Research

Engineering Research at Dartmouth

Dartmouth engineering researchers work within an integrated community of experts in their fields, unencumbered by departmental divisions. Our faculty and students are versatile thinkers who can define a problem, place it within the broad social and economic contexts, and articulate a clear vision for a human-centered approach toward a solution.

Most research projects are collaborations that integrate one or more engineering disciplines with other sciences. Students working in these labs learn important lessons about the interconnectedness of the world and develop both depth and breadth that make them innovators and leaders in emerging technologies.

Research by Program Area

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Biological/Chemical

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Biomedical

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Electrical/Computer

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Energy

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Materials Science

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Mechanical/Operations/Systems

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Culture of Collaboration

Dartmouth Engineering is a close-knit community of scholars with a broad range of expertise. The culture of collaboration extends across the hall, across campus, and beyond. Many research projects engage colleagues from other institutions such as Dartmouth-Hitchcock, Geisel School of Medicine, Tuck School of Business, Guarini School of Graduate and Advanced Studies, and CRREL, as well as industry—and offer numerous research opportunities for undergraduates.

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Research Quick Takes

Co-author Eugene Santos Jr.

Evolving Ontologies

Professor Eugene Santos co-authored "Bayesian-knowledge driven ontologies: A framework for fusion of semantic knowledge under uncertainty and incompleteness" published in PLOS ONE. The paper describes how to fuse multiple conflicting ontologies into a single knowledge base. "Biomedicine's rapid advancement is inundating us with new words, labels, and concepts that can be duplicative or even contradictory," says Santos.

Graphic of a human cellular matrix surrounding a circular foreign body

Interface Design for Bioelectronic Implants

Professor Alex Boys co-authored "Bioelectronic interfacial matching for superior implant design" published in Cell Reports Physical Science, including discussion of the relevance of different mechanical and electronic factors. "Interface design is an important aspect for any material that is implanted into the body," says Boys, "and we wanted to provide a framework for researchers who work on bioelectronics to think about this important issue."

PhD candidates Roman Vasyltsiv and Savannah Decker

Grad Students Shine at NEAAPM

PhD candidates Roman Vasyltsiv and Savannah Decker—both in the Optics in Medicine labs and the Medical Physics Education Program—tied for first place in the early investigator competition at the New England Chapter of the American Association of Physics in Medicine (NEAAPM) meeting in Quincy, Mass. Savannah presented "Improving Cherenkov Dosimetry via Quantitative Skin Tone Analysis," and Roman presented "Fast Imaging of a Novel Conformal Scintilator Mesh for 2D In VivoValidation During UHDR PBS Proton Therapy."

SPIE Medical Imaging Conference

At the SPIE Medical Imaging conference, PhD students Yuan Shi (Halter Lab), Chengpei Li, Haley Stoner, and William Warner Th'17 Th'19 (Paulsen Lab) presented their work on image-guided surgery, including talks on "A surgical navigation framework for image-guided transoral robotic surgery" and "Intraoperative stereovision cortical surface segmentation using fast segment anything model," and posters on "Large MRI specimen submersion phantom design" and "Smart line detection and histogram-based approach to robust freehand ultrasound calibration."

Illustration showing projections of the crystal structure.

Materials for Hydrogen Storage

Professor Geoffroy Hautier is a co-author of "Small-pore hydridic frameworks store densely packed hydrogen" published in Nature Chemistry. The study reveals a way of achieving high volumetric gas storage in nanoporous materials. "Transforming water to hydrogen is a promising way to store energy, but hydrogen gas takes up a lot of space. Developing materials that can absorb reversibly and 'pack' this hydrogen in a tighter space would reduce the volume needed for storage," says Hautier.

The inflammatory response in bone

Embracing Ethical Research

First-year PhD student Amritha Anup Th'23 is first author of "Embracing ethical research: Implementing the 3R principles into fracture healing research for sustainable scientific progress" published in the Journal of Orthopaedic Research. Anup and her international co-authors, as well as professor Katie Hixon, explore recent advances "to replace, reduce, and refine [3R] animal experiments in musculoskeletal, bone, and fracture healing research."

Nanodroplets graphic

Multiplex Ultrasound Imaging

Austin Van Namen Th'21, Sid Jandhyala Th'22, Catalina Spatarelu Th'22, and Professors Kim Samkoe and Geoff Luke are coauthors of "Multiplex Ultrasound Imaging of Perfluorocarbon Nanodroplets Enabled by Decomposition of Postvaporization Dynamics" published in Nano Letters. The paper describes a method to use phase-changing nanodroplets as ultrasound contrast agents for imaging multiple biomarkers simultaneously.

ENDO GIA stapler

A Better, Safer Surgical Stapler

Professors Ethan Murphy and Ryan Halter, and PhD student Harsha Devaraj, along with Medtronic collaborators, coauthored "Development of an Electrical Impedance Tomography Coupled Surgical Stapler for Tissue Characterization" published in IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering. The featured article investigates the incorporation of electrical impedance tomography into a surgical stapler to improve outcomes. Further studies are planned based on the promising results.