Spring 1996 Undergraduate Fellowships
The Hawai'i Space Grant Consortium awarded
undergraduate fellowships in the Spring of 1996 to students at the University
of Hawai`i at Manoa and Hilo, and the Community Colleges. At Manoa and Hilo, the
awards were given for space-related research and provided a stipend of up to
$1750 per semester to each recipient. At the Community Colleges, Fellows received
stipends that depended on the scope of the projects.
University of Hawai'i at Manoa:
University of Hawai'i at Hilo:
- Christopher Frost, a junior in the Geology and Geophysics Department, has a whole world to study this semester under his project called "Dating Impact Craters on the Moon." After spending last semester looking at Clementine data of impact craters at the Apollo 16 landing site, his attention now turns to the rest of the Moon. His mentor Dr. Paul Lucey has developed a technique for estimating the relative ages of different craters using Clementine data, so that a chronology for these impact events can be derived.
- Michael Larson, a senior in Mechanical Engineering, will be continuing a series of Space Grant Fellows' projects in his investigation called "Development of an Active Control System for Smart Composite Material Space Structures." Under his mentor Dr. Mehrdad Ghasemi Nejhad, Michael will help develop automatic control systems for spacecraft. This will involved the use of "smart materials" tailored to provide combinations of sensor, information processor, actuator, and feed-back/feed-forward functions within the materials.
- Grace Leung also a senior in Mechanical Engineering, will work on another aspect of space structures in her project called "Design, Manufacture, and Testing of an Active Strut with Active Vibration Suppression Capabilities." With her mentor Dr. M. N. Ghasemi Nejhad, Grace will attempt to miniaturize some of the piezoelectric systems that have been developed by former Space Grant Fellows. Vibration testing of this miniaturized system will also be done to see how well it can withstand the rigors of space travel.
- Cory Machida, a junior in Mechanical Engineering, will study the effects of gravity on the solidification of advanced materials such as metal alloys and composites. His project is called "Gravity Effects in Solidification Processing of Advanced Materials." With his mentor Dr. Chao-Yang Wang, Cory will develop a visualization experiment that will help understand the microstructure and chemical heterogeneities in castings that are used for space hardware.
- Donn Murakami, a continuing Fellow in Electrical Engineering, is performing research on "The Robust Control of Flexible Manipulators in Space." He is designing robust controllers attempt to optimize control characteristics when only an approximate model of the flexible structure is available. These controllers will eliminate significant errors in position and velocity of flexible space structures, including long mechanical arms that are used in the recovery of small satellites. Donn's mentor is Dr. Rahul Chattergy, Mechanical Engineering.
Leeward Community College:
- Dana Caccamise II, a senior in Geology, will continue his study "Sub-Grid Variability of Climate-Related Land-Surface Characteristics" under the mentorship of Dr. Jene Michaud. Dana's objectives are to characterize the spatial heterogeneity of land surface characteristics that are most important in land-atmosphere interactions. Using satellite data for the U.S. mainland, emphasis will be placed on vegetation effects which influence surface soil moisture and the soil profiles.
- David Phillips, a Geology major, will be working with Dr. Michael Bevis from Manoa's Institute of Geophysics and Planetology on his project "Applications of the Global Positioning System (GPS) to Enhance and Ground Truth Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Interferometry from Space". This entails the placement of several GPS instruments on the flanks of Kilauea volcano, and the comparison of the displacement data with observations made via orbital radar interferometry. Information on the distribution of water vapor in the atmosphere will also be retrieved from these GPS measurements.
- Lonnie Snyder, a Biology student, is continuing his research on "The Effects of Gravitational Forces on the Isolation, Identification, and Morphology of Bacterial Colonies" under the guidance of mentor Dr. John Chan. Lonnie's research will help determine the effects of gravity on the growth and development of micro-organisms, which will enable biologists to predict what changes should be expected in microbial populations during space flight. Such research is important because ultimately we will need to protect future crews of the Space Station from microbe contamination.
- Gene Toyama and Jan Saiki, who are both majoring in science education, will work with students from Campbell High School to stimulate interest in astronomy among high school students. It is hoped that by using the astronomical telescopes at Leeward CC and Poamoho, they will be able to guide junior astronomers as they prepare science fair projects and develop their own astronomical research programs.
- Elisa Amantiad, Civil Engineering student, will spend a second semester of her project "Beach Profile of Kaiaka-Waialua Bay Areas on the Internet" investigating the use of aircraft remote sensing data for the Kaiaka Bay region of Oahu. This project is connected to Hawaii Space Grant's "Virtually Hawaii" Internet project, and the results of Elisa's investigation will help show how high resolution multi-spectral images can illustrate the distribution of sediments off the coast of Oahu. By placing these data on the Internet, it is also hoped that other groups outside Hawaii will also see some of the applications of remote sensing for coastal resource management.
- Preston Freitas, a sophomore in Astronomy, will continue his project called "Software Development for Undergraduate Astronomy Courses". The programs that he is developing emphasize the connections between diverse topics in astronomy as they are taught at Leeward. One project is focused on the life cycle of a star, while the second examines some of the more exotic phenomena in space, such as black holes. A third program will enable students to utilize the Drake Equation to estimate the number of civilizations existing in the Galaxy.
Top of page.
Return to current Fellowships page.
Hawai`i Space Grant Consortium homepage