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Engineering: Current Students


NASA Microgravity University: Archives: 2008, Project, Members and Advisors

Our Project:

Effects of 0G or 1/6G on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) data accuracy

The UNL team is one of 10 college and university teams chosen to participate in NASA's Microgravity University--Systems Engineering Educational Discovery.  NASA has identified ongoing projects related to systems engineering and reduced gravity, and the UNL team will work on research concerning the "effects of 0G or 1/6G on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) data accuracy."  The team will test the effects of 1/6G and/or 0G on the read rate/accuracy of RFID capabilities of items contained in cargo transfer bags (CTBs) via portable readers, as well as the accuracy of read rates of CTBs and tagged items translating through a vehicle using stationary readers.  NASA is currently investigating Surface Acoustic Wave RFID technology to augment its current barcode-based inventory system, but no testing has yet been performed in a reduced gravity environment.

The overall experience, which begins in January and culminates in the reduced gravity flight in April, will feature hands-on investigational design, test operations, and educational/public outreach activities. These student investigations will follow the same stringent guidelines governing NASA research and test flights, allowing the students to gain insight into NASA and its programs.

During the project, the team and a NASA mentor will collaborate on the flight experiment. Several videoconferences will be conducted with NASA and other engineering organizations concerning the research. 

Each investigation is scheduled for two flights if conditions permit, to replicate the investigation and correct any problems encountered during the first flight.

NASA creates the reduced gravity environment through specialized aircraft, which includes flying a series of parabolic maneuvers, similar to a roller coaster ride. Normal missions consist of approximately 1.7 flight hours and are flown over the Gulf of Mexico.

Members and Advisors:

Dustin Dam
Dustin Dam
Hometown: Sidney, Neb.

Dustin Dam
Senior, Electrical Engineering

Dustin is an electrical engineering major who is pursuing a minor in mathematics. He became interested in Microgravity University because of his co-op experience at Jacobs Engineering (Engineering and Science Contract Group) through NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. There, he became flight-certified VBR for STS-118, provided STS-117 mission support for WIS GFE, tested VBR hardware and supported flight certification of the A31p Docking Station. He has also been a network technician for Cabela's Inc. in Sidney, Neb.

Dustin belongs to the UNL chapter of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, is chair of the Student Advisory Council and was a bass guitarist for the Scarlet and Cream Singers.

Dustin Dam
Olga Dzenis
Senior, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
Hometown: Lincoln, Neb.

Olga Dzenis
Senior, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Olga is a chemical engineering major with a wealth of research experience. At the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Md., she investigated the interactions between diesel and gasoline contaminants and household pipe materials. At the Keck Graduate Institute of Applied Life Sciences in Claremont, Calif., Olga studied DNA analysis using microfluidics and electrowetting techniques. She also participated in UNL's UCARE program, which allows undergraduates to assist with faculty research. As part of her UCARE project, Olga analyzed research literature on DNA extractions and helped develop an automated method for extracting DNA from fungus. Her research has been published in the International Journal of Self-Propagating High-Temperature Synthesis and in Khimicheskaya Fizika.

An honors student, Olga has earned various academic awards and scholarships. She is an officer in UNL's chapter of American Institute of Chemical Engineers, a member of the International Association for the Technical Exchange of Students and was a Neihardt Hall floor president and council treasurer. Olga also is fluent in Russian.

Steven Brogan
Stephen Brogan
Hometown:

West Point, NE

 

Stephen Brogan
Senior, Electrical Engineering

An honors student and Regents scholarship recipient, Stephen is pursuing a degree in electrical engineering. He is an intern for Patrick Engineering in Lisle, Ill., where he analyzes electrical one-line and riser diagrams to input data into SKM Arc-Flash, generates circuit breaker and fuse coordination studies and reports for clients, and revises AutoCAD drawings. Prior to this internship, Stephen was a lab technician in the University of Nebraska Controls Lab.

He is involved in a multitude of activities: intramural sports, Campus Crusade for Christ, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and Phi Sigma Pi. He also coordinates after-school activities at Goodrich Middle School.

Dustin Dam
Tyler Golberg
Hometown:

Alexandria, Minn.

Tyler Goldberg
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Tyler is majoring in mechanical engineering. He has held a variety of internships and co-ops: NASA in Houston, Goodyear in Lincoln, Neb., Jacobs ESCG in Houston, Square D in Lincoln, ASME in Grand Forks, N.D., and GCI in Garfield, Minn.

He is a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and Alpha Tau Omega. Tyler holds various academic awards: Fundamental Engineering certification, Dean's List, Presidential Scholarship Award and Top GPA for his ATO pledge class. He also was nominated for the college's Outstanding Service Award.

Dustin Dam
Lee Redden
Hometown:

Kearney, Neb.

 

Lee Redden
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Lee is studying mechanical engineering and pursuing minors in physics and communications. During a summer internship with Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, Lee implemented testing of paint thickness, a new size of pre-packaged self-mixing adhesive, and researched a new labeling and marking system. He also has worked for Royal Plastic in Minden, Neb., and Kearney Yamaha in Kearney, Neb.

With a 3.97 GPA, Lee has won many scholarships and academic honors. He is an Eagle Scout, belongs to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, and volunteers with the Lincoln Action Program.

Dustin Dam
Dana Valish
Hometown:

Columbus, Neb.

 

Dana Valish
Sophomore, Mechanical Engineering

Dana is pursuing a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering. He has already earned his B.A. in business administration from UNL. Dana is a financial analyst for Time Warner Cable in Lincoln, Neb., where he works with departments to guarantee accurate financial and statistical engineering, and helps with budget preparation, reporting and analysis.

Advisors:


Lance Perez
Lance Perez
Associate Dean
Erik Jones

Important Dates

Flight Week: May 30 - June 7, 2014

2014 Contacts