Office of Research News

Six receive Distinguished Scholar Award

Tue, 4th April, 2017

The Distinguished Scholar Award, established in 1978, recognizes exceptional scholarly accomplishments by senior professors who have compiled a substantial body of research, as well as younger faculty members who have demonstrated great scholarly potential. The 2017 honorees are:

  • Leonard J. Brillson, professor and Center for Materials Research Scholar, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, College of Engineering, and Department of Physics, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Laura M. Justice, Education and Human Ecology Distinguished Professor, Department of Educational Studies, College of Education and Human Ecology
  • Michael V. Knopp, The Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation Chair for Clinical Research, Department of Radiology, College of Medicine
  • William S. Marras, The Honda Chair in Transportation, Professor in Integrated Systems Engineering, Department of Integrated Systems Engineering, College of Engineering
  • Marc H. Pinsonneault, professor, Department of Astronomy, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Claudia Turro, Dow Professorship in Chemistry, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, College of Arts and Sciences

Recipients are nominated by their departments and chosen by a committee of senior faculty, including past award recipients. Distinguished Scholars receive an honorarium and a research grant to be used over the next three years. The award is supported by the Office of Research.

Previous Winners

Category : Featured Articles / Office of Research

More than 140 researchers honored at faculty recognition program

Mon, 27th March, 2017

President Michael Drake and Senior Vice President for Research Caroline Whitacre hosted a Faculty Recognition Program on March 27, 2017, honoring Ohio State faculty members who received national or international awards during the period 2016-2017. Faculty members whose achievements reached outside or across academic disciplines were also recognized.

Among the honorees were winners of the National Science Foundation’s Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award, Fulbright Scholars, Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and Fellows of the National Academy of Inventors.

See the full list of honorees.

View photos from the event.

2016 Honorees
2013-2015 Honorees


Category : Featured Articles / Office of Research

Battelle Endowment funds five science/technology projects

Fri, 24th March, 2017

The Battelle Engineering, Technology and Human Affairs (BETHA) Endowment annual grant competition supports projects that examine the complex relationship between science and technology on society and cultural issues. Thirty-three proposals were submitted for the 2017 competition, of which five projects were selected for funding.

Assessing Trustworthiness in Social Media
Marie-Catherine de Marneffe, PhD
Department of Linguistics
College of Arts and Sciences

The rise of social media has created an information flood, but which information can be trusted?  Factors including exact language used and the credibility of the source impact the veridicality of a statement. This project uses the analysis of veridicality and trustworthiness in social media as a gateway to engage students in linguistics and computer science. A course module will be developed to include introductory linguistics and programming assignments, culminating in an interactive demo that assesses the credibility of social media accounts and rates the veridicality of claims in social media.

Using Technology to Support Communication: Training Parent and Teacher Buy-in
Allison Bean Ellawadi, PhD
Department of Speech and Hearing Science
College of Arts and Sciences

Approximately one percent of the population in the United States is unable to communicate effectively using spoken language. Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) devices enable these individuals to communicate. Smart phone and tablet apps enable those devices to function as AAC devices, acting as the “voice” of an individual. Although the use of smart phones and tablets as AAC devices has increased awareness of and access to AAC, these devices continue to be abandoned/rejected. This project will investigate the impact of teacher and parent buy-in training on AAC use in school-age AAC users.

MAJI MARWA: Sustainable and Resilient Tanzania Community
Michael Hagenberger, PhD
Department of Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering
College of Engineering

The Village of Marwa in rural Tanzania, with an estimated population of 5,000 – 7,000, is located approximately ten kilometers from the Pangani River, a permanent water supply with its source running off Mt. Kilimanjaro. Marwa lacks the technical ability and financial capacity to sustainably access and treat this water source. The Sustainable and Resilient Tanzanian Community (SRTC) program is an interdisciplinary, international development service learning initiative that brings together students from Ohio State University and the University of Dodoma, Tanzania’s largest public university, in leading-edge civil engineering and community development practice and local indigenous resource management systems. Maji Marwa, or “Water for Marwa,” focuses on bringing clean, safe and accessible water to the village, while training the next generation of engineers, scientists and development workers in providing real-world solutions to real-world needs.

Community Gardens as Tools to Promote Science Education
Maria Miriti, PhD
Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology
College of Arts and Sciences

Efforts to recruit students from underrepresented backgrounds into careers in evolution, ecology and organismal biology (EEOB) and other STEM disciplines commonly target undergraduates by providing research opportunities. However, these efforts have not appreciably increased the diversity profile of EEOB professionals over the past 20 years. This project applies Participatory Action Research (PAR) to engage youth at an earlier age in community gardening, a growing national movement that promotes healthy eating in food deserts while also empowering youth and promoting social change. Students interact with science professionals and youth from other communities to design and plan garden space, becoming immersed in science to explore human impacts on the environment and discovering pathways to STEM careers.

Shake the Shoe: Connecting Earthquake Science and Football with the Best Fans in the Land
Derek Sawyer, PhD
School of Earth Sciences
Division of Natural and Mathematical Sciences
College of Arts and Sciences

Vibrations created by the 100,000+ fans during Ohio State football games can be recorded and analyzed just as an actual earthquake. The Shake the Shoe project will use seismometers to measure these “FanQuakes” at the Shoe. The data obtained will be used as an education and outreach tool about the science, technology and hazards associated with earthquakes. Classroom exercises, a publicly accessible website and interactive exhibits at COSI and other locations will engage and inspire current and future students and leaders.

Descriptions of Past BETHA Projects

Category : Featured Articles / Office of Research

Moses joins the Office of Research

Tue, 14th March, 2017

Randy Moses

Randy Moses

Randy Moses will be joining the Office of Research as senior associate vice president for research, effective March 15, 2017. In this role, he will assist in providing strategic oversight for the university’s expanding research enterprise. Moses will work to broaden major research initiatives, including playing a role in coordinating Discovery Themes strategies, and strengthen partnerships across the university with college deans, college research officers and other university offices. Moses will also work to enhance the university’s corporate and industrial research portfolio and strengthen defense and security related research. His position represents an expansion of the capability of the Office of Research and will enable growth of the university’s research institutes and core laboratories.

Moses brings to this position considerable experience in strategic organizational leadership, a successful track record in securing funding and a national perspective on key issues related to research. He is currently a professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and has served as the associate dean for research in the College of Engineering since 2008. In that role, he led the research endeavors of over 950 faculty and staff, oversaw the college’s research operations totaling more than $128 million in annual research expenditures and grew strategic industry partnerships with companies such as Battelle, Honda and GE Aviation. He also led the IP and commercialization strategy for the college.

Moses received his BS, MS and PhD degrees in electrical engineering from Virginia Tech. He joined Ohio State in 1985.

Category : Office of Research

Oglesbee named interim director of the infectious Diseases Institute

Tue, 7th March, 2017

oglesbeeMichael Oglesbee, professor of veterinary biosciences and faculty lead of the Infectious Diseases Discovery Theme, has been appointed interim director of the newly-established Infectious Diseases Institute. He replaces Larry Schlesinger who was recently named president and CEO of Texas Biomedical Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas. Oglesbee will continue to move forward plans to create a more streamlined and transparent structure for infectious diseases research at the university.

Category : Office of Research

Winslow to lead Center for Lake Erie Area Research

Wed, 8th February, 2017

Christopher Winslow

Christopher Winslow

Christopher Winslow has been appointed director of the Center for Lake Erie Area Research (CLEAR), the multidisciplinary initiative supporting the university’s Ohio Sea Grant College Program. CLEAR is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s nationwide network of 33 Sea Grant programs dedicated to the protection and sustainable use of marine and Great Lakes resources. Winslow will also oversee the operations of F.T. Stone Laboratory, Ohio State’s island campus located on Gibraltar Island.

Winslow brings a wealth of experience and expertise to this position in the areas of strategic planning, Ohio Sea Grant administration, grant management, research, outreach and teaching. He has served as the interim director of CLEAR since April 1, 2015. In this role, he has worked to develop research priorities and facilitated the submission of many interdisciplinary proposals to sponsors. He has also developed strong partnerships with universities, the scientific community, state and federal agencies and local communities, as well as many other key stakeholders. Winslow joined the Ohio Sea Grant Program as an assistant director in December 2011 and moved into the associate director position in June 2014. Prior to joining Ohio State, he spent eight years as a Stone Laboratory faculty member, teaching aquatic ecology classes to high school and college students and mentoring students in the lab’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates program.

Winslow holds a bachelor’s degree from Ohio University and a master’s and PhD in biology from Bowling Green State University.

Category : Office of Research

Yuan Zheng, Lise Worthen-Chaudhari and Jacob Mendlovic named 2016 Innovators of the Year

Wed, 25th January, 2017

As Ohio State continues to expand its role in the commercialization of research, it is important to create an environment that facilitates and rewards research creativity and entrepreneurship. To support and stimulate entrepreneurial activity among Ohio State researchers, three university-wide awards were presented on January 25, 2017, to Ohio State’s most successful entrepreneurs.

Innovator of the Year: Yuan Zheng

Yuan Zheng, Photo by Kevin Fitzsimons

Yuan Zheng
Photo by Kevin Fitzsimons

The 2016 Innovator of the Year is Yuan Zheng, professor of electrical and computer engineering. He has been a leader in robotics research for more than 35 years, creating innovative structures and mechanisms for robotics in industrial, defense and service applications.

In 2014, Zheng developed the Circular Wave Drive (CWD), a compact and co-axial gear head that allows for speed reduction in rotational motions. Speed reducers represent 36% of the total cost of an industrial robot. Yuan’s CWD was developed as a replacement for the traditional Harmonic Drive Gear (HDG) technology used widely in the robotics industry. The HDG technology uses a special metal alloy that has to be replaced every two years and requires expensive high precision machining.

Zheng’s CWD technology overcomes the shortcomings of the HDG. He developed a low-cost, compact, highly-efficient, ruggedized speed reducing gear system. He increased torque capacity and the life span of the gear by eliminating the use of flexible materials in the design. This invention could mean the formation of a new market of ultra-fast, high-precision steering and automation beyond robotic joints.

IKOVE, a local venture capital company, licensed his technology from the university in 2015 and founded a start-up company called CWD LLC. One U.S. patent and one international patent have been filed. Funding from the Ohio Third Frontier’s Technology Validation and Start-up Fund was used to design and fabricate a prototype CWD.

Early Career Innovator of the Year: Lise Worthen-Chaudhari

Lise Worthen-Chaudhari, research asst. prof. in College of Medicine Dance MFA Photo by Jo McCulty

Lise Worthen-Chaudhari
Photo by Jo McCulty

The 2016 Early Career Innovator of the Year is Lise Worthen-Chaudhari, research assistant professor in physical medicine and rehabilitation and associate director of the Human Motion Analysis and Recovery Laboratory. She uses the art, math and science of movement to integrate the creative arts with rehabilitation science.

Worthen-Chaudhari applies new creative paradigms and emerging technologies–from arts, gaming or other disciplines in the creative sector–to improve human recovery and health by making it more engaging and more data-driven. A biomechanist and former professional dancer, Lise combined her passion for biomechanics and dance to develop a revolutionary new therapy that inspires physical rehabilitation via movement that creates art.

She and her team developed an interactive computer program called Embedded Arts for patients receiving occupational, recreational or physical therapy to recover from traumatic brain injuries, strokes and spinal cord injuries. The program uses motion caption technology to highlight the personal nature of prescribed rehabilitative movement and to document the recovery process. Movement detected by lightweight sensors is translated on a computer screen as an abstract painting.

Worthen-Chaudhari’s technology has been licensed to Columbus-based Rekovo–a company whose mission is to “bring innovative ideas to the health care market that are both affordable and create tremendous positive impact.” The ultimate goal is for patients to be able to use this program at home to continue their therapy.

Student Innovator of the Year: Jacob Mendlovic

Jacob Mendlovic, Mechanical Engineering Photo by Kevin Fitzsimons

Jacob Mendlovic
Photo by Kevin Fitzsimons

The 2016 Student Innovator of the Year is Jacob Mendlovic, a recent Ohio State honors graduate with a degree in mechanical engineering and a minor in nuclear engineering. He is passionate about using innovative engineering solutions to solve real-world problems.

Mendlovic is the primary inventor of a patent-pending technology that does electrochemical imaging of below ground biomasses and fuel. He developed a microscale platinum wire probe that uses intrinsic electrochemical properties to create images of subsurface biomass structures.

The probe could provide farmers with information about soil conditions that would help them select crops resistant to drought and make adjustments to planting and irrigation techniques. National Park monitors could use the probe to analyze tree and biomass health, helping to mitigate wild fires. The Office of Energy and Environment sees potential for this technology to identify trace chemicals from fracking applications in water. Jacob worked with Shaurya Prakash, associate professor in mechanical and aerospace engineering, on his research.

Spurred by the success of leading a student group to develop cost-cutting methods for small-scale coffee farmers in Honduras, Mendlovic founded “Students for a Sustainable Honduras.” This club brings together teams of undergraduate students to share ideas and expand the impact of student projects across the country. Following graduation, he aided in the creation of a framework for universal metrics in the energy-water-food-social nexus, allowing for a better understanding of the interactions of these resources with the ever-increasing population.

The Innovator of the Year and Early Career Innovator of the Year awards recognize Ohio State researchers who are working actively to promote commercialization of university intellectual property, through invention disclosures filed, patents applied for and/or received, technologies licensed or spin-off companies formed. These activities support economic development in the Central Ohio region, and serve to attract companies that create a base of operations within the state. The creation of separate categories for more established researchers and for early career researchers allows cultivation of an entrepreneurial spirit among all of our investigators.

The Student Innovator of the Year award recognizes innovation and entrepreneurship among our students that has contributed to the development or commercialization of a new technology.

Category : Featured Articles / Office of Research

Mears to lead national security, defense strategy

Wed, 3rd August, 2016

Zachary Mears has joined Ohio State as assistant vice president for national security and research programs, effective August 1, 2016. Zach brings expertise in U.S. national security and defense strategy, planning and resourcing to this new position.

This is a shared leadership position with Battelle and Ohio State’s Office of Research and College of Engineering. Zach will help the university and Battelle develop and implement a strategic relationship management plan related to national security research conducted at Ohio State and Battelle.

Zach will lead the expansion of collaborative research projects, scientific and educational programs and business development opportunities at Ohio State to further the collaborative relationship between the university and Ohio-based federal national security programs. His primary focus will be on the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright Patterson Air Force Base. Zach also will work to develop teams of internal and external partners to identify major state and federal funding opportunities.

Prior to joining Ohio State, Zach served as the deputy chief of staff to the secretary of defense and chief of staff to the deputy secretary of defense in Washington, DC. He advised the secretary and deputy secretary of defense on national priorities and managed their implementation. He also served as the director of the Advanced Capability and Deterrence Panel and led the development of the Third Offset Strategy, which aims to identify new organizational and operational concepts and new capabilities to improve the United States’ military advantage. He also advised the Defense Innovation Unit–Experimental, which is building bridges between the Pentagon and the United States’ technology communities in Silicon Valley and Boston. Prior to these appointments, he served as the director for strategic planning for the National Security Council, where he co-authored the 2015 National Security Strategy. He also worked as a senior defense analyst for Scitor Corporation and as senior consultant for Booz Allen Hamilton.

Zach received his BA in political science from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and his MA and PhD in political science from Ohio State.

Category : Office of Research

Ohio State’s 2015 highly-cited researchers

Tue, 26th January, 2016

Nine Ohio State researchers have made Thomson Reuters’ 2015 list of Highly-Cited Researchers, a measure of the worldwide impact and influence of an individual’s research. These researchers have produced a large number of reports that rank among the top one percent most cited for their subject field and year of publication.

The 2015 researchers and the field(s) for which they were recognized are listed below:

  • William Abraham (Clinical Medicine)
  • Hojjat Adeli (Computer Science as well as Engineering)
  • Clara Bloomfield (Clinical Medicine)
  • Carlo Croce (Clinical Medicine)
  • Hesham El Gamal (Computer Science)
  • Rattan Lal (Agricultural Sciences)
  • Ness Shroff (Computer Science)
  • Rene Stulz (Economics and Business)
  • David Weinberg (Space Science)

Learn more.

Thirteen Ohio State researchers made the 2014 list. They are:

  • William Abraham (Internal Medicine)
  • Hojjat Adeli (Engineering)
  • Hansjuerg Alder (Internal Medicine)
  • Clara Bloomfield (Internal Medicine)
  • Carlo Croce (Biology & Biochemistry and Internal Medicine)
  • Hesham El Gamal (Computer Science)
  • Rattan Lal (Agricultural Sciences)
  • Guido Marcucci (Internal Medicine)
  • Ness Shroff (Computer Science)
  • Rene Stulz (Economics & Business)
  • Martin Tusler (Social Sciences, General)
  • Stefano Volinia (Internal Medicine)
  • David Weinberg (Space Science)


Category : Office of Research

Eight Ohio State faculty receive NSF CAREER awards in 2015

Fri, 1st January, 2016

Eight assistant professors received Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) awards in 2015 – the top award given by the National Science Foundation to junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of both.

The 2015 winners are:

Four Ohio State researchers received CAREER awards in 2014. They are:

Category : Office of Research