August 14, 2007

Four faculty members join College of Engineering

by Tim Crosby

CARBONDALE, Ill. — Four new faculty members will join the College of Engineering at Southern Illinois University Carbondale this fall.

Two of the new faculty members will join the Department of Computer and Electrical Engineering while the other two join the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

John W. Nicklow, professor and associate dean of the college, said the new faculty members are welcome additions to the outstanding researchers already on board.

"We are extremely pleased to have these talented individuals as part of our college's faculty," Nicklow said. "We anticipate a strong dedication to our students and their education and a commitment to advancing their areas of research."

The new faculty members are:

• Ada Chen, assistant professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Chen earned her doctorate in biomedical engineering in 2007 at Duke University. She also holds master's and bachelor's degrees from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China, earned in 2000 and 1997, respectively.

Chen's work focuses on image reconstruction algorithms and imaging parameter optimization by using novel tomographic technology aimed at improving breast cancer detection. She also is a principal investigator for a research project in that area sponsored by the U.S. Defense Department. She is the recipient of a several fellowships and awards from Duke University and Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

• Shaikh S. Ahmed, assistant professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Ahmed earned his doctorate and master's degrees in 2005 and 2003, respectively at Arizona State University, Tempe. Both degrees are in electrical engineering. He earned his bachelor's degree in electrical and electronic engineering in 1998 at Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology. Before coming to SIUC, he was a post-doctoral research associate from 2005 to 2007 in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Purdue University.

Ahmed's research focuses on developing electronic structure and quantum transport models for nanostructures, including quantum "dots," carbon nanotubes and silicon nanowire and sensors. He also works in circuit design, semiconductor device simulations and numerical algorithms. He is co-author of a book chapter and more than 40 journal and conference papers.

• Yanna Liang, assistant professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Liang earned her doctorate and master's degrees in 2006 and 2003 respectively, at Utah State University. She earned her bachelor's degree in 1992 at Suzhou Institute of Urban Construction and Environmental Protection, China. Liang worked as a post-doctoral fellow at Utah Water Research Laboratory in Logan, Utah, prior to coming to SIUC.

Liang's research focuses on environmental engineering, especially in the area of bioremediation of organic pollutants in subsurface and ground water. She also works with bioenergy and biomaterial production. Liang won a fellowship, scholarship and awards from the Inland Northwest Research Alliance and other groups. She is a member of Tau Beta Pi, American Society of Civil Engineering and the American Society of Engineering Education.

• Xingmao "Samuel" Ma, assistant professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Ma earned his doctorate in civil engineering with an environmental engineering specialization in 2004 at the University of Missouri Rolla. He earned his master's degree in environmental engineering in 2000 at Tongii University and his bachelor's degree with honors in environmental engineering in 1997 at Taiyuan University of Technology. He is a registered civil engineer in Ohio.

Ma's research focuses on contamination remediation for groundwater, soil and sediment using bioremediation with plants. He is the main investigator in several projects funded by the National Science Foundation, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Defense Department. He is the author of more than 10 published research papers and is active in national and international conferences.