Archives for July 2015

Technologies Directed at Capturing Carbon Dioxide From Low Concentration Sources to Support the Coal Industry

United States Department of Energy (DOE)  National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) Solicitation

Applications are sought for cost effective Carbon Dioxide CO2)capture or conversion solutions for coal-relevant applications are part of an all-of-the-above climate strategy. Proposed technologies should mitigate CO2from coal-relevant gases with CO2 concentrations of <1 vol percent at the lab-scale(or larger if the work can be done within the prescribed budget), on simulated gas. Applications will need to demonstrate that a current Technology Readiness Level of 3 (i.e., active research and development initiated, including analytical and lab-scale studies) has been achieved, while also highlighting the size and relevance of the targeted low concentration market.



Environmental Sustainability

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Directorate for Engineering (ENG)
Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Systems (CBET)

The goal of the Environmental Sustainability program is to promote sustainable engineered systems that support human well-being and that are also compatible with sustaining natural (environmental) systems. Thesesystems provide ecological services vital for human survival. Research efforts supported by the program typically consider long time horizons and may incorporate contributions from the social sciences and ethics. The program supports engineering research that seeks to balance society’s need to provide ecological protection and maintain stable economic conditions.

There are four principal general research areas that are supported:
– Industrial Ecology: Topics of interest in Industrial Ecology include advancements in modeling such as life cycle assessment, materials flow analysis, input/output economic models, and novel metrics for measuring sustainable systems. Innovations in industrial ecology are encouraged.
– Green Engineering: Research is encouraged to advance the sustainability of manufacturing processes, green buildings, and infrastructure. Many programs in the Engineering Directorate support research in environmentally benign manufacturing or chemical processes. The Environmental Sustainability program supports research that would affect more than one chemical or manufacturing process or that takes a systems or holistic approach to green engineering for infrastructure or green buildings. Improvements in distribution and collection systems that will advance smart growth strategies and ameliorate effects of growth are research areas that are supported by Environmental Sustainability. Innovations in management of storm water, recycling and reuse of drinking water, and other green engineering techniques to support sustainability may also be fruitful areas for research.
– Ecological Engineering: Topics should focus on the engineering aspects of restoring ecological function to natural systems. Engineering research in enhancement of natural capital to foster sustainable development is encouraged.
– Earth Systems Engineering: Earth Systems Engineering considers aspects of large scale engineering research that involve mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation to climate change, and other global scale concerns.

Geotechnical and Structures Laboratory (GSL) – Soil and Rock Mechanics

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC)  BAA
The Geotechnical and Structures Laboratory announces research in soil and rock mechanics. Research is needed
– to improve methods for prediction and control of erosion of unlined spillway channels during uncontrolledreleases;
– to develop innovative methods for flood protection and flood fighting, including field evaluations of promising technologies;
– to develop guidance for applications of trenchless technology on Corps structures, including measures to ensure safety and stability of Corps structures when trenchless technology is used to install pipelines, cables, or conduits through or beneath levees and other structures;
– to develop improved methods, including risk-based methods for analyzing earth and rockfill dams and other water control structures for both static- and earthquake-induced stresses;
– to improve the state of knowledge of physical and engineering properties of soil, rock, and clay shales; earth-rock mixtures, granular filters, cohesive and noncohesive fine-grained soils susceptible to liquefaction; and soils susceptible to drastic volume changes (collapse, consolidation, swell);
– to develop rational analytical procedures and more reliable prediction of behavior of partially saturated soils;
– to determine the response of soils in situ to static and dynamic loading and unloading;
– to determine the susceptibility of earth dams to cracking, hydraulic fracturing, and internal erosion;
– to evaluate improved defensive design measures in use of materials, particularly in filter and transition zones and impervious barriers;
– to improve procedures for monitoring and analysis of the performance of new and existing structures, particularly the use and interpretation of observations and data from specialized instrumentation, and expedient systems for rapid inspection and evaluation of the integrity of dams;
– to improve the understanding of the aging processes in dams and the influence of aging (particularly deterioration of safety-related features) on long-term maintenance and/or rehabilitation requirements for dams;
– to develop a better understanding of failure mechanisms to improve design of defensive measures, to provide information for remedial repairs, to assess potential damages resulting from failure, and to provide a basis for emergency actions;
– to develop expedient remedial measures when hazardous conditions are identified and, thus, reduce the damages and catastrophic potential of dam failures;
– to develop methodology to evaluate forces exerted on structural elements by adjacent soil masses that result from long-term variation in soil properties;
– to develop improved methodology for design and construction procedures for shallow and deep foundations, including mats, footings, piers, and piles for buildings, hydraulic structures and waterfront structures;
– for large-scale physical and numerical modeling of deep underground structures (tunnels, shafts, chambers, and intersections);
– for predictions of rock mass dredgability;
– for acoustic emission (micro-seismic) applications in geotechnical engineering;
– for geotechnical aspects of hazardous and low-level radioactive waste disposal;
– for evaluation of rock for use as riprap;
– for grouting of soil and rock masses;
– for sliding stability of gravity structures; and
– for centrifuge modeling of structures founded on or in rock.


Dear Colleague,

NSF has announced the Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (S-STEM) solicitation.  We may submit one (1) proposal (either as a single institution or as a member of a multi-institutional Design and Development consortium) from each college in an eligible field.  The deadlines we will be following to conduct the internal review to select the one proposal that will go forward are:

Intent to submit a proposal (PI name and Title of Proposal): Monday, July 20, 2015

Submission of 2-page white paper: Monday, August 3, 2015

Oral presentation of proposals: Week of August 10, 2015

FYI, NSF’s deadline for receiving the full proposal is Tuesday, September 22, 2015.

With best regards,


Krishnamurthy | Vice Provost for Research | Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) (Formerly University of Missouri-Rolla) | 202 Centennial Hall | 300 W. 12th St. | Rolla, MO 65409-1330 | T: 573-341-4154 | F: 573-341-4126 |

Teaching students how to live with military research, development and procurement

The US has the world’s best military equipment – the premier defense industry base – the biggest procurement budget – and hence the most byzantine acquisition system. The bane of every Secretary of Defense since Robert McNamara, the system and laws have been a favorite hobby of the US Congress to improve, regulate, monitor and adjust.

As much as that system affects Missouri S&T in research – it affects the lives of our recent graduates who work in industry and try to sell to the US federal government.  Two local heroes have stepped forward to ease the strange and strenuous process – Mr. Mike Cress from Fort Leonard Wood and Dr. Steve Corns from Engineering Management and Systems Engineering. Together they have cobbled together an academically unique approach that helps prepare future defense industry employees to contribute to the stressful and protracted game that is military procurement.

The most comprehensive approach is to look at a system of systems – and of all disciplines Systems Engineering is most adept at that. Systems Engineering has strong roots with the U.S. Department of Defense, and with the help of James Cress at the Edgewood Chemical Biological Center, Missouri S&T students are getting first hand experiential learning of why that relationship is so important. For the past four semesters, Mr. Cress has acted as a faux government contact for the class project for the Systems Engineering and Analysis course. Working with Dr. Steven Corns, he has developed real-world class projects and provided the information necessary for the students teams to successfully experience firsthand how a systems engineering project comes together. This provides both the tools and experience for students to succeed in the increasingly complex engineering environments found in industry, both defense and non-defense related.

Steve Corns

Dr. Steve Corns