(Dec. 14, 2009)--You've seen them on TV on "24" and "American Idol," and soon you'll see one in San Antonio. The UTSA College of Engineering announced plans to build a sophisticated visualization wall (Vis-Wall), funded by a $482,600, three-year National Science Foundation grant. The Vis-Wall will display computational models developed in UTSA's new Simulation, Visualization and Real-Time Prediction (SiViRT) Center and by other UTSA faculty in the course of research and teaching. The system will enhance engineering and technology-related education and community outreach by UTSA faculty.
"A significant part of the research we do in the College of Engineering is based on computational modeling," said Mauli Agrawal, dean of the UTSA College of Engineering. "In putting together this proposal, we initially found 13 projects that could benefit greatly from having a large-scale visualization system. This grant will give our researchers a place to display their data, test their models and draw conclusions with extreme accuracy."
Yusheng Feng, associate professor and director of the Computational Bioengineering and Nanomechanics Lab in the UTSA Department of Mechanical Engineering, is the principal investigator (PI) of the proposal for the Vis-Wall system. Co-PIs Ruyan Guo, Harry Millwater, Brent Nowak and Heather Shipley -- all faculty members in the UTSA College of Engineering -- contributed greatly to the proposal.
"Visualization is now so vital to almost all engineering and scientific disciplines that it can greatly enhance our ability to understand physical phenomena by building up digital representations -- mathematical and computer models -- and displaying complex experimental data in a comprehensible fashion," said Feng. "In my current area of computational cancer research, this new visualization system will be able to display physical and biological systems from nano- and micro-scale level objects such as nanoparticles and DNA molecules up to meso- and macro-scale entities like cells, tissues and tumors, all at the same time."
Sixteen UTSA faculty members in the College of Engineering and College of Sciences are involved and have expressed interest in using the Vis-Wall, which will boast ultra-high resolution and interactivity. Initially, the hardware will be used to:
The 15-foot wide and 4.5-foot tall Vis-Wall comprised of 24 30-inch monitors is one of three hardware components in the system which will include 25 high-end, graphics-enhanced workstations using the Linux operating system and integrated as a cluster to drive the Vis-Wall.
The system will include a multi-functional robotic arm serving as a joystick. The component will provide human-machine interaction emulating touching and control over a position that is sensed as it performs rolling, pitching and yawing motions.
As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.
At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.
Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.
With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.
Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.
All campuses will be closed for the Labor Day holiday.
The UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning’s 2015-16 Speaker Series begins Sept. 9 with Toshiko Mori, the Robert P. Hubbard Professor in the Practice of Architecture at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design and principal of Manhattan-based Toshiko Mori Architect.
Buena Vista Building Aula Canaria (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus
Cheer on the UTSA Roadrunners at their home-opener against the Kansas State Wildcats.
Alamodome, 100 Montana St.
As part of National Recovery Month, a panel of substance abuse practitioners and members of the recovery community will discuss issues related to substance abuse treatment and recovery.
Durango Building 1.124 (DB 1.124), Downtown Campus
The UTSA College of Education and Human Development will host award-winning children’s author and illustrator Yuyi Morales. Morales will share personal stories that have influenced her work as an author and illustrator.
Buena Vista Building Aula Canaria (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus
This summit is an opportunity to showcase and share the variety of community engagement activities of UTSA students, faculty, and staff. The summit is currently accepting proposals for poster presentations. The Call for Posters deadline is Friday, Sept. 11.
University Center Denman Room (2.01.28), Main Campus
Biomedical engineering alum and professor is working to regenerate tissue
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