News Releases from 2016


Compact videocamera captures panoramic images in high resolution

By combining 3D curved fiber bundles with spherical optics, photonics researchers at the University of California San Diego have developed a compact, 125 megapixel per frame, 360° video camera that is useful for immersive virtual reality content. Full Story


Dennis Abremski appointed as Executive Director of the Institute for the Global Entrepreneur at UC San Diego

The UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering is pleased to announce the appointment of Dennis Abremski as the Executive Director of The Institute for the Global Entrepreneur (IGE). The Institute is a collaboration between the Jacobs School of Engineering and Rady School of Management, dedicated to training global technology leaders and translating university discoveries to market. Full Story


New technique to study how proteins and ligands interact

A team of researchers has developed a more accurate and less disruptive method to study how proteins and the small molecules that bind to them, known as ligands, interact. The method, called Transient Induced Molecular Electronic Spectroscopy (TIMES), could be used as a tool to better understand protein chemistry and to accelerate drug discovery and development. Full Story


Keysight Technologies, UC San Diego Collaborate to Prove Viability of 5G Communication with Record-Setting Data Rates of 2 Gbps at 300 m, and more

Keysight Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: KEYS), with the University of California San Diego (www.ece.ucsd.edu) today announced the world’s longest bidirectional phased-array link in the 60 GHz band. At a link distance of 300 m, the 32-element array achieved a data rate of greater than 2 Gbps over all scan angles up to ±45 degrees. Data rates were 4 Gbps at 100 m and 500 Mbps at 800 m over most scan angles. Initial tests by a leading wireless provider suggest the system can deliver content to eight homes at a time at up to 300 m. Full Story


Jacobs School Recruiting for 16 Positions in 2016-17

The Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego is recruiting for 16 open faculty positions in the 2016-17 academic year.  Many recruitments have been posted—each of which can lead to more than one hire. The positions include 11 research faculty and six teaching faculty. Areas of focus include robotics, plasma science and engineering as well as and the social impact of science, medicine and technology. Full Story


Scientist, Entrepreneur, Robotics Expert Will Speak to Downtown Collaboratory 'Game Changers'

The fourth presentation in the Game Changers Series features Todd Hylton, a professor of practice at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering and executive director of the UC San Diego Contextual Robotics Institute.The presentation, free and open to the public, will be held 5-7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 30, at the Downtown San Diego Partnership offices at 401 B St., Suite 100.The field of robotics is poised to change all aspects of modern life, from driving to housekeeping to our jobs. Hylton -- who has worked at Brain Corporation and DARPA, cofounded 4Wave, and is an inventor and entrepreneur who has earned 19 patents throughout his career -- is well-positioned to explain what is fueling the increased interest and investment into robotics and how this emerging field will affect not only our region but also the global economy. Full Story


'Exceptional' nanosensor architecture based on exceptional points

Engineers from UC San Diego have developed a novel design for a compact, ultra-sensitive nanosensor that can be used to make portable health-monitoring devices and to detect minute quantities of toxins and explosives for security applications.  Full Story


UC San Diego Hosts Wearable Sensors Summit

The Center for Wearable Sensors at the University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering recently hosted its annual research summit.“The summit was a great opportunity for us to discuss and chart the future of wearable sensors with the forward-looking faculty we have as well as industry who know the field,” said Center co-director and electrical and computer engineering professor Patrick Mercier. Research in the Center features interdisciplinary collaborations to produce innovative technologies in the field of wearable sensors. For example, Center co-director and nanoengineering professor Joseph Wang’s lab have worked with electrical engineers in Mercier’s lab to develop a mouth guard sensor and an alcohol sensor. Full Story


Semiconductor-free microelectronics are now possible, thanks to metamaterials

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have fabricated the first semiconductor-free, optically-controlled microelectronic device. Using metamaterials, engineers were able to build a microscale device that shows a 1,000 percent increase in conductivity when activated by low voltage and a low power laser. The discovery paves the way for microelectronic devices that are faster and capable of handling more power, and could also lead to more efficient solar panels.  Full Story


Tackling Changes and Challenges With Robotics

 An aging, and sometimes ailing, population. An increasing number of self-driving cars and delivery drones. More complex and automated factories. These are just some of the coming changes discussed at the UC San Diego Contextual Robotics Institute’s third annual forum. The overarching topic, “Shared Autonomy: New Directions in Human-Machine Interaction,” will be important for defining the future of human health and well-being at the level of individuals, communities and societies.       Full Story


Engineers develop new magnetic ink to print self-healing devices that heal in record time

NanoEngineers at UC San Diego have developed a magnetic ink that can be used to make self-healing batteries, electrochemical sensors and wearable, textile-based electrical circuits. The work represents an important step towards widespread practical applications for long-lasting printed electronic devices. Such devices could be integrated into a wide range of health- and environment- monitoring applications and beyond.  Full Story


Lead Engineer for Pokemon GO Nabbed Game-building Skills at UC San Diego

Next time you see someone playing Pokémon GO, the popular mobile-phone based game, keep this in mind: an engineer who graduated from UC San Diego leads the game’s technical team. Ed Wu, senior product manager at Niantic, the company that makes Pokémon GO, earned a bachelor’s degree from the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego in 2004. What he learned here is the basis of his success as an engineer, he said during a talk on campus Oct. 13.  Full Story


Robotics for Exploration at the Contextual Robotics Forum on Oct. 28

Underwater camera traps used to photograph the rare vaquita porpoise in Mexico and drones used to conduct radio collar tracking missions in the Cayman Islands are just two of the technologies that will be presented at the technology showcase for the UC San Diego Contextual Robotics Forum on Oct. 28, 2016. Full Story


Getting to a Zero Carbon Future

Avoiding the worst consequences of climate change by reducing global carbon emissions to as close to zero as possible is one of humanity’s most pressing challenges. The University of California San Diego has launched the Deep Decarbonization Initiative to do just that. And they plan to do so in the real world—where costs matter. The initiative is a collaborative effort of UC San Diego faculty from across campus working at the intersection of science, technology and policy. It embeds the study of modern societies—economics, politics and social organization—within expert technical research on energy systems. The goal is to understand not just how energy systems function, but also how policy and social movements can transform energy and protect the planet. Full Story


Four UC San Diego Physician-engineer teams receive the 2016 Galvanizing Engineering in Medicine awards

Four physician-engineer teams from UC San Diego have been selected to receive the 2016 Galvanizing Engineering in Medicine (GEM) awards, which were created to bring engineers and clinicians together to develop innovative technology solutions to challenging problems in medical care. One engineer-physician team is developing battery-free wireless wearable sensors for sleep monitoring that could eventually be widely deployed at minimal cost. Full Story


The Secret (Code) for Getting Kids Excited About Engineering

You can find publications written by Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor Pamela Cosman in the IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, the International Journal of Computer Vision and, as of this past May, in the children’s section of the UC San Diego bookstore. Full Story


Metamaterial uses light to control its motion

Researchers have designed a device that uses light to manipulate its mechanical properties. The device, which was fabricated using a plasmomechanical metamaterial, operates through a unique mechanism that couples its optical and mechanical resonances, enabling it to oscillate indefinitely using energy absorbed from light.  Full Story


UC San Diego breaks income boundaries in engineering

“This is just the beginning of what technology like this can do,” said Gabriel Davalos, an incoming aerospace engineering major. Davalos was referring to a miniature table lamp he and some of his peers built that turned on when something nearby made a loud noise. The students also fabricated a tiny house to protect the lamp using 3D printed materials and rapid prototyping tools. Full Story


From Satellites to Biodegradable Surfboards

UC San Diego showcases real-world applications of research at Maker FaireA surfboard made of algae-based foam. A small satellite that could be put into orbit around the moon. A balloon that carries experiments to the outer reaches of the atmosphere. These were some of the innovations that students, faculty and alumni from UC San Diego showed off this weekend at San Diego Maker Faire, a gathering of more than 200 innovators in a festival-like atmosphere at Balboa Park.  Full Story


Maker Faire San Diego: Celebrating 'Geekdom' of Every Stripe

It’s billed as “The Greatest Show (&Tell) on Earth,” and researchers from the University of California San Diego will once again be part of the spectacle as Maker Faire San Diego takes over Balboa Park. Full Story


New Robotics Hires at UC San Diego

UC San Diego is strengthening its robotics expertise through the Contextual Robotics Institute, which launched in October 2015 as a partnership between the Jacobs School of Engineering and the Division of Social Sciences. The 2016-17 hires include computer science professor Henrik Christensen, a world-renowned roboticist who most recently led Georgia Tech’s high profile Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines. Christensen will serve as the Contextual Robotics Institute’s first director and some of his research will be done in UC San Diego’s Qualcomm Institute.   Full Story


UC San Diego's First Solar Car

During the summer of his third year at the University of California San Diego, electrical engineering major Ari Chatterji was taking classes and felt the need to get experience doing something more hands-on before his senior year.  Full Story


U.S. Secretary of Commerce Appoints Chancellor to Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced the appointment of 30 private sector, nonprofit and academic leaders—including UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla—to serve on the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE).  Full Story


New faculty focus on robotics, data and cybersecurity and more

Thirteen new faculty are joining the Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California San Diego this fall. The hires are part of a plan to grow the school’s faculty to 280 by 2020. Six of the hires were focused on robotics, including Henrik Christensen, the director of the Contextual Robotics Institute at UC San Diego and Todd Hylton, the institute’s executive director. Other hires focused on engineering and clinical medicine, data and cyber security, and materials and energy as well as networks, structures and extreme events and signal processing.Below are short summaries of their research work.  Full Story


Engineering Students, Faculty at UC San Diego Remember Beloved Educator

A longtime favorite of students, faculty and administrators alike, former University of California San Diego electrical and computer engineering professor Anthony V. Sebald passed away on July 11, 2016. He was 74 years old. For nearly 30 years, Sebald served the campus, the Jacobs School of Engineering and its Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE), but above all, he served the university’s students as advisor, mentor, teacher and eventually associate dean for academic affairs in the Jacobs School from 1998 to 2002. He retired in 2004.  Full Story


Todd Hylton, well-known San Diego scientist and entrepreneur, joins UC San Diego Contextual Robotics Institute

Todd Hylton, a well-known San Diego scientist and entrepreneur, is joining the University of California San Diego to become the executive director of the UC San Diego Contextual Robotics Institute. Since 2012, Hylton served as executive vice president of strategy and research at Brain Corporation, a San Diego-based robotics startup. Prior to Brain Corp., Hylton launched a series of successful projects as a program manager at DARPA, including a multi-million dollar effort to develop a chip inspired by the function of biological nervous systems.  Full Story


Coming Full Circle: An Engineer's Journey to Entrepreneurship

Ben Pouladian (BS, Electrical Engineering, ’04) was always a tinkerer. With small business owners for parents, he also learned to work hard. He wanted to challenge himself in college, so he set his sights on engineering. Full Story


UC San Diego, SDSU to Roll Out Research Platform to Improve Hearing-Aid Technologies

Engineers from UC San Diego, including Patrick Mercier from the Center for Wearable Sensors, and audiologists from SDSU have set out an ambitious timetable for delivering two new electronic platforms to dramatically improve and accelerate research on better hearing aids. Full Story


Researchers receive NSF grant to develop new quantum technologies for secure communication

A multi-institutional team of researchers led by the University of California San Diego has received a grant from the NSF Office of Emerging Frontiers and Multidisciplinary Activities (EFMA) to develop and manufacture microchips that would enable secure and efficient quantum communication. The technology has applications in long-distance fiber optic communication and will help advance research in quantum sensing and computing. Full Story


Flexible wearable electronic skin patch offers new way to monitor alcohol levels

Engineers at UC San Diego have developed a flexible wearable sensor that can accurately measure a person’s blood alcohol level from sweat and transmit the data wirelessly to a laptop, smartphone or other mobile device. The device can be worn on the skin and could be used by doctors and police officers for continuous, non-invasive and real-time monitoring of blood alcohol content. Full Story


KnuEdge, UC San Diego Host Conference to Drive Next-Gen Machine Learning

In partnership with the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology at UC San Diego, KnuEdge™ announced the Heterogeneous Neural Networks (HNN) Conference, to be held in spring 2017 in San Diego, Calif. KnuEdge’s LambdaFabric neural computing technology accelerates machine learning and signal processing, The event will also include a KnuEdge-sponsored research paper competition, challenging participants to enable the next-generation of machine learning performance and efficiency through developing heterogeneous neural network algorithms. Full Story


With $2.5M grant from DOE SunShot, UC San Diego and Sandia engineers will develop novel dielectric metasurface solar concentrators

University of California San Diego electrical and computer engineering professor Boubacar Kante will lead a three-year, $2.5 million project funded by the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative aimed at making solar energy systems cost-competitive with traditional energy sources. With this funding, the researchers plan to develop a new class of solar collectors – based on dielectric metasurfaces –  that focus sun rays spanning a wider angular range and allow scaled-down, less expensive tracking systems.   Full Story


UC San Diego Inventions Gain $6-Million Venture-Capital Backing

“MouthSense” and “SmartFoam” are two inventions by UC San Diego engineers that have attracted funding from NextWave Venture Partners. MouthSense is a salivary diagnostic sensor that can be worn in the mouth or used externally for continuous non-invasive real-time monitoring of saliva biomarkers, such as lactate, cortisol and uric acid – a marker related to diabetes and gout. SmartFoam is an intelligent, ultra-compliant composite foam that could be used in wearable biomedical sensors. Full Story


Dreaming Big at the 5G Wireless Forum and Connected Health Workshop

 “To me, 5G is really our first opportunity for a network not defined by numbers, but built for experiences that we have not seen before -- not just good audio or video experiences, but life-changing experiences, similar to what the Internet provided when it first arrived,” says Electrical Engineering Professor Sujit Dey, Director of the Center for Wireless Communications (CWC) at the University of California San Diego and the organizer of the CWC’s 5G Wireless Forum, which was held recently at UC San Diego. Full Story


Researchers Develop Novel Microscope to Study the Underwater World

A new microscopic imaging system is revealing a never-before-seen view of the underwater world. Researchers from the University of California San Diego have designed and built a diver-operated underwater microscope to study millimeter-scale processes as they naturally occur on the seafloor. Full Story


Engineering students try to become pinball wizards in this class

The vaguely sweet smell of laser-etched wood. Repeated pings and the laughter of students. Pairs of students huddling over their projects, connecting wires and poking and prodding. This was the scene on a recent afternoon in the basement of Jacobs Hall here on campus. The room was filled with students enrolled in ECE 115, a design and rapid prototyping class taught by electrical and computer engineering professor Michael Yip here at the University of California San Diego.  Full Story


UC San Diego Students Fabricate Device to Protect Seniors from a Fall

Falls are the leading cause of death from injury among people 65 and older killing more than 400,000 people each year. A team of engineering undergraduates at the Jacobs School is working to address the situation thanks to AirSave, an impact protection system they designed. Full Story


Computer Graphics and Vision Expert Appointed to Endowed Faculty Chair

University of California San Diego professor Ravi Ramamoorthi is the inaugural holder of a new endowed faculty chair in the university’s Department of Computer Science and Engineering (CSE). Full Story


Global Change Makers

Nick Forsch relies heavily on clinician feedback for his research. As a bioengineering Ph.D. student at the University of California San Diego, he is developing computational tools to enable doctors to better understand their patients’ diseases. The challenges of translating his research to real-world doctors and patients led Forsch to join a new program at UC San Diego that places Jacobs School of Engineering graduate students and MBA students in the same Rady School of Management classes, including the Rady’s signature Lab to Market program. Full Story


Interdisciplinary Calit2 Institute to Use Groundbreaking Neural Computing Technology

The California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2) will become an early partner and user of a new computing architecture from KnuEdge, a “startup” that has spent a decade under the radar while developing its first two major technologies announced by the company on June 6.   Full Story


In new program, UC San Diego engineering graduate students and MBA students team up to drive innovation

Nick Forsch relies heavily on clinician feedback for his research. As a bioengineering Ph.D. student at the University of California San Diego, he is developing computational tools to enable doctors to better understand their patients’ diseases. His experiences translating research to end users led Forsch to join a new program at UC San Diego that places Jacobs School of Engineering graduate students and MBA students in the same Rady School of Management classes including the Rady School’s signature Lab to Market program. This pilot program is part of the new UC San Diego Institute for the Global Entrepreneur that will launch June 2, 2016. Full Story


Engineers take first step toward flexible, wearable, tricorder-like device

Engineers at UC San Diego have developed the first flexible wearable device capable of monitoring both biochemical and electric signals in the human body. The Chem-Phys patch records electrocardiogram (EKG) heart signals and tracks levels of lactate, a biochemical that is a marker of physical effort, in real time. The device can be worn on the chest and communicates wirelessly with a smartphone, smart watch or laptop.  Full Story


Electrical engineering professor Siavash Mirarab honored by ACM for dissertation work

Electrical engineering professor Siavash Mirarab from the University of California San Diego has won an honorable mention for the 2015 Doctoral Dissertation Award presented by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM).   Full Story


The frontier of wearable sensors discussed at summit

Scores of industry leaders and researchers turned out to participate in the Jacobs School's wearable sensors summit run by its Center for Wearable Sensors. Full Story


UC San Diego Researchers Demonstrate Automotive SafeShield with Qualcomm

For the second time in three years, researchers from the Laboratory for Intelligent and Safe Automobiles (LISA) at the University of California San Diego were invited to showcase their computer vision-based technologies in connection with the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). In 2014, German automaker Audi followed up its presence at CES with a demonstration on the streets of San Francisco with a model equipped with some of UC San Diego’s safety applications for city driving. Then earlier this year, the LISA team was at CES itself in Las Vegas, giving attendees a sneak peek of its latest ‘intelligent transportation’ features as part of Qualcomm’s expansive new automotive pavilion at the show.Qualcomm’s exhibit included a late-model Maserati Quattroporte outfitted with next-generation infotainment and driver-assistance safety features in collaboration with the UC San Diego lab and private technology companies. Full Story


Stretchable, flexible, wearable solar cells take top prize at Research Expo 2016

Solar cells that are stretchable, flexible and wearable won the day and the best poster award from a pool of 215 at Research Expo 2016 April 14 at the University of California San Diego. The winning nanoengineering researchers aim to manufacture small, flexible devices that can power watches, LEDs and wearable sensors. The ultimate goal is to design and build much bigger flexible solar cells that could be used as power sources and shelter in natural disasters and other emergencies.  Full Story


A Day in the Sun

When UC San Diego undergraduate students Josh Hill, Victoria Santos and Alexander Han first became involved with the Solar Chill project, they never thought that they would one day have the opportunity to talk about the unique solar-powered charging station at Clinton Global Initiative University. But they did just that when the annual conference took place at UC Berkeley, April 1 to 3.  Full Story


UC San Diego Electrical Engineer Awarded Young Investigator Award from U.S. Office of Naval Research

The U.S. Office of Naval Research has awarded a Young Investigator Award to electrical engineering professor Duygu Kuzum of the University of California, San Diego, for her work to construct a computational model of signal processing in the hippocampus. The research is expected to provide a greater understanding of the mechanisms and microcircuits implicated in how the human brain processes information, which – when applied to computing – could lead to systems with more scalable, efficient and brain-like cognitive skills. Full Story


Electrical Engineering Undergrads Build and Race Robots

The EnVision Arts and Engineering Maker Studio at UC San Diego teemed with excitement on the day of the final in an electrical engineering class called Making, Breaking and Hacking Stuff. Instead of a typical test, the class culminated in a cumulative final project – teams of two or three students used the knowledge and some of the parts they had acquired during the class’s previous projects to build a line-following robot. The teams competed to see who programmed their robot to follow a line most closely, and at the fastest speed. Full Story


Lasers could make the Internet faster and cleaner

Researchers at UC San Diego think they might have found the way to faster internet: lasers. "As we are trying to fit more and more data on wires that we send from place to place, we are running up against the limit of what electricity can do," said Janelle Shane, an alumna of the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego. Full Story