Florida Univ’s engineering college launches institute for connected world

Florida, April 13, 2017: The University of Florida’s college of engineering on Wednesday launched the Warren B. Nelms Institute for the Connected World. On the occasion, a seminar was held which was attended by dozens of students who shared their research in smart technology to better the world.

William Eisenstadt, a professor in the department of electrical and computer engineering, led students in developing a device that would monitor and record weather data in Haiti, where sustaining agriculture can be difficult in erratic weather zones.

According to a post in the News section of the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering, leveraging core strengths in data analytics, sensors, networking and cybersecurity with cross-campus disciplines – like transportation and healthcare – that are fundamental to the growing Internet of Things, or “IoT,” the University of Florida had announced a new resource for the design, development and testing of state-of-the-art IoT systems – The Warren B. Nelms Institute for the Connected World.

The new institute, said the post, was named in honor of Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) alumnus Warren B. Nelms, a New Engineer who built his own solar “smart” house where he raised his children – who both went on to become UF engineers as well. His son and daughter-in-law, David and Daryl Nelms, had invested US $5 million in his honor to help create this institute.

The institute will work closely with industry, as well as with resident expert faculty in the Florida Institute for Cybersecurity Research (FICS Research) to integrate comprehensive security considerations into all design efforts. Additional faculty in ECE along with other engineering departments will contribute their established leadership in IoT research and enabling technologies, including those in the Multi-Functional Integrated System Technology Center (MIST), and Collaboration to Enable Transnational Cyberinfrastructure Applications (CENTRA).

“There are many examples of IoT devices being hacked, and that’s a huge problem,” said John Harris, professor and Chair of ECE, in the post. “We believe we can help with every aspect – from the sensors, the communication systems, processing in the cloud, machine learning and more.”

“My vision for the Warren B. Nelms Institute for the Connected World is that UF will become one of the leading places anywhere for educating the best and brightest engineers to securely connect all the world’s devices,” said David Nelms, Chairman and CEO of Discover Financial Services and a mechanical engineering alumnus. “UF will become a magnet for attracting people like my dad, engineers who can dream big and create a future that most people can’t imagine.”

Here’s a video:

 

Image Credit: University of Florida
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