Advertised Project Openings


Below are currently advertised UROP projects available to eligible undergraduates. All projects, regardless of mode (pay, credit, or volunteer) are expected to be worth MIT academic credit and be supervised by MIT faculty. Projects appear on this list in the order they have been received.

These projects do not represent all available UROPs as many faculty do not submit project listings for this site. Rather, they expect interested students to contact them based on their general research to discuss potential UROPs.

Available UROPs

7/17/19

Fall/IAP

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research (WI)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Sebastian Lourido

Project Title: Web tool development for mechanistic insights into RNA biology

Project Description: The Rouskin Lab at the Whitehead institute (www.rouskinlab.com) is looking to hire a  student preferably from the Computer Science department, or with substantial computation experience, over the summer of 2019 . The lab focuses on elucidation of RNA structure and its impact on biological processes and disease. This position represents an exciting opportunity to learn about our novel method to uncover alternative RNA structures using an Expectation-Maximization clustering algorithm. We are looking for a student to help integrate our code into a Web framework.

Prerequisites: Strong experience with the Python programming language, Web development with Django and version control using Git are desirable.

Contact: Silvi Rouskin: srouskin@wi.mit.edu


7/16/19

Fall/IAP

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Pattie Maes

Project Title: Wearable Lab on Body : Bio-Digital Devices for Health and Wellbeing

Project Description: The MIT Media Lab’s Fluid Interfaces group designs seamless interfaces for human augmentation. Building upon research from neuroscience, biotechnology, and machine learning, the Fluid Interfaces group designs systems that help us exploit the untapped powers of human body to supplement our natural abilities to support attention, memory, emotion regulation, creativity, learning, decision making and more. The group designs wearable and immersive systems that enhance people's cognitive abilities to enable them to maximize their potential. We are seeking motivational UROP(s) who are interested in working on a novel bio-digital wearable and ubiquitous device for realtime/continuous digital sensing and monitoring of biomarkers. Our aim for the project is to develop a system that is capable of:

  1. longitudinal/continuous monitoring of body biological data
  2. Plug and play system that can work with multiple biomarkers
  3. Easily adaptable bio-digital platform

You will be responsible for designing and testing the hardware arrangement. You will gain experience of working in an antidisciplinary setting: learn to integrate your work in field different from yours. This position is for Fall/IAP/Spring with potential for a longer term commitment.

Prerequisites: The project is open to students majoring in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, computer science, and other relevant fields. The UROP must have solid experience in mechanical design and fabrication. Also experience in electronics, embedded programming or experience of working with wearables,  biological science wet lab is preferable but not necessary.

Relevant URL: https://www.media.mit.edu/projects/wearable-lab-on-body/overview/

Contact: Pat Pataranutaporn: patpat@media.mit.edu


7/16/19

Fall

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Ekene Ijeoma

Project Title: Poetic Justice

Project Description: Poetic Justice is a new group at MIT Media Lab which researches social issues and produces conceptual artworks ranging from websites and apps to sculptures, large-scale installations and music performances.

Some of our first projects include:

  • The Green Book Project, a series of publications and interactive installations developed through storytelling and mapping workshops that reimagine the Negro Motorist Green Book for “traveling while Black” in today's “New Jim Crows”.
  • The Scream Project, a series of publications and interactive installations which revive the Teotihuacan folklore/ritual of women practicing catharsis in the pyramids to contemporary urban spaces.
  • Look Up, an app-based public artwork that engages citygoers in being more present, aware and mindful.

Prerequisites: Poetic Justice is looking for applicants who are passionate about breaking down the complexities of social issues and building up visibility, accountability, and solidarity around them. Applicants should be interested or experienced in at least one of the following: hardware/electrical/mechanical engineering, software engineering, interaction design, information design, architectural design, urban design/planning, industrial design, graphic design, music, performance, film, writing/journalism, storytelling, and community organizing/activism.

Relevant URL: https://www.media.mit.edu/groups/poetic-justice/overview/

Contact: Rebecca Cuscaden: cuscaden@media.mit.edu


7/12/19

Fall

UROP Department, Lab or Center: The MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Robert Armstrong

Project Title: Advanced Decision-Making Framework to Assess Renewables-Tied Energy Storage Systems

Project Description: We’re investigating the techno-economics of renewable energy (Wind, Solar PV, etc.) together with advanced energy storage devices such as batteries. As renewables become a more prevalent source of energy in our society, our electrical grid will need to adapt accordingly to account for the intermittent nature of resources such as wind and solar PV. We are exploring the profitability of combining renewables with energy storage systems to participate in different electricity market segments: energy, capacity and ancillary services. We are looking specifically into questions such as: How will the role of energy storage evolve with increasing levels of decarbonization in the future? What are the potential applications for ML/AI methods in areas such as electricity market price forecasting, prediction of renewable energy generation, and battery degradation estimation?

We are investigating these questions by developing a comprehensive linear model in Julia. The core of the model has been developed in MILP form and it will be expanded in the future to answer relevant questions, a couple of which have been listed above.

We invite you to come be a part of our team.

Requirements:

  • Programming:
    • Fluency with Julia and JuMP (Mathematical optimization in Julia)
    • MILP programming
    • Modeling experience (preferred not required)

Contact: Apurba Sakti: sakti@mit.edu


7/1/19

Fall/IAP

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Prof. Rosalind Picard

Project Title: Process and visualize call center employees longitudinal data

Project Description: The Affective Computing group, Media Lab is looking for UROP students who join us to develop tools to organize, analyze and visualize data from a study of employees’ wellbeing. The longitudinal measurements will be collected using mobile phones and wearable sensors. We will conduct a long-term ambulatory study of call centre workers with the goal of finding behavioral, physiological and social correlates of their performance and wellness. You will help us to analyze the collected data and to visualize the results.

Prerequisites: The student must have interests and experience in data analysis and visualization. Expertise in Python, Anaconda and longitudinal data processing is a plus.

Contact: If you are interested, please send an email to Szymon Fedor at sfedor@media.mit.edu with the following information:

  • Subject line: “UROP – first name, last name – years in college"
  • Content: Please write a short description (<200 words) that explains why you are interested and summarizes your relevant experience.  
  • Attachment: CV/resume

7/1/19

Fall/IAP

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Prof. Rosalind Picard

Project Title: Preprocess Measurements and Monitor Data Quality

Project Description: The Affective Computing group, Media Lab is looking for UROP students who join us to develop tools to preprocess and organize the data collected during clinical trials using mobile phones and wearable sensors. We will conduct long-term ambulatory measurement experiments for depressed patients at MGH to find new methods for diagnosis of depression. You will help us to preprocess, monitor its quality and analyze the collected data.

Prerequisites: The student must have interests and preferably experience in data preprocessing and analysis. Expertise in Python (e.g. Anaconda) and physiological signal processing is a plus.

Contact: If you are interested, please send an email to Szymon Fedor at sfedor@media.mit.edu with the following information:

  • Subject line: “UROP – first name, last name – years in college"
  • Content: Please write a short description (<200 words) that explains why you are interested and summarizes your relevant experience.  
  • Attachment: CV/resume

7/1/19

Fall/IAP

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Rosalind Picard

Project Title: Process and Vizualize Sleep Measurements

Project Description: The Affective Computing group, Media Lab is looking for UROP students who join us to provide support with the analysis of the sleep measurements collected during clinical trials using wearable EEG sensors. We will conduct long-term ambulatory measurement experiments for depressed patients at MGH to find new methods for diagnosis of depression. You will help us to analyze the collected sleep data and to visualize the results. The student must have interests and experience in data analysis and visualization. Expertise in Python and sleep signal analysis is a plus.

Contact: If you are interested, please send an email to Szymon Fedor at sfedor@media.mit.edu with the following information:

  • Subject line: “UROP – first name, last name – years in college"
  • Content: Please write a short description (<200 words) that explains why you are interested and summarizes your relevant experience.  
  • Attachment: CV/resume

7/25/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Ekene Ijeoma

Project Title: Poetic Justice

Project Description: Poetic Justice is a new group at MIT Media Lab which researches social issues and produces conceptual artworks ranging from websites and apps to sculptures, large-scale installations and music performances.

Some of our first projects include:

  • The Green Book Project, a series of publications and interactive installations developed through storytelling and mapping workshops that reimagine the Negro Motorist Green Book for “traveling while Black” in today's “New Jim Crows”.
  • The Scream Project, a series of publications and interactive installations which revive the Teotihuacan folklore/ritual of women practicing catharsis in the pyramids to contemporary urban spaces.
  • Look Up, an app-based public artwork that engages citygoers in being more present, aware and mindful.

Prerequisites: Poetic Justice is looking for applicants who are passionate about breaking down the complexities of social issues and building up visibility, accountability, and solidarity around them. Applicants should be interested or experienced in at least one of the following: hardware/electrical/mechanical engineering, software engineering, interaction design, information design, architectural design, urban design planning, industrial design, graphic design, music, performance, film, writing/journalism, storytelling, and community organizing/activism.

Relevant URL: https://www.media.mit.edu/groups/poetic-justice/overview/

Contact: Rebecca Cuscaden: cuscaden@media.mit.edu


7/25/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Brain and Cognitive Sciences (Course 9)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Alan Jasanoff

Project Title: genetically targeted functional brain imaging

Project Description: This project involves laboratory work for the design, validation, and application of novel neuroimaging methods. We have recently developed a novel technique to track cell type and circuit-specific brain activity in vivo using MRI. We anticipate the technique will generate a new field for brain science. We are now seeking motivated students to work on sub-projects related to this newly developed neuroimaging technology. The students will work on viral injection, immunostaining, confocal imaging, and data analysis. The students will also help with developing behavioral training paradigms for awake animals in the MRI environment.

Prerequisites: experience with animal work, mice/rat surgery

Contact: Nan Li: nli9@mit.edu


6/18/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Tod Machover

Project Title: New Technologies to Support Research on Vocal Disorders, Music and Animal Wellbeing

Project Description: Did you know that people who stutter almost never stutter when they sing? Here at MIT Media Lab’s Opera of the Future group, we are using audio analysis tools in Python and MATLAB, musical modulation tools including PureData and Max, and machine learning techniques to leverage this interesting fact and determine what sorts of vocal modulations are most effective at remediating stutter. Stuttering is a vocal communication disorder which affects approximately 1% of the adult population worldwide, and those who have it know how difficult it can make regular social interaction. Using modulated vocal feedback (playing one’s own voice back to them with some modification), we seek to decrease the prevalence of stutter in those who struggle with it. We have seen promising results in early trials and we want to experiment further with new techniques.

In addition to the work on stuttering, you would also be helping with the creation of novel sonic enrichment technologies for animals in managed care. In collaboration with the San Diego zoo, we are creating a series of systems based on deep learning, machine vision, sound design and animal-machine interface design to increase the wellbeing of while animals in zoo environments. 

As a UROP in Opera of the Future, you will be part of this trailblazing research movements. You would be:

  • working on algorithms for stutter detection using machine learning techniques, audio modulation algorithms, and/or data analysis for our trials;
  • helping us design and run human studies with people who experience stuttering;
  • building relevant wearable devices;
  • using deep learning and machine vision to detect animal behaviors in captivity;
  • helping us understand the unicity of sonic environments in zoos;
  • other projects that suit your skills and interests.

We plan on submitting papers for this work after the summer and you can be a co-author! You will have a personal desk space.

Prerequisites:

  • A good command of Python;
  • Experience in Machine Vision, Natural Language Processing or DeepSpeech is preferred;
  • Willingness to learn new software;
  • Interest in music and assistive technology;
  • Excellent interpersonal and organizational skills ;
  • Some knowledge of audio recording/analysis software such as Reaper and Praat would be helpful but not required.

Relevant URL: rebeccakleinberger.com

Contact: Rébecca Kleinberger: rebklein@mit.edu


6/13/19

Fall/IAP

UROP Department, Lab or Center: MIT Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research (MKI)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Kiyoshi Masui

Project Title: Building A Digital Radio Telescope

Project Description: Digital radio telescopes offer advantages compared to traditional dishes. Unlike traditional telescopes, where a dish is pointed at a particular patch of sky, telescope pointing in a digital radio telescope is done in post processing. This allows for an extremely wide field of view and the opportunity to do unique astrophysics and cosmology.

Our group is looking for a friendly, curious, and motivated undergraduate to assist in building and commissioning several computer server nodes which form the core of several such telescopes. The hardware built will be deployed at two radio observatories in the United States and Canada and see first light over the course of the 2019-2020 school year. The student will work closely with a second-year graduate student in physics.

Prerequisites: First-years and sophomores welcome! Course 6, 8 (physics, computer science) particularly encouraged to apply. 

Required: Fluency in using a command line, familiarity with Linux-based operating systems, and/or experience building Linux-based desktop computers.

Recommended: Interest in physics and/or astronomy is a plus, but not necessary.

Contact: Please feel free to email Calvin Leung calvinl@mit.edu if you're curious about this project and want to chat!


6/12/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Deblina Sarkar

Project Title: Biomedical Implants

Project Description: This work will involve the development of injectable and implantable nanoelectronic devices and testing them in-vivo.

Prerequisites:

  • experience with animal work
  • mice/rat surgery

Relevant URL: https://deblina-sarkar.mit.edu/research

Contact: Deblina Sarkar: deblina@mit.edu


6/12/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Deblina Sarkar

Project Title: Wireless Sensing of biological signals

Project Description: Our aim is to develop extremely energy-efficient and ultra-scalable next-generation nano-machines which will possess the capabilities of energy harvesting, wireless communication with systems outside the body and can be remotely controlled. They will be coated with biomolecules such that they can effectively camouflage and trick the body into thinking that it is a part of its own biological system.

The possibilities with such bioelectronic devices are endless, and we are exploring, among others, brain activity recording at a large scale with a precision of single neuron, activity recording in spinal cord and peripheral nervous system, monitoring tumor microenvironment, observing response to pathology development or external stimulus at a single cell level along with integrated functionalities such as stimulation and drug delivery.

Prerequisites: strong fundamentals in electromagnetic theory

Preferred but not required:

  • experience in working with network analyzers
  • experience in simulators such as COMSOL or HST etc

Relevant URL: https://deblina-sarkar.mit.edu/life-nanomachine-synergism

Contact: Deblina Sarkar: deblina@mit.edu


6/12/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Sloan School of Management (Course 15)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Valerie Karplus

Project Title: Measuring Impacts of China's Electricity Market Reforms

Project Description: The structure of China's electricity markets has been evolving since 2015, with markets introduced alongside prior quota-based approaches to dispatch. These reforms have the potential to impact the integration of growing amounts of renewable energy on China's electricity system. This project focuses on measuring the performance of China's reformed electricity markets. The successful candidate will develop and conduct analysis using a large data set on power sector operations in China. An initial task will involve scraping and compiling a comprehensive electricity price data covering multiple years and locations.

Please send a cover letter and resume highlighting relevant experience by June 17, 2019. The UROP position will begin on June 17th, and continue through the end of August and potentially into the fall semester if there is mutual interest.

Prerequisites: data scraping using Python, courses in econometrics and statistics and ability to use related software programs such as Stata or R

Contact: Valerie Karplus: vkarplus@mit.edu


6/11/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Ramesh Raskar

Project Title: Simulation for Imaging Through Scattering

Project Description: In Camera Culture group, we are developing a simulation to model photon propagation in a scattering media (such as skin tissue and fog) to image through scattering. We are looking for an undergraduate student who can help us develop features that are useful to understand how photons behave in the scattering media. The responsibility of UROP is to develop and optimize new features on the simulation platform.

Prerequisites: Experience in Python

Relevant URL: https://www.media.mit.edu/groups/camera-culture/overview/

Contact: Tomohiro Maeda: tomotomo@mit.edu


6/11/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Media Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Ekene Ijeoma

Project Title: Poetic Justice

Project Description: Poetic Justice is a new group at MIT Media Lab which researches social issues and produces conceptual artworks ranging from websites and apps to sculptures, large-scale installations and music performances.

Some of our first projects include:

  • The Green Book Project, a series of publications and interactive installations developed through storytelling and mapping workshops that reimagine the Negro Motorist Green Book for “traveling while Black” in today's “New Jim Crows”.
  • The Scream Project, a series of publications and interactive installations which revive the Teotihuacan folklore/ritual of women practicing catharsis in the pyramids to contemporary urban spaces.
  • Look Up, an app-based public artwork that engages citygoers in being more present, aware and mindful.

Prerequisites: Poetic Justice is looking for applicants who are passionate about breaking down the complexities of social issues and building up visibility, accountability, and solidarity around them. Applicants should be interested or experienced in at least one of the following: hardware/electrical/mechanical engineering, software engineering, interaction design, information design, architectural design, urban design planning, industrial design, graphic design, music, performance, film, writing/journalism, storytelling, and community organizing/activism.

Relevant URL: https://www.media.mit.edu/groups/poetic-justice/overview/

Contact: Rebecca Cuscaden: cuscaden@media.mit.edu


6/6/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Aeronautics and Astronautics (Course 16)

Faculty Supervisor: Olivier de Weck

Project Title: 3D Digital Globe Projection System

Project Description: Aquire, construct, setup and program a 3D digital globe projection system for applications related to Earth Observation (EO) and Telecommunications satellite constellations. For EO we want to (i) visualize reconfigurable satellite constellations that can switch from repeating ground tracks (regional mode) to drifting orbits (global mode), (ii) EO satellite constellation dynamic ground swaths for example for the TROPICS mission, as well as Landsat-8 and Sentinel-2 ground swaths, as well as (iii) dynamic resource allocation for geosynchronous telecommunication satellites (e.g. representing the SES fleet). The UROP requires aquisition of the hardware, physical setup, programming (JAVA or Python preferred) and some iterations with users for the above-mentioned examples.  

Full summer opportunity: 480 hours

Contact: Prof. Olivier de Weck: deweck@mit.edu


6/5/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research (WI)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Rudolf Jaenisch

Project Title: To Dissect Brain Functions and Disorders by Epigenome Editing

Project Description: Epigenetic mechanism such as DNA methylation and histone modification enables the genome to integrate environmental signals. Emerging evidence began to reveal the exciting role of epigenome in mediating brain functions. Abnormal epigenetic events have been documented in a variety of brain disorders. This project aims to develop novel epigenome editing tools (CRISPR-based strategy) allowing for precise editing of individual epigenetic event and figuring out the functional significance of these events in normal brain functions as well as in pathological conditions.

Prerequisites: Basic knowledge and experimental skills in molecular biology are required. This position is idea for the senior students who plan to apply for graduate school. Financial aid is possible if needed.

Contact: Shawn Liu: shawnliu@wi.mit.edu


6/5/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Biology (Course 7)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: David Sabatini

Project Title: Investigating the Role of Autophagy in Degrading RNA

Project Description: The lysosome plays a central role in cellular metabolism, functioning as both a recycling center and signaling hub. To date, research has emphasized the role of proteins at the lysosome; autophagy targets misfolded proteins to lysosomes and the protein complex mTORC1 mediates growth signaling at the lysosomal surface. It is now recognized, however, that autophagy degrades a variety of RNA species from ribosomes to RNA viruses. Additionally, RNA localization is emerging as a prevalent theme for controlling gene expression temporally and spatially. For these reasons I am interested in identifying and characterizing novel RNAs that are localized to the the lysosomal membrane and lumen. My current goals are to establish the types of RNAs localized the lysosome in addition to investigating the mechanism by which those RNAs become lysosomal.

Contact: Jordan Ray: gjray@mit.edu


6/5/19

Summer

UROP Department, Lab or Center: Urban Studies and Planning (Course 11)

MIT Faculty Supervisor Name: Carlo Ratti

Project Title: Roboat

Project Description: As self-driving cars hit the road, autonomous boats are entering Amsterdam’s canals. The ‘roboat’ project — a research collaboration between MIT and AMS, the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions — seeks to design and test the world's first fleet of autonomous boats in the city of Amsterdam. Each water-based unit ( a ‘roboat’ ) can be used for transporting goods and people and for creating temporary floating infrastructures, such as self-assembling bridges and concert stages. Roboats can also monitor the city's waters using new environmental sensors that provide vital insights on urban and human health. Learn more about the project: http://roboat.org/

Role/Tasks: We are looking for 1-3 students for RA/UROP this summer and possible extend to one year. We don’t expect you to have all these skills! This is just a guideline of what we’re looking for and the tasks you’ll be completing. Students of all majors encouraged to apply: CS, EE, ME, …

Experience with any or all of the following a plus:

  • programming experience in ROS environment
  • programming experience with C++/Python/Matlab
  • experience in LiDAR/camera based perception and navigation, robot control and optimization
  • experience in fabrication and machining, such as laser cutting, and 3D printing

Relevant URL: http://roboat.org/

Contact Person:

Wei Wang/ wweiwang@mit.edu

Luis Mateos/ lamateos@mit.edu

Fabio Duarte/ fduarte@mit.edu


6/5/19

Department/Lab/Center: Media Lab / Sloan

Faculty Supervisor: Alex `Sandy’ Pentland

Project Title: Super-Hybrid-Intelligence: Human+AI decision systems

Context: We are looking for 1-2 senior UROPs for joining us in Summer 2019. The project is led by researchers at the Media Lab and MIT Sloan School of Management, and looks into architecting hybrid human + AI decision systems. 

Project Description: A number of people have speculated about the rise of superintelligent computers. But few people have thought seriously about another—probably much more feasible—possibility:  the creation of super-hybrid-intelligent human-computer groups.  That is the focus of this project.

Skills you SHOULD have already: Strong UI/UX design concepts, meteor.js, React.js/Javascript/HTML/CSS

What you will do: 

  • Design and implementation of Human+AI experiments using Amazon Mechanical Turk and Empirica.ly, ​This includes heavy UI/UX design and implementation
  • Participate in production of research products: conference papers, talks, etc.

Skills you will learn/hone: UI/UX design, experimental design, data analysis, theories of collective intelligence.

What we expect you’ll gain:

  • Further development of your technical skills in UI/UX and experimental design.
  • High-impact thesis and/or research experience, and potential co-authorship.
  • Engagement and a working environment at the MIT Media Lab and MIT Sloan.

Pluses: HCI experience, amazon mechanical turk

Some papers the project builds on:

Contact: Send Abdullah Almaatouq <amaatouq@mit.edu> a short description of your background and your resume.


6/4/19

Summer 2019

BioInstrumentation Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Ian Hunter

Project Title:  Experimental Biogas Reactor

Background: With over 1.5 billion cattle worldwide, these animals are a major source of methane. Methane is both emitted directly from the animal (as belches) and from the decomposition of manure. As a potent greenhouse gas, methane has a global warming potential thirty times worse than carbon dioxide over 100 years (on a per-mass basis). At the same time, methane is a useful fuel and is the main component of natural gas. Thus, we seek technologies that allow us to capture and transform methane’s chemical energy to power other devices and processes. This is of great interest to the agriculture industry’s bottom line and sustainability efforts alike. 

Project Description:  We are looking for a talented summer UROP who is excited about developing sustainable energy harvesting technology for the agriculture industry. This full-time UROP will contribute to developing an experimental biogas reactor for methane production.

Tentative Tasks: 

  • Research and document pre-existing reactor designs
  • Drive analysis and development of a custom experimental reactor in the lab
  • Fabricate and test the reactor, iterating on the design as necessary

Required Qualifications:

  • Some solid modeling (Solidworks)
  • Some machining
  • Engineering drive that is creative, curious, and hands-on
  • Strong attention to detail, both theoretically and experimentally
  • Honest and trustworthy team player
  • “Doer” mentality (you don’t need to be explicitly told B to get from A to C)

Contact: Nickolas Demas (demas@mit.edu). In your email, please include your resume/CV and a few sentences describing why you are interested in the project.

Laboratory URL: bioinstrumentation.mit.edu


6/4/19

Summer 2019

BioInstrumentation Laboratory

MIT Faculty Supervisor: Prof. Ian Hunter

Project Title:  Methane-Consuming Miniaturized Power Plant

Background: With over 1.5 billion cattle worldwide, these animals are a major source of methane. Methane is both emitted directly from the animal (as belches) and from the decomposition of manure. As a potent greenhouse gas, methane has a global warming potential thirty times worse than carbon dioxide over 100 years (on a per-mass basis). At the same time, methane is a useful fuel and is the main component of natural gas. Thus, we seek technologies that allow us to capture and transform methane’s chemical energy to power other devices and processes. This is of great interest to the agriculture industry’s bottom line and sustainability efforts alike. 

Project Description:  We are looking for a talented summer UROP who is excited about developing sustainable energy harvesting technology for the agriculture industry. This full-time UROP will contribute to developing a miniaturized power plant for converting methane into electrical energy. 

Tentative Tasks: 

  • Research and document pre-existing miniature power plant designs (chemical and internal combustion)
  • Drive analysis and development of a custom miniaturized methane-consuming power plant
  • Fabricate and test the device, iterating on the design as necessary

Required Qualifications:

  • Some solid modeling (Solidworks)
  • Some machining
  •  Engineering drive that is creative, curious, and hands-on
  • Strong attention to detail, both theoretically and experimentally
  • Honest and trustworthy team player
  • “Doer” mentality (you don’t need to be explicitly told B to get from A to C) 

Contact: Nickolas Demas (demas@mit.edu). In your email, please include your resume/CV and a few sentences describing why you are interested in the project.

Laboratory URL: bioinstrumentation.mit.edu