New Mexico Research Symposium
The New Mexico Research Symposium (NMRS), collaboratively hosted with the New Mexico Academy of Science (NMAS), is an annual conference with oral presentations, a poster competition, and a keynote address. The conference is geared to undergraduate and graduate students from New Mexico’s colleges and universities. Presentation and poster abstracts are published in the New Mexico Journal of Science. View the Journal of Science on the NMAS Website.
NMRS 2021 is an all-virtual event occurring November 8-12, 2021.
Call for abstracts is now closed.
11/8 to 11/12/2021Times:
See the schedule of eventsLocation:
Dates and Deadlines:
Abstract submission due October 11, 2021
Notice of acceptance October 18, 2021
Poster submission October 29, 2021
General registration closes November 4, 2021
Mike Morrison Better Poster Webinar Registration October 21, 2021
Schedule of Events
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Speaker: Larry Crumpler
New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science
The Exploration of Mars: A New Era of Discovery with Perseverance and the Ingenuity Helicopter
Many years before we sent the first spacecraft to other planets, I was observing and reading all the books I could find about the mysterious red planet. At the same time, I enjoyed all of the classic science fiction movies where space travelers landed on other strange planets that, oddly, always had the appearance of the Southwestern desert. I wondered about the strange landscapes and rocks of those planets. Then we started seeing that Mars was remarkably similar to the dry deserts of Earth – in fact, very similar to New Mexico. Thus was born a dual interest in other planets and in geology here on Earth; and that led me to follow a path that eventually ended up as a scientist on many Mars and Venus missions. As a student, I was able to work on the very first orbiter images of Mars from the Viking mission; and as a planetary geologist and mission scientist, I have been able to work on rovers exploring the surface of the planet. With the rovers Spirit and Opportunity we “went to work on Mars” every day. And with another orbiter we began see images of Mars that were so detailed they looked like aerial photos. Now, as a scientist on the Perseverance rover mission, I am able to do Earth-style “field geology” on Mars every day; and we are learning about the geologic evolution of one of our nearest neighbors in space – and perhaps something about our own planet too. This presentation will take a look at that long road and some of the latest results from the Perseverance rover and Ingenuity, the first Mars helicopter, as they explore the rocks and landscape of an ancient lake on Mars.
Larry S. Crumpler, Ph.D. is Research Curator of Volcanology and Space Sciences at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science. He received his doctorate from the University of Arizona in Planetary Sciences and MS from the University of New Mexico in Geology. Prior to the Museum, he worked as a research scientist at Brown University.
His research includes the geology of the inner planets of our solar system, with particular emphasis on Mars, and studies of New Mexico volcanism with an emphasis on lava flows.
Currently, he is a member of the Perseverance Rover Mission science team, and was a member of the development team for the Ingenuity helicopter. Previously, he was a science team member on the Mars Exploration Rover (Spirit & Opportunity) mission, Mars Odyssey Gamma Ray Spectrometer, and the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter High-Resolution Camera (HiRISE). On the Mars Exploration Rover mission, he served as “Long-term Planning Lead” and downlinked information from the rovers on a daily basis from his office at the Museum. On the Perseverance Mission he is responsible for geologic context mapping of the terrain traversed by the rover.
He began his work with Mars as a student intern with NASA’s Viking Mission and later worked with the Pathfinder Mars mission, Magellan radar mission to Venus, and planning for the Russian Mars 96 mission. He has participated in Mars landing site selection for all of the landed science missions to date, and in many Mars rover field tests. He has published many professional papers, book chapters, and geologic maps; and has just completed a book about Mars and his personal journey as a Mars scientist, entitled “Missions to Mars,” that will be published by Harper-Collins in late 2021. He is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America.
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Using TEA to Inform your R&D
Dr. Anjali Mulchandani
Do you want to learn how to bridge the gap between academic research and industry implementation? Join us on Tuesday November 9 from 10-12am to learn from UNM Center for Water and the Environment researchers on how to use techno-economic assessment to identify economic feasibility and sustainability of a new technology to guide future research and development.
Dr. Anjali Mulchandani is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering at the University of New Mexico. She leads the Water and Environmental Resource Sustainability group. Her research converges environmental engineering with materials science, nanotechnology and data analytics to design and predict feasibility of novel water treatment and resource recovery technologies. Her passions include designing hands-on learning tools and leading public outreach initiatives for STEM awareness and engagement among all levels of learners.
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Virtual poster session featuring the research of undergraduate and graduate students from across New Mexico. Poster presenters will be available from 4 pm - 5 pm on November 9th to answer questions and discuss their research and posters will be available to view through the end of the symposium .
Registered attendees will also be able to cast their vote for this year’s “People’s Choice” poster award beginning Tuesday, November 9th at 4 pm until the evening of Thursday November 11. Details on how to vote will be emailed to registered participants on Tuesday morning.
Contact Sara Pichette with any questions at email@example.com
2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Venturing into Space: How New Mexico faculty is reaching for the stars and taking students along the journey
Abstract: New space, the influence of the private sector into all space-related efforts, and NASA’s Artemis program are making possible the realization of crewed long-term duration missions. New Mexico faculty are contributing toward this effort and the New Mexico Space Grant Consortium (NMSGC) and New Mexico NASA EPSCoR are supporting their research. Our panel, representing the three research universities in the state, will present their research, their motivations to study out of this world concepts, and how students gain experience into the new space. Our panelists are responding to the needs of a not-too-distant future where habitats on the Moon and Mars will one day materialize. Our panel will discuss some of the aspects of their research for making the dream of humans to travel and thrive in outer space safe and feasible. Everything begins with an idea; this panel will share some their wildest ideas and entertain the wildest questions.
Paulo Oemig, Director of the New Mexico Space Grant Consortium
Paulo Oemig is the Director of the New Mexico Space Grant Consortium (NMSGC) and the New Mexico NASA EPSCoR program. Paulo is an Assistant Professor in the College of Health, Education and Social Transformation at New Mexico State University. He teaches courses in research methods, bilingual education and methods of teaching science. His research areas are integration of STEM education and the development of science-literate identities, particularly among underrepresented and underserved students. Paulo completed an Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship with NASA, has five years of experience as a chemist and ten years of experience as a STEM educator. Paulo Oemig holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, master’s degree in anthropology and a Ph.D. in science and bilingual education. Dr. Oemig is a member of the Math and Science Advisory Council of the New Mexico Public Education Department.
Speaker: Sally Seidel, UNM
Sally Seidel received her Ph.D. in experimental particle physics from the University of Michigan in 1987 for a search for nucleon decay using the IMB water Cherenkov detector. As a research scientist with the University of Toronto on the ARGUS Experiment from 1987-1991, she participated in the construction of a drift chamber optimized for B physics and published a study of charmed baryon decay. Sally joined the University of New Mexico faculty in 1991. As a member of the CDF experiment, she co-led the upgrade tracker sensor design team and carried out a study of multi-jet final states. She then co-led the ATLAS Run-1 pixel sensor group. On ATLAS her analysis team focuses on signatures of new physics in rare decays of B mesons. Her past ATLAS analysis work included discovery of the excited heavy meson Bc(2S). The Seidel group is also developing radiation-hard technologies for particle sensing and tracking in extra-terrestrial conditions and at future particle colliders. She has served on the DOE High Energy Physics Advisory Panel, the Fermilab Users Executive Committee, and the Fermi Research Alliance Board of Directors and has held the positions of Secretary-Treasurer of the American Physical Society (APS) Topical Group on Hadronic Physics and Member-at-large of the Executive Committee of the APS Division of Particles and Fields (DPF). She is Past Chair of the APS Four Corners Section. She has served as chair of the DPF Instrumentation Award Committee. Seidel has held fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation, the Vietnam Education Foundation, the Royal Institute of Technology (Stockholm), the University of Canterbury Erskine Programme, and the European Union, as well as a Sigma Xi Distinguished Lectureship. She has served as a National Advisor to the DPF Instrumentation Task Force and is the recipient of awards from the NSF Major Research Instrumentation and Career Advancement programs as well as the DOE Advanced Detector Research program. She currently serves as Chief Editor of Advances in High Energy Physics and as Editor-in-Chief of Open Physics. Sally joined the LANSCE (Los Alamos National Laboratory) Users Executive Committee in 2018.
Speaker: Marlena Fraune, New Mexico State
Dr. Marlena R. Fraune is a Psychology Professor at New Mexico State University. She leads the Intergroup Human-Robot Interaction Lab. She received her B.A. in Psychology at Beloit College in 2013 and her PhD at Indiana University in 2018. Dr. Fraune studies how to make human-robot more efficient and enjoyable by examining group interaction. She performs research in Japan, Portugal, and Germany, and she collaborates with the US Air Force, Toyota Research Institute, and the New Mexico Space Grant Consortium. In her spare time, Dr. Fraune enjoys ballroom dancing, hiking, reading, and playing board games.
Speaker: Andrei Zagrai, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology
Dr. Andrei Zagrai is a Professor at New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology. His research interests encompass intelligent, adaptive structures, structural health monitoring (SHM) and vibrations. Dr. Zagrai’s current research is concentrated on structural health monitoring and diagnosis of space systems. His team has conducted first demonstrations of active SHM during a stratospheric flight and a suborbital spaceflight. This work has culminated in launching an experiment to International Space Station. Dr. Zagrai has published more than seventy technical papers and has received a number of national and international awards including the Achenbach medal for contribution in the field of SHM. Andrei is an active member of ASME NDPD division and serves as an associate editor of ASME Journal of Nondestructive Evaluation, Diagnostics and Prognostics of Engineering Systems.
Speaker: Fernando Moreu, University of New Mexico
Dr. Fernando Moreu is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering (CCEE) at UNM. He holds courtesy appointments in the Departments of ECE, Mechanical Engineering, and Computer Science. He is the founder and director of the Smart Management of Infrastructure Laboratory (SMILab). SMILab’s research interests include structural dynamics and control, structural health monitoring, wireless smart sensor networks, cyber-physical systems, computer vision, earthquake engineering, augmented reality, unmanned aerial systems, bridge engineering, and aerospace structures monitoring and reusability. He has published 73 journal papers and conference proceedings. Prof. Moreu received his MS and PhD degrees in structural engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2005 and 2015, respectively). Prof. Moreu received the CCEE Stamm Teacher of the Year award and Research of the Year award, in 2019 and 2021, respectively. Prof. Moreu’s projects are funded by NSF, DOE, DOD, NAS, USDOT, NASA, TRB, and the commercial sector. He is a Member of ASCE, ASME, SPIE, and AREMA. Prof. Moreu’s students have received the NMSGC scholarship in 2019 and 2021, respectively; Air Force Research Scholar of the year in 2019 and 2021, respectively; and 2nd place in ASCE EMI SCHM student paper competition in 2020.
Speaker: Elba Serrano, New Mexico State University
Dr. Elba Serrano is a Regents Professor of Biology at New Mexico State University. Serrano’s research focuses on the sensory systems for hearing and balance, neurogenetics, and glial neurobiology. Her laboratory’s NASA related investigations explore the impact of altered gravity environments on cell growth and gene expression. An advocate for interdisciplinary research and education, Serrano is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the recipient of a Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM). Elba serves as NMSU lead PI for the NSF HSI National STEM Resource Hub, a capacity-building and faculty development initiative that aspires to increase STEM student success at over 550 Hispanic Serving Institutions across the United States. Serrano is a first-generation-to-college researcher and educator who received a Ph.D. in biological sciences from Stanford University with an emphasis in neuroscience and biophysics, and an undergraduate degree in physics with a chemistry minor from the University of Rochester.
Speaker: Paul Fuierer, New Mexico Tech
Dr. Paul Fuierer is Professor of Materials & Metallurgical Engineering at NMT. He teaches courses at all college levels, introductory through graduate, with specialty areas including ceramic engineering, solid state physics, crystal chemistry, and electronic and other functional (magnetic, optical) materials. Paul’s primary research involves the novel processing of functional ceramics in bulk or film form, in particular processes which invoke texture, grain orientation and anisotropy. Recently, his focus has been Dry Aerosol Deposition (DAD), a unique spray process for creating fully dense, nano-crystalline ceramic films and coatings. Application areas include sensing, energy conversion, and erosion and thermal protection (for example space materials and structures). Fuierer is an Eastman Kodak Fellow, NSF early CAREER and Materials World Network awardee, and DFG (German Research Agency) Mercator Fellow (as Guest Research Professor at the University of Bayreuth). He has a B.S. degree in Ceramic Engineering from Alfred University, and Ph.D. in Solid State Science from the Pennsylvania State University. He also has three years of experience in the industrial manufacturing sector.
Speaker: Douglas Cortes, New Mexico State University
Dr. Douglas Cortes is the Harold Foreman Endowed Professor for Excellence in Civil Engineering at New Mexico State University. He received his BS, MS, and PhD degrees from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA. He is the secretary of the ASCE Sustainability in Geotechnical Engineering Committee, the Principal Investigator for NMSU’s new NASA M-STAR grant, a senior investigator at the Center for Bio-mediated and Bio-inspired Geotechnics and the POC for New Mexico State University at the Lunar Surface Innovation Consortium. Doug’s research interests include bio-inspired geotechnics, ground improvement, wireless underground sensor networks, and planetary landed exploration, construction and mining.
Jesse I. Kaczmarski
Public Support for Community MicrogridsAbstract
Utility-owned community microgrids can provide communities with decentralized grid access to distributed energy resources and improve reliability and resiliency. However, the feasibility of installing microgrids requires rigorous cost-benefit analysis, which should incorporate social values. Currently, the gap in our understanding of ratepayers’ preferences for community microgrid services leaves stakeholders guessing. Using a survey-based contingent valuation method, with a referendum-style elicitation format, this paper provides evidence of public support for community microgrid installations in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah (the Four Corners). The Four Corners region is unique in its potential for renewable electricity capacity as well as heterogeneous state policy objectives regarding the transition to clean energy. A split-sample survey of 4,783 Four Corner’s ratepayers resulted in between 40-45% of respondents voting to support a community microgrid installation (after controlling for hypothetical bias) with a median willingness-to-pay (WTP) of $25.44 (divided among 24 months) if the ratepayer received direct benefits, or $13.92 if they received indirect benefits. Ratepayers in Utah were willing to pay the most relative to the other states. Results highlight the impacts of ideological, institutional, and socioeconomic factors on public support and WTP.
A Lightweight Anonymous Device Authentication Scheme for Information-Centric Distribution Feeder MicrogridAbstract
Distribution feeder microgrid (DFM) augmented with information-centric networking (ICN) architecture is a promising solution for the modern microgrid. However, the integration of advanced information and communication technologies with DFM brings significant security concerns. In this work, we propose a new lightweight anonymous device authentication scheme for DFM supported by named data networking (NDN), a representative implementation of ICN. An analysis of security requirements satisfied by the proposed scheme is performed. The security of the proposed scheme is also formally verified using the popular AVISPA (Automated Validation of Internet Security Protocols and Applications) tool. The computational and communication costs of the proposed scheme are evaluated. Our results demonstrate that the proposed scheme can provide more security features with lower computational and communication overheads compared with other schemes.
S. Ali Ghorashi Kh. A.
Control and Management of Multiple Nano-grids in an Islanded DC Microgrid systemAbstract
Microgrids (MGs) are independent active distributed energy systems that can improve the performance of traditional power systems through increasing consumer participation, sustainable energy resources penetration, grid resiliency, and power system stability. Designing MGs by connecting multiple nano-grids (NGs) promotes the modularity of MGs which in turn results in higher flexibility, resiliency, and scalability. NGs can be defined as power distribution systems consisting of local power generation and consumption units which usually include a local energy storage system (ESS), a gate-way (GW) module, and a dedicated control system. The typical decentralized droop-based control techniques are not effective in multiple NGs due to their structural features. In a cluster of NGs, the efficient and reliable operation of the system relies on the suitable cooperation among the GW modules. In addition, due to the presence of constant power loads, the typical proportional-integral voltage regulators cannot ensure the stability of NGs’ local DC bus voltage. To address these challenges, this research proposes a distributed hierarchical control framework which ensures accurate power sharing among NGs by balancing the state of charge (SoC) of battery energy storages in different NGs while maintaining the plug and play ability of NGs. In addition, an adaptive model predictive controller (AMPC) is utilized that improves the stability of the NG’s local DC bus voltage while reducing the current ripples of the batteries.
Incorporating inverter-based power from distributed generation and energy storage to improve power quality in a distribution networkAbstract
As inverter-based generators and energy storage are increasingly integrated into the power grid, there is a novel opportunity for improving power quality at the distribution level. Power distribution systems may suffer from imbalance across the three phases, voltage sag, large variation in loads over time and low power factor. Classical three-phase inverters evenly distribute the power from amongst the phases of the distribution network; in contrast, new balancing inverters have the ability to unevenly distribute the power to compensate for highly loaded phases. In addition, inverters have the ability to regulate voltage and inject or absorb reactive power. In this research project, inverters’ power injection and voltage control algorithms are tested and coordinated on a three-phase model of an underground distribution system. Power consumption data collected from buildings and a photovoltaic system along with a distribution network model are used for the simulation test bed. Optimally improving the performance of the distribution network through coordinated control of the balancing inverters enables load/phase balancing, load shaping, voltage regulation and power factor correction.
Reevaluating the Change Point Detection Problem with Segment-Based Bayesian Online Change Point DetectionAbstract
Change point detection is widely used for finding transitions between states of data generation within a time series. Methods for change point detection currently assume this transition is instantaneous and therefore focus on finding a single point of data to classify as a change point. However, this assumption is flawed because many time series actually display short periods of transitions between different states of data generation. Previous work has shown Bayesian Online Change Point Detection (BOCPD) to be the most effective method for change point detection on a wide range of different time series data. In this paper, we explore adapting the change point detection algorithms to detect a period of transition. We design a segment-based mechanism to examine a window of data points within a time series, rather than a single data point, to determine if the window represents a period of transition. We test our segment-based change point detection algorithm on 36 different time series and compare it to the original BOCPD algorithm. Our results show that, for some of these 36 time series, the segment-based mechanism to detect transition periods can much more accurately identify change points based on standard metrics.
DC Microgrid Fault Detection Using Multiresolution Analysis of Traveling WavesAbstract
Fast detection and isolation of faults in a DC microgrid is of particular importance. Fast tripping protection (i) increases the lifetime of power electronics (PE) switches by avoiding high fault current magnitudes and (ii) enhances the controllability of PE converters. This paper proposes a traveling wave (TW) based scheme for fast tripping protection of DC microgrids. The proposed scheme utilizes a discrete wavelet transform (DWT) to calculate the high-frequency components of DC fault currents. Multiresolution analysis (MRA) using DWT is utilized to detect TW components for different frequency ranges. The Parseval energy of the MRA coefficients are then calculated to demonstrate a quantitative relationship between the fault current signal energy and coefficients’ energy. The calculated Parseval energy values are used to train a Support Vector Machine classifier to identify the fault type and a Gaussian Process regression engine to estimate the fault location on the DC cables. The proposed approach is verified by simulating an actual 750 V DC microgrid in PSCAD/EMTDC.
Defining and Developing Careers with NSFAbstract
This presentation speaks about my journey as a Research Assistant while working for the NSF EPSCoR project. I will primarily talk about three major topics during the tenure. Firstly I will share my experience in inheriting the existing code base of the web application and making it a production-ready application using containerization technology. Secondly, I would like to showcase my ownership and research on the application on how I wanted to make it a more sustainable project by migrating the application. Thirdly I would like to share my experience as an instructor for workforce development in the local region and the perspective I gained during that experience
NMAS Outstanding New Mexico Science Teachers
Sponsored by American Chemical Society, Central NM Section
This session will recognize excellence in science research and education in New Mexico. Symposium poster winners will be announced.
Desert Hills Elementary, Las Cruces Public SchoolsAward Recipient Bio
Meagan Strain is a 5th grade science teacher at Desert Hills Elementary in the Las Cruces Public Schools. She has taught for 9 years; and for the past two+ years she has been the departmentalized 5th grade science teacher, teaching all 5th grade students an hour of dedicated science each day – this is remarkable as the need for time for math and English language arts is great and science often loses out in elementary schools.
She is able to teach science all day in her classroom and dive more deeply into science than is common in elementary school. She genuinely cares for and supports her students and their families and is passionate about the success of her students. She understands how vital science education is and attends to equity by engaging all students in quality science learning. She also involves her larger school community by continuing to advocate for time spent in science teaching and learning.
Her students enjoy having science every day and many say that this is their favorite class. They collaborate through hands-on science and engineering experiences, they read, write, speak and listen about science concepts, they give presentations to their peers, and they engage in the foundations of scientific arguments using the process of “claim, evidence, reasoning.”
Ms. Strain has also served on the district Elementary Science Leadership Committee. This committee has been a critical component in promoting science education in Las Cruces Public Schools by creating district Science Instructional Guides for teachers and building content during Remote Instruction.
Jefferson Montessori Academy, a Charter School authorized by Carlsbad Municipal SchoolsAward Recipient Bio
Kerrie Thatcher is a 6th-12 grade science teacher at Jefferson Montessori Academy, a Charter School authorized by Carlsbad Municipal Schools. She has taught for 10+ years and is also the science fair mentor and SpEd Coordinator. She is revered at JMA as a science nerd; and wows the younger students with her wacky Halloween experiments and Star Wars knowledge.
Ms. Thatcher has taught integrated science, biology, physical science, horticulture and chemistry; and was the driving force in creating a science fair requirement in 2015 for middle school and secondary students that focused on student interests and was fueled by parent and staff volunteers. What began as a school science fair has become annual regional, state, and international fair participation by both general education and special education students.
In 2019, a weekly STEM club was created to allow experienced science fair students to mentor elementary and middle school students with their research and projects. Ms. Thatcher believes that the science competitions are an excellent opportunity for students to learn how to handle themselves in interviews, respond to criticism appropriately, and be supportive of each other. Ms. Thatcher collaborates with other teachers to reinforce math concepts and ELA skills in student science presentations. Her dedicated mentorship of both middle and high school science students has led to a successful track record of awards and recognition for these students including competing and placing in the International Genius Olympiad in New York for 5 years.
The most amazing testament to her ability to turn science into a passion among students is the past graduates who return to talk about science or volunteer as a science fair judge for a new batch of “Thatcher’s Science Kids.”
NM EPSCoR Poster Awards
Poster session awards will be announced on Friday, November 12, 2021
Raisa Islam, New Mexico Tech
"User Controllable Privacy Management Mechanism in the Smart Grid System: Ontology-based Approach"
Jesse Kaczmarski, University of New Mexico
“Public Support for Community Microgrids"
Jason Banegas, New Mexico State University
“GIS-Based Methods for Electric Vehicle Charging Station Site Selection”
Michael Nelwood, Navajo Technical University
“Fabrication of Low Cost, Paper-Based Electrodes”
Justin Platero, Navajo Technical University
“Design and Fabrication of Flexible, Paper-based Electrochemical Sensors to Detect Heavy Metals in Groundwater”
Candi Marti , Santa Fe Community College and STEMAP
“Machine Learning with Semi-Supervised Outlier Detection Algorithms for Detecting Cyber-Attacks on Smart Grids”
Raisa Islam, New Mexico Tech Graduate Student
“User Controllable Privacy Management Mechanism in the Smart Grid System: Ontology-based Approach”