For the Record: April 16, 2009

Anthony Cortese, Sociology, Dedman College, organized and moderated a session on “Race, Social, and Gender Inequality” at the 2009 annual meetings of the Pacific Sociological Association, which took place April 8-11 in San Diego, California.

Pia Vogel, Biological Sciences, Dedman College, was co-moderator for panel disussions on cancer biology and career opportunities at a Houston conference, “Frontiers of Cancer Research: Biology, Emerging Technologies and Therapeutics,” sponsored by The Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas. The Academy was founded in 2004 to provide broader recognition of the state’s top achievers in medicine, engineering and science, and to build a stronger identity for Texas as a center of achievement in these fields. Members include Texas Nobel Laureates and more than 200 National Academy members.

The HBO special “Breaking the Huddle: The Integration of College Football,” featuring SMU alumnus Jerry LeVias (’69), is one of 8 films being honored April 29, 2009 by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. University Archivist Joan Gosnell, Central University Libraries, helped provide photos and materials from the University Archives for the special. Heritage Hall Chair Gerry York (’58) also helped with research.

Daniel Salta, a junior double major in mechanical engineering and mathematics in the Lyle School of Engineering and Dedman College, has been accepted to the National Science Foundation‘s Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program for Summer 2009. He will work with Radovan Kovacevic in SMU’s Research Center for Advanced Manufacturing in the Lyle School. The national REU program supports the participation of students nationwide in research labs and projects.

Amy Hand, a Dedman College student double-majoring in physics and mathematics, also has been accepted to the NSF REU program for Summer 2009. She will do her research at CREOL – The College of Optics and Photonics at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.

Building the perfect Christmas tree

The SMU Lyle School of Engineering Christmas TreeThe Christmas tree that adorns the SMU Lyle School of Engineering holiday card is more than a colorfully lit symbol of the season. It’s a unique and festive embodiment of the capabilities of the School’s cutting-edge laboratories.

Designed and built in the Lyle School’s Research Center for Advanced Manufacturing (RCAM), the tree features a 3-dimensional lattice structure, known for its strength and versatility in a variety of manufacturing applications. With an actual height and width of about 5 inches, the tree was “grown” in a vacuum chamber from thin layers of titanium-alloy powder and shaped by the controlled melting of an electron beam.

In the holiday card image by University photographer Hillsman S. Jackson, a high-power fiber laser stands in for a treetop star.

The RCAM refined the techniques used to construct the tree during a collaboration with Dallas’ Baylor College of Dentistry, says Radovan Kovacevic, Herman Brown Chair Professor of Mechanical Engineering and director of RCAM and the Center for Laser-aided Manufacturing (CLAM). Working with Baylor researchers, the Center has developed a way to manufacture a dental implant typically assembled from three pieces as a single piece. The unitary construction results in devices with fewer weak points at which breaks can occur.

The technology has many other potential applications in industries ranging from medicine to aviation, Kovacevic says. In the meantime, he says, the Lyle Christmas tree “is a good example of the complexity we can achieve.”

Learn more about the RCAM
See a video about the technology video