Articles

To Hear or Not to Hear

2020-01-31T13:43:55-08:00 January 31st, 2020|Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Issue I, Lifestyle, Physics, Volume XX|

Abstract As the world seems to be getting louder and louder, noise-canceling headphones could be the potential answer to tuning noise out in many different situations. Born from the dissatisfaction of regular passive noise-reduction headphones, noise-canceling headphones utilize an internal speaker that actively produces a sound wave equal and opposite to that of external noise, [...]

SpectOCULAR: Using Smart Contacts to Improve Disease Diagnosis and Treatment

2020-01-31T13:33:46-08:00 January 31st, 2020|Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Issue I, Lifestyle, Material Science, Volume XX|

Abstract Smart contacts are one of the newest platforms for smart technology. They couple a compact wearable device with equipment for health diagnostics and drug delivery, optimizing both the existing infrastructures of ophthalmology and general medicine. Smart contacts already have a wide potential customer base in patients who want improved quality of life and real-time [...]

Holograms: Blurring the Lines of Reality

2020-01-31T11:54:17-08:00 January 31st, 2020|Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Issue I, Lifestyle, Physics, Volume XX|

Abstract First appearing in popular movies like Star Wars, the idea of 3D holograms captured and confused the world. While the idea was born over seventy years ago, it wasn’t until recent advances in technology that holograms transitioned from the fantasy world of the movies to real life. In fact, 3D holograms are so prevalent [...]

Fireworks Forever: The Story and Engineering of Fireworks

2020-01-31T11:42:16-08:00 January 31st, 2020|Chemical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Issue I, Volume XX|

Abstract When you look at a firework sparkling in the night sky, you may wonder how this phenomenon occurs or how fireworks became a staple for special occasions. The creation of the modern firework underwent much experimentation to become the spectacle it is today. With gunpowder, fire, and “stars,” fireworks can range from sparklers to [...]

The Piano: Scales of Engineering with a Note of Artistry

2019-11-13T11:46:38-08:00 October 28th, 2019|Issue V, Music, Volume XIX|

(Traumerei – Schumann playing in the background: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fHlfNYY1YIY) Sixty thousand pounds is the weight of five fully-grown elephants and the amount of force contained within a concert grand piano. [1] Although it's been around for over three centuries, the piano has evolved into one of the most versatile and complex instruments ever. It is the [...]

Setting the Curve: The Magnus Effect and its Applications

2019-11-13T11:46:28-08:00 October 28th, 2019|Issue V, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Introduction Throughout our daily lives, there are elements of design and engineering all around us, most of which go completely unnoticed. Whether it’s the chair you’re sitting on, your favorite pen, or the individual bricks in a building, they all needed to be engineered and designed to function. However, just because something goes unnoticed doesn’t [...]

Expanding (an Elevator’s) Horizons

2019-11-13T11:46:18-08:00 October 28th, 2019|Civil Engineering, Issue V, Volume XIX|

Introduction: In the 2005 movie rendition of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” five golden ticket guests were given a special tour of the factory.  During the second half of the tour, they enter an elevator that Willy Wonka introduces by saying, “This isn’t just an ordinary up and down elevator.  It can go sideways, longways, [...]

Repetition is catching on

2019-11-13T11:46:04-08:00 October 28th, 2019|Issue V, Music, Volume XIX|

INTRODUCTION Just a year ago, the world’s radio waves were flooded with the chants of “Gucci Gang”, a viral sensation by Soundcloud rapper Lil Pump. With a runtime of just 2:04, it was the shortest song to ever hit the top of the Billboard Top 100 since 1975, a whole 42 years earlier [1]. Even [...]

Harnessing the Power of Waves

2019-11-13T11:45:48-08:00 October 28th, 2019|Energy & Sustainability, Issue V, Volume XIX|

As fossil fuels become less viable as a long-term energy solution and the effects of global warming continue to worsen, new renewable energy solutions are in high demand. Solar, wind, hydro, and geothermal energies are now extremely popular and produce significant amounts of the world’s energy resources. Another budding form of renewable energy is ocean [...]

Rising Above Agricultural Challenges with Vertical Farming

2019-11-13T11:44:14-08:00 August 27th, 2019|Civil Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Environmental Engineering, Food & Drink, Issue IV, Volume XIX|

Written by: Tina (Hyunsu) Ryu About the Author: Tina is a senior majoring in computer science games. Before moving to California, she lived in Ohio and South Korea. After graduation, she hopes to go abroad to become a digital nomad!  Abstract The conventional agricultural system fails to keep up with the expanding population as it [...]

Are Your Headphones 3D Enough?

2019-11-13T11:43:59-08:00 August 27th, 2019|Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Issue IV, Mechanical Engineering, Music, Volume XIX|

Written by: Lauren Lawson About the Author: Lauren is a junior at USC, studying biomedical engineering. In her free time she volunteers for the Make-A-Wish USC chapter, participates in the executive boards of multiple on-campus organizations, and is in Alpha Gamma Delta. Introduction Imagine the ultimate headphone experience: just like listening to your favorite song [...]

A Stroke of Genius: Neurorehabilitation through Virtual Reality

2019-11-13T11:43:42-08:00 August 27th, 2019|Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science, Entertainment, Health & Medicine, Issue IV, Volume XIX|

Written by: Annie Lee About the Author: Annie Lee is an undergraduate student at the University of Southern California pursuing a progressive Bachelor’s to Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy. Abstract The aim of physical stroke rehabilitation is to improve motor function in paralyzed or semi-paralyzed limbs. Although the problem is physical, it begins with the [...]

The Making of Mario in 3D

2019-11-13T11:43:26-08:00 August 26th, 2019|Art, Computer Science, Entertainment, Issue IV, Volume XIX|

Written by: Rohan Tulsiani About the Author: Rohan Tulsiani is a 21-year-old undergraduate Computer Science student at the University of Southern California. Rohan works as a Teacher Assistant for ITP485, which is USC’s undergraduate Game Engine class. Abstract With the advent of Virtual Reality and other major advances in the field of computer graphics, video [...]

EE-101: Intro to Emoji Engineering

2019-11-13T11:42:54-08:00 August 26th, 2019|Communication, Entertainment, Issue IV, Lifestyle, Volume XIX|

Written by: Rajan Paul About the Author: Rajan is a junior studying Electrical Engineering at the University of Southern California. His interests include beekeeping, ethnic cuisine, and travel. Rajan hopes to combine his hobbies and education into developing a smart beehive that will help save the bees. Abstract Emojis have officially entered into the realm [...]

Man vs. Machine: Testing Machine Learning through Playing Video Games

2019-11-13T11:39:44-08:00 July 1st, 2019|Computer Science, Entertainment, Issue III, Lifestyle, Volume XIX|

Written by: Vicky Hui Competitive AI systems beat the best human players in chess, “Go,” checkers, and poker [1]. Over the last decade, innovation in AI learning has enabled computers to navigate more complex and chaotic problems in the real world, through soft-coded systems and reinforcement learning. Most recently, this has been exhibited in the [...]

Bottling the Problem: Drinking Water

2019-11-13T11:39:30-08:00 July 1st, 2019|Energy & Sustainability, Food & Drink, Industrial Engineering, Issue III, Material Science, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XIX|

Written by: Augustine Au Augustine is a junior studying Business Administration at the University of Southern California. He is passionate about entrepreneurship and aspires to use his knowledge to positively impact his community. Abstract The development of bottled drinking water has revolutionized the way in which the world has acquired and consumed water. This article [...]

The Role of Hyperloop in Transportation Innovation

2019-11-13T11:39:15-08:00 July 1st, 2019|Aerospace Engineering, Civil Engineering, Ergonomics, Issue III, Lifestyle, Physics, Transportation, Volume XIX|

Written by: Patrick Hennessey With every improvement to transportation, the world feels a little smaller, and people become more connected.  Some of the world’s greatest inventions have been in the field of transportation, but we haven’t had a major innovation in over a century- a new system is long overdue. This article will explore the [...]

The “Aero-Position”: Why Cyclists Study Aerodynamics

2019-11-13T11:38:35-08:00 July 1st, 2019|Aerospace Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Ergonomics, Issue III, Lifestyle, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Written by: Riley Walch Riley Walch is a junior studying Mechanical Engineering at the University of Southern California. He has interests in the intersection of the human body and engineering and hopes to turn this curiosity into a career, upon graduation. Abstract Greg LeMond’s 1989 Tour de France victory, aided by research-driven cycling advancements, marked [...]

The Algorithm behind Plane Ticket Prices and How to Get the Best Deal

2019-11-13T11:38:21-08:00 July 1st, 2019|Industrial Engineering, Issue III, Transportation, Volume XIX|

Written by: Kiera Shepard Kiera is a senior studying biomedical engineering with an emphasis in mechanical engineering, pursuing a Masters in applied biostatistics and epidemiology. As a frequent flyer between LA and her hometown of San Francisco, she is intrigued by the algorithms behind airline fares. Abstract Have you ever wondered why plane ticket prices [...]

Serving up Some Knowledge: The Physics of Tennis

2019-11-13T11:38:04-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Issue II, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract The shots of a professional tennis player may look like magic, seemingly defying the laws of science before your eyes. But it all becomes much simpler when you understand the physics behind tennis. This article focuses on the generation of spin on a tennis ball, how to maximize the power of a shot, and [...]

On-Screen Graphics and Their Impact on Sports

2019-11-13T11:37:53-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Computer Science, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract Since the mid 90’s, networks have projected virtual graphics onto the field during sporting events for at-home viewers; the most successful example is the 1st and Ten yellow line system used in football. By providing the audience with important information without distracting from the game, the system has changed how we watch football. Despite [...]

Fitness trackers: How they work and their highly anticipated future

2019-11-13T11:37:43-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Health & Medicine, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract Millions of people around the world wear fitness trackers daily to record their physiological conditions. These devices contain a variety of different sensors that allow the user to measure heart rate, sleeping patterns, steps taken, and more. The physics behind these sensors can be relatively simple. However, the most interesting component of fitness trackers [...]

The Science behind the Perfect Pirouette – and How It Has Changed the World of Prosthetics

2019-04-09T22:28:37-07:00 April 9th, 2019|Biomedical Engineering, Issue II, Volume XIX|

Megan Schoen is a sophomore at USC studying Biomedical Engineering with a mechanical emphasis. She also has 17 years of dance experience, and is currently part of the Xpressions Dance Company on campus.

Sneakers as a Science: Engineering Fashion for Comfort, Support, and Style

2019-11-13T11:37:28-08:00 April 9th, 2019|Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Hailey Manuel is a senior studying computer science and business administration at the University of Southern California. She is intrigued by streetwear and the different uses sneakers have other than for style.

The Engineering Behind the Happiest Place on Earth

2019-03-07T17:38:27-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Entertainment, Industrial Engineering, Issue I, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract Disney uses fundamental industrial and systems engineering principles to create the optimal environment for maximum customer satisfaction in their amusement parks.  By embedding efficient processes in their park layout such as the line design, FastPass system, and the Magic Band, Disney has seemingly made mundane processes magical.  Disney pushes the envelope of innovation, shaping [...]

Thermal Imaging: The next game changer for medical devices?

2019-03-07T17:38:07-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Material Science, Volume XIX|

Abstract Thermal imaging has incredible medical device applications. Infrared light is the driving force behind this technology because it allows us to produce an image derived from temperature variations. Bolometers allow infrared light to be converted to temperatures and are produced through UV lithography. The final product is infrared sensors that are affordable and can [...]

Fully Automatic Timing: The Most Reliable Sports Referee

2019-03-07T17:37:46-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Issue I, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract There’s nothing quite like the thrill of watching a close finish in racing sports such as track and swimming. However, sometimes these finishes are so close that they leave fans, and even referees, wondering who actually completed the race first. To address this ambiguity, the Fully Automatic Timing (FAT) system has been developed. This [...]

AI Behind AlphaGo: Machine Learning and Neural Network

2019-03-07T17:37:21-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Computer Science, Entertainment, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Sports & Recreation, Volume XIX|

Abstract The board game Go has been viewed as one of the most challenging tasks for artificial intelligence because it is “complex, pattern-based and hard to program”. The computer program AlphaGo’s victory over Lee Sedol became a huge moment in the history of artificial intelligence and computer engineering. We can observe AlphaGo’s enormous capacity,  but [...]

A Face Only Law Enforcement Could Love: Using Facial Recognition to Improve Security

2019-03-07T17:36:55-08:00 March 7th, 2019|Computer Science, Issue I, Security & Defense, Volume XIX|

Abstract Imagine making a credit card payment with just a selfie or having a virtually unhackable password without memorizing a single character. With the advancement of biometric security measures such as facial recognition, consumers will no longer have to imagine a world where this is possible. The technology that has been in development since the [...]

The Magic Touch: Human Anatomy Inspires Robotic Hand Design

2018-10-31T12:34:35-07:00 October 30th, 2018|Biomedical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Lifestyle, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XVIII|

Abstract For decades, the field of robotics has progressed slowly in attempts to develop a robotic hand as dexterous as the human hand. However, recent research efforts are entertaining the idea that the key to creating a dexterous robotic hand may be in artificially re-creating the muscle- and tendon-based approach that controls the human hand. [...]

The Human Lung…On a Chip!

2018-10-31T12:34:45-07:00 October 30th, 2018|Biomedical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Material Science, Volume XVIII|

Abstract The lung-on-a-chip is a clear, flexible microdevice that mimics the structure and function of the human lung. The size of a USB memory stick, the chip contains tiny hollow channels lined by living human lung cells. Inside the chip, realistically arranged cell layers are exposed to a flow of nutrients and air, as well [...]

Touchscreen: an Engineered Harmony between Humans and Machines

2018-10-31T12:34:55-07:00 October 30th, 2018|Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, History & Society, Issue III, Lifestyle, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XVIII|

Abstract Touchscreens change the way we interact with computers and machines. They remove physical buttons, make computers and machines easier and more fun to interact with, and integrate more technology into our everyday lives. Touchscreens also allow us to humanize or anthropomorphize devices because it reduces the barrier between the user and the device. While [...]

DNA Computing – The World’s Best Computers Already Exist and We Didn’t Make Them

2018-10-31T12:35:32-07:00 October 30th, 2018|Biomedical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Computer Science, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Volume XVIII|

Abstract DNA has been introduced to the computer science field as one of the newest materials used for computer construction and computational mechanics. Its unique chemical properties make it faster and smaller than traditional computers– able to perform parallel operations on enormous amounts of data. Since Leonard Adleman’s first experiment with this media,  others have [...]

Ask Me Anything

2018-10-31T12:35:41-07:00 October 30th, 2018|Communication, Computer Science, Entertainment, Issue III, Lifestyle, Volume XVIII|

Abstract Natural language processing (NLP) techniques help artificially intelligent computers understand and answer the questions that humans ask. Though NLP in artificial intelligence was popularized in everyday devices like Apple’s Siri  and Amazon’s Alexa, we can trace many of the techniques and methods used today back to Watson, the Jeopardy! robot. Growing NLP capabilities drive [...]

To Float or Not to Float?

2018-11-05T12:10:38-08:00 October 26th, 2018|Building & Architecture, Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Issue II, Mechanical Engineering, Transportation, Volume XVIII, Water|

Abstract Norway is a Northern European country made up of thousands of fjords— expanses of water often surrounded by steep cliffs. For more than a century, the country has been using a combination of road, rail, and ferry crossings to span the trail from southern to northern Norway, a trip that takes over 20 hours [...]

The Loudness Wars

2018-11-05T12:18:33-08:00 October 26th, 2018|Issue II, Music, Volume XVIII|

Abstract From the time of vinyl records to modern portable music capabilities on phones, music producers have been fighting for the best (read: the loudest) music releases.  Sound engineers have been the primary weapons in this war. Compressing the dynamic range, or the gap between the loudest and softest moments in a song, has armed [...]

Cryptography and Communication Security in a Digital Age

2018-11-05T12:21:59-08:00 October 26th, 2018|Communication, Computer Science, Issue II, Security & Defense, Volume XVIII|

Abstract Have you ever forgotten your password on a website where you made an account months before?  The process of retrieving that password begins with a trial and error process of running through your familiar passwords and usually ends with a frustrated click on the “Forgot password?” button nearby. After refreshing your inbox in search [...]

The Computation of Love: Finding Your Soul Mate Online

2019-05-22T09:44:34-07:00 October 26th, 2018|Computer Science, Issue II, Lifestyle, Volume XVIII|

The Computation of Love: Finding Your Soul Mate Online   Abstract   In an age of technology and free Wi-Fi, those of us navigating the single life can opt for the electronic highway to love. Computer engineering has allowed society to grasp the subjective nature of attraction and translate it into quantitative data that computers [...]

The Future of Surfing

2018-10-31T12:34:00-07:00 October 26th, 2018|Issue II, Issue II, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVII, Volume XVIII|

Introduction   Surfing. When you hear that word, what comes to mind? You might think of a guy on a surfboard speeding down the face of a monstrous sixty-foot wave, an aged Hawaiian man paddling into the sunset, a smiling Bethany Hamilton holding her surfboard, or maybe even the Beach Boys. The general sentiment towards [...]

From Shark Skin to Speed

2017-11-29T17:11:19-08:00 March 21st, 2017|Biomedical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Lifestyle, Material Science, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Volume XVIII, Water|

Sharks inspire a feeling of awe in many people, partly due to their natural speed and representation of power. Through modern biomimicry, scientists have been able to imitate shark skin and design speed-enhancing technologies to benefit transportation, medicine, and apparel design. Introduction When visiting a local aquarium, there is no lack of spectacles that may [...]

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? A Look Into Google’s DeepDream

2018-01-19T06:57:09-08:00 March 21st, 2017|Art, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Issue I, Lifestyle, Volume XVIII|

Do androids dream of electric sheep? The answer lies within Google's new image recognition algorithm, DeepDream. While the algorithm is more generally used to identify objects in images, it can also be used to give images a “dreamy” makeover. To fully understand what DeepDream is, and how it gives images these bizarre makeovers, we must [...]

Leaving the Light On: Vacuum Tubes and their Reemergence

2017-11-29T17:15:16-08:00 March 21st, 2017|Computer Science, Entertainment, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Lifestyle, Music, Volume XVIII|

Walk into an Urban Outfitters, coffee shop, or cafe in any arts district and you will catch wind of an audio craze that has blown through the younger generation – analog sound. Boycotting digital sound, those who seek warm, analog signals wish to receive their music in a more natural way – not unlike preferring [...]

Engineering Ice Cream

2017-11-29T17:24:25-08:00 March 1st, 2017|Chemical Engineering, Food & Drink, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Lifestyle, Material Science, Volume XVIII, Water|

When you put a spoonful of your favorite ice cream into your mouth, you are enraptured by blasts of flavor, its creamy texture, and coolness on your tongue. Ice cream makers have the same qualities in mind when they are formulating the recipe to their next frozen creation. But, more specifically they are mulling over [...]

The Future of Food: 3D Printing

2018-01-19T06:15:02-08:00 October 5th, 2016|Issue III, Lifestyle, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XVII|

3D printing is the process of building up a 3D object by depositing materials layer by layer onto the print bed of a 3D printer. The materials most commonly used to produce the 3D objects have been plastics and metals, but recently researchers, engineers, scientists and food connoisseurs have begun to experiment with edible materials. [...]

A Wireless World Is a Better World

2017-11-29T17:21:12-08:00 June 26th, 2016|Communication, Electrical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Issue II, Lifestyle, Power, Volume XVII|

The wireless transfer of electrical power is a technological concept that has been around since the late 19th century. However, this technology was never fully developed for commercial use, and after the death of its discoverer, Nicola Tesla, it became obsolete for almost a century. This technology was finally revived in the year 2007 by [...]

Hoverboards: Gliding to the Future

2018-01-19T06:28:42-08:00 May 20th, 2016|Electrical Engineering, Issue II, Lifestyle, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XVII|

Hoverboards have been a dream put into people’s imagination by movies and other science fiction works, but now they have become a reality. By using the concepts of magnetism, hoverboards have been developed that levitate a few inches off the ground while allowing the rider to maneuver across metal surfaces. This technology would not just [...]

From Ship Navigators to Agent 007: Cultural and Engineering Significance of Mechanical Watches

2018-01-19T06:27:32-08:00 May 20th, 2016|Issue II, Lifestyle, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XVII|

Although today, they are primarily known as fashion statements, mechanical watches have a long history of being a significant piece of mechanical engineering. Their development enabled long-distance ship travel, and for hundreds of years, they were the superior method for timekeeping. With up to hundreds of moving parts, mechanical watches are one of the most [...]

Dealing With Our Bacterial Neighbors: Engineering Deodorants and Antiperspirants to Prevent Malodor

2018-09-18T20:12:13-07:00 May 4th, 2016|Biomedical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Environmental Engineering, Food & Drink, Health & Medicine, Issue II, Lifestyle, Volume XVII, Water|

This paper investigates the physiological production of sweat, and how humans have developed strategies involving deodorants and antiperspirants to prevent the bacteria in our body from producing foul-odor chemicals. Well-known mechanisms of sweat production, from eccrine and apocrine glands, are described to introduce the topic. Biochemical explanations of the four main production pathways axillary bacteria [...]

Are You a Human? Exploring What Web Security Means to You

2018-01-19T06:26:26-08:00 April 12th, 2016|Communication, Computer Science, Issue I, Security & Defense, Volume XVIII|

The internet is a ubiquitous part of everyday life with people using it for work, play, and everything in-between. But for every helpful use of modern computers' superior speed and performance, there is also a way for malicious hackers to counteract traditional security measures. This becomes a considerable issue as the internet expands in terms [...]

Engineering NBA Players’ Health

2018-01-19T06:26:43-08:00 October 25th, 2015|Computer Science, Health & Medicine, History & Society, Issue III, Lifestyle, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVII|

Modern wearable sensors utilize global positioning system (GPS) technology to track basic movement data that has both statistical and medical implications in the sports world. This article highlights the ingenuity of such sensors, which weigh only one ounce yet contain an accelerometer (measures starts and stops), gyroscope (measures bending and twisting of the body), magnetometer [...]

Shop Smart

2018-01-19T06:30:18-08:00 October 20th, 2015|Building & Architecture, Communication, Environmental Engineering, Ergonomics, History & Society, Industrial Engineering, Issue II, Lifestyle, Volume XVII|

A store’s layout is carefully constructed to optimize for ease of shopping and increase sales. The placement of products, the arrangement of aisles, and the use of promotional signs are a scrutinized by engineers to increase the productivity of the business. When was the last time you walked into a store? Did you notice anything [...]

Solving the Brain Crisis in Sports

2018-01-19T06:19:49-08:00 June 25th, 2015|Biomedical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Lifestyle, Material Science, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVII|

Over the past few decades professional and collegiate football leagues have garnered significant attention regarding the health and safety issues that players face, specifically pertaining to concussions and brain health. While head injuries can occur in a variety of different ways, hard hits involving the helmets of one or more players are identified as the [...]

Car Turns Signals: Why They Blink, Make Sounds, and Look a Certain Way.

2017-11-29T17:25:24-08:00 December 10th, 2014|Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Issue II, Transportation, Volume XVI|

Although car turn signals seem like a trivial part of the car, they are a very important communication tool that drivers depend on. Each design decision of the turn signals from the frequency of the blinking, the sound of the ticking, the color of the lights, and their location on the car are carefully engineered [...]

To Boldly Go Where No Man Has Gone Before: Faster-than-Light Travel in the 21st Century

2018-01-19T06:31:35-08:00 June 24th, 2014|Aerospace Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Issue I, Physics, Space, Transportation, Volume XVI|

Albert Einstein’s famous theory of relativity specified that the Universe had a speed limit for all masses. As a result, faster-than-light travel has always been seen as nothing more than science fiction. However, faster-than-light travel may not be so farfetched anymore. Engineers today are working to create the first usable ‘warp drive’, which would allow [...]

To Boldly Go Where No Man Has Gone Before: Faster-than-Light Travel in the 21st Century

2017-08-11T14:51:43-07:00 June 24th, 2014|Aerospace Engineering|

Albert Einstein’s famous theory of relativity specified that the Universe had a speed limit for all masses. As a result, faster-than-light travel has always been seen as nothing more than science fiction. However, faster-than-light travel may not be so farfetched anymore. Engineers today are working to create the first usable ‘warp drive’, which would allow [...]

“Use the Force, Luke”

2017-10-26T18:27:47-07:00 May 8th, 2014|Biomedical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue II, Volume XVI|

Since the introduction of EEG technology in 1924, the reading and processing of neural signals has reached a remarkable level of sophistication. This has allowed the invention and development of the brain-machine interface, which allows for a direct connection from the brain to the surrounding world. In many cases, BMIs allow for control of or [...]

Engineering Gave the World More Tofu

2017-10-26T18:50:37-07:00 April 30th, 2014|Biomedical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Food & Drink, Health & Medicine, Industrial Engineering, Issue I, Recycling, Volume XVII, Water|

When you look at a block of tofu, one may wonder how the white, spongy mass was made or even why. Although tofu has been around for hundreds of years, it was not until the 21st century that the process started to become mechanized. Seeing as that the process was traditionally both labor and time [...]

Encrypt the Future – Quantum Cryptography

2018-02-23T11:31:35-08:00 April 30th, 2014|Editors' Picks, Electrical Engineering, Issue I, Physics, Volume XVII|

The inherent weakness of traditional cryptography has exposed its unreliability to modern computing technology. To overcome this issue, scientists used the laws of quantum mechanics to create quantum cryptography, which is invincible to conventional hacking. By developing the quantum cryptography system, conventional hacking will eventually be eliminated. Introduction The internet, as one of the greatest [...]

Big Things in Small Packages: The Development of Portable Nuclear Reactors

2017-10-26T18:32:20-07:00 April 30th, 2014|Energy & Sustainability, Issue II, Power, Volume XVI|

This paper discusses the development of portable reactor technologies and the history behind the science and engineering of portable reactors, focusing on describing the LENR or low energy nuclear reactions associated with the development of small modular reactors. In addition, it will elaborate on the companies and governments researching small reactors, and the current status [...]

The Artificial Natural “World”

2017-10-26T18:20:18-07:00 March 1st, 2014|Building & Architecture, Civil Engineering, Issue I, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XVI|

Dubai intrigues the world with its luxurious artificial islands. These man-made paradises display the innovative strategies of modern engineering as it involves the collaboration of the most notable engineering firms for land reclamation. The most famous island, Palm Jumeirah, attracts thousands of vacationers a day, and with this increase in tourism, the ruler of the [...]

3D Printed Organs

2020-09-22T16:11:28-07:00 March 1st, 2014|Biomedical Engineering, Editors' Picks, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Material Science, Volume XVI|

The field of tissue engineering has allowed developments in 3D printing organic parts and materials. 3D printing has become a widely popular means of manufacturing over the past decade, combining ease of design on a computer with fast production of custom parts. In regards to tissue engineering, these advantages have staggering implications in terms of [...]

Fast & Furious: The Science behind Badminton Smashes

2017-10-26T18:39:50-07:00 December 11th, 2013|Issue II, Physics, Sports & Recreation, Volume XVI|

Badminton Smash is a shot that demonstrates the player’s ultimate power and control. There are certain things that can help nonprofessionals smash like professionals. These things will be discussed in detail in this essay. illumin.usc.edu The Engineering behind Badminton. (Flash) Introduction Badminton is a racket sport like tennis, except that a bird (also called shuttlecock, [...]

A New World of Opportunity: A Look Into Virtual Reality

2017-10-26T18:18:21-07:00 December 6th, 2013|Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Issue I, Volume XVI|

People have shown an interest in virtual reality, long before we were capable of accomplishing it. Now, with technological advancements in computer graphics and hardware, engineers are closing the gap between fact and science fiction. Developing advanced 3D displays and increasing processing speed and response time are leading to a future with authentic, immersive virtual [...]

Wearable Contact-Lens Display: The Next Generation of Wearable Technology

2017-10-26T18:55:24-07:00 July 29th, 2013|Communication, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Food & Drink, Health & Medicine, Industrial Engineering, Issue I, Lifestyle, Sports & Recreation, Transportation, Volume XVII|

Engineers are on the brink of major breakthroughs in creating contact lenses that offer wearers all of the functionality of a computer or smartphone. Earlier iterations of this technology have been confined to clunky glasses and goggles. However, new composite materials that combine graphene and silver nanowires are making it possible to create a display [...]

Establishing a Lunar Colony

2017-11-03T17:24:29-07:00 May 24th, 2013|Aerospace Engineering, Building & Architecture, Civil Engineering, Issue II, Space, Volume XV|

Establishing a colony on the moon would force scientists and engineers to solve extremely complex design problems but would open doors to further exploration into our galaxy and beyond. In order to establish a lunar colony, scientists and engineers would need to develop new lunar structures as well as determine a way for the lunar [...]

Cellular Computing: Pushing the Boundaries of Computation

2017-10-26T18:44:08-07:00 May 7th, 2013|Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Volume XVII|

Dr. Endy and his team have developed a cellular logic gate, dubbed a transcriptor, which was the last of three things necessary to making cellular computing a reality: a way to store information, a method of transporting information, and something to perform basic logic operations. Storage has been achieved through recoding DNA into storing massive [...]

Engineering Heartbeats: The Evolution of Artificial Pacemakers

2017-11-03T16:59:28-07:00 May 6th, 2013|Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Health & Medicine, History & Society, Issue I, Volume XV|

Arrhythmia—a cardiac disease in which the heart beats irregularly or at an abnormal pace—is caused by faulty electrical signal generation within the heart at the SA node. Recognizing the electrical properties of the heart, engineers created a treatment device, the artificial pacemaker, by applying principles of electrical engineering. The device controls the rate and rhythm [...]

Crack is Whack: Self-Healing Concrete

2017-11-03T17:38:09-07:00 May 1st, 2013|Building & Architecture, Civil Engineering, Issue III, Transportation, Volume XV|

Concrete cracks for many reasons: thermal expansion or contraction, applied loads, and even earthquakes can fracture the concrete in roads, structures, and more. In particular, cracks in load-bearing elements, like concrete columns and beams, have the potential to create serious instability problems. To avoid expensive repairs—or even reconstruction—of compromised structures, engineers have worked to design [...]

Automotive Active Safety Systems

2017-11-03T17:33:24-07:00 May 1st, 2013|Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Ergonomics, Issue III, Mechanical Engineering, Transportation, Volume XV|

Automotive active safety systems have saved many thousands of lives since their introduction. From simple headlights to automated emergency braking, active safety systems use advances in engineering to make driving safer. By making a vehicle more visible to other drivers, better informing a driver of road hazards, and even taking total control of an automobile [...]

Layer-by-Layer: Engineering Surfaces

2017-11-03T17:26:51-07:00 May 1st, 2013|Civil Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Issue II, Lifestyle, Material Science, Volume XV|

Modifying window panes with thin films can block infrared rays from entering a building, an innovation that can make cars and homes more energy-efficient by limiting the need for air conditioners and heating units. The technology behind these films—layer-by-layer deposition—features many remarkable applications in the present and promises even more for the future. Introduction You [...]

Asteroid Deflection

2018-02-23T11:29:53-08:00 April 30th, 2013|Aerospace Engineering, Editors' Picks, Issue I, Space, Volume XV|

The threat of an Earth-asteroid collision is very real. Historically, asteroids and comets have proven to be sources of incredible destruction, and they are thought to have caused at least one mass extinction. This has motivated geologists, scientists and engineers to start devising plans to deflect potentially lethal asteroids and protect the earth from the [...]

Smoking without Smoke: Engineering the Cigarette

2017-11-03T17:08:03-07:00 December 14th, 2012|Electrical Engineering, Health & Medicine, History & Society, Issue I, Lifestyle, Mechanical Engineering, Volume XV|

Electronic cigarettes deliver the same nicotine as traditional cigarettes but with fewer additives. They offer themselves as an alternative to traditional cigarettes and possibly as an effective nicotine replacement therapy. Being that they are less harmful to our environment, electronic cigarettes are a strong example of how engineers are seeking to reshape our world for [...]

Technology at the Tip of Your Finger: Contact Lenses beyond Vision Correction

2017-11-03T17:28:05-07:00 December 10th, 2012|Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science, Health & Medicine, Issue II, Lifestyle, Volume XV|

Engineers are discovering modern applications of the contact lens, extending from correcting vision to curing blindness. Intraocular pressure sensors in contact lenses may provide relief to glaucoma patients; stem cell colonies from a healthy eye may, when applied to a lens, help repair vision loss. Contact lenses are also the subject of nanotechnology experiments, including [...]

Sun Bake No More: A Safer Alternative for a Beautiful Glow Using Sunless Tanner

2017-11-03T17:11:21-07:00 December 10th, 2012|Health & Medicine, Issue I, Lifestyle, Volume XV|

The sunless tanner has provided an alternative to sun-kissed skin that does not have an effect on premature aging or an increased risk of skin cancer. Instead of exposure to ultraviolet rays, sunless tanners use a natural ingredient, dihydroxyacetone, that reacts with dead skin cells on the outermost layer of the skin, temporarily staining it [...]

How Industrial Engineers Will Save Health Care

2017-11-03T17:41:16-07:00 December 7th, 2012|Health & Medicine, Industrial Engineering, Issue III, Volume XV|

Industrial engineers possess the knowledge, training, and experience needed to distribute solutions to improve inefficient systems, like American healthcare. Breakdown in efficiency, caused by factors such as ambiguous communication and ineffective timelines, contributes to patient frustration and dissatisfaction. Industrial engineers are rightly sought out to identify flaws in the healthcare system and to develop effective [...]

SCENTsory Entertainment: The Engineering Behind Smell-o-vision

2017-11-03T17:43:03-07:00 November 26th, 2012|Chemical Engineering, Entertainment, Food & Drink|

The technology for creating scents in television is in the near future. Researchers from the University of California San Diego are currently working with engineers at Samsung to develop a device that makes the smell-o-vision --smell with television-- a reality. This compact device will be an odor-generating component for TVs and will even be small [...]

Beauty and the Geek: The Engineering Behind Laser Hair Removal

2017-11-03T17:35:33-07:00 November 26th, 2012|Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Entertainment, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Physics, Volume XV|

Understanding laser hair removal requires knowledge of many disciplines. Quantum and optical physics, the biology behind the growth cycles of hair, and the historical and modern rationale for depilation (hair removal) contribute to this interesting cosmetic procedure. The study of Laser Hair Removal reveals the interconnection between societal values and science while also providing an [...]

How Companies Fulfill Your Deepest Desires: Neuromarketing and the MRI

2017-11-03T17:02:08-07:00 November 25th, 2012|Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Lifestyle, Volume XV|

Mad Men, the American Movie Channel’s award winning TV show, transports viewers to the sexy and fast paced marketing world of Don Draper in 1960’s New York. Today, that world is getting sexier and faster with the advancement of neuromarketing. By using MRI and EEG machines on subjects exposed to products or advertisements, companies are [...]

Disney’s “Green” Magic: Engineering Sustainability

2018-01-19T06:24:27-08:00 October 15th, 2012|Entertainment, Environmental Engineering, Food & Drink, Issue III, Physics, Recycling, Volume XVII|

This paper discusses the sustainable efforts that The Walt Disney Corporation has made in recent years to reduce their environmental impact and improve sustainability. From food to energy waste, Disney Parks and Resorts has paired up with Walt Disney Imagineering to find innovative ways to conserve energy that not only benefit the guest within the [...]

Mommy, I Want a Jetpack

2017-11-10T18:40:01-08:00 August 7th, 2012|Aerospace Engineering, Lifestyle, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Transportation|

Since the 1920s, science fiction has glamorized the jetpack as futuristic technology. After almost one hundred years and only moderate levels of success, people today are left wondering if the jetpack will ever become a reality. By exploring its origins and analyzing recurring design flaws, one can understand the jetpack’s slow development. The success of [...]

Can Electric Vehicles Charge Wirelessly?

2017-11-03T14:23:49-07:00 July 28th, 2012|Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Issue I, Physics, Power, Transportation, Volume XV|

Conventionally, electric vehicles are charged by plugging in the battery compartment to an outlet using a heavy duty wire. Recent work and study into inductive power transfer methods have shown that it is possible to power electric cars wirelessly. The work highlights the success achieved in charging car batteries by retrofitting them with inductive power [...]

Cotton Candy: Carnival Snack to Medical Wonder

2018-02-23T11:28:13-08:00 May 5th, 2012|Editors' Picks, Food & Drink, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Volume XIV|

Many people know that cotton candy is made from sugar. They may not know, however, this fun carnival treat's colorful history. Cotton candy has been used in many different ways since its properties have become known in greater detail. Melting and spinning sugar, for one, results in a delicious dessert: using chemistry and physics, engineers [...]

Uncovering the Secrets of the Mariana Trench

2017-11-10T14:55:38-08:00 May 2nd, 2012|Issue II, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Space, Transportation, Volume XIV, Water|

In March 2012, James Cameron became the third person in history to dive to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the lowest point on earth. The conditions in the bottom of the ocean are very harsh due to intense hydrostatic pressures and a lack of light. Nevertheless, deep sea diving allows us to study the [...]

Engineering Test-Tube Meat: Out of the Lab and onto the Dinner Plate

2017-11-03T17:17:49-07:00 May 1st, 2012|Chemical Engineering, Food & Drink, Industrial Engineering, Issue II, Volume XV|

What if we could produce and sell animal-free meat? Though it may sound like an oxymoron, this may be completely possible within the next few decades. With new technologies that allow scientists to create masses of muscle cells in a petri dish, engineers must step up to convert this technology to the production plant. By [...]

Rail Guns: From Sci-Fi to Reality

2017-11-10T18:42:13-08:00 April 23rd, 2012|Aerospace Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Issue III, Physics, Security & Defense, Transportation, Volume XIV|

A rail gun uses magnetic and electric forces to accelerate a projectile. Parallel rails extend along the length of the firing chamber of the rail gun powered by capacitors. With the power generated by the magnetic fields contained in rail guns, objects can be launched at incredible speeds. The result is a destructive force. The [...]

Follow Your Nose: Engineering in Perfumes

2017-11-10T18:38:11-08:00 April 23rd, 2012|Chemical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Lifestyle, Volume XIV|

Most people view perfumes as delicate works of art, created with a meticulous hand and applied with a careful touch. However, the introduction of engineering into the analysis and creation of fragrances has mechanized the process more than ever before. The consequences of these new methods, both intended and unintended, have changed the industry irreversibly [...]

Space-Based Solar Power: A New Path Towards Sustainable, Clean Energy?

2017-11-10T18:45:54-08:00 April 21st, 2012|Aerospace Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Issue III, Material Science, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Power, Security & Defense, Space, Volume XIV|

Space-based solar power (SBSP) is an idea that has been alternatively promoted and ignored since its inception in 1968. A space-based solar power system is essentially a satellite comprised mainly of solar panels that beams electrical energy down to a collecting station on Earth, which then distributes that energy to the domestic power grid. The [...]

Translucent Concrete: An Emerging Material

2017-11-10T14:52:53-08:00 December 9th, 2011|Building & Architecture, Issue II, Material Science, Volume XIV|

Concrete, that traditionally solid, substantial building material, is getting a makeover. Engineers have now developed concrete mixtures that are capable of transmitting light. By switching the ingredients of traditional concrete with transparent ones, or embedding fiber optics, translucent concrete has become a reality. As with any new material, it is expensive and still has some [...]

Power-Generating Fashion: A Look into Smart Textiles

2017-11-11T17:31:33-08:00 December 7th, 2011|Electrical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Ergonomics, Issue III, Material Science, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Volume XIII|

Technology has advanced the functions of clothing to a new level through the creation of power-generating textiles. These materials are made of solar cell or piezoelectric fabric that will allow enough electricity to be generated to recharge a small, portable electronic device. With additional engineering and research, clothing that can recharge any portable electronic device [...]

Mobile Microscopes: How Your Cell Phone Can Save Lives

2017-11-03T17:51:57-07:00 December 6th, 2011|Biomedical Engineering, Communication, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue I, Physics, Volume XIV|

What if a text message could save a life? Dr. Ayogdan Ozcan and his team of researchers have developed a cost-efficient, revolutionary device that can perform basic diagnostics for blood cell count, malaria, and tuberculosis – all on the back of a $30 camera phone. The device uses a lens-free imaging technique known as LUCAS, [...]

Maglevs: The Future of Flying Trains

2017-11-10T14:33:57-08:00 December 6th, 2011|Electrical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Issue II, Transportation, Volume XIV|

Maglev trains have the potential to revolutionize how we travel. The trains levitate using magnets, zipping through the air at speeds above 350 mph. These high speeds would allow for maglev trains to be a realistic alternative to flying, and they use very little energy and emit no pollutants during transportation. They require little maintenance, [...]

Silver Nanoparticles: A Valuable Weapon in Microbial Warfare

2017-11-11T17:33:34-08:00 December 4th, 2011|Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Issue III, Material Science, Volume XIII|

Nanotechnology is currently being used as a valuable weapon for combating body odor-causing bacteria. Materials can be manufactured at the ‘nano’ scale, one billion times smaller than the world of meters we currently live in. Nanoparticles provide terrific driving forces for diffusion, which allows chemical reactions to occur at a high rate. In the case [...]

The Dog’s Nose Knows…Or Does It? Explosives Detection by Mechanical and Electrical “Noses”

2017-11-10T14:51:19-08:00 December 1st, 2011|Electrical Engineering, Issue II, Mechanical Engineering, Security & Defense, Volume XIV|

Explosives have been and continue to be a major threat to airports and military personnel across the globe. With the endless amount of information available on the Internet and with technology advancing at an incredibly rapid rate, dangerous weapons have never been so easy to manufacture. Not only are newly made explosives a concern to [...]

Stealth Characteristics of the F-22 Raptor

2017-11-10T14:49:38-08:00 December 1st, 2011|Aerospace Engineering, Issue II, Material Science, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Security & Defense, Volume XIV|

The F-22 Raptor was developed by Lockheed Martin in partnership with Boeing. Though initially developed to serve as an air superiority fighter, which meant that it would take control of enemy airspace and destroy any opposition, it has developed into more of a multi-role vehicle. The F-22 is an overwhelming vehicle with capabilities that enable [...]

Flying Cars and the Future of Civil Transportation

2017-11-11T17:15:49-08:00 July 13th, 2011|Aerospace Engineering, Issue I, Mechanical Engineering, Transportation, Volume XIII|

Though many have tried and failed, those attempting to combine ground and sky with street-legal aircraft are presented with a new window of opportunity through which they can feasibly offer their innovations to the masses. Joint exploratory research conducted by NASA and the FAA has created the groundwork for an overhaul of our nation’s airspace [...]

Thorium Reactors: Solving the Global Energy Crisis

2017-11-03T18:02:26-07:00 July 7th, 2011|Chemical Engineering, Energy & Sustainability, Issue I, Material Science, Volume XIV|

As global demand for energy increases and access to fossil fuels decreases, we face a crisis. Nuclear power offers ecologically sound energy, but it is costly to produce and maintain. In the wake of the tragedy at the Japanese nuclear power plant Fukushima Daiichi, nuclear energy seems less safe in the eyes of the public, [...]

Biology’s Approach to Construction: The Development and Use of Scaffolds in Tissue Engineering

2017-11-11T17:23:53-08:00 July 1st, 2011|Biomedical Engineering, Health & Medicine, Issue III, Material Science, Volume XIII|

The field of tissue engineering has seen significant improvements in the past 10 years, much of which is due to the development of tissue scaffolds. These 3-dimensional, porous structures are perfectly suited for cellular attachment and growth due to their physical similarities to the native extracellular matrix. The ability of scaffolds to be strong yet [...]

The Prospects of Invisibility Cloaks: Bending the Laws of Light

2017-11-11T17:29:05-08:00 June 27th, 2011|Electrical Engineering, Ergonomics, Issue II, Material Science, Physics, Volume XIII|

Current research and experimentation with metamaterials have led to advancements in the development of invisibility. Metamaterials can be used to make objects appear invisible by bending light around those objects through refraction instead of away from those objects by reflection. Though no natural material exhibits this behavior, engineers are working to design cloaking devices with [...]

No Vacancy: IPv4 Address Depletion and Possible Solutions for the Expanding Internet

2017-11-11T17:28:41-08:00 June 27th, 2011|Communication, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Issue III, Volume XIII|

Internet Protocol (IP) addresses form the foundation of the internet. Every device and website requires an IP address to send and receive information. Unfortunately, IPv4, the current IP address system, is limited to approximately 4 billion possible addresses, a threshold that is quickly approaching as countless new devices connect to the internet. When no IPv4 [...]