Brumley featured on SciTech Now
Recently, CyLab/ECE's David Brumley was featured on an episode of SciTech Now, where he talked about the importance of understanding basic cybersecurity concepts. "In our daily lives, one of our biggest problems is that most people have no idea how cybersecurity works," said Brumley. "At Carnegie Mellon, one of the things that we have a big initiative on is a cyber aware generation. We think understanding basic cybersecurity is something everyone should know."
Feature article showcases Holm's computer vision research
MSE’s Elizabeth Holm and her research team developed a computer vision system that characterizes metal powders used in additive manufacturing (AM) with up to 95 percent accuracy. Where humans only achieve 50 percent accuracy, Holm’s system uses micrograph images to identify, characterize, and ‘fingerprint’ powders based on qualitative and quantitative properties that human experts simply can’t classify. Holm’s goal is bigger than teaching computers to identify powders. She sees her system as a path to utilizing the data inherently produced by AM processes, allowing for the identification of material changes and maximization of print quality. “In additive manufacturing, we’re in a situation where, by the nature of the process itself, we are going to be given a lot of data. What machine learning is really good at is taking data and making some sense of it—finding correlation and trends and directions,” Holm told Additive Manufacturing.
Majidi and Wissman featured on liquid metals research
Advanced Science News
MechE’s Carmel Majidi and James Wissman are revolutionizing circuitry, making the first electrical switch using liquid metal. In their experiments, Majidi and Wissman deposited paired droplets of a liquid alloy into a lye bath. The pairs could drain an electric charge from an electrode and themselves act as a switch. Astoundingly, the pairs operated at 1-10 volts, lower than previous liquid circuit examples and closer to the voltage used by conventional transistors. Majidi and Wissman have opened the chance to create the “first soft matter electrical switch” on par with conventional switches.
ECE/CyLab’s Lujo Bauer and his research team recently developed eyeglasses that are capable of fooling facial recognition algorithms. In his recent study, titled “Adversarial Generative Nets: Neural Network Attacks on State-of-the-Art Face Recognition,” Bauer and his team explain how they developed five pairs of glasses that 90% of the population could successfully wear to bypass surveillance systems. After concluding their study, Bauer and his team notified the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)—an organization that already uses facial recognition technology—of their findings, and recommended that they require subjects to remove things like hats and glasses before conducting facial recognition scans.
Qian and Gu win Greenshields Prize
CEE's Sean Qian and alumnus Yiming Gu, now with United Technologies Research Center, received the prestigious 2017 Greenshields Prize from the Transportation Research Board’s Committee on Traffic Flow Theory and Characteristics. Their awward-winning paper, “Traffic State Estimation for Urban Road Networks Using A Link Queue Model,” proposes a model that fuses data to best estimate traffic states in large-scale urban networks.
McHenry collaborates nationally on solar energy
Department of Energy
MSE’s Michael McHenry partnered with the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) to address the issue of storing power collected from solar energy. During daylight hours, solar energy production peaks and wanes. An imbalance arises by the energy being distributed not as needed, but as collected. This imbalance has a simple solution: batteries. McHenry and the NETL are developing three-port transformers to transfer solar energy alternatively into a power grid or battery devices. This research should have powerful effects on solar energy usage. Integrated with batteries, a solar power grid would decrease intermittent energy flow and inefficiency, and increase reliability and longevity. This integration will enable wider commercial and residential solar energy usage.
Dogan featured on PIX11 Morning News
PIX11 Morning News
Muge Erdirik Dogan--a former Ph.D. student of ChemE's Ignacio Grossman--was interviewed at the Amazon fulfillment center in New Jersey by PIX11 Morning News on past and future Cyber Monday sales. Dogan now serves as a VP at Amazon.
Recode named MechE alumnus (BS ’92) and current Lyft Chief Strategy Officer Raj Kapoor the 37th most influential person in tech, business, and media in 2017. Since joining Lyft at the end of 2016, Kapoor has been integral in the ridesharing company’s expansion, which included raising $1.5 billion at an $11 billion valuation.
MSE/EPP’s Jay Whitacre spoke with Innovation Hub’s Kara Miller about the current state of clean energy research in the U.S. and how that landscape could change in the future. When compared with other countries, the amount of money the U.S. spends on energy research is relatively low. With countries like China going all-in on advancements in clean energy, the U.S. has work to do to maintain its position as a clean-energy leader. This means the way federal, state, and local funds are allocated is extremely important. “The United States is at risk of falling behind,” said Whitacre, “as opposed to the world not having these technologies.” Clean energy will continue to advance, but will the U.S. lead the charge?
EPP/CyLab’s Lorrie Cranor spoke with 90.5 WESA about the danger of tech support messages claiming to be from prominent companies. “Companies like Microsoft are not actually going to call you to tell you about problems with your computer. If somebody calls you to tell you they’re from Microsoft, don’t believe them,” Cranor said. Bad actors use this tactic as a way to access victims’ computers, which they then infect with spyware or ransomware. With the number of IoT (Internet of Things) devices on the rise, it’s even more important to keep devices updated and secure and to be wary of scammers.
EPP/CyLab’s Lorrie Cranor offers her insight in an NBC News story examining how most Americans’ passwords are weak and easily hackable. With cybercrime on the rise, it’s more important than ever for passwords to be robust. As director of the CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory (CUPS), Cranor helped develop a set of guidelines to assist in creating strong passwords. From character length to the avoidance of patterns, few people realize what it takes to thwart a hacker. “What people don't realize is that the attackers don’t just sit down at a computer and make a few guesses. They use computer programs that can actually make millions or billions of guesses in minutes,” said Cranor.