Leading the Way in Additive Manufacturing

UNT's Center for Agile and Adaptive Additive Manufacturing is positioned to accelerate future manufacturing science to create market-based solutions involving fundamental science impacting everything from medical implants to next-generation drones and encouraging new industry and global collaborations for the North Texas region. To bolster a skilled and diverse workforce for additive manufacturing in Texas, the Institute for Transformational Education and Additive Manufacturing (ITEAM) was established as a state-of-the-art educational and instructional wing of CAAAM. ITEAM has brought together regional community colleges and diverse industry members and created undergraduate and graduate training programs to enable and sustain UNT leadership in this disruptive new technology space. CAAAM launched in 2019 with a $10 million appropriation by the Texas State Legislature, which recently renewed funding through 2023 with an additional $10 million, reaffirming the importance of CAAAM in positioning Texas as a leader in additive manufacturing innovation and workforce development. Watch a video about CAAAM-ITEAM's summer program.

Collaboration Spotlight
Epigenetics, Climate Change and Cultural Exchange

UNT biological science researchers Warren Burggren and Pamela Padilla are exploring a not-well-understood field called epigenetics, the study of how the expression of genetic traits can be altered without change to the DNA itself. They received a $1.15 million, four-year grant from the National Science Foundation to study how fish experiencing low oxygen due to climate change might pass on traits helping them adjust to warmer, less oxygenated water to their offspring. The project will be an international collaboration with researchers and students at two universities in Mexico — Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México and Universidad Juárez Autónoma de Tabasco. As a part of the grant, they recently hired postdoctoral researcher Gil Martinez Bautista from the Universidad Autonoma del Estado de Mexico to work on the project.

Research News
Great Grads Inspire Others

UNT's Fall 2021 Great Grads exemplify the innovation and integrity the university strives to instill within its students. Student researchers working alongside faculty have already made an impact by mentoring others. Zarrin Bashir (pictured) strives to encourage other women through the Society of Women Engineers — work she plans to continue in both graduate school and into a career in research and development in mechanical engineering. Clay Moore, a first-generation college student who is earning one of the first master's in artificial intelligence, credits his success to his involvement in research, including the development of a tool for the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Conveying a Message

Born in the Kurdish region of Iran, Pedram Baldari, assistant professor of studio art, takes experiences from his upbringing, his time in the U.S. and issues that he finds meaningful and incorporates them into his art research. The interdisciplinary artist has showcased projects around the world focusing on issues from homeland citizenship to colonization to war. His involvement as a UNT Washington D.C. Research Faculty Fellow has led him to cross-campus collaborations, including one with Marco Buongiorno Nardelli, University Distinguished Research Professor affiliated with both physics and composition.

Cracking the Code on Cybersecurity Threats

Three UNT computer science and engineering researchers have been awarded a prestigious National Security Agency Research Innovation Award to better understand and prevent cybersecurity threats against private companies and government entities. Ram Dantu, Kirill Morozov and Sanjukta Bhowmick are looking for ways to gather and share data on failed attacks without compromising the targeted organizations. The researchers plan to use encryption methods to aggregate and correlate the data and ensure the organization's privacy and then create algorithms that could be used to analyze the encrypted data to help solve current and future cybersecurity threats and attacks.

Expanding Computing Capabilities

A new supercomputer for Texas researchers that recently launched will allow scholars at UNT to compute and compete at the cutting edge of science and engineering. Lonestar6, deployed by the Texas Advanced Computing Center at the University of Texas at Austin, will be able to perform roughly three quadrillion operations per second — or in high-performance terminology, three petaFLOPS. UNT is one of several Texas academic institutions who jointly contributed to the UT Research Cyberinfrastructure (UTRC) initiative. The collaboration, allowing researchers at UNT to use UTRC resources, has extraordinary long-term impacts for research at UNT.

Understanding Disease

A possible malaria outbreak in birds in Chile could lead to a better understanding of the impact global warming has on disease transmission, according to Andrew Gregory, assistant professor of biological sciences. Studying how malaria behaves in the population could offer insights into how disease travels through populations, as well as how it impacts the local ecology, population and ecological community dynamics. Gregory will travel to UNT's Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Conservation area in Chile in January with students from universities across the country to study the impacts of malaria and climate change on biodiversity.

Predicting Next Coronavirus Pandemic

Doctoral student Jamie Dixson (pictured) together with Rajeev Azad, professor of biological sciences, recently pivoted their bioinformatic research in the COVID-19 pandemic to study the evolution of the receptor binding domain of coronavirus spike proteins. The methods they are using could be beneficial in predicting the next emergence of a deadly coronavirus either before it happens or very early in an outbreak before it can reach epidemic or pandemic status. Their work was published by the Oxford University Press in the journal Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health.

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