ASU innovation on display at Arizona Science Center

April 10, 2013

New displays at Arizona Science Center will feature some of the latest research and entrepreneurship from around Arizona State University. The projects featured represent the innovation and creativity of ASU students and faculty members who work to create positive change in their community and the world at large. They are part of a larger partnership between Arizona Science Center and ASU, which was launched in 2012. The following projects will be highlighted.

G3Box Part of the ASU display that will appear at Arizona Science Center Download Full Image

G3Box converts steel shipping containers into doctors’ offices to use after disasters such as hurricanes, or in areas with limited access to health facilities. G3Box adds systems for providing power, water, waste disposal, and security to the recycled shipping container. The modified box can be shipped anywhere in the world, allowing the mobile, medical-grade clinics to be used for many different purposes, such as disaster response or maternal health facilities.

Susanna Young is CEO of G3Box. Young received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from Arizona State University. The G3Box team also includes Gabrielle Palermo, an undergraduate studying biomedical engineering at ASU; Clay Tyler, who graduated with a bachelor’s and master’s degree in mechanical engineering from ASU; and Billy Walters, an ASU student in mechanical engineering.

G3Box has also recently launched an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign to raise money to ship a maternity clinic to Kenya.


When was the last time you feared taking a drink of water? Globally, over one billion people lack access to clean drinking water. Each year, 3.5 million people die due to water-related diseases. In addition, women and children in many developing countries must walk miles each day to obtain water, carrying it home in heavy jugs.

SafeSIPP is a system that transports and purifies water at the same time in one simple device. The device rolls water in a recycled industrial barrel with a purification system inside. As the barrel rolls from the water source to the community, the purification system removes disease-causing contaminants.

The SafeSIPP team consists of ASU chemical engineering students Lindsay Fleming, Taylor Barker and Jared Schoepf, and Jacob Arredondo, a business major at ASU. SafeSIPP will be featured as part of a larger displays on water-related research and innovation.

(To see the display featuring G3Box and SafeSIPP, visit the first floor of the Science Center starting April 12.)

Algae testbed

In September 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy awarded Arizona State University $15 million to lead the first-ever national algae testbed. The Algae Testbed Public-Private Partnership (ATP3) provides high-quality data to support companies and research institutions working to solve the nation’s energy challenges.

The project is a partnership led by the Arizona Center for Algae Technology and Innovation (AzCATI), part of the College of Technology and Innovation on ASU’s Polytechnic campus, and receives support from national labs and academic and industrial partners.

ATP3 allows researchers to test real-world conditions for algal biomass production for biofuel. Long-term algal cultivation trials will help establish a realistic plan for the development and implementation of sustainable biofuels that can be utilized on a commercial scale. This represents an unprecedented step toward clean energy.    

(Visit the fourth floor of the Science Center to learn more about ASU’s algae testbed and ATP3 partnership.)

To learn more about the Arizona Science Center-ASU partnership, visit

Written by Allie Nicodemo, Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development

Director, Knowledge Enterprise Development


New online option offers greater access to engineering education

April 10, 2013

Beginning this fall, ASU's Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering will offer its renowned Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree program for electrical engineering in an online format.

“We want to offer an option to working professionals motivated to pursue an electrical engineering degree. It combines the convenience of an online format with interaction with our faculty, who through their dedication to teaching and innovation in research have made our electrical engineering program one of the top in the nation,” says Paul Johnson, professor and dean of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. QESST LAB Download Full Image

Combining fundamentals with applied experience

Stephen Phillips, director of the School of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering, one of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, notes that the program is designed to prepare students for the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of the electrical engineering industry.

“Our faculty members have expertise across a broad spectrum and we have strong ties to industry,” Phillips says. “Students in the program gain valuable insight into leading-edge innovation, but also the practical applications in a wide range of sectors from healthcare to energy to security.”

The 120-credit hour degree program includes core-engineering courses and a minimum of 45 upper division credit hours in specialty courses – including topics such as analog and digital circuits, electromagnetic fields, microprocessors, communications networks, solid-state electronics and electric power and energy systems.

The program’s labs incorporate practical hardware with industry-standard computer-aided design and simulation tools to give students applied, hands-on experience.

“Students will initially be working with circuit design and simulation tools that are easy to grasp, but will enable them to move on to more advanced tools, such as the Xilinx ISE environment, which is heavily used in industry for advanced digital logic design,” says assistant professor Michael Goryll.

Sessions are offered in a seven-and-a-half week format and the degree program can be completed in as few as three calendar years, depending on the student’s desired course load.

Working with leading faculty

The online format enables corporate partners to provide workforce development opportunities, and gives their employees the opportunity to bring back insights gained from interaction with faculty who are leaders in their fields.

Many faculty members have received the highest recognition for their research and teaching impact, including National Academy of Engineering members, IEEE Fellows, Regents’ Professors, NSF CAREER Award winners, and winners of the Fulton Schools of Engineering  Top 5% Teaching Awards.

“We are leveraging innovative learning technologies to enable students to gain the advanced skills needed in a fast-paced global economy,” says Phillips.

“It is an online class, but not a remote class,” says electrical engineering professor Marco Saraniti. “Students will have significant real-time exposure to the instructor.”

For example, Saraniti notes that office hours for both in-class and online students are implemented using an interactive display such as Skype, enabling the professor to share not only notes, but allowing the student to see exactly what the professor sees.

”Our hardware labs include kits for building circuits on breadboards and measuring the responses with computer-based instruments. Students can do the labs anywhere and at any time.  Students have real-time access to teaching assistants and faculty during scheduled office hours. These labs are the same as those completed by our on-campus students,” Goryll says.

Leveraging a history of innovation in education

ASU has a long history in distance-learning programs. Thirty years ago, it offered programs to corporate sites through interactive TV networks and satellites. In 2002, it first offered an online engineering graduate degree program. The programs have since expanded to include 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs entirely online.

In recent rankings released by U.S. News & World Report magazine, ASU’s online engineering graduate programs placed 23rd among the nearly 70 noted as top-tier online programs. Students in the programs are from across the United States and around the world.

Learn more about ASU’s electrical engineering online degree program.

Joe Kullman

Science writer, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering