WASHINGTON, Feb. 28 -- Designers of the Corona satillite, inventors of biosensors and educators in engineering and technology were awarded by the National Academies' National Academy of Engineering (NAE) for "altering the course of world history, improving the quality of life for millions and creating educational experiences that have transformed hundreds of engineers into community leaders."
Minoru S. Araki, Francis J. Madden, Edward A. Miller, James W. Plummer and Don H. Schoessler share the 2005 Charles Stark Draper Prize -- a $500,000 annual award that honors engineers whose accomplishments have significantly benefited society -- for the design, development and operation of Corona, the first operational photo reconnaissance satellite; this top-secret project was designed to observe Soviet missile capabilities during the Cold War. Since the 1960s,Corona's remote sensing technologies have had diverse applications; images of the Earth from space are now used for mapping unexplored regions, evaluating natural resources and uncovering archaeological data.
Araki was the Lockheed lead engineer for the new gyro-stabilized spacecraft. Madden was chief engineer of Itek Optical System's camera design group, which developed a panoramic camera that doubled the previous best focal length and improved resolution. Schoessler was lead engineer of the Kodak film design and production team, and Miller, of General Electric Co., was the lead developer of the satellite recovery vehicle. Plummer was the Corona Program Manager at Lockheed and the leader of the engineering effort and its management process.
Leland C. Clark Jr. will receive the 2005 Fritz J. and Dolores H. Russ Prize -- a $500,000 biennial award that recognizes bioengineering achievement that significantly improves the human condition, for bioengineering membrane-based sensors with medical, food and environmental applications.
Clark, a professor emeritus at the University of Cincinnati, was one of the founders of Synthetic Blood International Inc. Considered the "father of biosensors," he invented the first device to rapidly determine the amount of glucose in blood. The Clark oxygen electrode, invented in 1954, remains the standard for measuring dissolved oxygen in biomedical, environmental and industrial applications.
Edward J. Coyle, Leah H. Jamieson and William C. Oakes will receive the Bernard M. Gordon Prize -- a $500,000 award issued annually that recognizes innovation in engineering and technology education, for developing the Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) program at Purdue University. EPICS creates partnerships between undergraduates and nonprofit organizations to solve engineering problems in the local community. Projects have included constructing wetlands to mitigate farmland runoff, designing environmental controls for an art museum and making toys for preschoolers with special needs.
Jamieson, a Purdue professor and associate dean of engineering for undergraduate education, is director of EPICS. Oakes, an associate professor at Purdue, is co-director, and Coyle, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at Purdue, is director of the EPICS Entrepreneurship Initiative.
The prizes were presented at a gala dinner last week in Washington.
For more information, visit: www.national-academies.org