS-COV-2

Computer Scientist Receives NSF Grant to Identify Antibody Responses Against SARS-COV-2

July 27, 2020

Pavel Pevzner, Ronald R. Taylor Professor of Computer Science in UC San Diego’s Computer Science and Engineering Department, has been awarded a $300,000 grant, through the National Science Foundation’s EArly-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER) program. The grant will support efforts to investigate immune system genes in humans, bats and other mammals and identify successful antibody responses against SARS-COV-2. Full Story


Rare Glassy Metal Discovered During Quest to Improve Battery Performance

Rare Glassy Metal Discovered During Quest to Improve Battery Performance

July 24, 2020

Scientists from UC San Diego and Idaho National Laboratory scrutinized the earliest stages of lithium recharging and learned that slow, low-energy charging causes electrodes to collect atoms in a disorganized way that improves charging behavior. This noncrystalline “glassy” lithium had never been observed, and creating such amorphous metals has traditionally been extremely difficult.  Full Story


A Prototype for Help in the Fight Against COVID-19

A Prototype for Help in the Fight Against COVID-19

July 23, 2020

In the midst of the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic that had UC San Diego researchers racing to understand the complexities around the virus’s spread and to find ways to combat it, engineers and fabrication specialists at the Qualcomm Institute’s Prototyping Lab leapt into action. Vacuum exhaused isolation lockers, or VEILs, produced in the Prototyping Lab are ready to be delivered to local hospitals. Full Story


Engineer and mathematician receive Newton Award for Transformative Ideas during COVID-19 pandemic

Engineer and mathematician receive Newton Award for Transformative Ideas during COVID-19 pandemic

July 21, 2020

Two UC San Diego professors—Melvin Leok from the Department of Mathematics (Division of Physical Sciences) and Boris Kramer from the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (Jacobs School of Engineering) are among the 13 award recipients of the Newton Award for Transformative Ideas during the COVID-19 Pandemic from the Department of Defense.  Full Story


Non-invasive blood test can detect cancer four years before conventional diagnosis methods

Non-invasive blood test can detect cancer four years before conventional diagnosis methods

July 20, 2020

An international team of researchers has developed a non-invasive blood test that can detect whether an individual has one of five common types of cancers, four years before the condition can be diagnosed with current methods. The test detects stomach, esophageal, colorectal, lung and liver cancer.   Full Story


New model connects respiratory droplet physics with spread of Covid-19

New model connects respiratory droplet physics with spread of Covid-19

July 20, 2020

Respiratory droplets from a cough or sneeze travel farther and last longer in humid, cold climates than in hot, dry ones, according to a study on droplet physics by an international team of engineers. The researchers incorporated this understanding of the impact of environmental factors on droplet spread into a new mathematical model that can be used to predict the early spread of respiratory viruses including COVID-19, and the role of respiratory droplets in that spread.  Full Story


Ron Graham, mathematician, computer scientist, juggler and magician: 1935-2020

Ron Graham, mathematician, computer scientist, juggler and magician: 1935-2020

July 16, 2020

Ron Graham, a professor of computer science and mathematics at the University of California San Diego, perhaps best known for the discovery of Graham’s number, passed away July 6, 2020 at his home in La Jolla, from complications due to bronchiectasis, a chronic lung condition. He was 84.   Full Story


Computer Scientists Brings Us Closer to Complete Genomic Sequences

Computer Scientists Brings Us Closer to Complete Genomic Sequences

July 16, 2020

In a paper that brings scientists measurably closer to assembling the entire human genome, UC San Diego Department of Computer Science and Engineering Professor Pavel Pevzner has outlined an algorithm, called centroFlye, that uses long, error-prone DNA reads to assemble centromeres, the DNA that connects chromosome arms. This is the first time an accurate centromere sequence has been automatically assembled. The paper was co-authored with graduate student Andrey Bzikadze and published this week in Nature Biotechnology.Though quite comprehensive, the first draft of the human genome had many missing sequences. Centromeres were the largest of these gaps. Working with data produced by the Telomere-to-Telomere (T2T) Consortium, Pevzner and Bzikadze have developed an approach that could close these gaps. Full Story


In memoriam: electrical engineering professor Elias Masry

In memoriam: electrical engineering professor Elias Masry

July 16, 2020

Elias Masry, a pioneer in the theory and application of stochastic processes and professor emeritus at the University of California San Diego, passed away on March 17, 2020 in La Jolla, California. He was 83. Full Story


BluBLE: Estimating Your COVID-19 Risk with Accurate Contact Tracing

BluBLE: Estimating Your COVID-19 Risk with Accurate Contact Tracing

July 16, 2020

Motivated by the prospect of creating protective, social-distancing “bubbles” around members of the public, researchers in the UC San Diego Wireless Communications Sensing and Networking Laboratory are developing BluBLE, a new app for contact tracing during the COVID-19 pandemic.BluBLE employs ubiquitous Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology and personalized algorithms to ensure intelligent and accurate contact tracing. The app aims to provide each user with a personalized risk score by considering their various social and physical interactions. Risk scores update in real time, offering a faster, more efficient means of alerting individuals to exposure than current methods. Full Story


Researchers Discover Two Paths of Aging and New Insights on Promoting Healthspan

Researchers Discover Two Paths of Aging and New Insights on Promoting Healthspan

July 16, 2020

Molecular biologists and bioengineers at the University of California San Diego have unraveled key mechanisms behind the mysteries of aging. They isolated two distinct paths that cells travel during aging and engineered a new way to genetically program these processes to extend lifespan.The research is described July 17 in the journal Science.Our lifespans as humans are determined by the aging of our individual cells. To understand whether different cells age at the same rate and by the same cause, the researchers studied aging in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a tractable model for investigating mechanisms of aging, including the aging paths of skin and stem cells. Full Story


A nanomaterial path forward for COVID-19 vaccine development

A nanomaterial path forward for COVID-19 vaccine development

July 15, 2020

From mRNA vaccines entering clinical trials, to peptide-based vaccines and using molecular farming to scale vaccine production, the COVID-19 pandemic is pushing new and emerging nanotechnologies into the frontlines and the headlines. Nanoengineers at UC San Diego detail the current approaches to COVID-19 vaccine development, and highlight how nanotechnology has enabled these advances, in a review article in Nature Nanotechnology published July 15. Full Story


$18M Boost to Materials Science Research at UC San Diego

$18M Boost to Materials Science Research at UC San Diego

July 9, 2020

The National Science Foundation has awarded University of California San Diego researchers a six-year $18 million grant to fund a new Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC). These research centers are transformative for the schools that earn them, putting their materials science research efforts into the global spotlight. In addition to research and facilities funding, MRSEC centers provide sustained research opportunities for both graduate and undergraduate students, and resources to focus on diversifying the pool of students studying materials science. The UC San Diego labs funded by this new MRSEC will focus on two important, emerging approaches to build new materials aimed at improving human lives. Full Story


UC San Diego NanoEngineers to lead MRSEC research thrust on Predictive Assembly

UC San Diego NanoEngineers to lead MRSEC research thrust on Predictive Assembly

July 8, 2020

In some ways, the field of materials science is where the pharmaceutical sciences were twenty years ago. A team of University of California San Diego researchers is working to change that. The team makes up the "predictive assembly" research thrust of the new $18M Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC) funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF).  Today, computational and predictive tools are used in the pharmaceutical industry in order to design "small molecule" drugs with particular properties and behaviors. The challenge is that the design-before-you-synthesize approach hasn't worked for the larger-scale materials that are critical for many applications beyond small-molecule drugs. That's the work that will be done by the team led by nanoengineering professors Andrea Tao and Tod Pascal from the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. Full Story


UC San Diego NanoEngineers to lead MRSEC research thrust on Living Materials

UC San Diego NanoEngineers to lead MRSEC research thrust on Living Materials

July 8, 2020

University of California San Diego researchers are using the tools of the biotechnology revolution—in particular, genetic engineering and synthetic biology—to build new classes of materials with novel kinds of abilities. Materials that can repair themselves are just one example of the applications of the "living materials" research thrust that is a key component of the new $18M Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC) funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The team's big idea is to incorporate living organisms, either from plants or microbes, into their new materials. Living organisms have evolved over billions of years to perform complex functions and to sense the environment around them. Synthetic materials still lag far behind what biological systems can accomplish. The UC San Diego researchers are asking: why not use biology to program materials? Full Story


UC San Diego receives $1.6 million to better prepare young adults for engineering and technical careers

UC San Diego receives $1.6 million to better prepare young adults for engineering and technical careers

July 2, 2020

Longtime University of California San Diego supporter Buzz Woolley has pledged $1.6 million over the next three years to fund an innovative new initiative that will significantly expand the region’s engineering and technical workforce. Much of the work to create inclusive problem-solving materials for students and teachers will be based in the EnVision Arts and Engineering Maker Studio. Full Story


Women who mean business

Women who mean business

July 2, 2020

The University of California San Diego is proud to have been named a top 25 undergraduate university for female-founded startups by Pitchbook, a financial data and software company. Pitchbook tracked companies that raised their first round of funding between January 1, 2006 and August 31, 2019. UC San Diego landed in the No. 22 spot with 45 female founders whose companies raised over $580 million in first-round funding. Full Story


Creating an engineering senior design project...at home

Creating an engineering senior design project...at home

July 2, 2020

Curbside delivery of 3D-printed parts, the cooperation of roommates, weekend build sessions in Riverside and communication, communication, communication. This is what it took for graduating engineering students, staff and faculty at UC San Diego to transition the hands-on, team-based capstone mechanical engineering design course to remote instruction in the age of COVID-19. Full Story


Jacobs School of Engineering Launches Research Ethics Project

Jacobs School of Engineering Launches Research Ethics Project

June 25, 2020

Building a sustained culture where students, faculty and staff have the resources and comfort level to engage in ethical conversations on an ongoing basis is the goal of the Research Ethics Project at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. The project, which is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), entered phase two in May. Full Story


Researchers develop low-cost, easy-to-use emergency ventilator for COVID-19 patients

Researchers develop low-cost, easy-to-use emergency ventilator for COVID-19 patients

June 23, 2020

A team of engineers and physicians at the University of California San Diego has developed a low-cost, easy-to-use emergency ventilator for COVID-19 patients that is built around a ventilator bag usually found in ambulances.  The team built an automated system around the bag and brought down the cost of an emergency ventilator to just $500 per unit--state of the art models cost at least $50,000. The device's components can be rapidly fabricated  and the ventilator can be assembled in just 15 minutes. The device’s electronics and sensors rely on a robust supply chain from fields not related to healthcare that are unlikely to be affected by shortages.   Full Story


IEEE Spectrum Cover Story

IEEE Spectrum Cover Story

June 22, 2020

The cover feature of IEEE Spectrum this month is a feature on the UC San Diego Center for Wearable Sensors: Why Sweat will Power your next Wearable. Full Story


NIH grant to bioprint nanoparticles for ovarian cancer immunotherapy

NIH grant to bioprint nanoparticles for ovarian cancer immunotherapy

June 19, 2020

Nanoengineers at UC San Diego received a five-year, $2.9 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to develop an immunotherapy for ovarian cancer using plant virus nanoparticles. The particles will be produced using 3D-bioprinting, enabling them to be released at specified intervals, instead of a continuous slow release. Full Story


Using LEGO to test children's ability to visualize and rotate 3D shapes in space

Using LEGO to test children's ability to visualize and rotate 3D shapes in space

June 18, 2020

Researchers at the University of California San Diego have developed a test that uses children’s ability to assemble LEGO pieces to assess their spatial visualization ability. Spatial visualization is the ability to visualize 3D shapes in one’s mind, which is tied to increased GPAs and graduation rates in STEM college students.  Full Story


Nanosponges Could Intercept Coronavirus Infection

Nanosponges Could Intercept Coronavirus Infection

June 17, 2020

Nanoparticles cloaked in human lung cell membranes and human immune cell membranes can attract and neutralize the SARS-CoV-2 virus in cell culture, causing the virus to lose its ability to hijack host cells and reproduce. Instead of targeting the virus itself, these nanosponges, developed by engineers at UC San Diego, are designed to protect the healthy cells the virus invades.   Full Story


Nano-scale sponges for COVID-19 are already a win for San Diego

Nano-scale sponges for COVID-19 are already a win for San Diego

June 17, 2020

A team of nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego is taking a unique approach to COVID-19 drug discovery. Their strategy is to intercept virus particles and neutralize them with nano-scale sponges before the virus can enter healthy human cells and replicate. These nanosponges did not appear out of thin air back in January when troubling reports started coming in. Professor Liangfang Zhang leveraged a platform technology his team has been developing and methodically maturing for a decade. Full Story


How Stimulus Dollars are Spent will Affect Emissions for Decades

How Stimulus Dollars are Spent will Affect Emissions for Decades

June 11, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns have led to a record crash in emissions. But it will be emission levels during the recovery—in the months and years after the pandemic recedes—that matter most for how global warming plays out, according to a new Nature commentary from researchers at the University of California San Diego. While the skies have been noticeably cleaner, countries like the U.S., Mexico, Brazil, South Africa and others have recently relaxed laws controlling pollution and vehicle energy efficiency standards. Full Story


Graduating students honored with engineering Awards of Excellence

Graduating students honored with engineering Awards of Excellence

June 11, 2020

Six students were selected from among their peers to receive an Award of Excellence for their outstanding academic, leadership and community contributions.  Full Story


Pioneering Scientist and Innovator Larry Smarr Retires

Pioneering Scientist and Innovator Larry Smarr Retires

June 11, 2020

After 20 years at UC San Diego, Larry Smarr will step down as the director of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2) and retire as a distinguished professor from the Jacobs School of Engineering’s Computer Science and Engineering Department at the end of this month. Dr. Ramesh Rao, professor of electrical and computer engineering at the Jacobs School of Engineering, will serve as interim director of Calit2, in addition to his current position as the director of the Qualcomm Institute.During these two decades, Smarr grew the two-campus Calit2 into a collaborative discovery system that engaged hundreds of faculty, staff, students and companies. Full Story


Class Acts: 2020 Grads Step into the Spotlight

Class Acts: 2020 Grads Step into the Spotlight

June 4, 2020

They’ve worked hard, made an impact, inspired their communities, and most of all, they’ve demonstrated incredible resilience in challenging times. Help celebrate the class of 2020’s remarkable achievements by reading their stories of hope as these new alumni create better futures for themselves and the world. Full Story


International Symposium on Computer Architecture Honors Scientists for Paper's Lasting Impact

International Symposium on Computer Architecture Honors Scientists for Paper's Lasting Impact

June 3, 2020

The International Symposium on Computer Architecture (ISCA) is honoring a paper by UC San Diego Computer Science and Engineering Department Chair Dean Tullsen — along with Rakesh Kumar, then a PhD student at UC San Diego and first author on the paper, and Victor Zyuban — with the 2020 Influential Paper Award for its lasting impact.   Full Story


Joel Conte Named to the Eric and Johanna Reissner Chair for Structural Engineering

Joel Conte Named to the Eric and Johanna Reissner Chair for Structural Engineering

June 2, 2020

Structural engineering professor Joel Conte was named to the Eric and Johanna Reissner Chair in the Department of Structural Engineering at UC San Diego. Conte is the principal investigator for the operation and maintenance of the world’s largest outdoor shake table located at the UC San Diego Englekirk Structural Engineering Center at the University of California San Diego. The facility, which is also the second  largest shake table in the world overall,  is currently undergoing a major upgrade funded by the National Science Foundation. Once upgraded, the shake table will be able to reproduce all six components of ground motions experienced during earthquakes. Conte is the principal investigator on the $16.3 million upgrade grant.   Full Story


These flexible feet help robots walk faster

These flexible feet help robots walk faster

June 1, 2020

Roboticists at the University of California San Diego have developed flexible feet that can help robots walk up to 40 percent faster on uneven terrain such as pebbles and wood chips. The work has applications for search-and-rescue missions as well as space exploration. Full Story


Making matter out of light: high-power laser simulations point the way

Making matter out of light: high-power laser simulations point the way

May 28, 2020

A few minutes into the life of the universe, colliding emissions of light energy created the first particles of matter and antimatter. We are familiar with the reverse process—matter generating energy—which occurs in an atomic bomb, for example, but it has been difficult to recreate that critical transformation of light into matter. Now, a new set of simulations by a research team led by UC San Diego’s Alexey Arefiev point the way toward making matter from light. Full Story


I'm gonna contribute to the revolution of the pharmaceutical world

I'm gonna contribute to the revolution of the pharmaceutical world

May 20, 2020

When Qiangzhe “Oliver” Zhang was still a high school student in China applying to colleges in the United States, UC San Diego’s chemical engineering program at Jacobs School of Engineering was at the top of his list. “I knew they had this very new, very innovative nanoengineering program,” he said. “It’s one of a kind, and that got me really excited.” Now, almost eight years later, Zhang is working at the leading edge of biomedical research under Liangfang Zhang in the Nanomaterials and Nanomedicine Laboratory, developing new technologies that could completely change how scientists combat viruses like HIV and SARS-CoV-2 Full Story


COVID-19: the Jacobs School community engages

COVID-19: the Jacobs School community engages

May 19, 2020

The Jacobs School community has stepped up to the many challenges the SARS-CoV-2 visus has put before us. This is a cross section of projects that Jacobs School faculty, students and staff have launched in response to COVID-19. Some of these efforts are sure to grow into larger, sustained efforts. Others will morph or conclude as needs and available resources change. Through it all, our commitment to bold innovation for the public good remains.  Full Story


eCOVID platform provides remote patient monitoring

eCOVID platform provides remote patient monitoring

May 19, 2020

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a remote monitoring platform for patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 but aren’t in need of hospitalization. The system is being tested by patients in a clinical trial at UC San Diego Health. Full Story


Engineers develop low-cost, high-accuracy GPS-like system for flexible medical robots

Engineers develop low-cost, high-accuracy GPS-like system for flexible medical robots

May 18, 2020

Roboticists at the University of California San Diego have developed an affordable, easy to use system to track the location of flexible surgical robots inside the human body. The system performs as well as current state of the art methods, but is much less expensive. Many current methods also require exposure to radiation, while this system does not. The system was developed by Tania Morimoto, a professor of mechanical engineering at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego, and mechanical engineering Ph.D. student Connor Watson. Their findings are published in the April 2020 issue of IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters.   Full Story


New wearable sensor tracks Vitamin C levels in sweat

New wearable sensor tracks Vitamin C levels in sweat

May 18, 2020

A team at the University of California San Diego has developed a wearable, non invasive Vitamin C sensor that could provide a new, highly personalized option for users to track their daily nutritional intake and dietary adherence. The study was published in the May 18, 2020 issue of ACS Sensors. Full Story


Computer Scientists Win Test of Time Award for Paper that Changed the Auto Industry

Computer Scientists Win Test of Time Award for Paper that Changed the Auto Industry

May 18, 2020

UC San Diego computer scientist Stefan Savage and his colleagues first gave the automotive industry a wake-up call when they published research demonstrating the ability to hack a car’s computer system in 2010. This research, and the resulting academic paper, was honored with the Test of Time Award at this year’s IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy for its broad and lasting impact. Full Story


A low-power, low-cost wearable to monitor COVID-19 patients

A low-power, low-cost wearable to monitor COVID-19 patients

May 18, 2020

Engineers at the University of California San Diego are developing low-cost, low-power wearable sensors that can measure temperature and respiration--key vital signs used to monitor COVID-19. The devices would transmit data wirelessly to a smartphone, and could be used to monitor patients for viral infections that affect temperature and respiration in real time. The research team plans to develop a device and a manufacturing process in just 12 months.   Full Story


Undergraduate engineers design neonatal ECMO simulation

Undergraduate engineers design neonatal ECMO simulation

May 11, 2020

In collaboration with physicians and surgeons at Rady Children’s Hospital, a team of undergraduate mechanical engineering students developed a neonatal simulation system for a critical and rare surgical procedure called ECMO. They developed this realistic simulation system- believed to be the first for neonatal patients—for their senior design project.  Full Story


UC San Diego Team Delivers Protective Equipment to Hospitals in Baja California

UC San Diego Team Delivers Protective Equipment to Hospitals in Baja California

May 11, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting the availability of personal protective equipment (PPE) supplies in Baja California, and researchers with UC San Diego’s Department of Computer Science and Engineering are developing solutions to help. Nadir Weibel, an associate professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering and head of the Human-Centered and Ubiquitous Computing Lab, is collaborating with university colleagues, government and industry to develop PPE solutions and to transport  supplies, like masks and face shields, to hospitals in Baja. Full Story


COVID-19: What is obvious and clear for us may not be for a lot of people

COVID-19: What is obvious and clear for us may not be for a lot of people

May 7, 2020

This is my fifth year away from my family. If anyone knows about being out of reach from loved ones, it’s me. But unfortunately, with our current situation, it is likely you, too. Full Story


UC San Diego's Earth 2.0 COVID-19 Response Platform Connects Clinicians with Resources, Engineers and Answers

May 5, 2020

Everything about the COVID-19 pandemic is new: the virus’s transmission to humans, the stay-at-home orders, the challenges many caregivers are facing. With so much in flux, providers are often being asked to find solutions. In response, a group of UC San Diego faculty, with the help of hundreds of students, has stepped up to create an online portal called Earth 2.0 COVID-19 Rapid Response. Full Story


The heart of experimentation beats outside the classroom anyway...

The heart of experimentation beats outside the classroom anyway...

May 5, 2020

Working from home as an experimental scientist is a bit… impossible. My lab mates and I synthesize new materials destined for next-generation lasers, magnets, and batteries. We work with custom-built, expensive equipment with special power supplies and materials that are toxic, carcinogenic, and corrosive. These things don’t exactly fit nicely into graduate student apartments, or really any home outside the Stark family. Full Story


UC San Diego Researchers Optimize Microbiome Tool for Computer GPUs

UC San Diego Researchers Optimize Microbiome Tool for Computer GPUs

May 4, 2020

Researchers at the University of California San Diego have been applying their high-performance computing expertise by porting the popular UniFrac microbiome tool to graphic processing units (GPUs) in a bid to increase the acceleration and accuracy of scientific discovery, including urgently needed COVID-19 research.“Our initial results exceeded our most optimistic expectations,” said Igor Sfiligoi, lead scientific software developer for high-throughput computing at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at UC San Diego. “As a test we selected a computational challenge that we previously measured as requiring some 900 hours of time using server class CPUs, or about 13,000 CPU core hours. We found that it could be finished in just 8 hours on a single NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPU, or about 30 minutes if using 16 GPUs, which could reduce analysis runtimes by several orders of magnitude. A workstation-class NVIDIA RTX 2080TI would finish it in about 12 hours.” Full Story


Green method could enable hospitals to produce hydrogen peroxide in house

Green method could enable hospitals to produce hydrogen peroxide in house

May 1, 2020

A team of researchers has developed a portable, more environmentally friendly method to produce hydrogen peroxide. It could enable hospitals to make their own supply of the disinfectant on demand and at lower cost. Full Story


Students harness their knowledge for ventilator challenge

Students harness their knowledge for ventilator challenge

April 28, 2020

Two groups of engineering students at UC San Diego spent their spring break harnessing their knowledge to contribute to the ventilator shortage the world is facing with the COVID-19 pandemic.  Full Story


Creating an Early Alert System for COVID-19

Creating an Early Alert System for COVID-19

April 27, 2020

To better understand early signs of coronavirus and the virus' spread, physicians around the country and data scientists at UC San Diego are working together to use a wearable device to monitor more than 12,000 people, including thousands of healthcare workers. The effort is already underway at hospitals in the San Francisco Bay Area and at the University of West Virginia.  Full Story


Making recombinant-protein drugs cheaper

Making recombinant-protein drugs cheaper

April 23, 2020

By cleaning up mammalian cell lines that produce recombinant-protein drugs, researchers forge a path to purer, cheaper drugs that treat cancer, arthritis and other complex diseases Full Story


Marrying molecular farming and advanced manufacturing to develop a COVID-19 vaccine

Marrying molecular farming and advanced manufacturing to develop a COVID-19 vaccine

April 20, 2020

UC San Diego nanoengineers received a Rapid Response Research (RAPID) grant from the National Science Foundation to develop—using a plant virus—a stable, easy to manufacture COVID-19 vaccine patch that can be shipped around the world and painlessly self-administered by patients. Full Story


Engineering student leaders honored by Gordon Center

Engineering student leaders honored by Gordon Center

April 20, 2020

The Gordon Engineering Leadership Center at UC San Diego recently announced the 2020 winners of its Engineering Leadership Awards, which recognize undergraduate and graduate engineering students who have demonstrated excellence in leadership, technical ability, communication, and teamwork.  Full Story


'Decoy' nanoparticles can block HIV and prevent infection

'Decoy' nanoparticles can block HIV and prevent infection

April 20, 2020

Flipping the standard viral drug targeting approach on its head, engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a promising new “nanosponge” method for preventing HIV from proliferating in the body: coating polymer nanoparticles with the membranes of T helper cells and turning them into decoys to intercept viral particles and block them from binding and infiltrating the body’s actual immune cells.  Full Story


Engineering telemedicine app, universal control system for ventilators for COVID-19 care

Engineering telemedicine app, universal control system for ventilators for COVID-19 care

April 20, 2020

Engineers in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at UC San Diego have partnered with physicians at the Mayo Clinic to create a telemedicine to help critical care specialists provide the best possible care, even when resources are stretched thin. The team is also working on a universal control system that would work with any DIY ventilator. Full Story


Incoming President of Quiz Bowl Club Represents Campus in 'Jeopardy!' College Championship

Incoming President of Quiz Bowl Club Represents Campus in 'Jeopardy!' College Championship

April 16, 2020

UC San Diego was one of 15 schools represented in the 2020 Jeopardy College Championship, thanks to Alistair Gray, a second year computer science and linguistics double major. Full Story


Undergraduates simplify intubation tool for senior design project

Undergraduates simplify intubation tool for senior design project

April 16, 2020

A team of UC San Diego undergraduate engineers helped design a simple, all-in-one tool to perform endotracheal intubations, which could simplify the steps clinicians need to take when performing the time-sensitive, complex procedure. The mechanical engineering students took on the challenge as their senior design project, with direction from project sponsor Dr. Taylor Graber of the Department of Anesthesiology at the UC San Diego School of Medicine.  Full Story


Economic Impact of COVID-19 will Make the Fight Against Climate Change Harder

Economic Impact of COVID-19 will Make the Fight Against Climate Change Harder

April 15, 2020

Measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus have reduced the demand for fuel and slashed oil prices. Global emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), the chief long-term cause of climate warming, have slid perhaps by one-fifth and pollution is down, but can we expect COVID-19 to create lasting change in reversing global warming?“I doubt it,” said David Victor, professor of international relations at the University of California San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy. “While the pandemic might alter societies permanently, the same market forces that drive our dependence on fossil fuels are still in play and may even be reinforced with the economic fallout of COVID-19.” Full Story


Part 2: Treating Cancer with Plant Viruses: A Conversation with Nicole Steinmetz

Part 2: Treating Cancer with Plant Viruses: A Conversation with Nicole Steinmetz

April 14, 2020

In this second episode of Stories from the NNI featuring UC San Diego nanoengineering professor Nicole Steinmetz, she describes her work using plant virus-based nanoparticles to train the immune system to fight cancer. Full Story


3D printed corals provide more fertile ground for algae growth

3D printed corals provide more fertile ground for algae growth

April 9, 2020

Researchers have 3D printed coral-inspired structures that are capable of growing dense populations of microscopic algae. The work could lead to the development of compact, more efficient bioreactors for producing algae-based biofuels, as well as new techniques to repair and restore coral reefs. Full Story


Call for Citizen Scientists to Contribute to COVID-19 Studies

Call for Citizen Scientists to Contribute to COVID-19 Studies

April 9, 2020

The Microsetta Initiative, a crowdsourced research effort based at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, has expanded its capabilities to now allow citizen-scientists around the world to help collect crucial information about SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus causing a COVID-19 pandemic.“We are now positioned to collect data that will help drive epidemiological studies of where the virus is and isn’t, and help researchers determine who is at greatest risk, who is already immune, how the virus is transmitted and how it spreads through a population,” said Rob Knight, professor and director of the Center for Microbiome Innovation and co-founder of The Microsetta Initiative, which is run by his research lab at UC San Diego School of Medicine under Scientific Director Daniel McDonald.  Full Story


UC San Diego researchers move closer to producing heparin in the lab

UC San Diego researchers move closer to producing heparin in the lab

April 9, 2020

In a recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, University of California San Diego researchers moved one step closer to the ability to make heparin in cultured cells. Heparin is a potent anti-coagulant and the most prescribed drug in hospitals, yet cell-culture-based production of heparin is currently not possible. Heparin is currently produced by extracting the drug from pig intestines, which is a concern for safety, sustainability, and security reasons.  Full Story


Bioengineers inducted into prestigious biomedical institution

Bioengineers inducted into prestigious biomedical institution

April 8, 2020

Two researchers at the Jacobs School of Engineering were inducted into the College of Fellows of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. The College of Fellows is comprised of the top 2 percent of medical and biological engineers in the country. Full Story


Thanks to 'flexoskeletons,' these insect-inspired robots are faster and cheaper to make

Thanks to 'flexoskeletons,' these insect-inspired robots are faster and cheaper to make

April 8, 2020

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a new method that doesn’t require any special equipment and works in just minutes to create soft, flexible, 3D-printed robots. The structures were inspired by insect exoskeletons, which have both soft and rigid parts--the researchers called their creations “flexoskeletons.”    Full Story


Company founded by engineering alumni advances 1-hour COVID test

Company founded by engineering alumni advances 1-hour COVID test

April 7, 2020

Medical diagnostic company Fluxergy, founded by UC San Diego engineering alumni, submitted an Emergency Use Authorization to the FDA for their quick, point-of-care COVID-19 test. Full Story