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(Last updated 4/27/04)



COLUMBUS, Ohio – With prestigious awards from the National Science Foundation (NSF), six Ohio State University faculty members are tackling issues as diverse as using computers to help study new words and exploring how sand moves on a beach.

The six researchers have earned NSF's Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award, which recognizes a young researcher's dual commitment to scholarship and education. Together, the OSU faculty garnered approximately $2.6 million in CAREER funding, to be awarded over the next five years:

  • Chris Brew, assistant professor of linguistics; $500,000 for “Hybrid methods for acquisition and tuning of lexical information.”
    Brew will investigate ways to use computers to help work out the meanings of new words found in text. Normally, lexicographers and linguists go through text by hand, finding new words and looking for patterns to indicate their definition and how they are used. Brew has developed software that can help automate that process by finding new words in large amounts of text and determining which existing words these new words seem to most resemble.
  • Hesham El-Gamal, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering; $400,000 for “Multi-input-multi-output fading in links, cells, and networks.”
    El-Gamal will develop new schemes to enable high quality multi-antenna wireless data transmission. The project lies on the boundary between electrical engineering and applied mathematics, and is expected to contribute to both disciplines.
  • Diane Foster, assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering and geodetic science; $400,000 for “Fluid-sediment interactions of complex coastal topography.”
    Foster will obtain field observations of the movement of sand over seafloor ripples. The innovative observations will be used to create computer models which predict how ocean waves and currents interact with sand to change the shape of beaches over time -- a complex relationship that requires advanced computing techniques. The models will help scientists and public policy managers better understand the impacts of hurricanes, sea-level rise and coastal structures.
  • Srinivasan Parthasarathy, assistant professor of computer science and engineering; $500,000 for “A scalable framework for mining scientific and biomedical data.”
    Parthasarathy will develop efficient techniques for data mining, with the goal of modeling the shape and structure of molecules and larger objects such as the human eye. Mining such data could yield clues to the evolution of defects in materials, or the origin and progression of diseases of the eye, for example.
  • Han-Wei Shen, assistant professor of computer science and engineering; $400,000 for “Effective visualization of large-scale time-varying data.”
    Shen will design algorithms for the management and tracking of data generated from high-resolution computer simulations. He will design tools that can automatically create multi-resolution spatio-temporal data efficiently, and help researchers visualize and track time-varying elements within large datasets.
  • Fernando Teixeira, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering; $400,000 for “Time-domain forward and inverse scattering techniques for ultra-wideband remote sensing.”
    Teixeira will develop new techniques for using microwaves and millimeter waves to detect hidden explosives, underground pipes, and defects in bridges and runways. Since these waves can penetrate dust, fog, and smoke, they could be used in battlefield scenarios, terrorist attack responses, and in fire rescue operations.

The CAREER award also contains a strong education component. Ohio State students will be able to broaden their field of study by participating in these cutting-edge interdisciplinary research projects.

The CAREER award honors teachers and scholars who are likely to become academic leaders in the future. Since 1996, NSF has given the award to faculty who effectively integrate research and education within the context of the mission of their institution.

With the addition of the six new faculty, Ohio State now boasts 37 CAREER winners. Other winners will be announced as NSF makes its awards throughout the year.


Contact: Chris Brew, (614) 292-4052; Brew.2@osu.edu
Hesham El-Gamal, (614) 292- 4374; Elgamal.2@osu.edu
Diane Foster, (614) 292-6420; Foster.316@osu.edu
Srinivasan Parthasarathy, (614) 292-2568;
Han-Wei Shen, (614) 292-0060; Shen.94@osu.edu
Fernando Teixeira, (614) 292-7251; Teixeira.5@osu.edu

Written by Pam Frost Gorder, (614) 292-9475; Gorder.1@osu.edu