Spring 2014
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2014 Commencement

2014 Commencement Celebration

The Electrical, Computer, and Systems Engineering Department at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute requests the pleasure of your company at a Champagne Reception in honor of the graduating Class of 2014 on Thursday, May 22, 2014 from 4:00 to 6:00 pm at the Fireside Grill, Hilton Garden Inn, Hoosick Street, Troy.

The reception is free to you and one guest. Additional tickets may be purchased for $25 each.

All reservations must be received by Monday, May 14th, 2014. Reception tickets ordered by you must be picked up at JEC 6049 between 2 and 4 p.m. Mon-Friday. Tickets ordered by parents will be mailed to their address provided.

John Wen

John Wen Recognized by IEEE for Invention of Adaptive Scanning Optical Microscope

Robotics and control systems expert John T. Wen, recently received the 2013 Transition to Practice Award from the IEEE Control Systems Society. This prize is awarded “to recognize outstanding university-industry collaboration that enables the transition of control and systems theory to practical industrial or commercial systems.” Wen’s award was to honor his development of the Adaptive Scanning Optical Microscope (ASOM) and a high-precision laser scanning system for the electronic manufacturing industry. Read More »»

ECSE Fact SheetECSE Fact Sheet
Brian Glinsman

ECSE alum becomes VP of Texas Instruments

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute alum Brian Glinsman was recently named vice president of the multicore processors division at Texas Instruments (TI)

In this role, Glinsman is responsible for TI’s high-performance multicore processor product lines for the fixed and mobile infrastructure market, including base stations, media gateways and core networking applications as well as new markets such as mission critical, industrial automation, embedded vision, high performance computing, medical imaging and audio and video infrastructure. Read More »»

Lester Gerhardt

ECSE Professor Lester Gerhardt Honored by ASEE

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Professor Lester Gerhardt last month received the prestigious Benjamin Garver Lamme Award and Medal from the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE). The ASEE applauded Gerhardt for his "combined contributions to the art of teaching, contributions to research and technical literature, and achievements that contribute to the advancement of the profession of engineering college administration." Awarded since 1928, the Benjamin Garver Lamme Award is regarded as the highest honor bestowed by the ASEE.



RPI Students Launch Unique Weather Balloon

ECSE senior Greg Pitner and the RPI Students for the Exploration and the Development of Space club successfully launched a unique weather balloon 90,000 feet into the atmosphere from the '86 field. The balloon payload contained three high-definition cameras to capture the Earth's entire horizon and some electronics to help the group track the balloon's descent back to earth.

Please visit the club web site at

Read local news coverage.
Troy Record, YNN (Video), CBS6Albany (Video)

For a must-see 360° video of the event click here:


Doug Mercer Lab

Analog Devices, Inc. donates $100,000 in support of the Douglas Mercer '77 Laboratory for Student Exploration and Innovation

The Department is pleased to announce that Analog Devices, Inc. has made a very generous $100,000 donation in support of the Douglas Mercer '77 Laboratory for Student Exploration and Innovation. (A previous story on the Mercer Endowment appears below.) This gift from Analog Devices as Founding Corporate Sponsor significantly advances our progress toward bringing this state of the art laboratory for independent student projects and competitions to life. The lab will be built in JEC 6204; the grand opening is planned for the start of Fall Semester 2012. 

ECSE Graduate Dr. B. Jayant Baliga has been awarded the National Medal of Technology and Innovation

On September 27, 2011, President Barack Obama named five inventors as recipients of the National Medal of Technology and Innovation and seven eminent researchers as recipients of the National Medal of Science, the highest honors bestowed by the United States government on scientists, engineers, and inventors. The recipients will receive their awards at a White House ceremony later this year.

Dr. B. Jayant Baliga received his MS '71 and Ph.D '74 in electrical engineering from RPI. Currently a professor at North Carolina State, he developed the Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor which has had an extensive impact in transportation, lighting, medicine, defense, and renewable energy systems.


Doug Mercer Lab

Doug Mercer '77 to endow "The Douglas Mercer '77 Laboratory for Student Exploration and Innovation"

I am so pleased to tell you that Doug Mercer '77 has signed the documents to endow "The Douglas Mercer '77 Laboratory for Student Exploration and Innovation" at $500,000, together with a $50,000 expendable gift to begin equipping the laboratory.

This facility will support student projects in an open shop environment, allowing students to tinker and move class design projects (or whatever else fires them up) to real, working hardware. But beyond that, the lab will promote competitive innovation and student participation in electronics design competitions (or other competitions that include an electronics design element).

The lab will provide infrastructure and consumable supplies, faculty and staff guidance and referral, external linkages, interface with competition organizers, travel and exhibit transport, publicity, and a diverse array of other activities necessary to compete and win. The visibility gained from participating in some of these competitions can reap significant rewards; winning can vault an institution to national prominence in a given field. Competitions provide a rich medium in which to grow the national and global engineering leaders of the future, leaders we want to come from Rensselaer.