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Projects in 1998–1999

Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc.: Edge Partitioning and the Chinese Postman Project

Lisette de Pillis

The goal of this project is to develop requirements for finding efficent Chinese Postman routes in an analysis of networks known as the Edge Partioning Problem. Consideration must be given to ESRI's client needs in enforcing rules on the partitioning of networks. The team should construct realistic test scenarios and databases using ESRI's products, ArcView and ARC/INFO, and use ESRI's NetEngine product to store salient properties about the network. The team will work towards developing computer programs which use NetEngine to partition a network and solve the Chinese Postman Tour on each partition.


  • Kenneth Conrad
  • Matthew Fluet
  • Stacy Sanders
  • Marie Snipes (Team Leader)

Fair, Isaac, and Company, Inc.: Intelligent Techniques for Scanning and Extracting Information from Text

Michael Moody

Included in many of the data sources Fair, Isaac works with are free-form text fields filled with typed in comments that convey unique or important information about the record. This project requires the development of a set of automated methods that can scan such text fields across many observations in order to find and report upon important words or phrases found. The methods must be intelligent enough to approximate the information a person would report if she scanned the text by hand, and flexible enough to handle abbreviations or typos which may be present in some of the data.


  • Caroline Crum (Team Leader)
  • Andrew Olsen
  • Ranjithkumar Rajagopalan

Owen Racing Shells: Optimal Design of a Racing Shell

Andrew J. Bernoff

Owen Racing Shells is one of the leading designers of eight-man rowing shells. In this sport, proper boat design must complement a team's athletic ability. This team will work towards understanding and contributing to ergonomic racing shell design. The project will begin by analyzing the present design of racing shells. The clinic team will undertake a comprehensive literature search and construct a block model of the dynamics of the shell. This model should explain the role of the shell's components in the transfer of energy from the oarsman to the forward momentum of the boat. This model will then be used to identify which components of the shell are the most important in improving efficiency. In particular the team will study how modern composites can best be incorporated to reduce weight to a minimum while maintaining necessary strength. Our goal will be to design an algorithm that allows evaluation of the effect of a material's properties on the shell's design.


  • Jennifer Jack (Team Leader)
  • Nathan Jakubiak
  • Jeffery Liebert
  • Jeannette Wait

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC): Wavelet Transform Detection and Classification

Ruye Wang

In recent years wavelet representations of images(and time series)have been used in a wide variety of applications, including lossy compression, de-noising, and image registration. Standard detection and classification theory based on the representation of the image on a two-dimensional grid is quite mature and has a number of applications in sensor system signal processing, robotics, and medical imaging. Some of the difficulties in these standard applications of image detection and classification arise when the shape of an object is known but its scale within a given image is not. The multiresolution capabilities of wvelets allows the simultaneous inspection of an image at different resolutions. It is desirable to determine what combinations of objects(and associated backgrounds)have enhanced detection and classification performance when represented by their wavelet coefficients within an image. The project should begin by casting standard detection theory in the language of wavelet image representations. This project should develop a testbed for use of analyzing the utility of wavelet transformed images for classical detection and classification. The testbed should be implemented in Matlab(desirable to be independent of computer platform), allowing flexibility of analyzing synthetically generated images or real images from external sources in a variety of standard image formats. This Wavelet Detection Testbed should have the flexibility of using many of the standards basis wavelets studied over the last 10-12 years. Finally, a vartiety of different kinds of images, slected in conjunction with SAIC, shall be analyzed for the utility of the wavelet approach to detection and classification.


  • Addison Gronquist
  • Fabrice Humblot
  • Adam Nisenbaum
  • David Rudel (Team Leader)

Space Systems/Loral: Analysis System for Satellite Propellant Budget Dispersion

Henry Krieger

The useful mission life of an orbiting satellite depends on the amount of propellant that reamins after completion of the complex maneuvers required to place the spacecraft in the desired location and orientation. Propellant usage depends significantly on the dispersion in the performance factors during the launch and orbit raising processes. Dispersion in satellite on-orbit performancemust also be accounted for. This project involves the development of an analysis tool for determining the compliance with the on-station life requirement of an orbiting spacecraft. The tool should take into account the following features: nominal statistical treatment of all dispersion factors, selectable alternate treatments for individual dispersion factors, database-derived menu-driven selection and user override of launch vehicle and orbit-raising mission parameters, graphical and tabular displays of results with an up-to-date and user-friendly interface.


  • Belinda Fischer (Team Leader)
  • Tyson Kackley
  • Naveen Matthew
  • Scott Robertson
  • Tara Salamone