At Washington State University, scientists are harnessing the power of connectivity and data crunching to help the elderly stay in their homes longer, improve city air quality and traffic flow and even detect harmful bacteria with an iPhone.
WSU is one of six founding partners in Urbanova, a smart technology proving ground in the heart of Spokane. WSU scientists are working with researchers from Verizon Smart Communities, Gallup, Avista, the city of Spokane and other partners in Urbanova to come up with new ways of using smart technology to solve a variety of challenges facing cities across the country.
For example, the Smart and Connected Streetlights Pilot project enables the intelligent management and control of the streetlights in Spokane’s university district using a smart, connected sensor network. The pilot also features a human‑scale urban air quality R&D component, measuring environmental factors to improve understanding of pollution and health in a community.
- Kim Zentz, engineering and technology management, 509‑358-2030, firstname.lastname@example.org
To speed robotic advancements that help farmers grow food with fewer resources, scientists at Washington State University and Australia’s University Technology Sydney have partnered to form the new Joint Center for Agricultural Robotics. Manoj Karkee, an associate professor of biological systems engineering, is the co‑director of the center. Karkee was also named a 2019 pioneer in AI and the Internet of Things by Connected World Magazine for his work creating robots that help farmers and the farming industry grow and harvest their fruits and vegetables more safely and efficiently.
- Manoj Karkee, biological systems engineering, 509‑786‑9208, email@example.com
Researchers at Washington State University’s College of Nursing, School of Electrical Engineering, and Department of Apparel, Merchandising, Design & Textiles have developed a wearable microelectronic system to sense fluid volume inside a diaper and automatically record it via a base station.
Developing software tools to help power grid operators make good decisions in major emergencies like hurricanes or cyberattacks, is the focus of Washington State University researchers supported by a $1.4 million National Science Foundation grant.
- Anurag Srivastava, electrical engineering and computer science, 509‑335‑2348, firstname.lastname@example.org
A research team led by WSU scientists has developed a computer model to manage the movement of automated vehicles through signal-free intersections. Their model relies on communications between automated vehicles to create consensus on how to proceed through intersections. Their control system can reduce travel times on intersections by 43%-70%.
- Ali Hajbabaie, civil and environmental engineering, 509‑335‑7805, email@example.com
An elder care robot created by WSU scientists could eventually help those with dementia and other limitations continue to live independently in their own homes.
- Diane Cook, electrical engineering and computer science, 509‑335‑4985, firstname.lastname@example.org
A 3D‑printed glucose biosensor for use in wearable monitors has been created by Washington State University researchers. The work could lead to improved glucose monitors for millions of people who suffer from diabetes.
- Arda Gozen, mechanical and materials engineering, 509‑335‑3214, email@example.com
Hassan Ghasemzadeh, assistant professor in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, received a $516,000 National Science Foundation grant to improve wearable‑based health monitoring technology. The grant will support Ghasemzadeh as he researches significant challenges with wearable technologies that often prove successful in the lab but don’t work well in real‑world settings.
- Hassan Ghasemzadeh, electrical engineering and computer science, 509‑335‑8260, firstname.lastname@example.org
Washington State University researchers have developed a low‑cost, portable laboratory on a phone that works nearly as well as clinical laboratories to detect common viral and bacterial infections. The work could lead to faster and lower‑cost lab results for fast‑moving viral and bacterial epidemics, especially in rural or lower‑resource regions where laboratory equipment and medical personnel are sometimes not readily available.
- Lei Li, mechanical and materials engineering, 509‑335‑4034, email@example.com
An app being developed by WSU researchers provides notifications to people if the air quality outside is harmful to them. The Cardiopulmonary Events from Smoke Estimator (CENSE) will evaluate smoke particulate pollution information and convert it into air quality forecasts for medical condition specific warnings, and deliver these warning to caregivers and patients in high‑risk populations.
- Joseph Vaughan, civil and environmental engineering, 509‑335‑2832, firstname.lastname@example.org
Washington State University researchers are developing sensors that will provide better measurement, monitoring and management of groundwater resources. Funded by a $233,182 grant from the U.K. Department for International Development, the sensors cost less than $20 and are built solely from components that can be purchased at any hardware store.
- Sasha Richey, civil and environmental engineering, 509‑335‑1691, email@example.com