Spring 2004 Undergraduate Fellowships
The Hawai'i Space Grant Consortium awarded
undergraduate fellowships in the Spring of 2004 to students at the University of
Hawai`i at Manoa and Hilo.
University of Hawai'i at Manoa:
University of Hawai`i at Hilo:
- Blaine Murakami, a junior in Electrical Engineering, will continue to work with mentor Dr. Wayne Shiroma of the Department of Electrical Engineering on satellite-to-satellite communication techniques. Blaine's project, titled "Retrodirective Antenna Array Design for CubeSat Applications and CubeSat Program Management" will emphasize simulation and design of the experimental antenna arrays that serve as the satellite payload. In addition to his technical responsibilities, Blaine serves as Program Engineer leading the 30+ students on the UH CubeSat/NanoSat Program. Final Report
- Josh Nagashima, a senior in Chemistry will work with mentor Dr. Craig Jensen of the Department of Chemistry researching "Hydrogen Fuel Storage-Metal Hydrides." Josh's work will help develop improved hydrogen cycling capacities of metal hydrides, which could ultimately lead to an improvement of cost and performance of energy storage in spacecraft. Final Report
- Jennifer Olson, a senior in Geology and Geophysics, will use continue her study of remote sensing data from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) currently orbiting Earth to study active volcanoes. Jennifer's project, titled "Monitoring Persistent Lava Lakes from Space," is being conducted under mentors Dr. Luke Flynn and Dr. Andy Harris of the Hawai`i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology. Jennifer's work will contribute to our understanding of the mass flux of lava lakes on Mount Erebus, Antarctica and Erta 'Ale, Ethiopia. Final Report
- Johnny Saucedo, a senior in Information and Computer Science, will use his programming skills to contribute to comet research and the broader field of astrobiology by designing and implementing a web interface in his project, titled "Deep Impact Database." NASA's Deep Impact mission will explore the pristine interior of a comet by crashing an autonomous spacecraft into the comet to excavate a large impact crater. Johnny's efforts will contribute to the best access of the mission's data. Mentor for this project is Dr. Kim Binsted of the Department of Information and Computer Science. Final Report
- Alina Stauffer, a senior in Mathematics, will be working with mentor Dr. Monique Chyba of the Department of Mathematics on a project titled "Optimizing Orbital Transfers." Alina's work will emphasize the use of differential geometry and numerical simulations visualized in 3D to solve how to transfer satellites or spacecraft from one orbit to another in the shortest time.
- Kristina Wong, a junior in Electrical Engineering, will embark on an interdisciplinary research project involving physics, engineering, and materials science. Kristina's project, titled "Study of Micro- and Nano-cracks in Fatigued Advanced Materials" is being conducted under mentor Dr. Murli Manghnani of the Hawai'i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology. She will use a variety of advanced microscopes in her study of the elastic properties of ceramic fiber-reinforced composite materials and ceramic sensors that are important in the building of space vehicles.
- Lance Yoneshige, a junior in Mechanical Engineering, will continue his work on structural dynamics, vibration, and thermal stress analyses with mentor Dr. Mehrdad Ghasemi Nejhad of the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Lance's project, "Design, Analysis, Manufacture, and Test of the Structural Housing of the University of Hawai`i NanoSat," is part of a larger research program involving Electrical, Civil, and Mechanical Engineering students and mentors. As leader of the Mechanical Structures and Analysis team, Lance will help design the NanoSat structure with space qualified materials. Final Report
- Heather Chang, a senior in Geography, will work with mentor Dr. Rebecca Ostertag of the Department of Biology on a remote sensing project using IKONOS and/or Landsat data to create a land use map in her project titled "Mapping Remnant Lowland Wet Forests in Hawai'i in Relation to Human Impacts." This project will test hypotheses about the abundance and dominance of native vs. non-native species in relation to urbanization and agricultural practices on the island of Hawai'i. Final Report
- Anna Moore, a junior in Geography, will work with mentor Dr. Barbara Gibson of the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies on a project using Geographic Information Systems to analyze lichen morphology in relation to its distribution over different elevations and growing surfaces. Anna's project, titled "Environmental Constraints that Govern Spatial Distribution of Stereocaulon vulcani on Hawai'i Island" will document the growing habits of this primitive plant that shows tolerance to environmental extremes, which may prove beneficial to future astrobiology research.
Spring 2004 Undergraduate Traineeships
Kapiolani Community College:
- Jon Samaniego, a freshman in Radiology, will continue to gain practical experience in cardiovascular research during his traineeship project titled "The Effect of Gravitationally Induced Stress on Cardiovascular Variability." Jon is interested in the heart's response to stress when the body changes positions. Dr. John Rand of the Mathematics and Science Department will serve as mentor on this project. This study has implications for astronaut health during long-term microgravity exposure.
Leeward Community College:
- Brandon Sato and Gemma Spillner will work with mentor Dr. Kakkala Mohanan of the Mathematics and Science Department on a traineeship project titled "Spectral Characterization of Short Period Variable Stars using CCD Cameras and a Grating Spectrometer." Their project will allow them to become familiar with the technologies associated with telescopes, CCD cameras, and spectrometer that enable astronomical research.
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Communications: Linda Martel