VU School of Engineering lands $3.5M grant

The Vanderbilt University School of Engineering has landed a $3.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy.

The grant will support VU researchers' efforts to create software that can control the Smart Grid — a decentralized power system that is more efficient, sustainable and reliable than America’s current electrical power delivery, according to a release.

Under the collaborative agreement, the Vanderbilt Institute for Software Integrated Systems is partnering with Professor Anurag Srivastava at Washington State University and Professor Srdjan Lukic at North Carolina State University, both nationally recognized experts in power systems.

“The system we have now is power coming from the power company, flowing down to your neighborhood and into your home. That’s it,” Gabor Karsai (pictured), associate director of Vanderbilt’s Institute for Software Integrated Systems and lead researcher on the grant, said in the release. “In the future, we will have local power generation — solar panels on your home, a small generator in your neighborhood — and you need this software infrastructure to control the whole system, the individual substations and delivery to customers.”

Read more here.

Nov 25, 2015 12:30 PM

Patent Patrol: 25 November 2015

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Patent Patrol: 11 November 2015

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Vanderbilt engineering team founds biotech company

A Vanderbilt University engineering student has founded MetaMap BioWorks, a biotechnology company that has developed an X-ray-like tool for cells.

Lara Jazmin, who just completed her Ph.D. in chemical engineering, and associate professor Jamey Young are moving forward with their company with support from the Vanderbilt Center for Technology Transfer and Commercialization. The company's metabolic flux analysis — or "X-ray" — allows researchers to pinpoint biochemical reaction pathways.

"Researchers don't know which pathways are efficient or bottlenecks or which byproducts might be produced," Jazmin said. "Our technology uncovers were bottlenecks or wasteful side pathways may be occurring."

The company was also selected for the National Science Foundation's I-Corps program and the Association of University Technology Managers' Fishbowl Fights competition, where Jazmin and Young recently won $1,500. For more info on their venture, click here.

Nov 9, 2015 1:30 PM

Patent Patrol: 4 November 2015

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TSU part of consortium that lands $28.1M grant related to energy systems

Tennessee State University will participate in a five-year, $28.1 million U.S. Department of Energy initiative to improve computer/communication networks for energy delivery systems such as power grids and pipelines, the agency has announced.

The university will receive $930,000 to conduct studies in security risk assessment, software-defined networking, robust control systems, and detection and classification of the impact of attacks on cyber-physical systems, according to a release.

TSU researchers will join a consortium of 11 universities and national laboratories led by the University of Illinois. The consortium will attempt to improve the resilience and security of the cyber networks, which serve as the backbone of the nation’s so-called energy delivery systems (including the electric power, oil and gas industries).

Dr. Sachin Shetty, TSU associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and a cyber security and networking systems expert, will oversee the effort as project director. Dr. L.H. Keel, TSU professor of electrical and computer engineering, will assist as co-PI.

“The security of critical infrastructure — such as power grids, oil and gas refineries, nuclear power reactors and pipeline operations — has attracted tremendous attention,” Shetty (pictured) said in the release. “There is growing awareness in the industry to safeguard cyber and physical resiliency and move beyond cyber security to ensure the nation’s energy delivery systems can operate in the presence of attacks caused by adversarial actions.”

Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of the TSU College of Engineering, called the partnership with the CREDC part of his college’s “strategic initiative” to train and educate a more diverse workforce in cyber security.

In addition to TSU and Illinois, the consortium includes research experts from Argonne National Laboratory, Arizona State University, Dartmouth College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Oregon State University, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Rutgers University, University of Houston and Washington State University.


Oct 23, 2015 11:35 AM

Asian surveillance products company taps KJB for distribution

Nashville-based security and surveillance products manufacturer and distributor KJB Security Products announced today it has been named North American distributor for LawMate International Co. Ltd.

Terms of the partnership were not disclosed in a release.

Established in 1998 and based in Taipei, Taiwan, LawMate is a supplier of covert video, countermeasures and audio products for law enforcement, military, government and investigative companies. The LawMate line includes law enforcement grade body-worn cameras (including earphone and button cameras).

"While we've carried many LawMate products over the years, this formal distribution agreement allows the company to benefit from our deep market penetration and broad customer base to increase sales," Jill Johnston, KJB president, said in the release. "We are pleased to now offer their complete line to our network of hundreds of retailers and government agencies in the U.S., Canada and Mexico."

In addition to having access to all LawMate products, KJB will be involved in new product development, and sales and marketing programs, Johnston (pictured) said.

"This expanded relationship will not only help LawMate increase their market share, but also solidifies KJB's position as a leading distributor of high-quality security and surveillance products," she said. "LawMate's products are top quality, designed and engineered with law enforcement in mind for legal evidence gathering, and are a welcome addition to our offering of devices designed to protect what matters."


Oct 21, 2015 12:15 PM

Patent Patrol: 21 October 2015

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