MU Contributes to National Security

1 decade 8 months 3 weeks ago January 04, 2006 Jan 4, 2006 Wednesday, January 04 2006 Wednesday, January 04, 2006 11:59:16 AM CST in News

Steve Apperson is an MU doctoral student who graduated just last month with a bachelor of engineering degree. But, he enjoyed his research so much that he decided to stay for his Phd.

"I started two years ago in this group, and I started work in a slightly different area," Apperson said. "And then, after that, I came into this field which is the mems and energetic materials."

A $1.75 million grant in a U.S. defense appropriations bill will help Apperson's research. One thing MU researchers are focusing on includes developing a computer-based method to automate information.

"We'll be developing automated ways to process satellite image data, to work on various applications," explained MU professor Curt Davis, the center's director. "For example, target detection, target tracking, change detection, trying to find out areas that are changing on the surface of the Earth."

For example, if a soldier's radio breaks down in combat, Apperson's research includes making smaller chips to generate energy. So, the soldier could use the chip to run the radio.

"We've actually patented this technology," added Apperson. "And I transferred it to Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey over the summer."

MU's center works closely with National Geospatial Intelligence Agencies in Washington, D.C.and St. Louis.

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