EPP News Updates

News Updates - 2011


EPP Alum mentioned in USA Today
Dec 2011

Research done by EPP alum, Bill Strauss '05, was recently referenced in a USA Today article on electronic gadget use during commercial flight.
http://travel.usatoday.com/flights/story/2011-12-21/Many-fliers-refuse-to-turn-off-electronic-gadgets/52146544/1?loc=interstitialskip


Peha named IEEE Fellow
Dec 2011

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers has named EPP Professor Jon Peha IEEE Fellow for  leadership in wireless and broadband technology for public safety communications.


EPP Professor Lorrie Cranor discusses CUPS research
Nov 2011

Internet users who want to protect their privacy by stopping advertisers from tracking their online behavior will have a tough time of it.  Commonly available "opt-out" tools aren't very user-friendly, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University report.
http://www.cmu.edu/homepage/computing/2011/fall/opting-out.shtml


EPP Professor Joel Tarr discusses a history of energy at CMU
Nov 2011

Imagine drilling for natural gas right in the middle of Pittsburgh. But in the thick of World War I, a new technical institute did just that. Historian Joel A. Tarr has the granular detail.
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11310/1187509-109.stm


Whitacre's Acquion Recognized Again!
Nov 2011

EPP professor Jay Whitacre's company Aquion recently won the World Technology Award in the category of Corporate Energy,  beating out the likes of GE, First Solar, 1366, Ballard, etc. The awards ceremony was held at the UN building in New York City.
http://www.wtn.net/summit2011/winners.html


Lester Lave To Live on Through Professorship and Fellowship
Oct 2011

The legacy of visionary researcher Lester B. Lave will be honored by the establishment of a professorship in economics, engineering and public policy, and a fellowship for doctorial studies on innovative areas in economics, public policy and engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. 
http://www.cmu.edu/news/stories/archives/2011/september/sept29_lesterlavelegacy.html


Granger Morgan in the news
Oct 2011

M. Granger Morgan, professor and head of the Engineering and Public Policy Department, is part of a blue-ribbon task force that reports it is time for the U.S. to undertake a climate remediation research program to understand the risks, costs, feasibility and potential effectiveness and consequences of climate remediation technologies. Morgan and 17 other members of the Washington, D.C.-based Bipartisan Policy Center's Task Force on Climate Remediation Research recommend that the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy coordinate the research program.


Bigger Isn’t Better: Benefits Of Plug-In Vehicles Depend On Battery Size, CMU Study Says
Sep 2011

In a study appearing this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, EPP Professor Jeremy J. Michalek and his co-authors report that plug-in vehicles with smaller battery packs are more efficient in reducing societal costs for health care, environmental damages and oil consumption.  
 http://www.cmu.edu/news/stories/archives/2011/september/sept26_pluginbatteries.html


Wolter recognized
Sep 2011

EPP alumnus and post doctoral researcher, Claudio Wolter, has been chosen as the winner of the 2011 INFORMS TMS Dissertation Competition.
His thesis is entitled “Technological Competences and Firm Boundaries: An Empirical and Conceptual Investigation of Diversification, Vertical Integration and Profitability."  Congratulations Claudio!


Whitacre's Acquion recognized
Sep 2011

Jay Whitacre's company Aquion Energy has been named startup company of the year by Pittsburgh Technology Council.  Aquion Energy, Lawrenceville, is developing a new type of battery using sodium-ion technology.  Aquion was founded in 2008 by EPP professor Jay Whitacre. The company, which had a half-dozen workers a year ago, now employs more than 30.
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/business/s_757800.html


Alex Hills authors new book
Sep 2011

Alex Hills, distinguished service professor of engineering and public policy and electrical and computer engineering, has authored the recently released “Wi-Fi and the Bad Boys of Radio.” The book is about Hills and his small team of Carnegie Mellon innovators who built “Wireless Andrew,” the network that would become the forerunner to today’s ubiquitous Wi-Fi. Hills will sign his book during a “Luncheon Book Launch” from noon to 1 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 27 in the Dilks Library in the Roberts Hall of Engineering. For more about the book and to purchase a copy, go to http://www.dralexhills.com/


Peha to participate in community dialogue
Sep 2011

Free Press will host a community dialogue on the state of the media in Pittsburgh. 
Owning Our Airwaves: A Community Dialogue with Media Policymakers will take place on September 26 at 7 p.m. in McConomy Auditorium.  Panelists include CMU Professor of Engineering and Public Policy Jon Peha, Rep. Mike Doyle, Federal Communications Commissioner Michael Copps and Deborah Acklin, president and CEO of WQED Multimedia. 


This Machine Can Suck Carbon Out Of The Air
Sep 2011

NPR recently spoke to EPP adjunct professor David Keith about his 'carbon dioxide machine'. 
http://www.npr.org/2011/09/19/140513014/this-machine-can-suck-carbon-out-of-the-air


E&TIM student's work recognized
Sep 2011

Deepthi Uppala, an ETIM student who recently interned at Intel, conceived a new "Family Wall" product that is getting a lot of press.
http://techreport.com/articles.x/21629
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2392898,00.asp


ELumanate lights up Sierra Leone
Sep 2011

Engineering and public policy doctoral student Paul van der Boor and junior economics and statistics major Tori Baggio are part of a four-member team called ELumanate that is currently working on refurbishing a hydropower plant that will provide electricity to over 600 households.  The team has been working with the community of Yele since 2007 and spent one month working on the hydropower plant this summer.  Full article is available online
http://thetartan.org/2011/9/12/news/yele
http://www.yele.nl/


Mitchell receives award
Sep 2011

EPP doctoral student, Austin Mitchell, has been awarded the 2011 Society for Risk Analysis Student Merit Award by the specialty group, Economics and Benefits Analysis, for his work on the regulatory policy for post-production reclamation of Marcellus shale natural gas well sites.


CMU report finds that Marcellus Shale gas emits less greenhouse gases than coal
Aug 2011

Chris Hendrickson,  EPP professor Paulina Jaramillo and their colleagues report that life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions from Marcellus Shale natural gas are not as high as life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions from coal, when used by the electric power sector — the major sector in which these fuels compete.  “Marcellus Shale gas emits 50 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than any U.S. coal-fired plant,” said Hendrickson, the Duquesne Light Co. Professor of Engineering and co-director of the Green Design Institute at Carnegie Mellon. “We favor extraction of Marcellus Shale natural gas as long as the extraction is managed to minimize adverse economic, environmental and social impacts.”  The Marcellus Shale vein stretches across Pennsylvania and New York with more than 50 percent of the 2011 interstate pipeline projects dedicated to that shale extraction. Jaramillo said natural gas will serve a critical role in supporting the increasing penetration of renewable energy, and the Marcellus Shale resources will allow the nation to depend on a domestic resource to meet this demand. http://www.cmu.edu/news/stories/archives/2011/august/aug18_marcellusshale.html


CMU Resarchers find web hackers profiting from illegal online pharmacies
Aug 2011

A growing number of illegal online pharmacies are flooding the Web trying to sell dangerous unauthorized prescriptions, according to a new report from cybersecurity experts at Carnegie Mellon.  Report authors Nicolas Christin, associate director of the Information Networking Institute (INI) and a senior systems scientist at the INI and Cylab, Nektarios Leontiadis from the Department of Engineering and Public Policy (EPP), and Tyler Moore from Wellesley College, found that rogue websites were redirecting consumers to illicit pharmacies.  By researching the top search results for 218 drug-related queries over nine months in 2010 and 2011, Christin's research team found evidence of substantial manipulation of search results to promote unauthorized pharmacies.


http://www.cmu.edu/news/stories/archives/2011/august/aug11_onlinepharmacyhackers.html


UN Environmental Program Names EarthSpark International Implementing Partner for Haiti Initiative
Aug 2011

The UN Environmental Program (UNEP) named EarthSpark International as one of five original implementing partners in its multi-year multi-sector Côte Sud Initiative which aims to bring sustainable prosperity to Haiti’s Southern Peninsula.  In recognition of EarthSpark’s leading work in clean energy delivery, UNEP has asked EarthSpark to advise on the development of the Initative’s 5 Year Plan for the energy sector and is directly supporting EarthSpark’s work with funding and logistical support.  UNEP awarded EarthSpark $182,000 in grant funding and also delivered $80,000 to the UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS) for large capital purchases directed by EarthSpark.

EPP grad student, Dan Schnitzer is founder and Executive Director of EarthSpark International.  http://earthsparkinternational.org/blog/


A special collection of all the papers Lester Lave published in Risk Analysis, along with comments from a number of his colleagues.
Jul 2011

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/%28ISSN%291539-6924/homepage/special_issue__lester_lave.htm


Fischbeck says Shutting Down U.S. Nuclear Plants Would Have Daunting Effect
Jun 2011

"Turning off a single large nuclear power plant could require dozens of coal and gas-fired plants to ramp up production to make up the difference," said Paul Fischbeck, a professor of Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon. "These plants use fossil fuels, cost more to operate, and emit pollution that can lead to acid rain and ozone, and CO2, a greenhouse gas."

read more here:
http://www.cmu.edu/news/archive/2011/June/june17_nuclearplants.shtml


Blumstein discusses drop in crime
Jun 2011

The FBI has released year-over-year changes in the level of violent crimes in the United States. The details are surprising to many.  The report highlights an impressive 5.5 percent drop in the number of violent crimes in 2010. And a 2.8 percent decline in property crimes such as theft and burglary.  Both of these declines follow an impressive drop that occurred in 2009.  It's a two-year trend that contradicts the general consensus that crime rates rise during times of economic distress.  Media outlets, including the Associated Press and the New York Times, sought out expert criminologists such as EPP professor  Alfred Blumstein for possible explanations.  Blumstein is the J. Erik Jonsson University Professor of Urban Systems and Operations Research at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College.  "The recent drop in violent crime on a national scale is striking," said Blumstein, whose research over the past twenty years has focused on criminal justice phenomena and policy.  "For almost a decade prior to 2009, the national crime rate remained impressively flat," he says. "That made the large decline in 2009 particularly impressive and started many criminologists thinking about potential causes for the drop."  Blumstein notes that until further detailed analysis is conducted, all hypotheses into the rapid downward trend are purely speculation.  Most people's explanations are based on steadily changing phenomena like better policing or a better cultural climate.  What is needed, however, is some explanation for what could be causing the discontinuity from the flat trend to the sharp decline in 2009 and its reinforcement in 2010.  One notable event that occurred in 2009 that quickly comes to mind is the inauguration of Barack Obama, the first African-American president of the United States.  Blumstein notes that at the same time this particularly salient event occurred, there were also interesting changes in the 2009 arrest data.   He explained, "For murder, arrests of blacks went down by 2.7 percent while arrests of whites went up by 0.4 percent. A similar pattern exists for robbery and drug abuse offenses in 2009."  While Blumstein acknowledges these preliminary findings are sufficiently limited and certainly cannot prove an "Obama Effect," he feels they are consistent with one and warrant further investigation.  He also notes that if that effect prevails, it should show itself not only in crime statistics, but in domains such as school dropout and other areas.  "If we find the 'Obama Effect' to be a reality," he said, "it would represent the best news yet of movement in the many distressing racial disparities that continue to plague the nation."  Related Links: About Alfred Blumstein


Perrig's Phd Student Wins Best Thesis In CS In The World
Jun 2011

Bryan Parno, a recent PhD graduate in ECE, has won the 2010 Association for Computing Machinery Doctoral Dissertation award.  A student of EPP professor, Adrian Perrig, Bryan’s thesis is entitled, “Trust Extension as a Mechanism for Secure Code Execution on Commodity Computers.”  This is really a tremendous honor, since ACM only gives out a single doctoral dissertation award each year, and competing are all the theses in the broader area of computer science that have globally been completed that year.

Press release:
http://www.acm.org/press-room/news-releases/2011/dd-award-2010/
Link to Thesis:
http://sparrow.ece.cmu.edu/~parno/pubs/phd-thesis-parno.pdf


Wagner wins Best Paper Award
Jun 2011

EPP doctoral student, Sharon Wagner has been awarded the World Renewable Energy Congress (WREC) Best Paper Award within the topic Solar Thermal Applications.  Her paper, "Economic Implications of Thermal Energy Storage for Concentrated Solar Thermal Power" was recently presented at the WREC in Linköping.  In addition, Sharon's work has also been recommended for the consideration to be published in a WREC 2011 special issue in Renewable Energy.  Congratulations Sharon!


Robinson's work with Jet Exhaust Vapors Recognized
May 2011

EPP professor, Allen Robinson, argues that Jet exhaust vapors, when exposed to sunlight, produce a lot of fine particulate matter; over and beyond what is measured at the engine exit. This has obvious implications for future regulation of PM from aircrafts since it is currently regulated only at the engine exit.

Original Paper:  http://www.atmos-chem-phys-discuss.net/10/27893/2010/acpd-10-27893-2010.html

Feature Articles:
http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/05/airplane-exhaust-oil-toxins/
http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/74131/title/Idling_jets_pollute_more_than_thought_
http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2011/05/10/Jet-exhaust-sunlight-can-create-

Other Contributors include EPP professor, Neil Donahue and EPP graduate Student Tim Gordon.


Project Yele Competes for Seed Funding
May 2011

Engineering and public policy doctoral student Paul van der Boor will compete for more than $100,000 in seed funding in the final round of the Dell Social Innovation Competition from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Monday, May 16 at the University of Texas at Austin. The competition will be streamed live at http://bit.ly/eerr8N. Project Yele is one of five finalists from more than 1,400 entries submitted by college students in 85 countries. The project aims to open a community bazaar that uses a refurbished hydropower plant to provide space for 16 shop owners. The bazaar also will include access to refrigerators and clean drinking water, an area to buy and charge LED lights, and Internet access.  Good Luck Paul!


Lester Lave
May 2011

EPP/Tepper Professor Lester Lave died at his home on May 9, 2011.  Lester, one of he world’s leading applied economists, spent virtually his entire career at Carnegie Mellon.  Through his research and teaching he had a profound impact on the Department of Engineering and Public Policy.  His friends and colleagues in EPP miss him greatly.  


 


"Elevator speeches" inspired by Lester:


 


http://www.epp.cmu.edu/lester/Elevatorwithlester.pdf


 


Lester's EPP obituary can be found at:


 


http://www.epp.cmu.edu/lester/Lesterobit.pdf


 


Lester's CMU obituary can be found at:


 


http://www.cmu.edu/news/archive/2011/May/may9_lesterlaveobit.shtml


 


Lester's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette obituary can be found at:


 


http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11130/1145394-122-0.stm


EPP Researchers Recognized
May 2011

EPP Professor, Paulina Jaramillo served as advisor to EPP undergrads Anna Lenhart and Lauren Sittler, in a research project with 9 students from various colleges in Engineers Without Borders.  The group investigated the potential of biogas digesters and composting for campus (result: not a good idea).  The project was awarded 2nd place in the Sigma Xi competition and runner-up in the Steinbrenner competition for Meeting of the Minds. 
Congratulations for a job well done!


EPP Students Weigh Costs of Energy Supply Accidents
May 2011

A class of 24 engineering students in Carnegie Mellon University's departments of Engineering and Public Policy (EPP) and Social and Decision Sciences (SDS) recently completed a comprehensive analysis of accidents in the production and delivery of energy in the U.S. in the wake of the massive BP Gulf oil spill and gas pipeline explosions in Pennsylvania, California and Texas. 
http://www.cmu.edu/news/archive/2011/April/april26_energysupplycosts.shtml


Fischhoff's Work with the Intelligence Community Recognized
May 2011

EPP professor, Baruch Fischhoff, recently chaired a panel of behavioral scientists who discussed specific ways their field could help America’s top spies do a better job.  Learn more here:  http://articles.boston.com/2011-05-01/bostonglobe/29493741_1_intelligence-scientists-academic-research


Uppala wins Google Scholarship
Apr 2011

E&TIM student Deepthi Uppala has won a Google Anita Borg Scholarship.  In addition to the substantial monetary award, Deepthi will be attending a Scholars Retreat at the Googleplex in Mountain View, California later this summer. 
                                                                                     Congratulations Deepthi!


EPP Students Look to Reduce Printing on Campus
Apr 2011

iPads are out, Print Quotas are in

Tuesday, April 26th, 3:00 - 4:30, Porter Hall 125C

The number of pages printed in CMU computer clusters per year is increasing faster than the student population. CMU students print enough pages in the campus computer clusters every year to stretch from Pittsburgh to Cuba. Many of these pages are wasted-- an average student at the job fair has printed twice as many resumes as he or she will use. However, far more pages are printed on unrestricted printers operated by individual departments.  The students of the EPP Project Course have worked all semester to answer find the best ways to reduce computer printing on campus. Come to their mid-tem presentation Tuesday, March 26th at 3:00 pm to find out what they have found and to ask them "EPP questions".

Some results:


 





  • iPads are not a cost-effective way to reduce computer printing



  • 100% post-consumer paper is not a cost-effective way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.



  • Print quota and release stations should be installed on department printers (like the EPP student office)




EPP Professor Ed Rubin Featured on CMU Homepage
Apr 2011

http://www.cmu.edu/homepage/environment/2011/spring/golden-opportunity.shtml


American Physical Society Award goes to Granger Morgan
Apr 2011

2011 Joseph A. Burton Forum Award

Citation:
"For his public service and major contributions in the field of risk analysis and its application leading to increased public understanding of issues at the interface of physics and society."

The Joseph A. Burton Forum Award is to recognize outstanding contributions to the public understanding or resolution of issues involving the interface of physics and society. The award consists of $3,000, a certificate citing the contributions of the recipient, and an allowance for travel to the meeting of the Society at which the award is presented.

Granger will receive the award at the APS annual meeting in Anaheim, CA early next month.  He will also present the Joseph A. Burton Forum Award Talk, “How a Physics Education has Influenced Practice and Graduate Education in Technically-Focused Quantitative Policy Analysis.”

Congratulations Granger!


Morgan Receives Award
Apr 2011

EPP Department Head, Granger Morgan, has received the 2011 The Chester F. Carlson Award.  The award is presented annually to an individual innovator in engineering education who, by motivation and ability to reach beyond the accepted traditions, has made a significant contribution to the profession. The award is sponsored by Xerox Corporation.
                                                                            Congratulations Granger!


New Fellowship Announced
Apr 2011

We are delighted to announce the establishment of the Emerson and Elizabeth Pugh Fellowship in Engineering and Public Policy.  Income from this endowed fund will be used to help support Ph.D. students getting started on new and innovative research topics.Emerson Pugh holds a BS and PhD in Physics from Carnegie Mellon and had a long distinguished career with the IBM Corporation.  Elizabeth (Betsy) Pugh has been deeply involved in historic preservation in the Hudson River Valley and in several other settings.


Fischhoff discusses "The emotions of nuclear experts."
Apr 2011

EPP professor, Baruch Fischhoff aruges that a better understanding of the emotions felt by technical experts grappling with the crisis at Fukushima Daiichi can improve the industry's communication with the public.
http://www.thebulletin.org/web-edition/features/the-emotions-of-nuclear-experts


Qualifier Awards Announced
Apr 2011

Congratulations to this year's winners Stefan Schwietzke and Huimin Tan.


 


The Herbert L. Toor Award, earned by Stefan, recognizes outstanding research papers submitted for the Part A portion of the EPP Qualifying Exam.
New this year, the Robert W. Dunlap Award, earned by Huimin, recognizes outstanding solutions submitted for the Part B portion of the EPP Qualifying Exam.


Klima wins AGU award
Apr 2011

EPP Doctoral Candidate, Kelly Klima, has received an Outstanding Student Paper Award from The American Geophysical Union.  She presented her paper, Does It Make Sense to Modify Tropical Cyclones? A Decision-Analytic Assessment, this past fall at the AGU meeting in San Francisco.  Congratulations Kelly!


EPP grad students awarded fellowships
Apr 2011

EPP Grad Students Dena AstaAmy Wesolowski have been awarded NSF fellowships. Congratulations Dena and Amy!


New Report Urges US Intelligence Community To Improve Analyses Using Methods, Research From Behavioral, Social Sciences
Mar 2011

Led by CMU's Baruch Fischhoff, the National Research Council Committee Also Calls for Director of National Intelligence To Lead Initiative

PITTSBURGH—A new report from the National Research Council recommends that the U.S. intelligence community adopt methods, theories and findings from the behavioral and social sciences as a way to improve its analyses.  The report committee, chaired by Carnegie Mellon University's Baruch Fischhoff, also advises that the Director of National Intelligence should lead the initiative to make these approaches part of the intelligence community's analytical work, hiring and training, and collaborations.
     
"The social and behavioral sciences have long studied topics central to analysts' work, such as how people evaluate evidence and collaborate on difficult tasks," said Fischhoff, the Howard Heinz University Professor of Social and Decision Sciences and Engineering and Public Policy. "Our report shows how the community can take full advantage of that research — and of its dedicated analysts — by adopting an evidence-based approach to its own analytical methods.  We envision a community engaged in continual learning, both absorbing scientific research into the analytical process and evaluating its own performance."
     
According to Fischhoff, the report is designed to help the intelligence community answer critical questions about how to perform analyses in ways that are both relatively inexpensive and grounded in science, rather than intuition.  Those questions include:


 





  • How can we report out analyses so that they aren't oversold or undersold?  How can we evaluate the new methods as they are presented to us?  How can we tell if we're falling prey to groupthink?  How can we recruit and retain the most talented analysts, then let them realize their potential?  How can we adapt our methods, when the world keeps changing? How can we tell if our critics are relying on hindsight bias, or we really should have done better? How can we help analysts with very different backgrounds work together?




Kiron Skinner, associate professor of social and decision sciences at CMU, also participated on the National Research Council Committee.  Fischhoff, Skinner and other committee members held a public briefing to discuss the report from 10 a.m. to noon on March 28 at the 20 F Street Conference Center, 20 F Street, N.W., Washington, D.C.

The report was released along with a collection of individually authored papers titled "Intelligence Analysis: Behavioral and Social Scientific Foundations." Each chapter introduces readers to a fundamental behavioral or social science approach as it applies to the kinds of complex, uncertain problems facing intelligence analysis. The topics covered include analytic methods, group dynamics, individual decision making, intergroup relations, evaluation and communication. 
   
PDFs can be downloaded at Consensus Report: http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=13040






New Report Urges US Intelligence Community To Improve Analyses
Mar 2011

A new report from the National Research Council recommends that the U.S. intelligence community adopt methods, theories and findings from the behavioral and social sciences as a way to improve its analyses.  The report committee, chaired by EPP Professor Baruch Fischhoff, also advises that the Director of National Intelligence should lead the initiative to make these approaches part of the intelligence community's analytical work, hiring and training, and collaborations.
http://www.cmu.edu/news/archive/2011/March/march28_intelligenceanalyses.shtml


PRESIDENT COHON WINS NATIONAL ENGINEERING AWARD
Mar 2011

PRESIDENT COHON WINS NATIONAL ENGINEERING AWARD
President Jared L. Cohon has been named the 2011 recipient of the National Engineering Award from the American Association of Engineering Societies. The award recognizes inspirational leadership and tireless devotion to the improvement of engineering education and to the advancement of the engineering profession.
http://www.pittsburghurbanmedia.com/Carnegie-Mellon-President-Jared-Cohon-Wins-National-Engineering-Award/


Fischhoff says Nuclear Industry Must Change the way it Communicates
Mar 2011

The earthquake and tsunami in Japan have forced an international spotlight on nuclear energy and its risks to society.  Conflicting reports and leadership responses about what exactly is going on with Japan's nuclear reactors have cast a cloud of uncertainty over the situation.  EPP professor Baruch Fischhoff, a world-renowned risk communication expert at Carnegie Mellon University, has worked on nuclear power issues intermittently since the 1970s.  "I have met many dedicated, talented, hard-working individuals in the nuclear energy industry," he said.  "However, as an entity, the industry does a terrible job of communicating with the general public — both in hearing its concerns and conveying credible responses."  To some extent, he says, it reflects a feeling that the industry can proceed without public consent — or the belief that the public is too irrational to sustain a dialogue.  "These beliefs are not supported by the evidence," he said.  Back in February 2009, Fischhoff wrote a column encouraging the industry's leaders to overcome their intuitive psychological theories about the public.  He urged them to engage in a disciplined communication strategy supported by behavioral science.  "Doing so will increase its chance of getting a fair hearing in the court of public opinion," he said, "and of being a trusted partner in crises."  In his opinion piece, Fischhoff outlined eight principles the industry should follow to gain the public's acceptance and trust — and avoid what is currently happening in Japan.


 


Among his recommendations? Require senior management to:


 





  • commit to treating communication as a strategic activity



  • assume stewardship over the life cycle of its technology



  • press for industry-wide discipline



  • separate public affairs communications from public health communications, and



  • staff its public health communications adequately




Aquion Energy goes live with website
Mar 2011

http://www.aquionenergy.com/


Origins


In 2007 Dr. Jay Whitacre used R&D funding from Carnegie Mellon University to start a project aimed at discovering novel ultra low cost electrochemical couples for the stationary electricity storage application. Whitacre observed that most advanced electrochemical storage systems target mobile applications, where size and weight are key value drivers. He surmised that for stationary applications, lower energy density is acceptable if the total cost of implementation is disruptively low and the usable device lifetime is extremely long. In the spring of 2008, Whitacre had promising results that led him to write a patent application and contact David Wells of Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, who had cultivated an ongoing dialog with Whitacre. Wells, Whitacre, and KPCB senior partner Bill Joy subsequently worked to found a venture called 44 Tech Inc, which licensed from CMU exclusive rights to the core invention. Fundamental R&D work then continued as an incubation at CMU under a sponsored research agreement.


Moving Out of the Lab


In the spring of 2009, Whitacre’s lab results had demonstrated commercial potential. 44 Tech hired its first employees, Ted Wiley and intern Ed Lynch Bell, and brought on board KPCB operating partner Jan van Dokkum as an interim CEO. In the fall of 2009, 44 Tech raised a round of venture funding and won a substantial Department of Energy grant. In January 2010, the company was renamed Aquion Energy, moved into its R&D headquarters in Pittsburgh, and began building a team to commercialize the technology.  A key first hire was Duracell veteran Don Humpreys as VP of Manufacturing. Humphreys designed the low cost, high-throughput manufacturing methodology now being proven in PIttsburgh.

Under the leadership of CEO Scott Pearson, Aquion is producing modules that can be assembled into economically compelling electricity storage systems from 5kW household size to 100MW electric grid size. Mass manufacturing will start with our pilot line in late spring 2011 and the first commercial customer deliveries will begin in the early fall of 2011. Our core innovations enable us to produce world leading cycle and calendar life performance in a materials system paradigm that is reliable, affordable and sustainable, delivering stationary electricity storage systems with a reasonable acquisition cost and a compelling lifetime cost of ownership across a wide range of applications.


Rubin makes recommendations as member of CA CCS Panel
Mar 2011

Edward S. Rubin, EPP and Mech E Professor and Alumni Professor of Environmental Engineering and Science is helping to guide California's policy on the long-term geologic storage of carbon dioxide to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Rubin is a member of the California Carbon Capture and Storage Review Panel, which recommended that California agencies recognize regulated carbon capture and storage as a measure that can safely and effectively reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and other facilities in the state. "If done right, carbon capture and storage can be a valuable and cost-effective addition to the set of measures available to California and the nation to deal with the urgency of the climate change problem," Rubin said. Read more on the Carnegie Mellon homepage archive.


EPP Researchers Suggest Standards for Low-Carbon Fuels
Feb 2011

EPP researchers Kimberley Mullins, Aranya Venkatesh, W. Michael Griffin, Paulina Jaramillo and H. Scott Matthews have found that ignoring uncertainty in greenhouse gas emissions from fuels could mean the difference between meeting or not meeting omissions reduction targets in policies like low-carbon fuel standards.
http://www.cmu.edu/news/archive/2011/February/feb2_lowcarbonfuelstandards.shtml


Perrig Receives 2010 Benjamin Richard Teare Teaching Award
Feb 2011

EPP professor Adrian Perrig has been selected by the 2010 CIT Faculty Awards Committee as a joint recipient (with Prof. Philip LeDuc of Mechanical Engineering) of the 2010 Benjamin Richard Teare Teaching Award from the College of Engineering.  A description of the award is available at http://www.cit.cmu.edu/faculty_staff/faculty_awards/teare.html .


New Carnegie Mellon Study Finds Diesel Vehicles a Better Value
Feb 2011

WASHINGTON—A new Carnegie Mellon University study, released today at the Washington Auto Show, reveals that despite the sticker shock associated with diesel-engine vehicles, they are a better value compared to vehicles with gasoline engines because of their lower operating costs and higher resale value over time. 
The study by researchers at CMU's Tepper School of Business, underwritten by Bosch, noted diesel's better fuel efficiency and a residual value up to 30 percent higher than traditional port-fuel injection (PFI) gasoline-powered vehicles. 
"It's been generally known that diesel vehicles typically post lower operating costs because of their increased fuel economy," said EPP professor Lester Lave, University Professor and Higgins Professor of Economics at CMU's Tepper School of Business. "But that's only one element of the equation. Our study considered a vehicle's initial price and resale value along with other operating and maintenance costs."


Deanna Matthews Receives Award
Feb 2011

EPP Professor Deanna Matthews has received a 2010 IBM Smarter Planet Innovation Faculty Award.


Cohon Applauds Obama's Investment in Research
Jan 2011

CMU president Jared L. Cohon has praised U.S. President Barack Obama’s plan “to win the future” by out-innovating, out-educating and out-building the rest of the world, stating that America’s universities are up to the challenge.  “While the U.S. faces intense competition in the global economy, our country has one asset that no other nation has yet duplicated: the capacity of university-based research to launch high-growth companies,” Cohon said. “As a pioneer in computer science, robotics, cybersecurity and other high-tech fields, Carnegie Mellon is at the forefront of job creation through innovation.  “We support continued investment in biomedical research, information technology and clean energy technology because we know they are proven catalysts for using public investment and converting knowledge, innovation, and expertise into start-ups, entrepreneurship, economic renewal and job growth.”