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Research Projects

 

Project: Versatile Polymers for Organic Field Effect Transistors: Sustainable Materials for Photovoltaic Cells and Sensing Applications

Research Team: Dr. Bassam Alameddine, Prof. Fakhriea Al-Sagheer, Prof. Saleh Al-Mousawi, Prof. Kay Severin, and Prof. Thomas Heiser.

About the project:

This project will focus on discovering novel polymeric materials for applications in organic field effect transistors, as well as possible use in photovoltaic cells and gas sensors.

 

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS).

Grant Amount: 84,025 KD (~280,000$)

Period: 2018-2021

 

This project is conducted in collaboration with:

 

Prof. Fakhriea Al-Sagheer and Prof. Saleh Al-Mousawi

Chemistry Department

Kuwait University

Kuwait.

 

This project is also conducted in an international collaboration with:

 

Prof. Thomas Heiser 

Materials for electronic and photovoltaic devices

CNRS - iCube

University of Strasbourg

France

 


 

Project: New Efficient and Accurate Discontinuous Galerkin Methods for Differential Equations arising in Biology, Finance, and Mechanical Engineering

Research Team: Helmi Temimi, Mohamed Ben-Romdhane, and Mahboub Baccouch.

Project Description:

Stochastic differential equation (SDE) models play an important role in various applications including biology, physics, chemistry, epidemiology, mechanics, microelectronics, economics, finance, when uncertainties are taken into account. In many cases, analytic solutions of SDEs are not available. Thus, numerical methods are needed in order to find approximate solutions to these SDEs. In this project, we develop, implement, and analyze new efficient accurate, and stable numerical solvers for SDEs using the discontinuous Galerkin finite element method. In particular, we focus on SDEs arising in various practical applications, especially in biology, finance, and mechanical engineering. We particularly consider constructing efficient numerical solvers for the standard stochastic SIR epidemic model, the famous stock-price stochastic financial model, and the mechanical vibration model.

 

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS).

Grant Amount: 8,200 KD (~27,000$)

Period: 2018-2020

 

This project is conducted in an international collaboration with:

 

Dr. Mahboub Baccouch

Department of Mathematics

University of Nebraska at Omaha

Omaha, NK

USA.

 


Project: Implementation of a Study Skills Program Integrated with a Basic Algebra Developmental Course

Research Team:

Principal Investigator: Dr. Ilene Winokur Al-Zaid (Foundation Unit, College of Arts & Sciences)

Co-Investigators: Dr. Wassim Daher (Dept. of Mathematics & Natural Sciences)

Research Assistant: Mrs. Milena Baeff (Mathematics Foundation Unit, College of Arts & Sciences)

 

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS).

Grant Amount: 9,800 KD (~33,000$)

Period: 2017-2020

 

Project: Multi-Parametric Testing of Immunological and Biochemical Markers of Osteoporosis in Postmenopausal Women

Research Team: Fawaz Azizieh, Raj Raghupathy Dia Shehab, Khaled Al Jarallah, Renu Gupta, Olusegun Mojiminiyi, and Rabeah Al-Temaimi.

Project Description:

This project is to further extend our previous observations by comparing the circulatory levels of parameters related to (a) oxidative stress (b) osteoclastogenesis stimulator cytokines and osteoclastogenesis inhibitor cytokines (c) adipokines, (d) bone turnover markers and (e) estradiol. We also proposed to explore the association of vitamin D and vitamin D-binding protein (VDBP) levels with the risk of Osteoporosis and Osteopenia and to test two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the VDBP gene for their association with VDBP levels and risk of Osteoporosis and Osteopenia. The results will shed light on possible links between these parameters and bone health.

 

 

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS).

Grant Amount: 10,450 KD (~35,000$)

Period: 2017-2018

 

This project is conducted in collaboration with:

 

Prof. Raj Raghupathy (Dept. of Microbiology),

Prof Dia Shehab & Prof. Khaled Al Jarallah (Dept. of Medicine),

Prof. Renu Gupta (Dept. of Radiology),

Prof. Olusegun Mojiminiyi & Dr. Rabeah Al-Temaimi (Dept. of Pathology)

Faculty of Medicine

Kuwait University

Jabriya, Kuwait.

 


 

Project: Statistical predictive modelling of cytokine data from pregnancy complications

Research Team: K. Dingle, F. Azizieh, R. Raghupathy, J. VanderPlas, K. Johnson, A. R. Ansari.

Project Description:

Trying to understand and quantify the different cytosine profiles associated to normal pregnancies and a variety of common pregnancy complications.

 

 

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS).

Grant Amount: 5,900 KD (~20,000$)

Period: 2016-2018

 

This project is conducted in collaboration with:

 

Prof. Raj Raghupathy

Department of Microbiology

Faculty of Medicine

Kuwait University

Jabriya, Kuwait.

 

This project is also conducted in an international collaboration with:

 

Dr. Jake VanderPlas

eScience Institute

University of Washington

 Seattle, WA

Washington

Dr. Kjell Johnson

Statistics Consultant

Arbor Analysis

USA

 


 

Project: Design of Iptycene Polymers: A New Generation of Gas Separation Nanomaterials for Energy Applications

Research Team: Dr. Bassam Alameddine, Prof. Fakhriea Al-Sagheer, Prof. Saleh Al-Mousawi, Prof. Kay Severin, and Prof. Thomas Heiser.

About the project:

 

 

 

 

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS).

Grant Amount: 96,600 KD (~350,000$)

Period: 2015-2018

 

This project is conducted in collaboration with:

 

Prof. Fakhriea Al-Sagheer and Prof. Saleh Al-Mousawi

Chemistry Department

Kuwait University

Kuwait.

 

This project is also conducted in an international collaboration with:

 

Prof. Kay Severin

Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering 

Federal Polytechnic Institute of Lausanne 

Switzerland

Prof. Thomas Heiser 

Materials for electronic and photovoltaic devices

CNRS - iCube

University of Strasbourg

France

 


 

Project: Cytokine Production Patterns in Osteoporosis

Research Team: Fawaz Azizieh, Raj Raghupathy Dia Shehab, Khaled Al Jarallah, Renu Gupta.

Project Description:

Osteoporosis is a significant health issue which is set to rise alarmingly worldwide.  In addition to some well-characterized factors, the immune system is also suggested to contribute to bone loss in osteoporosis, via pro-inflammatory cytokines. Cytokines play important roles in the regulation of normal bone remodeling, as well as in bone formation and resorption, during pathologic bone remodeling. Recent studies suggest that bone loss in women in the post-menopausal period is partly mediated by increased production of certain cytokines. It is reported that a similar situation characterizes inflammatory arthritis; inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis is associated with skeletal pathology. This project aimed to shed light on possible links between cytokine profiles and bone health. Further research along these lines will contribute to better understanding of the etiopathology underlying osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis, and may subsequently contribute to the development of strategies for reversing systemic bone loss associated with the disease, by targeting both the bone and the inflammatory process.

 

 

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS).

Grant Amount: 24,800 KD (~85,000$)

Period: 2014-2016

 

This project is conducted in collaboration with:

 

Prof. Raj Raghupathy (Dept. of Microbiology),

Prof Dia Shehab & Prof. Khaled Al Jarallah (Dept. of Medicine),

Prof. Renu Gupta (Dept. of Radiology),

Faculty of Medicine

Kuwait University

Jabriya, Kuwait.

 


 

Project: Modelling and design of nano-structures: multilayer nanoplasmonics configurations

Research Team: Dr. Harun Kurkcu and Dr. Haluk Karaca

Project Description:

Nanoplasmonics forms a major part of the field of nanophotonics, which explores how electromagnetic fields can be confined over dimensions on the order of or smaller than the wavelength. Initiated in 1902 by R.W. Wood with the discovery of grating anomalies, this phenomenon has attracted significant attention over the last century. Current applications relate, for instance, to bio-sensing wherein the binding of analyte molecules to a properly treated metallic arrangement can provide a very sensitive means to detect their presence through a shift in the resonant (plasmonic) frequency. The potential for further impact is even greater as the confinement of light in sub-wavelength regions can clearly provide significant gains in a wide variety of areas (e.g. telecommunications, microscopy). We believe that state-of-the-art computational thinking can be used to dramatically improve the design process for nanostructured optical materials. The Principal Investigator (PI) has already designed an efficient integral equation solver for single layer configurations and succeeded to outperform many challenges associated with the old-fashioned and inaccurate techniques (such as the ever-popular ``FDTD"). In this proposal, the PI offer to extend this achievement to a more challenging case; multilayer configurations. The new configuration, the PI proposes to study, will composed of a thin layer of noble metal (gold, silver, etc.) with depth larger than skin depth of the material, buried into different epoxies on top  (glass/polymer substrate) and the bottom (liquid/water/blood).  Unfortunately, the developments of the single layer case do not fully carry over to the multi-layer case. The PI proposes, initially, to derive a new modified integral-equation formulation, and high-order treatment of the challenges stemmed from the adapted new mathematical model. We feel that computations will result in new fast/accurate simulator that can be used for real time design.

This Project is financially supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS)

Grant Amount: 5,000 KD (~17,000$)

Period: 2014-2016

 

International Collaboration with:

 

Dr. Haluk Karaca

Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Kentucky

Lexington, KY

USA.

 


 

Project: A new method for drawing graph layouts

Project Leader: Fadi Dib and P. Rodgers

Project Description:

Graph drawing, or the automatic layout of graphs, is a challenging problem. There are several search based methods for graph drawing which are based on optimizing an explicit multi-criteria cost function. Multi-criteria graph layout can be modelled as a multiple objective optimization problem. When an algorithm attempts to draw a graph layout according to several graph aesthetic criteria (such as edge crossings, edge lengths, and others), some of these criteria might conflict with each other. Hence, a fitness function that linearly combines all criteria is formulated. The graph drawing optimizer attempts to minimize this function.

The main goal of the current work is concerned with developing a new graph drawing search based method that outperforms other search methods that were previously used to draw graph layouts such as simulated annealing, hill climbing, and genetic algorithms.

 

 

Related publications:

Dib, F., Rodgers, P. (2014). A tabu search based approach for graph layout. Journal of Visual Languages & Computing, 25 (6), (pp. 912-923). doi:10.1016/j.jvlc.2014.10.019

In international collaboration with:

Dr. Peter Rodgers

School of Computing

University of Kent

Canterbury

United kingdom