"Wood to Wheels" - Research Experience for High School Teachers in Sustainable Transportation Technologies


Sustainable Futures Institute
1400 Townsend Drive
Houghton, Michigan 49931

Phone: 906.487.3612
Fax: 906.487.2943
e-mail: sfi@mtu.edu

qRobbins Professor David Shonnard (right)
with 2011 RET high school teachers and graduate students at RET poster session (Photo: Emil Groth)


Graduate student Jill Jensen demonstrates the use of laboratory equipment for RET participants.
(Photo: David Shonnard)












Wood to Wheels RET Site

Brief Description:
Our goal for this project is to provide in-depth, multidisciplinary research experiences and concurrent curriculum development activities for 21 high school teachers over a three-year project in a “Wood-to-Wheels” (W2W) forest-based biofuels transportation enterprise. The main outcomes of the project will be teaching units that incorporate multi-level engineering content into high school science courses. The W2W RET six-week research experiences will be implemented in three technical areas in collaboration with three tenured faculty mentors:
i. Forest Genomics (Professor C. Joshi),
ii. Bioconversion to Cellulosic Ethanol (Professor D. Shonnard), and
iii. Combustion in Next Generation Engines (Professor J. Naber)
The RET schedule includes a balance of comprehensive laboratory research activities, teaching unit development/refinement, and opportunities for knowledge integration and information sharing among the teacher participants, graduate students, and faculty mentors. Michigan Tech will commit three high technology research laboratories, faculty and graduate student resources, and meeting /conference facilities to support this project.
Project Leaders:
Principal Investigator (PI): David R. Shonnard, Chemical Engineering
Co-PI: xxxxxxxxxxBradley H. Baltensperger, Cognitive & Learning Sciences
Senior Personnel: Chris S. Anderson, Office of Institutional Diversity

________________Chandrashekar Joshi, School of Forest Resources
__________________and Environmental Sciences
________________Kedmon Hungwe, Cognitive & Learning Sciences
________________Jeffrey D. Naber, Mechanical Engineering
__________________and Engineering Mechanics
________________Shawn Oppliger, Western UP Center for Science, Mathematics, __________________and Environmental Engineering
________________Lenora Ashford, Lewis Cass Technical High School, and __________________Michigan Tech Board of Control
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxGwenolyn Hamilton, Lewis Cass Technical High School

For More Information:

Dowload RET Brochure

MTU College of Engineering Blog: Research Experience for Teachers (includes videos)

Woods to Wheels: Kids Think Engineering in Spring 2013 Michigan Science Teacher's Association Newsletter (page 6)

Woods to Wheels at Michigan Tech: How I Spent my Summer Vacation in Summer 2012 Michigan Science Teacher's Association Newsletter (page 8)

David R. Shonnard: email - drshonna@mtu.edu, phone - (906) 487-3468
Bradley H. Baltensperger: email - brad@mtu.edu, phone - (906) 487-2460
Lori J. Witting: email - lori@mtu.edu, phone - (906) 487-2263

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