REU program in smart structures

Funding agency: 
National Science Foundation
05/01/2009 - 00:00 to 04/30/2013 - 00:00

This ten-week collaborative international REU site program will establish a Smart Structures Undergraduate Research Collaboratory where students at the Universities of Akron, South Carolina, and Connecticut will partner with the Korean Advance Institute for Science and Technology (KAIST) to gain access to world class facilities in Smart Structures and by doing so this will enhance the scope of the undergraduate research. A challenge faced by the Smart Structures community is the fact that structures vary in different geographical regions due to local building practices, availability of materials and dynamic loads likely to be experienced in the region. Ideal Smart Structure solutions should be universal in order to achieve the desired performance for various structures in the environment. Reducing structural damage due to natural and made-made hazards in is vital to the safety and economic viability of society. Smart Structures which are those structures that can sense their environment and react accordingly, can provide more resilient designs, more effective construction, and extend overall the safe life of our built infrastructure. This collaborative project will further advance research on universal solutions in Smart Structures. This program will engage six undergraduate students over ten weeks in these research activities: 1) formal training in structural dynamics, health monitoring and control; 2) experience conducting laboratory experiments in Smart Structures; 3) travel to KAIST in South Korea to experience international collaboration and gain access to world class facilities in Smart Structures; and 4) participate in site visits and cultural events. The PIs will focus recruitment efforts on students from underrepresented groups at minority institutions. Undergraduate students will work directly with U.S. and Korean graduate students gaining valuable insight about research and graduate school.