Awards/Honors 2023-2024

The UConn ECE Department is ranked 46th nationally in the 2023 Research.com ranking of top universities in the field of Electronics and Electrical Engineering. 

 

Faculty Honors and Awards

  • The late Peter Luh, along with his former graduate students and research professors Bing Yan and Mikhail Bragin, were part of a team that received the IEEE PES PSOPE Technical Committee Outstanding Technical Report Award for the “Security Constrained Unit Commitment for Electricity Market: Modeling, Solution Methodology and Future Challenges” report. 
  • Liang Zhang has secured funding from the Dept of Energy for UConn’s Industrial Assessment Center  and Manufacturing Simulation Center. This is part of a pilot to enhance the small/medium-sized manufacturers practice to adopt smart manufacturing and high-performance computing, and the reduce emissions from the industrial sector in the State. Liang has also recently been appointed as the Pratt & Whitney Associate Professor in Advanced Systems Engineering.

Stanford University released the updated ranking of Top 2% scientists for 2023.  Yaakov Bar-ShalomBahram JavidiMarten van DijkTom KatsouleasFrancesco PalmieriDavid KleinmanShengli ZhouPeter WillettPeter LuhJunbo ZhaoMartin FoxKrishna PattipatiCharles KnappAli Bazzi, and Rajeev Bansal are all on the career list.  Yaakov Bar-ShalomBahram JavidiJunbo ZhaoFrancesco PalmieriMarten van DijkTom KatsouleasDavid KleinmanPeter WillettAli BazziNecmi BiyikliYang Cao, and Shengli Zhou are on the 2023 single year list.

 

 

  • Research Professor Marten van Dijk was awarded the “Test of Time” Award at the 2023 ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security for his work on Path ORAM.
  • Professor Ali Bazzi was recently selected to become a member of the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering (CASE) and will be formally inducted in a ceremony on May 21st.
  • Professor Necmi Biyikli was appointed as the Collins Aerospace Professor of Engineering Innovation
  • Professor Bahram Javidi was appointed as SNET Professor of Communications & Information Technologies.
  • Faquir Jain was recognized as an outstanding reviewer for the Light: Science & Applications journal in 2023.

Assistant Professor Zongjie Wang achieved the following: 

Professor Emeritus Krishna Pattipati received the following achievements:

  • Awarded the 2023 Distinguished Alumnus Award from his alma mater Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur.
  • Along with his grad student, Adam Bienkowski, had their TMPLAR project selected as a Future Navy Capability by the Navy, which means that TMPLAR will be operationalized for deployment and use by Navy operators. 

Assistant Professor Junbo Zhao along with several research assistants received the following accomplishments:

  •  Awarded $3.7M in funds, (DOE committing $2.1M funding and industry committing $1.6M cost share) for grant application entitled “DLR-Renew: Dynamic Line Rating Robust Validation, Enhancement and Field Demonstration in New England with Changing Weather and Offshore Wind Integration”
  • Received new funding for grant application “New England University Research Cooperative (NEURC) for Active Distribution System Cybersecurity” DOE will commit $2.5M funding while the industry will commit $1.12M cost share, yielding $3.6M in total. 
  • A highly cited paper (top 1% of citations) by Web of Science: D. Cao, W. Hu, J. B. Zhao, G. Zhang, B. Zhang, Z. Liu, Z. Chen, F. Blaabjerg, Reinforcement Learning and its Applications in Modern Power and Energy Systems: A Review,” Journal of Modern Power Systems and Clean Energy, vol. 8, no. 6, pp. 1029-1042, 2020. 
  • Best Paper Award from International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems (Q1 with IF: 5.2) for the papers published from July 2020-July 2022: Tao Wang, Wei Liu, Junbo Zhao, Xiaokang Guo, and Vladimir Terzija. “A rough set-based bio-inspired fault diagnosis method for electrical substations.” International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems 119 (2020): 105961. Only 5 papers are recognized out of about 1500 papers published in the past two year. 
  • One paper received the Best Paper Award from International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems (Q1 with IF: 5.2) for the papers published from July 2021-July 2023: Bendong Tan, Junbo Zhao, Marcos Netto, Venkat Krishnan, Vladimir Terzija, and Yingchen Zhang. “Power system inertia estimation: Review of methods and the impacts of converter-interfaced generations.” International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems 134 (2022): 107362. Only 5 papers are recognized out of about 1500 papers published in the past two year. 
  • Chaired the technical report “Behind-The-Meter Distributed Energy Resources: Estimation, Uncertainty Qualification, and Control” – TR111 which won the 2023-2024 IEEe PES Technical Committee Working Group Recognition Award for Outstanding Technical Report. Prof Zhao’s postdoc, Ankur Srivastava, and PhD student, Soroush Vahedi, also contributed to the report. 
  • Received the 2023 IEEE Transactions on Power Systems Outstanding Associate Editor recognition.
  • Chaired the IEEE PES technical report “State Estimation for Integrated Energy Systems: Motivations, Advances, and Challenges”-TR118 to win the 2024 IEEE PES Technical Committee Working Group Recognition Award for Outstanding Technical Report, with contributions from Postdoc Ankur Srivastava.
  • Received the 2023-2024 IEEE PES Technical Committee Distinguished Individual Service Award. 
  • Received the Excellent Young Subject Editor Award from the CSEE Journal of Power and Energy Systems
  • Appointed as the Castleman Professor of Engineering Innovation in the College of Engineering
  • Along with student Tong Su have contributed to the IEEE PES Technical Report “Application of spatio-temporal data-driven and machine learning algorithms for security assessment” , which received the 2024 IEEE PES Technical Committee Working Group Recognition Award for Outstanding Technical Report.
  • Appointed as principal investigator for new center CyberCARED, which will focus on cybersecurity within the power industry.
  • Recognized for a highly cited paper in the IET Energy Systems Integration Journal 
  • Honored by IEEE PES in celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month’s 2024 theme of “Advancing Leaders Through Innovation”
  • Appointed Technical Committee Program Chair (TCPC) of IEEE PES Renewable Systems Integration Coordinating Committee.
  • Paper “A Lagrange-multiplier-based Reliability Assessment for Power Systems Considering Topology and Injection Uncertainties,” IEEE Trans. Power Systems, 2024, is now one of the Hot Paper according to Web of Science since May 2024-in the top 0.1% of papers in the field within the past two years
  • Paper “A Physics-Guided Graph Convolution Neural Network for Optimal Power Flow,” IEEE Trans. Power Systems, 2024, is now one of the Hot Paper according to Web of Science since May 2024-in the top 0.1% of papers in the field within the past two years.
  • Paper “Reinforcement Learning and its Applications in Modern Power and Energy Systems: A Review,” Journal of Modern Power Systems and Clean Energy, 2020, is now one of the most Highly Cited Paper according to Web of Science since May 2024-in the top 1% of papers in the field
  • The CT Section Chapter of IEEE PES, which Prof. Zhao chairs, received the High Performing Chapter award.
  • Awarded the prestigious National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine-Gulf Research Program Early-Career Research Fellowship
  • One of only 100 early-career engineers from industry to be invited to The Grainger Foundation Frontiers of Engineering 2024 Symposium
  •  Paper “Aggregating buildings as a virtual power plant: Architectural design, supporting technologies, and case studies” was recognized as one of the top 10 most-cited papers in the  IET Energy Systems journal
  •  Appointed Technical Committee Program Chair (TCPC) of IEEE PES Renewable Systems Integration Coordinating Committee.
  • Prof. Zhao’s Post Doc, Ankus Srivastava, received a best paper award for the IEEE PES General Meeting for the paper entitled “Development of Cyber-Physical Security Simulation Testbed in RTDS using Modbus Communication.”

Graduate Student Awards

Yitong Liu, an advisee of Junbo Zhao, received the prestigious 2023 IEEE PES Outstanding Student Scholarship award. Only 6 are selected around the world for this highly competitive process!

Yitong has a strong background in power engineering and her research topics include power flow analysis and optimal operation of microgrids. She has published 5 papers in high-quality journals, including two in IEEE Transactions on Power Systems, one in IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, and one in IEEE Transactions on Industry Applications.  She has presented at many international conferences related to electric power engineering. Two of the conferences won Best Paper Awards, such as 2022 IEEE 5th International Electrical and Energy Conference and 2020 IEEE 3rd Student Conference on Electric Machines and Systems.

Yitong ’s paper “Data-Driven-Aided Linear Three-Phase Power Flow Model for Distribution Power Systems“, received the 2023 IEEE Transactions on Power Systems Best Paper Award (only 5 papers are selected out of the past more than 1500 published papers over the last three years).

 

PhD student Jinxian Zhang received the Student Poster Award-Second Place for poster entitled: “A Graph Convolutional network for Active Distribution System Considering Measurement Spatial and Temporal Correlations” at the 55th North American Power Symposium (NAPS).

 

 

 

 

  • ECE Students Alaa Selim and Soroush Vahedi, (as well as Sunil Subedi from Oak Ridge lab) earned a Second Place award in the 2023 IEEE PES Ideathon Competition for their paper entitled, “Optimal Charging and Discharging Strategies for School”.
  • Alaa Selim and Soroush Vahedi were selected as an Explore Phase competitor in EnergyTech University Competition hosted by the Department of Energy. They will compete to identify a promising energy tchnology, assess its market potential, and create a business plan for commercialization. 
  • Alaa Selim also received the 2023 IEEE PES Connecticut Chapter Outstanding Chapter Volunteer Award, and an NSF travel grant to present their research work at the Texas Power and Energy Conference.
  • Grad students Ayah Abdallah, Sandra George, Alaa Selim, and Soroush Vahedi have been selected to join the John Lof Leadership Academy for the 2023-2024 cohort, which over the course of a two year term, helps graduate students build communication and leadership skills and provides funding for conference travel.
  • Graduate student Bendong Tan, advised by Junbo Zhao,  received the 2023 IEEE PES Connecticut Chapter Outstanding Young Engineer Award. Bendong also received the Best Paper Award from the International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems for their paper “Power system inertia estimation: Review of methods and the impacts of converter-interfaced generations.”  Bendong also received an Excellent Reviewer Award from the Journal of Modern Power Systems and Clean Energy.
  • Graduate student Ilhom Saidjafarzoda, advised by Necmi Biyikli was selected as one of the six finalists of this year’s Coburn and Winters (C&W) Student Award, presented by the Plasma Science and Technology Division (PSTD) of AVS.
  • Ph.D. students Tong Su and Bendong Tan received the 2023 IEEE Transactions on Power Systems Outstanding Reviewer recognition. 
  • Graduate students Abdulmajeed Almalki, advised by Faquir Jain, and William Stark, advised by Lei Wang, also won poster awards at the 2024 CMOC Symposium.
  • Incoming graduate student, Yingyi Tang was selected as a GE NextGen Scholar. Yingyi will be advised by Junbo Zhao. 
  • Gokul Krishnan, advised by Bahram Javidi, received a $3500 SPIE Optics and Photonics Scholarship.
  • Soroush Vahedi and Alaa Selim, advised by Junbo Zhao, were selected to join the 2024 Clean Energy & Sustainability  Innovation Program.

 

 

 2024 ECE IEEE Poster Competition winners were Graduate Students:

Leila Chebbo (1st), Alaa Selim (2nd), and Soroush Vahedi (3rd)

 

  • For the 2024 CoE Poster Competition, Alaa Selim, advised by Junbo Zhao, received 1st Place for the ECE department, and Leila Chebbo, advised by Ali Bazzi, won People’s choice.
  • Ketian Ye and Bendong Tan  won a best paper award for the IEEE PES 2024 General Meeting, for the paper titled  “Power System Overloading Risk Assessment Considering Topology and Renewable Uncertainties.”
  • Soroush Vahedi won a best paper award  for the IEEE PES 2024 General Meeting for the paper titled “Resilience Assessment for Distribution Systems during Hurricanes: A Learning-Based Framework.”
  • The UConn Chapter of IEEE PELS won the 2024 Best Student Branch Chapter Award and received a $1,000 prize
  • CMOC Winners (below, l-r): Ashiq Rahman(PHY), Tejas Bhosale(CHEM), Chengluo Lin(ECE), Hurayra Lizu(MS), Shao-Hao Lu(MS), John Grasso(CHEM), Steison Ruiz(ECE), Adanma Akoma(MS), Devon Rojas(ECE), Lauren Dagostino (BME), Allisaon Flemin(BME), Todor Bliznakov (Not pictured are winners Zichen Wang, Abu Lizu, Puxian Gao, William Stark and Abdulmajeed Almalki)

 

 

 

 

Undergraduate Student Awards

  • Undergraduate senior design team consisting of Spencer Albano, Matt Silverman, and Nicholas Wycoff was selected as a finalist for the AFRL Software Defined Radio University Showcase 
  • Undergraduate EE Students Chengluo Lin, Kevin Medeiros, and Steison Ruiz received a best poster paper award at the 2024 CMOC Symposium
  • Frost Robotics got $2500.00 donation from Automated Building Systems, Inc.  Glastonbury CT
  • Undergrad student Malik Francis recognized as a McNair Scholar
  • Winners of the FIRST Robotics and FIRST Tech Challenge Scholarship for 2023-2024: Karan Rana and Ayush Patel 
  • Hezekiah Theophile was selected as the March member of the month by the UConn chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers
  • Senior design team 2402, composed of undergraduate students Spencer Albano, Matthew Silverman, and Nicholas Wycoff, won the first prize at the AFRL Software Defined Radio University Showcase.  The team was advised by Shengli Zhou.
  • Incoming PhD student Yingyi Tang has received the prestigious 2024 IEEE PES Outstanding Student Scholarship. She was one of only 4 selections worldwide!
  • Senior Design Winners:

    1st place: Team 2415: Robotic Perception Sensor Characterization Platform (joint with ME); Sponsor: Draper
    Team members: Samuel Gresh, Hritish Bhargava

    2nd place: Team 2402: AFRL SDR University Challenge; Sponsor: UConn ECE; Team members: Spencer Albano, Matt Silverman, Nicholas Wycoff

    3rd place: Team 2420: Automated Angle Table for AS5 (joint with CSE); Sponsor: OEM Controls; Team members: Mitchell Bronson, Alexander ReCouper

 

Fellowships

Alaa Selim Future Climate Venture Studio Fellowship
Matt Maceskar Krishna Pattipati Fellowship
Benjamin Brown Peter Willett Fellowship
Qian Yang & Shanglin Zhou Vijaya Raghavan Fellowship
Aalvee Kausani GE Excellence Fellowship
Bendong Tan GE Excellence Fellowship
Yansong Pei GE Excellence Fellowship
Kalinath Katuri GE Excellence Fellowship
Nina Stefanovic GE Excellence Fellowship (deferred from 21-22)
Yitong Liu  GE Next Generation Fellowship
Mohamadamin Rajabinezhad GE Next Generation Fellowship
Gregory Aschenbrenner GE Next Generation Fellowship
Jacques Goosen GE Inclusion and Equity Fellowship
Keshawn Smith GE Inclusion and Equity Fellowship
Tashfiq Kashem Summer Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship
Adnan Mohammad Summer Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship
Rakesh Joshi Summer Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship
Abdul Almalki Summer Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship
Yuting Sun Summer Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship
Jianghua Wu Summer Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship
Alaa Selim Eversource Fellowship
Usman Ali Synchrony Fellowship
 

TA Awards

Fall 2023 Left to Right: Abdulmajeed Almalki, Steve Allaby, Nina Stefanovic
Spring 2024 Aalvee Kausani

Alumni Awards

  • Qin Liu (PhD ’18), an advisee of Yaakov Bar Shalom, co-advised with Peter Willett, received a CAREER award. She is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Georgia. 
  • David Sidoti (BS’11, MS’16, PhD’18), along with Krishna Pattipati and Yaakov Bar-Shalom, have been selected to receive the Alan Berman Research Publication Award at the 2023 Annual Research Publication Awards for outstanding federal government-authored research contributions to the Naval Research Laboratory.  This award is for their paper “Minimum Time Sailing Boat Path (SBP) Algorithm” in IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering, April 2023.  The paper was rated highest for its research contributions and quality within the Marine Meteorology Division.

Previous Years’ Awards

2022-2023

2021-2022

2020-2021

2019-2020

2018-2019

2017-2018

2016-2017