Graduate and undergraduate students enrolled in the Mechanical Engineering program at Virginia Tech recently visited the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research (IALR) as part of an ongoing collaboration with IALR. Senior Scientist Scott Lowman is also an adjunct professor at Virginia Tech. He regularly visits the students on campus to update them on current research projects and opportunities for them to complete research projects with IALR. Joint projects for the fall semester will include automating IALR’s SMART table image-capture system, improving SMART table control systems and linking them to the wireless network, upfitting the tables with advanced camera systems, developing SMART table software and data management capabilities, and hyperspectral image analysis of plant movement at Virginia Tech’ s greenhouse complex.

“Coming to the Institute for Advanced Learning & Research for the first time, I would say that my initial impression is that it has a great deal of potential for research and outreach with the larger community. As a scientist and engineer, I feel it is imperative that I strive to do meaningful work that contributes to the advancement of society. Because of the Institute’s ties to the city of Danville, working with the Institute illustrates my commitment to this belief,” said Virginia Tech Mechanical Engineering student Adam Lowery. 

Photo 1: Dr. Lowman (left) discusses how a stepper motor is incorporated in IALR’s SMART table technology with Virginia Tech student Adam Lowery.

Photo 2: Virginia Tech Mechanical Engineering students Philip Repisky, Joshua Moser, and Adam Lowery (left to right) recently visited IALR.

Photo 3: Dr. Lowman demonstrates how IALR’s SMART tables incorporate robotics, technology, and camera images to determine the overall health of up to 7,500 plants on each table at a time. Virginia Tech Mechanical Engineering students include (left to right) Christopher Jelesnianski, Jackson Klein, and Joshua Moser.