ISE News and Events

Professor John T. Wen has been named the Russell Sage Professor and head of the Department of Electrical, Computer, and Systems Engineering (ECSE) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He will begin his new roles on Jan. 1, 2019.
Ana Duque Convocation 2018
Ana Gabriela Duque (Class of 2020) was recently received the Founders Award of Excellence. The Founders Award of Excellence was established in 1994 to honor students who embody qualities of creativity, discovery, leadership, and the values of pride and responsibility at Rensselaer.
Student Leadership Boards
This year IISE created 4 pilot student leadership boards (shadow boards): Data, Analytics & Information Systems Lean Logistics & Supply Chain Work Systems  Each board will consist of eight student board members (president, vice-president, secretary and five directors). This student leadership board will take specific roles and responsibilities to help ensure the designated division achieves its strategic goals.
Thomas Sharkey, Associate Professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISE), will lead an NSF-funded effort to integrate Operations Research (OR), public policy, and social science methods to plan investments into infrastructure in the Arctic in a way that simultaneously improves emergency response capabilities, such as search and rescue and oil spill response, and benefits the local Arctic communities where the infrastructure is built and maintained.
Since becoming Professor Emeritus, Tom Willemain resumed full-time work as Senior VP/Research at his company, Smart Software, Inc. He has also taken up writing. His memoir "Working on the Dark Side of the Moon: Life Inside the National Security Agency" (see was published in 2017.

Institute News

Materials and mechanical scientists are using machine learning to rapidly vet combinations of elements that could be used in next-generation environmental barrier coatings needed to protect vehicles traveling in the extreme conditions of aerospace and space environments. The project, led by researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, is supported by the National Science Foundation.
Faculty from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute served as experts in an exchange of information about developments in the field of sustainable energy, large-scale environmental change, and innovative and interdisciplinary research into energy storage and smart systems in the built environment on a recent visit by two members of the U.S. Congress.
In the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing protocols did not slow Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute students Wyatt Delans and Jake Szottfried down when they needed to design and develop code for a robotic system capable of assembling a model trophy for a class project. Using new simulation and virtual reality lab capabilities at the university, they were able to design most of the project in their dorm rooms and then test it in a virtual environment before physically manufacturing it in the Manufacturing Innovation Learning Lab (MILL) at Rensselaer.
TROY, N.Y. — Researchers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute will study whether body heat, or even humidity from a person’s breath, for instance, may impact the effectiveness of the porous fibers that are used to make protective technologies, like face masks. With the support of a National Science Foundation grant, the team will use its expertise in fluid and solid mechanics to study the mechanical performance of fibrous materials when they are exposed to warm temperatures and humidity.
TROY, N.Y. — A novel experiment aimed at studying the mechanics of amyloid fibrils — a type of protein aggregation associated with diseases like diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s — started today aboard the International Space Station (ISS), led by a team at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.