Alpha Foundation to fund additional research in coal mine fires

Working in partnership with Ali Rangwala, professor of fire protection engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Akkerman was awarded a grant from the Alpha Foundation in 2014 to create a knowledgebase and computational model capable of quantifying the probability and associated hazards of spontaneous ignition, fire and explosion. Akkerman and Rangwala went on to develop the Dust and Gas Explosion Model, or D-GEM, a joint analytical and computational platform quantifying mining fire hazards, namely, the probability of spontaneous ignition, the evolution of a flame front and the likelihood of a deflagration-to-detonation transition in the presence of combustible dust.

WVU team selected to compete in EcoCAR Mobility Challenge

Team leads and the advisors for EcoCar include (front row, from left) Joshua Strogen (engineering manager), Nikola Janevski (CAV co-lead), Haleigh Fields (communications manager), Curtis Stapleton (controls/modeling lead), Benton Morris (project manager); back row: Vinod Kulathumani (CAV faculty advisor), Thomas Harris (propulsion systems/modeling lead), Andrew Nix (lead faculty advisor), Zach Purdy (mechanical team lead), Scott Wayne (co-faculty advisor) and Priyash Misra (CAV lead).

WVU conference promotes energy innovators working on ‘some of the world’s most challenging problems’

Morgantown, W.Va. - A gathering of innovative startup companies will promote businesses and projects that reduce building energy costs by up to 40 percent while maintaining comfort in every room; convert waste materials to energy and useful products; adapt the Internet of Things concepts for smarter manufacturing and a more dependable electric grid. 

These are just a few of the ideas being pitched tomorrow and Wednesday (Oct. 23-24) to investors and industry partners at the seventh TransTech Energy Business Development Conference at the Hilton Garden Inn in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania.

Model to predict greenhouse gases, carbon storage in coastal wetlands under changing conditions developed at WVU

Omar Abdul-Aziz, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, and Khandker S. Ishtiaq, a postdoctoral fellow, have developed the model, which was published in a recent edition of the American Geophysical Union’s “Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeoscience.”

Coastal wetlands play an important role in mitigating the effects of GHGs by efficiently removing atmospheric carbon. However, climate change mitigation benefits have to be achieved through conservation and restoration of coastal wetlands.

WVU mining professor earns recognition from SME

For the second time, Huang was selected as a distinguished speaker for SME’s Henry Krumb Lecture Series. The program is offered to SME sections to enhance their appreciation and understanding of important new methods and technologies by bringing outstanding speakers to local sections. Lecturers are selected from the professionals who present technical papers at the SME Annual Conference and Expo. Only 10 are selected for the honor annually out of more than 800 professionals.

WVU advances technology and transparency to shale gas in new MSEEL site

MORGANTOWN, W.Va.— Improving shale energy productivity and reducing the environmental footprint of the natural gas industry are the goals of a West Virginia University partnership at a second Marcellus Shale Energy and Environmental Lab to be located in western Monongalia County. 

WVU researchers from multidisciplinary departments, as well as undergraduate and graduate students, will use the advanced models they develop for this project, continuing to address complex technical, environmental and social issues surrounding unconventional energy development. The researchers will use best practices in environmentally responsible shale development as they undertake subsurface scientific investigations.

WVU awarded MSHA grant to study mine emergency prevention, preparedness

Joshua Brady, associate director of mining extension, and Eduardo Sosa, research associate professor in mechanical and aerospace engineering, were awarded more than $52,000 for one year to provide miners with hands-on, realistic training on how to handle an explosion or fire in a mine.

“Miners may be the at the front line of an emergency involving fire, so they should know how to react as first responders and provide the first attempt to extinguish it,” Sosa said. “They may be trapped between the fire and the emergency exits, and may also have limited visibility due to the presence of smoke, so knowing how to react under low visibility and where they go is essential to stay alive.”