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Technical briefings, tours highlight 69th SwRI annual meeting

For immediate release

San Antonio — Feb. 20, 2017 — Scientists and engineers at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) highlighted key areas of research in transportation, infrastructure, space, healthcare and biosciences as well as energy and the environment today at the 69th Annual Meeting of the Advisory Trustees and Board of Directors. Many of the attendees also toured new facilities.

“We’re excited to tell the story of the remarkable range of science and technology that SwRI engineers and scientists conduct,” said SwRI President and Chief Executive Officer Adam L. Hamilton, P.E. “The projects that we’ll hear about and the new facilities we’ll see today are just glimpses of the diverse, innovative solutions to real-world problems we develop every day out here, ranging from deep sea to deep space.”

Lee and David S. Zachry were re-elected chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of SwRI’s Board of Directors. Lee, retired general manager and CEO of CPS Energy, was Board vice chairman from 2014 to 2015. Both Lee and Zachry, CEO of the Zachry Corp., joined the Board in 2007.

Meeting highlights included briefings on the SwRI-led Juno mission to Jupiter and the SwRI-built CYGNSS satellites now in orbit around Earth. Other presentations focused on powerful computer technology used to improve drug development and new technology to identify methane gas leaking from pipelines. Attendees also toured a new gas gun facility featuring a hypervelocity air gun and received a demonstration of the human performance initiative, which is integrating expertise in biomechanics, image processing, neural networks, sensor fusion, and systems engineering to optimize human physical performance, particularly for military special forces and professional sports.

In addition, Hamilton announced new advisory trustees serving 2017-2020 including Sam Dawson of Pape-Dawson Engineers, Renée Flores of AT&T Services, Gregory Goff of Tesoro Corporation, Joe Gorder of Valero Energy Corporation, Tracy Hayes of CWS Corporate Housing, Dr. Kennon Guglielmo of EControls, Gordon Logan of Sports Clips, Chris May of Deloitte Transactions & Business Analytics, Richard Perez of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, Jenna Saucedo-Herrera of the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation, Dr. Peter Hennings of The University of Texas at Austin Center for Integrated Seismicity Research, and Brad Morrison of Innové. New advisory trustees serving the 2016-2019 term include John Barton of Texas A&M University, Dr. Daniel Baker of the University of Colorado Laboratory of Atmospheric and Space Physics, George Cotter of Isologic, and Gary Frashier of Targeted Technology Funds.

The re-election of Institute officers was also announced. In addition to Hamilton, SwRI officers include: Walter D. Downing, P.E., executive vice president and chief operating officer; Beth Ann Rafferty, CPA, chief financial officer, vice president–finance, and Institute secretary; John W. McLeod, vice president and general counsel; and Linda M. Boehme, CPA, treasurer and assistant Institute secretary.

69th Annual Meeting Media Resources: annualmeeting.swri.org

For more information, contact Deb Schmid, (210) 522-2254, Communications Department, Southwest Research Institute, PO Drawer 28510, San Antonio, TX 78228-0510.

Media Resources

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Fuels, lubricants, and internal combustion
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Image: SwRI automotive engineering technician
Since 1949, SwRI has dedicated extensive resources to serving the automotive industry, solving problems from headlights to tailpipes and evaluating the functional fluids that keep vehicles running. We are the world’s largest independent engine, fuels, and lubricants research, development, and evaluation laboratory.
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Electric vehicle technologies
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Automotive Engineering Infographic
Automotive Engineering Infographic
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Energy & Environment
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a 10 MWe (megawatt electric) pilot plant for demonstrating supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) power cycles
The team of SwRI, GTI, and GE Global Research will design, build, and operate a 10 MWe (megawatt electric) pilot plant for demonstrating supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) power cycles. The plant, shown here in an engineering concept drawing, will be located at SwRI’s headquarters in San Antonio.
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Infrastructure
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Time REsilient System (TRES), designed to safeguard energy infrastructure
SwRI and San Diego Gas & Electric won an R&D 100 Award for the Time REsilient System (TRES), designed to safeguard energy infrastructure, as one of the 100 most significant innovations for 2016. Using inexpensive hardware and sophisticated software, TRES protects critical infrastructure from GPS cyberattacks and maintains the precise, GPS-based time synchronization needed for operations.
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Methane leak detection technology using machine learning
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an autonomous system that detects hydrocarbon leaks in real time using mobile or stationary sensors
Engineers developed an autonomous system that detects hydrocarbon leaks in real time using mobile or stationary sensors. Using machine learning techniques, the system analyzes sensor data and reliably determines the chemical fingerprint of liquid spills. The technology is being adapted to locate methane leaks.
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Optimizing human physical performance
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3-D motion capture analysis for biomechanical assessments
SwRI has entered a new area of research: optimizing human physical performance. The military special forces and professional sports communities are interested in 3-D motion capture analysis for biomechanical assessments. However, current practices and technologies do not meet cost and accuracy demands. The SwRI team is combining expertise in biomechanics, image processing, neural networks, sensor fusion, and systems engineering to explore a new 3-D motion capture system that aligns with the needs of the human performance community.
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Optimizing human physical performance
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3-D motion capture analysis for biomechanical assessments
SwRI has entered a new area of research: optimizing human physical performance. The military special forces and professional sports communities are interested in 3-D motion capture analysis for biomechanical assessments. However, current practices and technologies do not meet cost and accuracy demands. The SwRI team is combining expertise in biomechanics, image processing, neural networks, sensor fusion, and systems engineering to explore a new 3-D motion capture system that aligns with the needs of the human performance community.
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Accelerating drug discovery and delivery
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a 10 MWe (megawatt electric) pilot plant for demonstrating supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) power cycles
SwRI chemists and high performance computer specialists joined forces to develop Rhodium™ Therapeutic Drug Development Software. This powerful new modeling and 3-D visualization tool accelerates the development of more effective treatments for diseases ranging from Alzheimer’s to Ebola.