News

A three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Energy will be used to fund fundamental research into materials, work that could have implications for technologies such as data storage, superconductors, fuel cells, and electrical power plants. MSI PI Rafael Fernandes (Physics and Astronomy) is a member of the new Center for Quantum Materials, which is an interdisciplinary center that will study complex oxides.
On Wednesday, November 2, 2016, from 6am - 4pm CDT, MSI staff will perform scheduled maintenance and upgrades to the network and various MSI systems. Please note that the Tier 2 storage will be unavailable for much of the day while we update that system.  November maintenance will affect the following systems:
Long-time MSI PI Sean Garrick, a professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, is the new Faculty Development Fellow for the Institute of Diversity, Equity, and Advocacy (IDEA) at the University of Minnesota.
Professor Kelvin Lim (Psychiatry) is featured in the U’s Fall 2016 Driven to Discover campaign. Professor Lim is part of the “End Addiction” section of the campaign. He uses MSI resources for analysis of fMRI and MRI data as part of multiple projects to examine brain structure, connections, and function in brain disorders.
Associate Professor Yuqing Ren, an MSI PI from the Department of Information and Decision Sciences, has received a $919,979 grant from the National Science Foundation to develop and test a computational theory of online communities. Professor Ren’s collaborators on the grant are from Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Michigan.
MSI PIs Chad Myers, an associate professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, and Carol Lange, a professor at the Masonic Cancer Center, are on the interdisciplinary team that has won one of the two Grand Prizes in the National Cancer Institute’s Up for a Challenge (U4C) Breast Cancer Challenge Award.
MSI PI Erin Carlson (Chemistry) has been selected to receive a 2017 Rising Star Award from the American Chemical Society Women Chemists Committee. This award recognizes early- to mid-career women chemists. An article about Professor Carlson’s work appears on the chemistry department’s website.
Regents Professor Vipin Kumar (Computer Science and Engineering) is featured in the U’s Fall 2016 Driven to Discover campaign. Professor Kumar is part of the “Abolish Hunger” section of the campaign. He uses MSI’s supercomputers for data-mining projects in climate science, earth science, and bioinformatics.
MSI PI Laura Gagliardi, a professor in the Department of Chemistry, has been elected to be a Fellow of the American Physical Society. This award recognizes Professor Gagliardi's groundbreaking work in electronic-structure methods. An article about this award appears on the chemistry department's website.
MSI PI Vipin Kumar, a Regents Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, has been named to receive the Sidney Fernbach Memorial Award from the IEEE Computer Society. Professor Kumar is being recognized for foundational work on understanding scalability, and highly scalable algorithms for graph partitioning, sparse linear systems, and data mining.
MSI PI Craig Packer, who is a world-renowned expert on lions, was interviewed recently by National Geographic’s Cat Watch blog. Professor Packer is a faculty member of the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, and is the director of the University of Minnesota Lion Center in the College of Biological Sciences.
Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) has posted a conversation with MSI PI Peter Sorensen, a professor in the Department of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology and member of the Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center. Professor Sorensen spoke at the annual statewide conference on invasive species in early October. His presentation concerned setting aside “freshwater preserves” or “stewardship areas” in lakes and rivers to protect their ecosystems.
Assistant Professor Candice Hirsch (Agronomy and Plant Genetics) is featured in the U’s Fall 2016 Driven to Discover campaign. Professor Hirsch is part of the “Abolish Hunger” section of the campaign. She uses MSI resources in studies of genotypic and phenotypic variations that exist in maize (corn), with the ultimate goal of improving maize as a crop.
Two MSI PIs, Professor Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos (Computer Science and Engineering) and Professor Nathan Springer (Plant Biology) have been named McKnight Presidential Endowed Professors by the University of Minnesota. This is one of the University’s highest honors.
MSI PI Jason Hill, an associate professor in the Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering and a Fellow of the Institute on the Environment, led research published in the journal Energy Policy that shows a “fuel market rebound effect” from the use of biofuels, especially ethanol. This effect is so strong that emissions can actually increase with the use of ethanol.
MSI PI Eric Newman, a professor in the Department of Neuroscience, and his colleagues have published a paper showing that glial cells have functions in information processing and signaling. Previously, they were thought to have only “housekeeping” functions. This research was the cover story in a recent issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.
Assistant Professor Jed Elison (Institute of Child Development) is featured in the U’s Fall 2016 Driven to Discover campaign. Professor Elison is part of the “Close the Opportunity Gap” section of the campaign. He is studying the development of infants’ and childrens’ brains and uses MSI resources for MRI analysis.
Associate Professor David Masopust, an MSI PI in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, has been named one of the first group of Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Faculty Scholars.
Fifteen of the 29 Grand Challenges Research grants announced by the University of Minnesota on September 29 are being led by MSI Principal Investigators. These grants are a new initiative to encourage interdisciplinary collaborations that will address critical challenges facing the state and the world. They are part of the U’s overall strategic plan, Driving Tomorrow. There are five areas of focus, four of which include projects headed by MSI PIs.
MSI PI Mo Li, an associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and members of his research group have succeeded in measuring the torque (twisting force) that is generated by light on a silicon chip. Light’s torque comes from the spin angular momentum of photons. This research is on a smaller scale than previous such measurements and has implications for such devices as miniaturized gyroscopes and torsional sensors.