Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Engineering Graduate Students Help Uncover Hints of a Lost Da Vinci

Four graduate students from the departments of computer science and materials science at the Jacobs School of Engineering have helped Calit2 researcher Maurizio Seracini uncover tantalizing hints of a lost artwork by Leonardo Da Vinci in the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence.

Samantha Stout, a materials science graduate student, and Tom Wypych, Vid Petrovic and David Vanoni, computer science graduate students, all worked in the Palazzo's Hall of the Five Hundred, where a Da Vinci mural is believed to be concealed behind another mural by Giorgio Vasari. Also on the team is Daniel Johnson, an alumni from mechanical and aerospace engineering, who is now on staff at Calit2.

Read more about the hunt for the lost Da Vinci here and here.

In the picture, from left: Stout, Wypych, Johnson, Petrovic and Vanoni.

Their work has been profiledon 

and more...

Circuits, Cells, Balloons: It's Time for the Science & Engineering Festival

Circuits, a board game about cellular life, strawberry DNA: these are just some of the fun ingredients on display at booths from the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego at this year's San Diego Science and Engineering Festival Expo Day, March 24 at PETCO Park.

Learn more about this year's festival here. And here are some of the Jacobs School's contributions:

Visitors at the Department of Bioengineering booth will be able to play the Cellular Adventure Game and learn how the body uses unique cues to help immature cells "grow up" and replace damaged cells. At each checkpoint in the game, participants will roll a die to determine the next step in their cellular journey toward a specific type of mature cell (cardiac, neuronal, etc.)

Undergraduate students with IEEE will teach children how to make their own circuits. Children will work with snap circuits--small, low power circuit kits that can be used to build many things. They will also be able to take a look at Seaperch, a remote-controlled underwater robot.

The UC San Diego Near Space Balloon Team, led by aerospace engineering professor John Kosmatka, will show what conditions are like in near space using vacuum tubes. Team members might even run a live feed from a tethered balloon, with a camera that children will be able to control remotely.

The Jacobs Graduate Student Council will teach children about how engineering is involved in their every day lives. They will be able to extract DNA from strawberries, among other activities.