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WBZ News Radio

WBZ reported on WPI biology professor Pamela Weathers being part of a team of researchers finding that extracts from leaves of the medicinal herb known as sweet wormwood inhibit the replication of COVID-19 and two of its variants. Plays at time mark 19:07:26.

WPI robotics engineering professor Marko Popovic discusses the work of a WPI student team that is building a partial hand prosthetic for University of Houston student Payton Heiberger. “She’s thinking about moving the thumb in a certain direction, and then is succeeding,” he said. Heiberger added that “the WPI team showed me (a partial prosthetic) is possible.”

Carlo Pinciroli, assistant professor of robotics engineering, discussed how WPI’s Team Capricorn advanced to the finals of the NASA-sponsored Space Robotics Challenge. The WPI team is seeking to program virtual robots to locate and extract valuable resources from the Moon. “This has a direct financial and economic interest because there are lots of resources on the moon that are important to access,” he said.

WBZ Radio radio featured how WPI students in ME1800, a normally hands-on class, are, instead,  building thermoacoustic engines virtually due to the coronavirus pandemic. Toby Bergstrom, operations manager at Washburn Shops, was interviewed.  

Dmitry Korkin, associate professor of computer science, spoke with WBZ News Radio about the structural road map of the 2019 novel conoravirus he and his graduate students developed. The goal of the research is to reach new breakthroughs in treating the virus.

Randy Paffenroth, associate professor of mathematical sciences, computer science, and data science, told Boston-based WBZ radio how he is helping the U.S. Army create a thumbnail-sized chemical sensor to protect soldiers. In the five-minute segment, he noted that he is using a “combination of classic and new math to extract from these many sensors what’s in the environment.”​

WBZ Radio reported on Adam Powell, associate professor of mechanical engineering, testing a new type of welding that may make the joint between light metal alloys more resistant to corrosion, including salt spray, leading to future designs of durable, next-generation metal car joints used in ultra-light car doors and other vehicle body applications. This “could cut the weight in half of a lot of major parts of a vehicle,” Powell told WBZ.

WBZ News Radio interviewed Cagdas Onal, associate professor of mechanical engineering about a $3m NSF grant WPI received to study how humans and robots can co-exist in the workplace.

WBZ radio aired a segment last night and this morning about WPI’s Jazz History Database. Rich Falco, director of Jazz Studies and assistant teaching professor of music, discussed the unique collection. WPI has compiled hundreds of CDs, cassettes, and other materials from jazz artists, families, and musical societies. Students digitize the analog versions of the jazz performances and enter them into the database.   

Danielle Cote, assistant professor of materials science and engineering, and Kyle Tsaknopoulos, a postdoctoral fellow at WPI, discuss their $25 million award to advance a cold spray 3D printing technique that could be used to repair military vehicles and equipment. Cote noted that they alter the chemical composition of spray powders, where “a small adjustment in composition can make a big difference.”