Engineering

Joseph Traub (GSAS'59) was honored for his contributions to computer science.

When Joseph Traub joined Columbia’s Engineering School in 1979, it had a single computer, only three tenured faculty members teaching computer science and huge demand for the classes—but no computer science department.

Professor Cathy Popkin discovered Russian literature in the 1970s. Bored with her data entry job, she went shopping for books—the fatter the better—to keep herself entertained at work. What she found was Dostoevsky.

The figure above is of the weather-in-a-tank apparatus, which Tiffany Shaw (pictured at right) uses to demonstrate atmospheric phenomena such as fronts, convection, the general circulation of the atmosphere, flow over a barrier and the flow in a hurricane. In the experiment illustrated here, Shaw has combined the two main ingredients that control the general circulation of the atmosphere, namely Earth’s rotation and differential heating (warm equator, cold pole). The ice-water bath at the center mimics Earth's 'pole' and the water outside is at room temperature with the outermost region mimicking the warm 'equator.’ The tank is slowly rotating creating a laboratory analog of the circulation in the tropical atmosphere. The purple dye shows the movement of water at the bottom of the tank in a southwest direction toward the ‘equator,’ which is consistent with the earth's trade winds. The green dye illustrates the movement of water in the interior, which forms an annular pattern. The dots on the surface show the movement of surface water, which rotates in a counter-clockwise direction and moves faster toward the pole.

Tiffany Shaw, assistant professor of applied mathematics, has been awarded a Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering, a prestigious honor given to a group of the most promising and innovative researchers who are at the beginning stages of their careers.

Alvin E. Roth, who graduated from Columbia Engineering in 1971 and is currently the George Gund Professor of Economics and Business Administration at Harvard, was awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize in Economics for his pioneering work in the practical design of market institutions.

Research on volcanic eruptions and on the structure of abstract graphs have resulted in two Columbia professors being named MacArthur Fellows, the “genius” awards given to individuals who have shown “extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits.”

The Columbia Engineering methodology enables carbon footprinting and hotspot analysis across thousands of products simultaneously. Shown here are examples of carbon intensities (i.e. total GHG by weight; broken down to stages of the supply chain) for individual products as well as rollup views of brands and countries.

Researchers at Columbia Engineering have developed a new software that can simultaneously calculate the carbon footprints of thousands of products faster than ever before.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg at a July 30 news conference announcing the new Institute for Data Sciences and Engineering, which is partly funded by the city Image credit: Eileen Barroso/Columbia University

Mayor Michael Bloomberg, his economic development team and a host of local elected officials came to the Northwest Corner Building on July 30 to announce their support for Columbia's new Institute for Data Sciences and Engineering.

Computer Science Professor Steven M. Bellovin has been appointed Chief Technologist by Federal Trade Commission Chairman Jon Leibowitz. His was one of four appointments announced today.

The Insertable Robotic Effector Platform in action

A collaboration between Columbia Professors Peter Allen (Computer Science, Columbia Engineering), Nabil Simaan (formerly Mechanical Engineering at Columbia, now at Vanderbilt) and Dennis Fowler (Surgery, Columbia University Medical Center) has resulted in an innovative new approach to mini

Professor Dimitris Anastassiou stands next to a high-performance computer cluster that was instrumental for his latest research in cancer biology. Image credit: Eileen Barroso/Columbia University

People often say that a book changed their lives—for some it might be "To Kill a Mockingbird," for others it’s Plato's "The Republic." For Dimitris Anastassiou, it was a biology textbook.

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