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U.S. National Committee for URSI


Past Activities and Events

2017 USNC-URSI Meeting and Student Paper Competition
The most recent annual National Radio Science Meeting (NRSM) was held from Wednesday, January 4 through Saturday, January 7 in Boulder, Colorado. The meeting offered Student Travel Grant awards to both graduate and undergraduate students, and featured the 120 Ernest K. Smith Student Paper Competition.

This student paper competition is organized at each National Radio Science Meeting. Papers are reviewed by representatives of the 10 USNC-URSI Commissions and the top three authors are invited to present their research at the Ernest K. Smith Student Competition held during the Plenary event. This year, the top three winners received a prize of $750 each:

Radio-Frequency Emission Detection and Scaling from Hypervelocity Impacts on Charged Targets
(Commission G)
Andrew Nuttall* and Sigrid Close, Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Stanford University

Warm Plasma Raytracing of Whistler Mode 2 Waves in the Earth's Magnetosphere
(Comission H)
Ashanti S. Maxworth* and Mark Golkowski, Department of Electrical Engineerng, University of Colorado at Denver

Miniaturized Antenna System Designs and Characterizations for Wireless and Fully-Passive Brain-Machine Interface
(Commission K)
Lingnan Song* and Yayha Rahmat-Samii, Department of Electrical Engineering, University of California at Los Angeles

2016 USNC-URSI Meeting: January 6-9
This open scientific meeting was sponsored by the USNC-URSI. Through technical co-sponsorship of the meeting by the IEEE Antennas and Propagation Society, the authors of summaries that were presented at the meeting had the option of archiving their summaries on IEEE Xplore.

The USNC-URSI awarded a total of 106 travel fellowships to Boulder. On Wednesday, January 7, the committee held a student luncheon and a Reception for Women in Radio Science. Sixteen women attended the reception, and were able to network and exchange their experiences working in a highly male-dominated field.

The Ernest K. Smith Student Paper Competition is organized at each National Radio Science Meeting. Papers are reviewed by representatives of the 10 USNC-URSI commissions and the top three authors are invited to present their research at a special plenary session. The 2016 winners were:

First Prize: Experimental Validation of Mode Dominance Reversal in Novel Slow Wave Structure for High Power Backward Wave Oscillators (Commission B)
Ushemadzoro Chipengo and John L. Volakis (Advisor)
ElectroScience Laboratory, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

Second Prize (tie): Modification of the Lower Ionosphere Conductivity by Thunderstorm Electrostatic Fields (Commission H)
Mohammad A. Salem, Ningyu Liu (Advisor), and Hamid K. Rassoul
Geospace Physics Laboratory, Department of Physics and Space Sciences, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL

Second Prize (tie): A Novel Array with 6:1 Bandwidth and 70° Scanning using FSS Superstrate (Commission B)
Ersin Yetisir, Nima Ghalichechian, and John L. Volakis (Advisor)
ElectroScience Laboratory, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

2015 IEEE AP-S Symposium on Antennas and Propagation and URSI USNC-CNC Joint Meeting
The 2015 IEEE AP-S Symposium on Antennas and Propagation and URSI USNC-CNC Joint Meeting was held July 19-25, 2015 in Vancouver, Canada. ´╗┐This event also served as the meeting time for the USNC-URSI. The symposium and meeting were sponsored by the IEEE Antennas and Propagation Society (AP-S) and the U.S. and Canadian national committees (USNC-CNC) of URSI. The technical sessions, workshops, and short courses were coordinated between these groups to provide a comprehensive and well-balanced program. For more details, please consult the Joint Meeting website

To assist with travel costs, the USNC-URSI awarded 72 travel fellowship grants to North American students attending the symposium.

The winners of the NARSM Student Paper Competition were:

  • 1st Place -- Luz Maria Neira, "Investigation of High Resolution Microwave Breast Imaging Using a 3-D Inverse Scattering Algorithm with a Variable-Strength Spatial Prior Constraints"
  • 2nd Place -- Jeffrey S. Jensen, "A Cognitive Spatial Learning Control System For 3-Dimensional Random Arrays"
  • 3rd Place (Tie) -- Jonathan M. Pozderac, "X-Band Beacon-Receiver Array Evaporation Duct Height Estimation," and
    Seyed Mohamad Amin Momeni Hasan Abadi, "Wideband Polarization Converters Based on Miniaturized-Element Frequency Selective Surfaces

2016 URSI David Jackson and Steven Reising
Steven C. Reising (right) receives an Outstanding Service Award from the Chair of USNC-URSI, David R. Jackson (left), for his three years of dedicated service as the previous Chair of USNC-URSI.

2016 URSI Student Paper Competition
Winners and mentors of the Ernest K. Smith Student Paper Competition. From left to right: John L. Volakis, Ushemadzoro Chipengo,
David R. Jackson, Erdem Topsakal, Mohammad A. Salem, Ningyu Liu, Ersin Yetisir.

First URSI Atlantic Radio Science Conference
The first URSI Atlantic Radio Science Conference (URSI AT-RASC) was held in Gran Canaria, Spain, May 18-22, 2015. Finalists presented their research at the 4th International URSI Student Paper Prize Competition, where awards of $750, $500, and $250 were given to the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners, respectively. This conference is part of a new URSI initiative to encourage increased technical activities in all ten URSI Commissions in the years between the General Assemblies and Scientific Symposia. For more details, please visit the URSI AT-RASC website.
31st URSI General Assembly and Scientific Symposium: August 16-23, 2014
The 31st URSI General Assembly and Scientific Symposium (GASS) was held August 16-23, 2014 in Beijing, China. The U.S. Delegation to the GASS included Steven C. Reising and Yahya Rahmat-Samii.

The GASS had a scientific program organized around the ten Commissions of URSI, including oral sessions, poster sessions, plenary and public lectures, and tutorials. In addition, there were workshops, short courses, special programs for Young Scientists, a student paper competition, programs for accompanying persons, and industrial exhibits. For more details, please visit the XXXI URSI General Assembly website.

In collaboration with the Union, the USNC-URSI administered three international awards at the 2014 URSI GASS: the 2014 Dellinger Medal, awarded to J.P.G. Berenger (France); the Booker Award, given to H.V Poor (U.S.); and the Booker Fellowship, awarded to Mona Jarrahi (U.S.). A new URSI prize was also created in honor of Professor Santimay Basu, which rewards a prominent early career in the field. This new prize is administered by the USNC-URSI and was awarded as part of the 2014 URSI GASS. The first awardee was Morris B. Cohen from Georgia Tech. 
Election results from the 2014 GASS included the following winning candidates from the U.S.:
  • URSI Vice-President Elections: Umran Inan (Stanford University)
  • Commission Vice-Chair Elections: Amir Zaghloul (Commission C), V. Chandrasekar (Commission F), Patricia Doherty (Commission G), and Richard Bradley (Commission J)
  • Commission Early Career Representative Elections: Seebany Datta-Barua (Commission G) and Wen Li (Commission H)
The URSI Student Paper Competition has been held at URSI General Assembly and Scientific Symposiums (URSI GASS) since 2008. Finalists are judged on both the content and delivery of their talks. Certificates and monetary prizes, provided by the USNC-URSI, are awarded. The 2014 winners were:
  • First Prize Winner: Filipa Prudêncio (University of Lisbon, Portugal)
  • Second Prize Winner: Simon Adrian (Télécom Bretagne, France and the Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany)
  • Third Prize Winner: Andreas Ericsson (Lund University, Sweden)
  • Fourth Prize Winner: Jiangfeng Wu (University of Michigan)
  • Fifth Prize Winner: Sean Elvidge (University of Birmingham, United Kingdom)




This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number AST-1708170. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

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