MIT's Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP)
MIT: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Current Research: Project Openings

Below are currently advertised UROP projects available to MIT, CME and cross-registered Wellesley College undergraduates. All projects, regardless of mode (pay, credit, or volunteer) are expected to be worth MIT academic credit and be supervised by MIT faculty. Projects appear on this list in the order they have been received.

These projects do not represent all available UROPs as many faculty do not submit project listings for this site. Rather, they expect interested students to contact them based on their general research to discuss potential UROPs.

Available UROPs

UROP Project listings are posted for approximately one month before they are removed, unless we are asked to re-post.

9/1/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: MIT Media Lab
Faculty Supervisor: Rosalind Picard

Project Description: The Affective Computing group, Media Lab, is looking for UROP students who join us to run our experiments and develop system to collect and visualize stress, sleep and social network data using mobile phones and wearable sensors. We will conduct long-term ambulatory measurement experiments for MIT students this semester to understand stress, sleep and social networks. You will help us to prepare for experiments, conduct the experiments and visualize the collected data.

Prerequisites: The students must have interests in doing experiments in health/wellness research fields and programming in python. Experience in human experiments, Javascript, or D3 programming is plus.

Contact: If you are interested, please send an email to Akane Sano at akanes@media.mit.edu with the following information:
- Subject line: “UROP – first name, last name – years in college"
- Content: Please write a short description (<200 words) that explains
why you are interested and summarizes your relevant experience.
- Attachment: CV/resume


9/1/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: The MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI)
Faculty Supervisor: Christopher Knittel

Project Title: Social dynamics and discrimination in transportation

Project Description: The goal of this project is to understand whether transportation systems provide equal service to customers of all races and genders. We are recruiting students of varying backgrounds to assist with this study by reserving and taking travel options in the Boston metro area. The UROP student is expected to assist postdocs in collecting and formatting data from the experiment.

Prerequisites: Self-motivated and willing to perform work in the afternoons and evenings, and able to commit for the duration of the experiment (up to six weeks).

Contact Name: Stephen Zoepf
Contact Email:szoepf@mit.edu


9/1/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Aeronautics and Astronautics (Course 16)
Faculty Supervisor: Julie Shah

Project Title: Robots for Healthcare

Project Description: Robots for Healthcare! We Need You to Program a Robot to Help Nurses Manage Labor and Delivery. The Interactive Robotics Group is building a team of highly motivated undergraduate students to put a robot on the labor and delivery floor of a Boston area hospital. We have been developing cutting edge computational methods to provide decision support to nurses making complex resource management decisions in the time critical domain of delivering babies into the world.

The challenges of the project include:
- Optical character recognition to read the status of the labor floor from hand-written notes on a white board, algorithms.
- Robotic speech and gesture as well as speech recognition to communicate decision recommendations.
- Working with a professional team of healthcare professionals to develop a fully-functioning system that provides decision support in real time on the labor floor.

We are looking for undergraduate students who have experience in computer programming (preferably Python, C++, or Java), have a desire to learn, enjoy working with a team, and can dedicate at least ten hours per week to the project. Experience with the Robot Operating System (ROS) is a bonus.

URL: https://www.dropbox.com/s/kczvnnlm2kj1utg/Robots%20for%20Healthcare%20-%20Fall%202015%20UROP%20Adverisement.pdf?dl=0

Contact: Please send resumes and a short cover letter describing your background and interest in the project to Matthew Gombolay at gombolay@mit.edu


9/1/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Sloan School of Management
Faculty Supervisors: Alberto Cavallo

Project Title: Validation of online prices as a source of high-frequency real-time data.

Project Description: Online prices have been attracting a lot of attention in economics and finance as a source of high-frequency data for the measurement of inflation and other macroeconomic indicators (see bpp.mit.edu). A common concern with the use of this type of data is that relatively few transactions take place online, so it becomes essential to compare the product-level behavior of online and offline prices. This project is the first attempt to do it on a large scale in the US. We will form a team that will visit a number of offline retailers (also selling online) and, using an android app that we developed, scan products barcodes, take a picture of the tags and record the offline prices. The resulting database will then be compared with the prices collected by the Billion Prices Project at MIT.

During the Fall, the UROP will have to:
-Visit some retail stores every week, once a week (any day you want).
-Using a special android app, scan the barcodes of some products in each store, take a picture of the tags and record their prices (the same products must be scanned each week).
-Make on-the-spot decisions about product substitutions, coupon treatments, etc.
-Make a “double check” of the information collected each week.
-Calculate and analyze some statistics using Stata (Data Analysis and Statistical Software).
-Provide feedback and help us to improve the mechanism used for offline-price collection.
-Per week, we estimate a total of 3 hours as maximum, plus 1 hour for travel if the location is not within walking distance of the MIT campus (or the place where the UROP resides during the Fall). We will be paying the transportation costs.

Requirements:
-Must have access to an android smartphone to install and use the data collection app.
-Data or Wi-Fi connection are needed to send the information (you don’t need to have connection at the moment of scanning because you can send the data collected later).
-Minimal commitment of 3 hours per week during the semester.

Contact: Please send resume to Maria Fazzolari mariabf@mit.edu.


9/1/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: Karen Gleason

Project Title: Improving water desalination efficiency by developing biofouling resistant and scaling resistant coatings

Project Description: By the year 2030 there will be severe freshwater shortages throughout the world. Several nations are already highly dependent on desalination to obtain freshwater. The efficiencies of the processes used are impeded by large scale biofouling and crystallite scaling, which often result in complete plant shutdowns for cleanings. This project focuses on making desalination more efficient by developing novel chemistries and coating techniques to prevent fouling and scaling. The coatings are produced by chemical vapor deposition (CVD). They are further analyzed using SEM, AFM, FTIR, and MFP among other techniques. The UROP student would assist postdocs and graduate students in producing and characterizing the coatings.

Prerequisites: Self-motivated and committed to doing lab-work, prior lab experience preferred. Training will be provided as needed.

Contact Name: Minghui Wang
Contact Email: minghui@mit.edu


8/31/15
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering
Faculty Supervisor: T. Alan Hatton

Project Title: Fabrication of Electro-Responsive Polymers for Environmental Applications

Project Description: Polymer materials, especially those with amine functional groups, can be engineered into nanostructured composite materials to increase their specific surface areas and thus can be developed as great adsorbents for metal ion pollutants. In this project, we aim to develop nanostructured polymer hybrids to effectively separate metal ions from aqueous media via an electrochemical method. The student will work on polymer nanostructure design/optimizations and obtain the hands-on experience of polymer electrode preparation and electropolymerization. The student can learn a variety of electrochemical characterization and data analysis methods to assist the engineering design. In addition, experiments will be performed to evaluate the separation efficiency of metal ions using various electrochemical methods. We also aim to investigate the detailed adsorption/desorption mechanism vial experiments. The student will both assist the graduate researchers and also have the opportunity to perform independent studies in this project.

We are seeking a highly motivated and self-driven UROP to join this project. No prior polymer or electrochemistry knowledge is required, but the student should have the desire to learn new concepts and deliver in a fast paced environment.

Details:
- Minimum 10 hours per week.
- Basic Excel skill is needed for data analysis. Prior laboratory experience is preferred, but not required.
- Students who can continue after this fall semester are preferred.
- Credit or pay available, must apply for direct funding through UROP office or MITei for pay.

Contact: Please send your CV/resume and a brief discussion of your interest to Wenda Tian (tianw@mit.edu)


8/31/15
Department/Lab/Center: Experimental Study Group (ESG)
Faculty Supervisor: Analia Barrantes

Project Title: Creating hands-on physics labs for the dorm room and the Web

Project Description: The goal of this project is to explore and produce new hands-on laboratory exercises to be initially tested at the Experimental Study Group (ESG), and to be subsequently used in 8.011, in the MIT edX offering of the AP Physics MOOC and in other contexts at MIT and beyond. Candidates will therefore have the opportunity to have a positive impact on a large number of future students.

We will explore producing two types of laboratory activities:
1. Learner-produced experiments and videos that make use of the increasingly available measurement and analysis capabilities of mobile devices as well as of computers;
2. Learner-constructed laboratory modules that use inexpensive, easily available materials in order to make the labs accessible to learners who might not have access to the new technology.

An important aspect of these labs will be for them to have clear and explicit goals beyond simply demonstrating the validity of the theoretical physical models. These goals will include: graphing techniques for clear representation of the functional form of the data; experimental design to minimize systematic errors and comparing different ways of measuring the same physical properties. The development team will include Prof. Ted Ducas (on leave from Wellesley College), Analia Barrantes , Dave Custer and Paola Rebusco (lecturers at ESG). Our team will work in coordination with Prof. David Pritchard's team who is working on the AP Physics MOOC. This UROP is available for course credit or pay.

Prerequisites: We are looking for two creative students that are enthusiastic about Physics. Candidates must be reliable, organized, and independent, with strong communication skills. The position will be of particular interest to students who may want to teach in the future, as well as to freshmen/sophomores interested in getting started with basic physics lab procedures. Priority will be given to ESG students/alumni. Minimum commitment 8-10 hours per week during the Fall semester 2015, with the possibility to extend to IAP and Spring 2016.

Contact Name: Paola Rebusco
Contact Email: pao@mit.edu


8/31/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Picower Institute for Learning and Memory (PILM)
Faculty Supervisor: Prof Matt Wilson

Project Title: Characterizing neuron firing during spatial navigation

Project Description: Looking for students in EEC (course 6), biology (course 7), or BCS (course 9) to work on a project recording neuronal signals from rats during navigation. These recordings will help us elucidate the role of different brain areas during spatial tasks. The project would entail: - building electronics and small pieces of equipment - writing some code for data analysis - running some behavioral experiments with rats - occasional wet lab work There will be very little, if any, "traditional" biology work. The position is likely best suited for someone in EEC who is interested in the application of electronics to biology and neuroscience work.

Prerequisites: You must be comfortable working with animals (rats). A commitment of a year, minimum, is expected, with two years preferred. You will need to be available 10-12 hours a week, and availability on (some) weekends is also needed. I am looking for someone timely, responsible, and detail focused.

URL: http://www.mit.edu/org/w/wilsonlab/

Contact: If interested, please send a CV, your fall schedule, and statement of interest to Hannah Wirtshafter hsw@mit.edu


8/31/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Brain and Cognitive Sciences (Course 9)
Faculty Supervisor: Laura Schulz

Project Title: Language, Social Cognition, and Leaning in Development

Project Description: The Early Childhood Cognition Lab (https://eccl.mit.edu) is looking for students who are interested in cognitive development and cognitive science. UROPs will be working to collect data for experiments with infants and children and will be closely mentored by a graduate student. Our lab studies how infants and young children learn about the world. Specifically, our research projects investigate how young children learn to understand others and the world around them, as well as language causal reasoning. We have a partnership with the Boston Children's Museum where most of our experiments take place. As a research assistant in our lab, you will be involved in the full research process, including recruiting families to participate in research, conducting behavioral experiments with young children, coding behavioral data, and building stimuli (toys!) for research projects. We are looking for UROPs who are curious and who would be comfortable interacting with children and their parents. Multiple positions open.

Details: 9.00 and 9.85 or 9.46 are preferred but not required. Programming experience in Javascript is also preferred but not required. Minimum commitment is 6 hours per week, but 9 is strongly preferred.

Contact: Sammy Floyd (samfloyd@mit.edu)


8/31/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Architecture (Course 4)
Faculty Supervisor: Christoph Reinhart

Project Title: Developing Open Source Daylighting Simulation Tools

Project Description: Daylight in buildings is both aesthetically pleasing and a sustainable means of offsetting heating and electric lighting costs. However, poor use of daylight can lead to veiling glare on monitors and discomfort glare that impedes worker productivity. The Sustainable Design Lab develops a number of tools that assist architects in predicting daylight quality and quantity in new buildings and neighborhoods. The goal of this project is to develop and open-source repository for several existing tools and enable integration with new tools such as GPU-based parallel simulations and .net API-based CAD plug-ins.

Tasks of UROP: The student will structure a GitHub repository for a number of related programs and ensure that they compile under multiple operating systems. The student will be encouraged to experiment with the software to increase program efficiency. The student will also carry out performance testing and may be involved in collecting data from physical settings to use in validation. As work progresses, there may be opportunities for original research.

Prerequisites: Applicants should be motivated and have strong programming backgrounds with experience in C/C++ or C# programming. The ability to write, debug, and assess efficient code is key to this project. Prior experience with git, CMake, Visual Studio, Linux, and graphics programming are a strong plus.

Hours per week: 10+ hrs/week during fall semester with potential to carry on for additional semesters.

Contact: Please contact graduate student Nathaniel Jones (nljones@mit.edu) to set up an interview.


8/31/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: Klavs F Jensen

Project Title: Precious metal - based catalyst recycle strategies in flow

Project Description: More than 80% of all chemicals and active pharmaceutical ingredients are made using catalysts on an industrial scale. Many of these catalysts contain varying amounts of precious metals such as ruthenium and palladium. These metals are 'precious' (and thus very expensive) because of their low abundance on the earth's crust. For example, 0.001 grams of ruthenium is present in 1000000 grams of crust. These metals are often rendered unusable after a catalytic reaction and not recovered. This project aims to recycle ruthenium metal based catalysts for the production of pharmaceutically relevant chemicals in small-scale using state-of-the-art 'flow' systems. Flow synthesis represents a departure from traditional, batch-based pharmaceutical production and promises more efficient, safer production.

The project will draw upon the UROP's interest and aptitude in performing lab-based experiments such as the construction and maintenance of small-scale reactors and the study of organic reactions. The UROP will also receive training in analytical methods and instruments such as GC/MS, HPLC and AAS as well as chemical synthesis of air-sensitive molecules. To benefit most from this experience, a UROP with some knowledge of organic chemistry and reaction engineering is preferred. Lack of prior experience in both may be offset by a highly driven intern.

Contact Name: Dr. Saurabh Shahane
Contact Email: shahane@mit.edu


8/31/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: Karen Gleason

Project Title: Development of vapor-printed, paper-based flexible supercapacitors

Project Description: Supercapacitors are promising energy storage devices as they can provide high power densities, fast charge/discharge rates and long lifetimes. The goal of this project is to develop supercapacitors fully integrated into single sheets of paper. Electrode layers will be produced using oxidative chemical vapor deposition (oCVD) and the electrolyte layer will be produced using initiated chemical vapor deposition (iCVD). The materials will be characterized using SEM, FTIR, AFM, and spectroscopic ellipsometry among other techniques. This project offers the UROP student the opportunity to learn about producing and characterizing the materials and devices.

Prerequisites: Self-motivated. Interested in doing lab-work. Prior lab experience relevant to material/polymer synthesis and characterization preferred. Training will be provided for any new techniques

Contact Name: Andong Liu
Contact Email: adliu@mit.edu


8/31/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Brain and Cognitive Sciences (Course 9)
Faculty Supervisor: Ki Goosens

Project Title: Investigating hunger hormone ghrelin s effects on amygdala neurons

Project Description: The hunger hormone ghrelin, first discovered as a gastrointestinal hormone to regulate food intake, has recently been shown to regulate emotion and memory. Previous studies from our lab showed that manipulating ghrelin levels abolishes stress-enhanced fear memory in rodent model of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). But the underlying cellular mechanisms are not clear. The only known ghrelin receptor, growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHSR), are widely expressed in brain, including amygdala which is a critical region for emotional memory. The project is to investigate the effects of ghrelin - GHSR signaling in amygdala neurons.

Prerequisites: enthusiastic in neuroscience, strong work ethic. The expected work for credits per week would be 12 hours. Students who can stay for at least a year will be given priority. Students will be exposed to animal behavior tests, varies imaging techniques, and imaging data analysis.

Contact Name: Xiaoyu Peng
Contact Email: xiaoyup@mit.edu


8/28/15
Department: Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL)
Faculty Supervisor: Kent Larson

Project Title: Big Data -- Applied Machine Learning for an Innovative Future in Andorra

Project Description: This is a rather unique collaboration project between the Media Lab and Andorra's government, largest private companies (e.g., energy and telecom), and academic institutions (please see this link for more context). The overarching paradigm of our work is the application of machine learning and data science methodologies on Andorra's big data , for enabling an understanding of the country's dynamics on tourism and commerce, human mobility and transportation systems, energy and environmental impact; as well as to shed light on technological and system s innovation towards radical improvements in these domains.

Data: this is a unique opportunity to work on a rich dataset that includes pseudonymized mobile phone records (CDRs) of the entire country, spatially specified logs to the national network of public WIFI, disaggregated energy consumption data from the national utility company, pollution and environmental data from the national network of environmental sensors, etc.

Tasks: Overall, we work both on conceptualizing and implementing high value data analysis, data processing, exploration, modeling, prediction, supervised and unsupervised learning tasks, etc.; as well as on high value data visualization and communication to project's stakeholders and Andorran citizens! For the latter task we use CityScope, a physical interactive platform for information visualization and exploration. Academic papers will be elaborated on selected topics along this project. UROPs are welcomed to participate and co-author. These will be discussed on an ad hoc basis depending on student's interests, skills, and availability. Please see this link for examples on the line of exciting research we are interested on.

Candidates profiles:
- Ideal candidates will have sharpened data science skills, and should be able to develop a thoughtful and creative understanding on how the models, analysis and visualizations can generate value in the contexts of Andorra's tourism and commerce, human mobility and transportation systems, energy and environmental impact.
- Interest or experience in the aforementioned domains is required: tourism and commerce, human mobility and transportation systems, energy and environmental impact.
- We are looking at integrating more than one UROP to the project. It is OK for candidates to have skills focusing on either machine learning, data processing and analysis, or on data visualization and communication. We also welcome candidates that have particular interests and/or experience in one of the aforementioned domains.
- You will be asked for previous experience, class projects, relevant courses, internships, etc. that support your knowledge and skills germane for this project.

Added Value for You:
- You will learn how your machine learning, data science, and\or data visualization skills can generate real value for all public, private, and civil sectors.
- You will acquire experience working with a unique set of big data : from mobile phone records (CDRs) of an entire country, and spatially specified logs to the national network of public WIFI, to disaggregated energy consumption data at the national level, to pollution and environmental data from a national network of environmental sensors.
- You will significantly build up your data science CV/portfolio. o You will be able to participate and potentially co-author exciting academic research.
- You will live and breathe the fun and interdisciplinary culture of the MIT Media Lab.

URL: http://cp.media.mit.edu/workshops/

Contact Name: Luis Alonso
Contact Email: alonsolp@mit.edu


8/28/15
Department: Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (Course 6)
Faculty Supervisor: Kent Larson

Project Title: Big Data -- Applied Machine Learning for an Innovative Future in Andorra

Project Description: This is a rather unique collaboration project between the Media Lab and Andorra s government, largest private companies (e.g., energy and telecom), and academic institutions (please see this link for more context). The overarching paradigm of our work is the application of machine learning and data science methodologies on Andorra s big data , for enabling an understanding of the country s dynamics on tourism and commerce, human mobility and transportation systems, energy and environmental impact; as well as to shed light on technological and system s innovation towards radical improvements in these domains. o Data: this is a unique opportunity to work on a rich dataset that includes pseudonymized mobile phone records (CDRs) of the entire country, spatially specified logs to the national network of public WIFI, disaggregated energy consumption data from the national utility company, pollution and environmental data from the national network of environmental sensors, etc. o Tasks: Overall, we work both on conceptualizing and implementing high value data analysis, data processing, exploration, modeling, prediction, supervised and unsupervised learning tasks, etc.; as well as on high value data visualization and communication to project s stakeholders and Andorran citizens! For the latter task we use CityScope, a physical interactive platform for information visualization and exploration. o Academic papers will be elaborated on selected topics along this project. UROPs are welcomed to participate and co-author. These will be discussed on an ad hoc basis depending on student s interests, skills, and availability. Please see this link for examples on the line of exciting research we are interested on.

Prerequisites: Candidates profiles: o Ideal candidates will have sharpened data science skills, and should be able to develop a thoughtful and creative understanding on how the models, analysis and visualizations can generate value in the contexts of Andorra s tourism and commerce, human mobility and transportation systems, energy and environmental impact. o Interest or experience in the aforementioned domains is required: tourism and commerce, human mobility and transportation systems, energy and environmental impact. o We are looking at integrating more than one UROP to the project. It is OK for candidates to have skills focusing on either machine learning, data processing and analysis, or on data visualization and communication. We also welcome candidates that have particular interests and/or experience in one of the aforementioned domains. o You will be asked for previous experience, class projects, relevant courses, internships, etc. that support your knowledge and skills germane for this project.

URL: http://cp.media.mit.edu/workshops/

Contact Name: Luis Alonso
Contact Email:alonsolp@mit.edu


8/28/15
Department: Materials Science and Engineering
Faculty supervisor: Prof. Antoine Allanore

Project Title: Characterization of a new type of mineral fertilizer

Project description: We are recruiting one student to work in the laboratories headed by Prof. Antoine Allanore within the department of Materials Science and Engineering. We work in close collaboration with a mining company, with the ultimate goal to provide local sources of fertilizers to agriculture-intensive countries in the southern hemisphere. More specifically, the candidate will be involved in the characterization of a nutrient-rich silicate mineral. The candidate will work 60% of the time in the laboratory, investigating the leaching performance of the mineral by using Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectroscopy (ICP-MS) and 40% of the time on the analysis of data and imaging software.

Students from Materials Science and Engineering, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, and possibly Mechanical Engineering (with prior chemistry experience) are welcome to apply. This UROP will be paid or used for credits depending on the student choice. This UROP can be extended into IAP.

Contact: Interested candidates please send a CV and a short cover letter expressing your interest for the position to Dr. Davide Ciceri (ciceri@mit.edu) and include in carbon copy Prof. Antoine Allanore (allanore@mit.edu).


8/26/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Media Laboratory
Faculty Supervisor: Ramesh Raskar

Project Title: Develoing a low-cost quantitative method to detect neurological disorders

Project Description: Neurological disorders such as ALS and Parkinsons can appear first in proximal muscles (fingers, hands, forearms), however non-invasive methods for diagnosis are often qualitative. Using a multiple kinects and force meters, we have captured a dataset of many individuals performing simple tasks. We are analyzing this data-set and learning from it in order to create a robust, low-cost, non-invasive method of diagnosing disorders. The project will involve extracting joint positional information from a mix of color and depth data, finding correlations between positional information and grip strength, and finally using machine learning techniques to understand and predict strength based on pose and motion.

Prerequisites: Matlab

Contact Name: Hisham Bedri
Contact Email:hbedri@mit.edu


8/26/15
Fall 2015-IAP 2016
Department/Lab/Center: Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (Course 6)
Faculty Supervisor: Nancy Kanwisher

Project Title: Oculus Rift and Brain Imaging

Project Description: How does the brain knit together moment-to-moment representations of the visual world? Our understanding of this question in neuroscience is limited in part, because studies have rarely trained participants in a virtual reality environment. This project will use the Oculus Rift to introduce individuals to novel panoramic environments, and fMRI to investigate how ego-centric elements of these environments are represented in the person s memory (head-direction, facing-direction, etc.). We are seeking a UROP to help code the Oculus Rift training paradigm.

Prerequisites: Seeking a student in EEC (Course 6) with strong coding skills and previous experience working with the Oculus Rift, C#, and/or Unity. We would like at least an 8-10 hour/week commitment for 2 semesters. Project is primarily coding-based, but you would be welcome to help with fMRI experimentation as well, as time permits. Position offered for credit or for pay.

Contact: To apply, please contact Caroline Robertson (cerw@mit.edu) with a brief description of your interest in the position, your background, and a coding portfolio , made up of two well-annotated sample scripts.


8/26/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Health Sciences and Technology (HST)
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. John J Rosowski

Project title: Development of 3D models of human middle ear

Project description: The middle-ear group of the Eaton Peabody Laboratory at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary is developing finite-element models of the human middle ear. These models are used for interpretation of the vibration and acoustical data that we collect using various experimental methods. The models are also used for developing prostheses.

Prerequisites: We are looking for an undergraduate motivated in learning and performing 3-D reconstruction of complicated biological structures using medical images and segmentation software. Prior exposure to anatomical concepts, CAD, image processing, segmentation software (like 3D Slicer, ITK-SNAP, AMIRA, ScanIP, etc ) are advantageous.

Contact: Nima Maftoon, (nima_maftoon@meei.harvard.edu)


8/26/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Media Laboratory
Faculty Supervisor: Chris Schmandt

Project Title: Mobile Virtual Reality

Project Description: We are working on a Virtual Reality system using the Google Tango tablet device that allows the users to explore virtual worlds by walking around in the real world. We are looking for someone who had a strong background and experience in Computer Vision. Experience with Android especially using the NDK is necessary i.e. you must be proficient in C/C++ and have experience with OpenGL on Android.

Contact: If interested, please send an email, providing a short description of why you are the ideal candidate, stating relevant past or ongoing work (include links if applicable) to Misha Sra (sra@media.mit.edu)


8/26/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Media Laboratory
Faculty Supervisor: Chris Schmandt

Project Title: Multiperson Virtual Reality

Project Description: We are working on a Virtual Reality system for multiple users and looking for someone to help build the next version of our system. Our system is designed to allow free movement for multiple people in physical space which enables new kinds of interactions in the real world as well as the virtual world.

We are looking for someone who is motivated and can take ownership of work without needing micro management. Experience with 3D modeling software like Blender, 3DS max, Maya etc and have programming in C#, Java, or something close is required. Experience working with the Oculus Rift and the Microsoft Kinect would be great but not required.

Contact: If interested, please send an email, providing a short description of why you are the ideal candidate, stating relevant past or ongoing work (include links if applicable) to Misha Sra (sra@media.mit.edu)


8/25/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Sloan School of Management (Course 15)
Faculty Supervisor: David Keith

Project Title: Understanding Behavioral Influences on Consumer Adoption of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles

Project Description: Despite substantial policy pressure for automakers to introduce hybrid (HEVs) and electric vehicles (EVs) in the United States, consumer demand for these technologies has been limited. While obvious explanations for low uptake exist, such as low gasoline prices and high HEV and EV purchase prices, relatively little is known about consumer decision-making regarding these technologies. The objective of this study is to understand how consumer adoption of hybrid and electric vehicles is influenced by factors including: technological awareness, consideration, prior vehicle ownership, beliefs and demographics. We are seeking a student to analyze a large dataset consisting of millions of survey responses completed by new vehicle buyers over the past 15 years, examining topics including the dealership experience, satisfaction with numerous aspects of their new vehicle, the importance of vehicle aspects in their purchase decision, personal viewpoints and attitudes about vehicles, the previous vehicle owned, other vehicles considered, household demographics and experience with alternative fuel vehicles.

Prerequisites: - Experience undertaking analysis of large datasets and/or programming in R/Matlab/Python/etc. is highly desirable - Interest in transportation/energy/environment

Contact: To apply please contact David Keith (dkeith@mit.edu). Send your CV, a short statement about why you are interested in the position, and a brief description of your data analysis and programming experience.


8/25/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Materials Science and Engineering (Course 3)
Faculty Supervisor: Krystyn Van Vliet

Project Title: Nanomechanics of functional oxides for energy conversion

Project Description: Solid oxide fuel cells, electrolyzers, and gas sensors rely on materials that readily release and absorb very large amounts of oxygen. This breathing of oxygen not only leads to dramatic changes in functional properties such as ionic conductivity and reactivity with the gas phase, but also changes mechanical properties often causing mechanical failure of systems. Together, the coupling between these properties is known as electrochemomechanics . While many have explored this coupling in bulk, large scale materials, very little is known on the nano-scale, where chemical reactions such as oxygen incorporation take place, and where dramatic differences from bulk materials have been identified. In this project, thin films with an array of oxide compositions and defect concentrations have been prepared on microscopic cantilevers. These cantilevers will be deformed via atomic force microscopy (AFM) to understand how changes in defect concentration affect mechanical stiffness. This project will involve extensive use of atomic force microscopy to determine material mechanics, along with morphological and compositional characterization of samples via scanning electron microscopy/energy dispersive spectroscopy (SEM/EDS) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS).

Responsibilities: The student will characterize the stiffness of cantilevers with an array of film compositions using AFM. The student will characterize film compositions and morphology via XPS and SEM/EDS. The student will analyze data to identify trends in stiffness vs. composition as well as assess statistical significance and error. These studies may be extended to in situ studies at elevated temperatures and controlled gas environments using a custom environmental nanoindenter.

Prerequisites: Interest in materials science and engineering highly preferred. Understanding of basic statistics preferred. Prior experience with AFM or XPS appreciated but not required. Commitment to a minimum of 10 hours per week required.

URL: http://vvgroup.scripts.mit.edu/WP/

Contact Name: Jessica Swallow
Contact Email:jswallow@mit.edu


8/25/15
Fall 2015-IAP 2016
Department/Lab/Center: Health Sciences and Technology (HST)
MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Bruce Rosen

Project Title: Brain Imaging of Sleep

Project Description: How and why does the brain generate sleep? This project will use newly developed neuroimaging methods to study human brain activity during sleep. By measuring electrical activity through EEG, and spatial patterns of activity using fMRI, we plan to map how brain networks change between awake and asleep states. We are seeking a UROP to help run combined EEG-fMRI experiments and to assist with data analysis (primarily in Matlab).

Prerequisites: Seeking a student who is enthusiastic, hardworking, and interested in how the brain works! A background in programming and/or engineering would be very helpful, as would experience using Matlab or interest in computational neuroscience. We would like at least a 8-10 hour/week commitment for 2 semesters. The UROP will be asked to assist with experiments that take place at the MGH-HST Martinos Center in Charlestown and that frequently occur in the evening.

Contact Name: Laura Lewis
Contact Email:ldlewis@mit.edu


8/24/15
Department/Lab/Center: Sea Grant Program
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Chrys Chryssostomidis

Project Title: Effects of ocean acidification and warming on New England fauna

Project Description: Atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide (pCO2) has increased from 280 to nearly 400 ppm since the Industrial Revolution, causing the pH of surface seawater to decrease by 0.1 units since then. As this increase is largely due to the anthropogenic combustion of fossil fuels and deforestation, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicts that the pH of high latitude surface seawater will decrease by another 0.3 0.4 units by the end of this century. This, in turn, will result in a nearly 50% reduction in the carbonate ion concentration of seawater, making it more difficult for many calcifying organisms to produce and maintain their shells and skeletons. The proposed research seeks to advance our understanding of the combined effects of pCO2 and temperature on critical life aspects of economically and ecologically important species of organisms found in Massachusetts waters. This area has among the highest sensitivity to the potential effects of ocean acidification in the nation due to its economic dependence on the shellfish industry and strong use of shellfish resources. This highlights the importance of understanding the impact of acidification on the early life stages of the mollusks that support these shellfish industries. Lab training can be provided in various aspects including: maintenance of carbonate chemistry and living organisms in seawater, 3-D stereomicroscopy (to measure key shell morphometric parameters), Bulk powder XRD analysis of CaCO3 and use of X-ray diffractometer (for polymorph mineralogy), TESCAN scanning electron microscope and petrographic microscope (for analysis of ultrastructure and of shell/skeletal thin-sections).

Prerequisites: Self-motivation and reliability. Prior lab experience preferred but is not required.

URL: http://seagrant.mit.edu/index.php

Contact Name: Carolina Bastidas
Contact Email: bastidas@mit.edu


8/24/15
Department/Lab/Center: Sloan School of Management (Course 15)
Faculty Supervisor: Barbara Wixom

Project Title: Student help needed to prepare research report for business executives

Project Description: In search of help to prepare a research report of findings from an academic survey (survey/report audience: 40 senior business executives, representing large, multi-national firms). The report will be created in PowerPoint. I will need someone proficient in IBM SPSS and statistics: descriptive, correlation, regression, means comparison. First step will be to run analyses - second step to create a report that communicates results.

Candidate must be certified to work with human subjects data - for social sciences. (See https://couhes.mit.edu/training-research-involving-human-subjects) Principal Research Scientist Barb Wixom is happy to provide additional details, if desired.

Prerequisites: SPSS skills

Contact Name: Barbara Wixom
Contact Email:bwixom@mit.edu


8/24/15
Department/Lab/Center: Media Lab
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Ramesh Raskar

Project Title: UROP in 3D Cameras at MIT Media Lab

Project Description: How can we create cameras of the future? This project will be devoted to the creation of a micron-scale 3D camera system. The Microsoft Kinect uses time-of-flight technology, sending active illumination to the scene and waiting for "echoes" of light to come back. The reconstructed 3D shape is of mm-quality (10^-3). In this UROP, the student will work on an established project to leverage additional optical cues, taking a step toward micron-quality depth maps (10^-6). Very specifically, the student's role will be to design and fabricate a camera assembly that captures simultaneous "echoes of light" with polarization cues. A publication may result if the science works. .

Prerequisites: Practical experience in 3D printing and basic electronics is required. We are looking for students motivated to learn more about optics and publish research results (e.g., CVPR, ICCV, SIGGRAPH)

About us: We are the Camera Culture group at MIT Media Lab directed by Professor Ramesh Raskar (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_9vd4HWlVA).

Contact: To join, please contact Achuta Kadambi (achoo@mit.edu). Welcome!


8/24/15
Department/Lab/Center: Biological Engineering (Course 20)
Faculty Supervisor: Linda Griffith

Project Title: Differentiating human pluripotent stem cells into hindgut tissue in microwells

Project Description: Current in vitro models of the intestine mostly consist of 2D mononlayers of cells, which do not retain any of the important structural components of the intestine. We work with 3D intestinal organoids derived from human pluripotent stem cells. The goal of this UROP is to differentiate human pluripotent stem cells into hindgut, the precursor to intestinal organoids, in microwells. The microwell system reduces the complexity of the differentiation cultures and allows for more control over manipulation in the culture conditions. You will be working closely with two mentors, one who specializes in hindgut differentiation and one who specializes in microwell fabrication. You will learn to make microwells and vary the different parameters using a technique already established in the lab, maintain human pluripotent stem cells, and differentiate them into hindgut tissue. The main method of analysis will be fluorescent imaging and image analysis.

Contact: If you are interested, please contact Natasha (narora@mit.edu). Include your CV with past research experience, your research interests and goals, and approximately how many hours per week you have available.


8/24/15
Department/Lab/Center: CSAIL and Aeronautics and Astronautics
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Julie Shah

Project Title: Enhanced Situation Awareness through Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Project Description: In many dangerous and demanding environments, such as disaster response or military operations, improved situation awareness of the environment can drastically improve outcomes. In the Interactive Robotics Group, we are researching systems for using unmanned aerial vehicles to gather knowledge of the immediate environment and convey that knowledge to a human operator in an efficient and non-intrusive manner. This involves making decisions about what information the UAVs should gather, how to assign UAV resources throughout the target environment, and how to process, integrate, and present that information to the human user without interfering with their current task or distracting them. Successful UROP applicants will work on one or more of the following:

1) integrate new components with existing quadcopter UAV platforms
2) design systems (electronics, programming) for tools to convey information to human operators
3) conduct literature review of relevant prior research
4) assist in designing and running human trials for a research study
5) contribute to academic articles for publication

Project Requirements: Electrical Engineering and Computer Science background. You should have substantial experience working with microelectronics. Moderate C++ knowledge required, MATLAB knowledge is beneficial. You must be able to work individually on components of a larger overall project.

Contact: Direct Supervisor Kyle Kotowick (kotowick@mit.edu) for more information.


8/21/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Nuclear Science and Engineering (Course 22)
Faculty Supervisor: Ronald Ballinger, Alex Slocum

Project Title: Reliability of Marine Shafting under Cyclic Loads and Extension of Inspection Intervals

Project Description: Faculty Supervisors: Professor Ronald Ballinger (NSE, DMSE), Professor Alex Slocum (ME) Naval submarine shaft inspection intervals are the limiting factor in establishing the maintenance plan for the next class of submarines. An increase in the inspection interval will save $10 billion in submarine costs alone since an increase in the time between inspections is equivalent to have more vessels available. Corrosion fatigue is the limiting factor for extending this interval, a failure mechanism for which testing and modeling are both difficult. The overall project seeks to develop a predictive model for use in establishing extended intervals. A first-order model was previously completed, but it requires updating through testing that simulates each step of the corrosion fatigue process. A test device is also to be designed that will simulate the full corrosion fatigue life of the submarine shaft.

In this specific project, a UROP student will be working with members of the H.H. Uhlig corrosion laboratory to perform the component testing using several test devices. Exposure to machine design and specimen manufacturing may be part of the work, if desired. Preparation of samples and monitoring of test equipment will be required. Testing, not necessarily all performed by the UROP, includes electrochemical and mechanical testing and analysis.

No prior experience in any of these techniques is necessary. This is an interdisciplinary project and is most applicable to the disciplines of Mechanical Engineering (Mechanical Design, Mechanics), Materials Science and Engineering (Structure-Properties Relationships, Metallurgy, Corrosion, Fatigue) and Nuclear Science & Engineering (Probabilistic Risk Assessment and Systems Analysis).

Contact: Professor R. G. Ballinger (hvymet@mit.edu), Douglas Jonart (jonart@mit.edu)


8/20/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Sloan/Laboratory for Financial Engineering (LFE)
Faculty Supervisor: Andrew Lo

Project Title: Case study of innovative clinical trial model

Project description: The LFE has gained access to a research consortium that is running a clinical trial to identify new cancer treatments which employs a new and innovative trial design. The goal of this project is to write a detailed case study on this clinical trial so that the design can be replicated throughout the biopharma industry. The project will entail interviewing key personnel, examination and analysis of clinical trial designs, and collaborating with other LFE researchers.

Prerequisites:
· Ability to commit 10-20 hours per week for the 2015-2016 academic year; some travel may be required (costs covered by the lab)
· Biomedical background
· Strong writing skills
· Strong organization skills
· Programming skills (e.g., MATLAB, R, etc.) preferred

Contact: If interested, please send your resume, your unofficial grade transcript, and a writing sample to Jayna Cummings, jcummin@mit.edu.


8/20/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Media Laboratory
Faculty Supervisor: Sandy Pentland

Project Title: An open-source behavioral data collection platform for improved team collaboration

Project Description: We develop wearable devices, video-chat plugins and other tools in order to explore how online and offline teams collaborate. We analyze data collected from face-to-face or online interactions to present real-time insights about their communication patterns, helping them improve their performance.

Upon successful implementation, UROP will have an option to continue developing the platform, and to participate in the planning and execution of field experiments.

Position #1 – Frontend developer - develop and maintain a real-time visualization platform for face-to-face interactions.

You should be comfortable with doing (or learning how to do) the following:

- maintaining a server endpoint to collect data from android devices
- storing this data securely in a database
- creating algorithms to produce actionable insights from this data (who spoke the most, the most ‘central’ person in a meeting, etc).
- creating and maintaining a real-time visualization website that displays this data in a useful way.

Required: D3.js, Python

Advantage: Google Polymer, Coffeescript, any real-time web framework
___________

Position #2 – Android/iOS developer - develop a mobile-based application that records face-to-face interaction based on Bluetooth signal strength and speaking activity picked up by the mic. The job may also involve create a data collecting app that communicates with our proprietary hardware badges using Low Energy Bluetooth
· Required: Android and/or iOS development experience
· Advantage: experience with Bluetooth Low Energy and analysis and signal processing.

Other prerequisites:
· We are looking for students that are able to contribute a minimum of 10 hours of work a week
· Candidates are expected to continue working on the project during IAP

Contact: contact Oren Lederman (orenled@media.mit.edu) with a short description of your background or résumé


8/20/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Brain and Cognitive Sciences/Linguistics and Philosophy
Faculty Supervisors: Prof. Ken Wexler, Martin Hackl

Project Description: We investigate the nature of the computational system of human language, by studying immature language in the child (the development of language). The research is interweaving current linguistic theory and empirical work. The current research areas include quantified statements, focus operators, and passive sentences. Your work will involve (i) running experiments with children (mainly 3-6 years old), (ii) data-entering, (iii) and contacting day-cares for cooperation. It might also involve (iv) assistance in experimental design and preparation of experimental materials.

Prerequisites: Having taken 24.900 is preferred but not required. Given that the work is mainly about interaction with children and keeping them engaged in the experiments, you will have to be very good at playing with kids.

UROP's main goals will be: engagement with cutting edge theoretical developments in language acquisition and acquiring hands-on experience with behavioral research with children.

Contact: If you are interested, please email Prof. Wexler (wexler@mit.edu) and Prof. Martin Hackl (hackl@mit.edu), and also CC Leo Rosenstein (leaena@mit.edu) with your resume or CV.

There are a few UROP positions for Spring 2015: Work hours are flexible. There is a possibility of continuing working in the subsequent semester(s). Applications received by October 10 will be given full consideration. MIT students interested in direct funding should apply by September 15.


8/20/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: Karen Gleason

Project Title: Development of advanced membranes for desalination

Project Description: The goal of this project is to develop new membranes for membrane distillation desalination systems. Membranes are produced using initiated chemical vapor deposition (iCVD) and characterized using SEM, AFM, FTIR among other techniques. The UROP student is expected to assist graduate students in producing and characterizing the membranes.

Prerequisites: Self-motivated, committed to doing lab-work, prior lab experience preferred. Training will be provided for any new techniques.

Contact Name: Amelia Servi
Contact Email:aservi@mit.edu


8/18/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Media Laboratory
Faculty Supervisor: Ethan Zuckerman

Project Title: NewsPix: A tool to engage readers of news

Project Description: The Future of News Initiative at the MIT Media Lab offers a great opportunity to participate in a project aimed at the intersection of Journalism and digital engagement. The project, called NewsPix, will gives a student a chance to work with national and international media companies, while at the same time expanding their technical capability. The student will learn about the global media landscape by helping to build a technology platform that spans mobile and web applications.

Prerequisites: As our project crosses multiple platforms, we are seeking a student with experience building web and mobile applications. Web experience might include Python Flask, MongoDB, HTML/CSS, and Javascript. Mobile experience could be on Android, iOS or both.

Contact Name: Matt Carroll
Contact Email:matt54@media.mit.edu


8/18/15
Department: Materials Science/Koch Institute
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Michael Cima

Project Title: Solid-state magnetic resonance imaging contrast agents for in vivo chemical sensing

Project Description: The Cima Lab is looking for an undergraduate researcher to participate in the development of a new class of polymeric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agents. These materials are designed to be sensitive to oxygen and pH, and their MRI responses change based on the amount of oxygen present or the environmental pH. Making quantitative measurements of these targets before, during, and after treatment enables physicians to customize care for each individual patient. Oxygen and/or pH measurements can guide treatment in many pathologies including traumatic limb injuries, wound healing, and cancer.

A student on this project will focus on synthesizing, characterizing, and testing new contrast agent materials. An ideal student will be enthusiastic about learning new synthesis and characterization techniques, interested in expanding their general knowledge, and committed to making an impact on the project.

Prerequisites: No experience is required. Training will be provided in all areas. Familiarity with polymer synthesis and materials characterization would be beneficial. We will give preference to candidates who can commit to working at least 12 hours per week during the academic year. We are offering academic credit for new UROPs. The position is available starting August/September 2015.

Contact: Please contact Greg Ekchian (gekchian@mit.edu) with your CV/resume, relevant courses, anticipated start date, and interests/why you would like to work on this project.


8/18/15
Department/Lab/Center: Media Laboratory
Faculty Supervisor: Chris Schmandt

Project Title: Amphibian: Terrestrial Scuba Diving Harness Using Virtual Reality (Course 2, 6, 16)

Project Description: This is the state-of-the-art next generation project at the Media Lab that aims to develop a full-body mechanical harness coupled with a head-mounted display that lets you experience the wonders of scuba diving on land. The mechanical harness would contain various sensors to collect the movement data from body, and pulleys, motors, pneumatics, and other actuators to give a 'feel' of being in the ocean, without actually getting wet. The primary aim is to simulate the drag, buoyancy and the viscous forces acted by water, using the mechanical harness and also the complete ocean scene on a head-mounted oculus rift.

Requirements: The student would work closely with the researcher and develop the full-body mechanical harness using an assembly of body wearables driven by electronically controlled pulleys, weights and pneumatic actuators. The student should have good experience with building dynamic, macro scale, heavy duty mechanical projects. Proficiency with building large movable robots is preferred. Experience with ocean engineering is beneficial. A junior or senior from course 2 with thorough hands-on experience would be ideal, but others are encouraged to apply. If interested, please send us an email, providing a short description of why you are an ideal candidate.

Contact: Dhruv Jain, djain@media.mit.edu


8/17/15
Department/Lab/Center: CSAIL
Faculty Supervisor: Joshua B. Tenenbaum

Project Title: The "big data" of praise and blame in professional sports.

Project Description: Whether its celebrating the athlete who made the game winning shot or cursing the coworker who blundered in the final minutes of a presentation, praising and blaming from the sidelines is a significant aspect of human life. The huge amount of data from professional sports presents a new opportunity to study how these judgments are made "in the wild". Indeed, fans routinely use Twitter and other forms of social media to praise and criticize both teams and players.

In this project, we will build tools to collect both game and player statistics from professional sports games as well as the social media posts made during those games. After collecting a large dataset, we will use sentiment analysis and other machine learning tools to analyze this data for praise and blame and look at how games with different outcomes and player compositions lead to different responses on social media. Our overall goal is understand and predict how a player or team will be praised or blamed based on both the features of the players and teams involved and the events that occurred to bring about the game's outcome.

Requirements & Commitments: Strong Python and general systems engineering skills. Interest in cognitive science, machine learning, NLP, and human behavior. Strong priority to students who commit to both Fall and Spring. This UROP is available for volunteer, course credit or can be used as a senior UAP project.

Contact: To apply, send your CV or Resume and a brief description of any relevant coursework or previous projects to Max Kleiman-Weiner at (maxkw@mit.edu)


8/14/15
Department/Lab/Center: Mechanical Engineering (Course 2)
Faculty Supervisor: Evelyn Wang

Project Title: Advanced thermo-adsorptive battery climate control

Project Description: Our team is developing an advanced thermo-adsorptive battery (ATB) for electric vehicle (EV) climate control using advanced adsorbents (zeolites and metal-organic frameworks) water pairs. ATB delivers heating with exothermic adsorption process and cooling with endothermic evaporation process. After the operation, ATB re-charges with aid of heat to desorb water molecules from adsorbents and desorbed water condenses on a condenser for next operational cycle. We are in the process of developing a final prototype with ultimate goal of integrating it in a Ford focus. UROPs will help a graduate student and post-docs to fabricate and test ATB, tasks will include 1. Fabrication and characterization of adsorption bed and ATB enclosure 2. Characterization of advanced adsorbents with different fabrication and testing conditions 3. Synthesis of newly developed zeolite binder We are looking for motivated 1 or 2 UROPs to work on the project for Fall 2015 through IAP 2016 or Spring 2016.

Prerequisites: Comprehensive knowledge of machining, fabrication, thermodynamics, heat and mass transfer desirable.

Contact: If interested, please contact Hyunho Kim (hyunho@mit.edu) and Sameer Rao (srrao@mit.edu) with an updated CV.


8/14/15
Department/Lab/Center: Research Lab for Electronics (RLE)
Faculty Supervisor: Yoel Fink

Project Title: In-fiber capillary breakup: A novel method of microparticle synthesis

Project Description: In recent years, the Fink Laboratory has developed an exciting new method of microparticle formation that leverages the natural phenomenon of capillary instability to create microparticles with properties that are unobtainable through traditional chemical synthesis. This project aims to synthesize Si-Ge microspheres and observe how their microstructures are affected through various heat treatments. The UROP would be primarily involved with flame-induced microsphere fabrication.

Prerequisites: Interest in Materials Science/Nanotechnology and knowledge of phase diagrams is highly preferred. Highly motivated students who are interested in thermodynamics and kinetics are especially well suited for this position. The position is available starting August 2015 and is expected to last 2-3 months.

Contact Name: Etgar Levy
Contact Email:etgar@mit.edu


8/14/15
Department/Lab/Center: Science, Technology and Society
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Louis Bucciarelli

Project description: Work with Prof. Bucciarelli on research and development of online content of "modules" meant to integrate exemplary engineering subject matter with studies in the humanities and social sciences. Source materials - mostly web based - must be sought out, evaluated, reshaped and formatted for posting online using the EdX platform. Content will include - in addition to primary and secondary source materials - video clips, exercises and a discussion forum.

Responsibility: You will work with Prof. Bucciarelli researching existing online content, helping think through content selection and formatting from the perspective of a student, and interfacing with MITx.

Key qualifications:
· Interest in broadening engineering education
· Experience with Python, Javascript, HTML, CSS would be desirable, but is not necessary · Ability to meet deadlines and work independently

Contact: Louis Bucciarelli (llbjr@mit.edu)


8/13/15
Department/Lab/Center: Materials Science and Engineering (Course 3)
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Elsa Olivetti

Project Title: API Development for a Materials Science Database

Project Description: We’re working on an exciting materials science project that involves serving portions of a database along with some data mining functions via a REST API; the API will also take responses from third parties and consolidate those responses to update machine learning algorithms. The basic framework for the API has been prototyped, and the goal of this UROP project will be to polish and add to the existing API framework. In particular, you’ll be building a robust API that allows our internal research team high-level access to the dataset for data mining purposes, and also allows our database to intelligently interact with third parties.

Work with us, and you’ll get to...
- Work on a interdisciplinary project involving machine learning, NLP and materials science
- Make key infrastructure-level decisions and deploy your code on distributed servers
- Build algorithms for consolidation of API responses (for training machine learning algorithms)
- Interface a REST API with a significant collaborating group (which has ~10k users)
- Work closely with a grad student and other UROPs; collaborate using Github, Asana, Slack

We’re looking for anyone who enjoys a high level of autonomy and is up to the challenge of writing code for a large, interdisciplinary project.

Prerequisites:
- Python, MongoDB (or some other database framework
- Mongo is easy to learn), knowledge of APIs and web frameworks

Nice to have: Experience building and/or working with REST APIs

Contact: If interested, please contact Edward Kim (edwardk@mit.edu) with a resume.


8/12/15
Fall 2015-IAP 2106
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: T. Alan Hatton

Project Title: Synthesis and functionalization of electrode materials for energy, biological and environmental applications

Project Description: Electroactive conducting polymers are promising functional materials for energy storage, catalysis, sensing and separations. In particular, organometallic coordination polymers allow for tuning of their electronic structures through the chemical design of ligand and metal-center. We aim to impart functionalities additional to the original coordination polymer through post-synthetic modification in particular creating additional chemical groups on the metal center or ligand yet preserving the electrochemical activity. There are two major aspects of our project:

1) In this first, the student will assist in current on-going research for the characterization of various redox-functionalized electrodes, and most importantly, helping to setup various systems for both catalysis and separations. These systems will be used to both facilitate reaction pathways towards renewable fuel and environmental applications such as waste control and environmental remediation. The student will be expected to both assist researchers in the project as well as work independently. Materials characterization technique will be developed (microscopies techniques such as TEM, SEM as well as BET surface area analysis), as well as engineering skills in designing separation systems.

2) In the second aspect of the project, we are aiming to explore further properties of the electrodes for biological applications, especially interactions with biomacromolecules (proteins and peptides) and therapeutic agents. These will be important for devices for biomedical applications and high-throughput purification. Tasks will include protein modeling, biological assaying and various kinetics testing.

Prerequisites: Commitment of 15-20 hrs a week for the fall and spring, motivation in learning molecular design, electrochemistry, organic chemistry and materials characterization, interest in energy and environmental science, prior experience in lab is recommended. Candidates from all related fields are encouraged to apply, including Materials Science, Biological Engineering, Biology and Chemistry.

Contact: Please contact Xiao Su (x2su@mit.edu) with resume.


8/11/15
Term: Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Brain and Cognitive Sciences (Course 9)
Faculty Supervisor: Professor Ki Goosens

Project Title: The role of ghrelin in fear acquisition in humans

Project Description: Recent work from the Goosens laboratory suggests that ghrelin, a hormone made primarily by endocrine cells in the stomach, is a stress hormone that plays a critical role in the regulation of fear in rodents. The aim of this project is to reproducibly measure circulating endogenous ghrelin levels around the time of fear acquisition in healthy controls. Components of the research involve the organization of the study visits and data collection in healthy participants. The UROP would be primarily involved in the recruitment of participants for the study, running behavioral tests, collecting hormone samples and data analysis.

Prerequisites: Interest in cognitive science is highly preferred. This position is available starting in August 2015 with an option to continue during winter. There may be opportunities to work on brain imaging subprojects in healthy participants.

Contact Name: Maria Dauvermann
Contact Email:mariad@mit.edu


8/11/15
Term: Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences (Course 12)
Faculty Supervisor: Paul O'Gorman

Project Title: Quantifying the effects of Sea Ice loss on the Extratropical Circulation Using Comprehensive Climate Models

Project Description: Arctic sea ice loss has declined dramatically over the last few decades and recent studies have suggested that this may be altering features of the mid-latitudinal atmospheric circulation like the storm tracks, potentially leading to more extreme events and other anomalous weather. These changes may become even larger over the next few decades as Arctic sea ice loss is expected to accelerate due to global warming. In this UROP you will investigate the connection between sea ice loss and the atmospheric ciruclation using the output from global climate models. In the first part of this project, you will download, format, and organize monthly model output onto a local MIT machine. Such data include sea ice area, surface temperature, 3-d wind fields, etc. If time permits, you will also do the same for daily data, which can be used to calculate eddy fields. In the second part of this project you will analyze the model output to quantify the effects of ice loss on the circulation. With the data, you can answer such questions as do models with greater sea ice loss also have greater changes in the strength of the storm tracks? Does controlling for climate sensitivity improve any such relationship? Is there a relationship between 20th century sea ice concentration and 20th centruy strom track position?

You will work closely with postdoc Dr. John Dwyer with faculty supervision by Professor Paul O Gorman. Through this project, you will gain data science skills by working with large datasets and an understandings of the basics of climate science.

Prerequisites: The student should be familiar with some of the basics of programming or scripting. Preference will be given to students who have taken at least one course in atmosphere, ocean or climate science or a closely related area.

URL: http://www.mit.edu/~jgdwyer http://www.mit.edu/~pog

Contact: If interested, please send an updated CV, including list of courses taken and previous UROP experience to John Dwyer (jgdwyer@mit.edu) and Paul O'Gorman (pog@mit.edu).


8/11/15
Term: Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Materials Science and Engineering (Course 3)
Faculty Supervisors: Prof. Antoine Allanore

Project Title: Potassium Extraction for use in Fertilizer using High Temperature process with a chemical additive

Project Description: Potassium is a crucial commodity on the global market with 95% of production being used in agriculture, mostly for fertilizer. Sylvinite used to produce potash is currently the main industrial source of potassium but global demand rises by 2.4% every year and crustal distribution of sylvinite leaves many major agriculture markets needing to import it. Potassium silicates, such as feldspars, have a much higher crustal abundance but have been historically considered inaccessible.

Through the application of high temperature approach with chemical modifiers, the entrapped potassium in these silicates can be released from the crystal and be available to the plants. For this experiment modifiers can either act as network formers or breakers.

The goal of the research is to find a method which makes economic and agricultural sense for the extraction of potassium from feldspar at high temperature. During this research, you will be assessing the efficiency of the modifier on the extraction of potassium and optimize an experimental set-up. You will also investigate the different phase compositions by using characterization techniques such as scanning electron microscopy and assess the potassium release from the formed material by inductively coupled plasma/mass spectrometry.

Prequisites:
- Motivated chemical or material engineering student.
- Student should be committed and interested in research.
- Prior laboratory experience is desirable, but not a must.

Contact: Interested students are asked to email Dr. Carole Gadois (cgadois@mit.edu) with the following information :
• Your CV
• The specific dates during which you would like to UROP
• The level of effort you are seeking (e.g., 10, 20, … hours per week)
• A one paragraph statement of why you are interested in this UROP


8/11/15
Term: Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Materials Science and Engineering (Course 3)
Faculty Supervisors: Michael F. Rubner / Robert E. Cohen

Project Title: Exploring the Properties of Polymer Backpacks for Cell Based Drug Delivery.

Project Description: The polymer backpacks are 7-10 um diameter polymer patches of a few hundreds of nanometers in thickness that can be attached to the surface of living cells for cell-mediated, targeted drug-delivery. This research project focuses on engineering new approaches for loading and releasing drug payloads from the backpacks. The applications will include using backpacks to carry small molecule drugs and enzymes for treating various diseases and will be tested with in vitro and in vivo models. The students will be working with (Layer-by-Layer) LbL deposition of small molecule drugs or enzymes in these backpacks, and will be studying their drug loading and release profiles, as well as performing sample characterization (e.g. NMR, Profilometry, Ellipsometry).

Prerequisites: Commitment of 15-20 hrs a week for the fall and spring. We are looking for self-motivated, responsible, and detail-focused students interested in polymer and materials sciences, and materials characterization. Prior experience in lab is preferred but not required. We have 2 openings available.

Contact: Please contact Roberta Polak (rpolak@mit.edu) with a resume.


8/11/15
Term: Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Anthropology (Course 21A)
Faculty Supervisor: Professor Erica Caple James

Project Title: Global Health and Medical Humanities Initiative

Project Description: A new Global Health and Medical Humanities Initiative (GHMHI) led by Professor Erica Caple James and housed within MIT Anthropology in the School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (SHASS) was established in 2014. GHMHI combines critical examinations of contemporary global health topics with classical approaches to the medical humanities through a number of courses, extracurricular activities, analyses of best practices in global health education, and collaborative interdisciplinary research in order to build community and capacity among MIT faculty, students, and staff members who are engaging these topics. Such efforts, furthermore, will build the capacity of MIT students to think critically and in nuanced ways about health, and also to improve the effectiveness of the interventions in which they become involved during and after their study at MIT.

This Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) posting will provide key support to Professor James, the Initiative's Postdoctoral Associate, and the Initiative's Administrative Assistant through the following activities (among others):
- Researching contemporary topics in global health in specific regions of the world
- Researching existing global health and/or medical humanities programs in the United States and across the globe to identify best practices
- Conducting literature reviews on research topics of interest to GHMHI staff

GHMHI welcomes applications from interested students at both MIT and Wellesley College, although priority will be given to MIT students. Applicants should have a background or demonstrated interest in the subject matter and preferably some prior research experience. GHMHI is pleased to offer this opportunity to undergraduate students for direct funding via the UROP Office (proposal deadline: 10/1/15) or for academic credit (proposal deadline: 11/5/15). Students must be able to commit a minimum of five (5) hours per week to the position for the duration of the semester and must be willing to begin work no later than mid-September. Those students participating in a UROP for direct funding who wish to have a notation of this UROP position recorded on their transcript must contribute a minimum of eighty (80) hours during the term. Academic credit will be granted based on the following formula: 1 hour/week throughout the term = 1 credit unit.

Contact: Interested applicants are invited to contact Brittany Peters via email at bapeters@mit.edu. Please include an up-to-date resume along with a brief statement of interest in the work of GHMHI in your submission.


8/11/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering
Faculty Supervisor: T. Alan Hatton

Project Title: 2D Nanosheet/Polymer Hybrid Materials for (1) Electrochemically Controlled Catalysis and Separation in Flow Systems, and (2) Energy Storage and Conversion.

Project Description: Two-dimensional materials (graphene, graphene oxide, MoS2, WS2, etc) exhibit tunable electronic structure, and when combined with electrochemically active polymeric materials, can have the potentials towards applications in a variety of applications such as energy storage/conversation, and particularly of our interest, electrochemically mediated catalysis and separation. In this project, the student will have the opportunity to work on synthesis and characterization of 2D nanosheet/conducting polymer or redox polymer hybrid material systems. The student will also learn important material/electrochemical characterization and data analysis methods to assist the engineering design. The main applications we are exploring using these hybrid materials include energy conversion in organic synthesis and liquid phaseseparation in flow systems, together with dye-sensitized solar cells, energy storage. The student can be actively involved in designing and conducting experiments to evaluate the performance of the resultingmaterials in those applications.

We are seeking a highly motivated and self-driven UROP to join this project. No prior 2D materials or polymer or electrochemistry knowledge is required, but the student should have the desire to learn new concepts and deliver in a fast paced environment.

Details:
- Minimum 10 hours per week, 12 hour per week preferred.
- Basic Excel/Matlab skills are preferred for data analysis.
- Prior laboratory experience (particularly organic synthesis) is preferred, but not required. Students who can continue after this fall semester are preferred.
- Credit or pay available, must apply for direct funding through UROP office or MITei for pay.

Contact: Please send your CV/resume and a brief discussion of your interest to Xianwen Mao (xmao@mit.edu).


8/4/15
Fall 2015-IAP 2016
Department/Lab/Center: Materials Science and Engineering (Course 3)
Faculty Supervisor: Polina Anikeeva

Project Title: Flexible materials for neural interfaces

Project Description: Restoration of motor and sensory functions in paralyzed patients requires the development of tools for simultaneous recording and stimulation of neural activity in the spinal cord. In addition to its complex neurophysiology, the spinal cord presents technical challenges stemming from its flexible fibrous structure and repeated elastic deformation during normal motion. To address these engineering constraints, we seek to develop highly flexible fiber probes, consisting entirely of polymers, for combined optical stimulation and recording of neural activity. The specific focus of this UROP project is to assist with the optical characterization and electrical characterization of the fiber probes. The fiber probe will be implanted to mice and the goal is to stimulate the spinal cords optically, get the neural recording simultaneously, and control the limb movements on demand. Besides characterization, students will learn how to fully assemble the fiber probes from a piece of polymer fiber into an implantable device. The UROP will begin during the Fall semester and must continue in the Spring semester as well (at least one year and can be continued).

Prerequisites: Sophomores and Juniors are strongly encouraged to apply. Coursework in Chemical Engineering, EECS, or Materials Science background required. While previous lab experience is desired, we are open to providing students at various skill levels opportunities to broaden their research skill set. Students are expected to work12-15 hours during the semester.

URL: http://www.rle.mit.edu/bioelectronics/

Contact Name: Chi Lu
Contact Email:chilu@mit.edu


7/29/15
Fall 2015-IAP 2016
Department/Lab/Center: Biological Engineering (Course 20)
Faculty Supervisor: Ed Boyden

Project Title: Technology for Whole-Brain Mapping

Project Description: Recently, in the Synthetic Neurobiology group at MIT (Biological Engineering, Brain and Cognitive Science, Media Lab), we developed a radical new way to map the brain: simply make it bigger, through chemical means (Jan 2015, Science 347:543-548). Then, you can image it with nanoscale precision, on fast classical microscopes. We are now setting out on a quest to use this technology, which we call expansion microscopy (ExM), to map an entire vertebrate brain - one of the holy grails of neuroscience. The project be about combining expansion microscopy with other technologies (e.g., genetically encoded fluorophores), followed by high-throughput imaging, and data analysis.

Prerequisites:
- We will expect the UROP to lead the way on, and own one of the small number of key components of, the project (and potentially be a key author on the paper that results). Thus, we anticipate that a 1-year commitment may be useful.
- Experience with immunochemistry and microscopy a plus.
- Experience with programming or data analysis also a plus.
- This is a team project that also requires each member to be very independent, so high levels of responsibility and communication are essential.

URL: http://syntheticneurobiology.org/

Contact: Send a resume or curriculum vitae, and statement of interest, to Limor Freifeld (limorf@mit.edu) and Ed Boyden (esb@media.mit.edu).


7/27/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: CSAIL.
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Julie Shah

Project Title: Software development for Visualization of Machine Learning Algorithms for Collaborative Robotics

Project Description: We are seeking a UROP to develop visualization functions in python and vtk. The visualization will be used to show the results of machine learning algorithm in real time for collaborative robotics systems. We develop state of the are prediction algorithms for motion and task levels planning in order to increase the efficiency of human-robot collaboration in assembly for manufacturing and teleautonomy for disaster response.

You will be developing visualization methods within our existing user interface and will have the opportunity to work with the one of the most advance robotics systems in the world https://youtu.be/dd9i7YxSB6I while gaining valuable experience in the field.

Dedication: We are seeking a UROP for the Fall term, with the possibility of continuing during following terms. We will discuss the level of dedication considering the classes you will be taking during the term.

Requirements:
*Candidate should be comfortable using Ubuntu and the linux environment.
*Strong background in Python. MATLAB is a plus.
*Working knowledge of QT and vtk.
*Experience with git using github.
*Interest in user interfaces and 3D visualization.
*Experience or interest in robotics and human-robot interaction.

Contact: Interested? Send a resume and relevant sample code to Project Lead Claudia Perez D'Arpino (cdarpino@mit.edu)


7/27/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: CSAIL.
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Julie Shah

Project Title: Software development for building a Gazebo simulator for the Optimus robot

Project Description: We are developing a robotic system for disaster response using a next generation dual arm highly dexterous robotic mobile manipulator. We are seeking a UROP to continue the development of a gazebo simulator for this robot. This video shows the current simulator you will be adding capabilities to:
https://youtu.be/GkjP9dKx4wA

You will be coding new Gazebo plugins for this robot, including sensors and interface with the existing codebase of the project. This position is ideal for an UROP looking for experience with state of the art robotics systems who has already worked with ROS and Gazebo.

Dedication: We are seeking a UROP for the Fall term, with the possibility of continuing during following terms. We will discuss the level of dedication considering the classes you will be taking during the term.

Requirements:
*Candidate should be comfortable using Ubuntu and the linux environment.
*Strong background in C++.
*Experience with ROS and the Gazebo Simulator.
*Experience with git using github.
*Willing to read and understand existing code in order to be able to interface with it.
*Working knowledge of python might help.
*Ready to have fun with robotics!

You will have the opportunity to work with the one of the most advance robotics systems in the world https://youtu.be/dd9i7YxSB6I and gain valuable experience in the field.

Contact: Interested? Send a resume and relevant sample code to Project Lead Claudia Perez D'Arpino (cdarpino@mit.edu)


7/27/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: CSAIL.
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Julie Shah

Project Title: Software development for robotic systems: visualization and interface with hardware

Project Description: We are developing a robotic system for disaster response using a next generation dual arm highly dexterous robotic mobile manipulator. The system also includes two UAVs. We are seeking a UROP to extend the capabilities of our current 3D visualization system, both for mobile manipulators and UAVs, and integrate into the pipeline of visualization-planning. You will be developing visualization methods for robotics.

Dedication: We are seeking a UROP for the Fall term, with the possibility of continuing during following terms. We will discuss the level of dedication considering the classes you will be taking during the term.

Requirements:
*Candidate should be comfortable using Ubuntu and the linux environment.
*Strong background in Python.
*Working knowledge of QT and vtk.
*Interest in user interfaces and 3D visualization.
*Knowledge of C++ and MATLAB might help.
*Working knowledge of ROS (or willing to learn the basics quickly).
*Experience or interest in robotics and human-robot interaction.
*Experience in interfacing software with hardware (no hardware work, just software interface to it).
*Experience with UAVs/quadrotors is a plus.

You will have the opportunity to work with the one of the most advance robotics systems in the world https://youtu.be/dd9i7YxSB6I and gain valuable experience in the field.

Contact: Interested? Send a resume and relevant sample code to Project Lead Claudia Perez D'Arpino (cdarpino@mit.edu)


7/27/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Architecture (Course 4)
Faculty Supervisor: Leon Glicksman

Project Title: Real-Time Determination of Occupants' Comfort Level for Optimized HVAC Operation in Residential Buildings

Project Description: Thermostats control the thermal environment of building spaces and may include features that can help users to save energy for heating and cooling. However, the primary goal of any thermostats is not to save energy, but maintain a comfortable thermal environment of indoor spaces. Therefore, the most interesting features that can be embedded in next-generation products should face the problem of comfort. The objective of our research is to develop a non-invasive and user-acceptable hardware system that is capable to assess if a person is either feeling comfortable or uncomfortable in building spaces, and take the proper actions for optimizing the HVAC operation, thereby facilitating the energy savings in the long run. The UROP student will work closely with a PhD visiting scholar to help him in the development and later testing phases of such a system. This is a hands-on project and we are looking for a EECS undergraduate who enjoys a high level of autonomy and is up to the challenge of working on an interdisciplinary project. Credits for his efforts will be recognized with citations on papers and other official works that will derive from the project.

Project Tasks:
1. Hardware/Software Development
2. Help in deploying and testing the system
3. Participation in weekly and bi-weekly meetings

Time commitment: Approximately 20-25 h per week beginning by the end of August, with a minimum of 3 days per week in the lab during the semester. Continuation throughout the fall and future semesters is expected. Preference will be given to candidates who have more time available and show particular desire to contribute the research.

Prerequisites: we are seeking a UROP who is a EECS with hardware/software experience

Contact: interested candidates should send a brief letter of interest, a resume and a list of attended courses to Dr. Leon Glicksman (glicks@mit.edu) and Angelo Martucci (martu86@mit.edu). Information requests are also welcome.


7/27/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: Greg Stephanopoulos

Project Title: Genetic engineering biofuel production in sulfur oxidizing bacteria

Project Description: Thiobacillus denitrificans is a sulfur oxidizing bacteria that fixes carbon dioxide into cell biomass. The aim here is to develop and implement genetic engineering tools for the production of native and non-native chemicals and fuels in T. denitrificans. The student will use genetic engineering tools including protein expression and gene knock-outs with plasmid-borne systems to alter the bacteria's metabolism. The resulting affects on chemical production in the bacteria will be quantified by chromatography and (to a lesser extent) enzyme-based assays. The project requires a time commitment of 10 - 12 hours per week. Lab presence on consecutive days is preferred as overnight experiments are often required for cell culturing.

Prerequisites: Basic understanding of prokaryotic cellular biology and biochemistry. Molecular biology and organic chemistry are recommended, but not required.

Contact Name: Jason King
Contact Email: j_king@mit.edu


7/21/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: Robert Langer

Project Title: Medical Device Design and Testing

Project Description: Our lab is focused on developing novel devices for healthcare and drug delivery. This particular project is based on the use of ultrasound for drug delivery. The goal of the project is to model and develop new ultrasound emission spectra for incorporation into a new device. Work will start with modeling and will involve fabrication and testing. Join a team that was a finalist in this year s MIT 100k Competition!

What you will get out of it:
-Work in an innovative, highly multi-disciplinary lab with state-of-the-art facilities and equipment.
-Work closely with post-docs and advisors directly.
-Potential for generation of intellectual property, exposure to patent process and business development
-Team has a fast-paced startup feel

Prerequisites: A driven, enthusiastic, and collaborative student with modeling (COMSOL or other) experience. Someone who enjoys autonomy and tackling challenging, interdisciplinary work!

Contact Name: Carl Schoellhammer
Contact Email: cschoell@mit.edu


7/21/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: The MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI)
Faculty Supervisor: Robert Stoner

Project Title: Data analytics software development for bringing electricity to rural India

Project Description: Over 1 billion people live in areas without electricity. We're developing machine learning and data analysis tools to help renewable energy companies bring electricity to these people. We do this by automatically analyzing satellite images of enormous tracts (> 100km^2) of predominantly rural land. Our software finds villages, simulates how to wire them up, and estimates the cost of thousands of wiring configurations per village. We regularly communicate with renewable energy companies to make sure what we provide them is useful.

Candidate role: The student will play a pivotal role in developing GUI software to help streamline data analysis and enable interactive power grid planning assistance. This software will link up with our machine learning and power grid simulation tools, and have an accompanying framework for crowdsourcing training data collection for machine learning algorithms. There may be an opportunity to travel to India to participate in meetings with our partners.

Prerequisites: Strong interest in data science for social good, and basic experience with Python, user-interface design, and web development are necessary. Some background in machine learning, computer vision, image processing, and optimization is a plus.

Contact Name: George Chen
Contact Email: georgehc@csail.mit.edu


7/21/15
Fall 2015-IAP 2016
Department/Lab/Center: Biological Engineering (Course 20)
Faculty Supervisor: Darrell Irvine

Project Title: Visualization of immune response during tumor immunotherapy.

Project description: The Irvine Lab is looking for a motivated UROP(s) to work with a senior postdoc, to study a) immune cell activation during immunotherapy, or b) develop novel ways to image melanoma tumors and metastasis. In assistance with the postdoc fellow, the UROP will study the process of melanoma metastasis, and immunotherapeutic methods to target it, using a variety of molecular and immunological techniques. This includes in-vivo imaging of immune response, FACS, ELISA, lentiviral expression of proteins, western blotting and immunohistochemistry. In addition, we are developing chemical tools to process mouse organs, in order to visualize the tumor cells and immune response in intact organs and solid tumors. This involves using organic solvents- based clarification of organs and confocal microscopy. The ideal candidate is committed, inquisitive, adventurous and willing to learn new concepts in chemical biology/immunology/cell biology. Prior experience of these area will be helpful, but is not necessary.

Prerequisites: Should be comfortable with handling cells, and willing to put in sufficient time to make significant progress in the project.

Time commitment: Approximately 15-20 h per week beginning immediately (training phase) with a minimum of 3 days per week in the lab during the semester. Continuation throughout the summer and future semesters is expected, with a minimum commitment of 1 year. Preference will be given to candidates who are have more time available and show particular desire to develop research independence to learn and implement principles in experimental design and planning.

URL: http://irvine-lab.mit.edu/

Contact: Interested candidates should send a full CV, unofficial transcript/course list, tentative fall 2015 schedule, and a statement of specific interests and goals for your UROP experience directly to Sudha Kumari, PhD (Kumars04@mit.edu).


7/21/15
Fall 2015-IAP 2016
Department/Lab/Center: Chemical Engineering (Course 10)
Faculty Supervisor: Karen Gleason

Project Title: Developing thin film polymers using chemical vapor deposition (CVD) for applications in energy and water systems

Project Description: The goal for this research project is to develop thin film functional polymers using chemical vapor deposition technique for applications in energy and water systems. The synthesized films will be characterized using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and ellipsometry among others. The UROP is expected to work closely with postdocs and graduate students and under direct supervision of the PI for the research group. A self-motivated individual with prior research experience who is likely pursue graduate studies is preferred. There will be lots of hands on experiments. Trainings will be provided as needed.

Contact Name: Hossein Sojudi
Contact Email: hsojoudi@mit.edu


7/21/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Civil and Environmental Engineering (Course 1)
Faculty Supervisor: Lydia Bourouiba

Project Title: Interface of fluid dynamics and disease transmission

Project Description: Seeking a motivated and driven UROP student interested in both experimental and mathematical modelling to tackle problems at the interface of fluid dynamics and disease transmission. The goal is to evaluate how fluids and various forms of pathogens could interact to shape disease transmission in various contexts and populations (human, animal, and plant diseases).

Seeking students who are self-motivated, creative, and enthusiastic about 1) problem solving and hands on activities or 2) problem solving and mathematical modeling. Some interest in art and photography, Matlab, latex, and ImageJ are considered to be a plus.

A strong Physics or Math-Physics background and experience or courses in fluid dynamics will be also considered to be assets.

Contact: If interested, please send an updated CV, including list of courses taken and previous projects/UROPs experiences to Prof. Lydia Bourouiba lbouro@mit.edu.


7/16/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Brain and Cognitive Sciences (Course 9)
Faculty Supervisor: Rebecca Saxe

Project Title: Neuroscience of Social Cognitive Development

Project Description: Are you interested in getting research experience in a social cognitive neuroscience lab? The Saxe Lab is looking for a UROP to help run various studies pertaining to theory of mind development. For more information about the lab, please visit our website:http://saxelab.mit.edu/. We are looking for a UROP for the Fall 2015 semester. The first semester of involvement in the lab will be voluntary- credit/pay is an option after one semester of volunteering. Strong candidates must be comfortable working with children and be available to work on weekends. Specifically, this position will involve running behavioral studies at the Children's Museum in Boston and helping collect fMRI data. This position will provide you with experience running studies and organizing data, as well as exposure to working with an fMRI scanner.

Contact: If you are interested and would like more information, please email Hilary Richardson (hlrich@mit.edu) by Friday, July 17 with a brief paragraph about yourself and a current resume.


7/9/15
Fall 2015
Department/Lab/Center: Materials Science and Engineering
Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Elsa Olivetti

Project Title: Training Machine Learning Algorithms for a Materials Science Database

Project Description: We’re working on an exciting materials science project that involves large-scale data mining of scientific literature. This data mining effort is largely powered by machine learning algorithms which require ‘training data’ to learn parameters for classifying and predicting new data. The overall goal of this project will be to build up a set of training data to improve the accuracy of these predictive models.

Work with us, and you’ll get to...

• Work with machine learning algorithms
• Gain exposure to a variety of materials science literature
• Use industry-standard software tools (e.g. Github, TravisCI)
• Use a variety of in-house software tools (written in D3JS, etc.)
• Work closely with a grad student; collaborate using Git, Asana, Slack

We’re looking for anyone who enjoys a high level of autonomy and is up to the challenge of working on an interdisciplinary project.

Prerequisites: Some experience reading scientific literature - bonus points for familiarity with materials science or similar fields; basic experience with command line interfaces (e.g. Unix shell) is a plus

Contact: If interested, please contact edwardk@mit.edu with a resume.

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