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New Institute Advances Manufacturing and Automation Technologies

Photo of Faculty Member, Bob Minaie

CSULB's Institute for Manufacturing and Automation Technologies (I-MAT) was established in December to enhance research and development activities in partnership with industry as well as state and federal agencies. Housed within the CSULB College of Engineering (COE), I-MAT facilitates both private and public investments in innovative development of high tech manufacturing in Southern California.

I-MAT will play a critical role in advancing COE research with its industry partners through activities in person-centered design and human system integration, aerospace manufacturing and assembly, rapid prototyping and integration, composite manufacturing, nanofabrication, and system engineering. This will build upon COE's history of collaborations with the aerospace manufacturing industry including a significant collaboration with The Boeing Company. This will be expanded to other areas of manufacturing with great potential including autonomous manufacturing and assembly, light materials and manufacturing, smart materials, sealing and finishing operation, and full system integration.

I-MAT can provide additional opportunities for the faculty and students at CSULB to engage in multi-investigator and interdisciplinary research and development.

With the establishment of I-MAT, COE and CSULB will play a critical role in advancing manufacturing and automation technologies with significant involvement by industry partners. As such, I-MAT will be a vehicle for training the next generation of researchers and innovators to support the workforce development and addressing regional and national economic needs and challenges. As a university-wide institute, I-MAT can provide additional opportunities for the faculty and students at CSULB to engage in multi-investigator and interdisciplinary research and development.

I-MAT is being led by Dr. Bob Minaie as Director and Dr. Parviz Yavari as Co-Director. I-MAT's advisory board includes members from Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, automotive design and manufacturing companies, among others.

Dr. Minaie is the Boeing Endowed Professor of Manufacturing in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.

He has conducted research in the areas of manufacturing and materials including the use of advanced composites and multifunctional nanostructured materials for aerospace, energy, green manufacturing, structural health monitoring, fuel cell, nanotechnology, and transportation applications. His research activities have been supported by NASA, Office of Naval Research, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, and industry.

In the past decade, Dr. Bob Minaie has obtained more than $6.5 million in research funding.

During the past decade, he has obtained more than $6.5 million in research funding as PI, published 25 papers in reputable journals and 41 papers in peer-reviewed conference proceedings, authored 49 technical reports, and supervised two post-doc, five Ph.D., and 27 M.S. students.

Close collaboration with industry, cultivating diversity, and providing leadership for university-industry-government teams in conducting interdisciplinary and multi-investigator research have been integral parts of his activities.

He holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Minnesota.

Dr. Parviz Yavari is a Professor in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department and the undergraduate advisor and coordinator for the Manufacturing Technology Program. He teaches, consults, and performs research in the areas of materials, manufacturing processes, simulation, and advanced quality processes.

Dr. Yavari has published more than 25 technical papers in refereed journals, presented technical papers at over 60 conferences, and published more than 100 technical reports for aerospace industries, the Air Force and the Navy. He holds two patents on process modeling/manufacturing processes.

Dr. Parviz Yavari has more than 20 years of engineering and management experience in aerospace industries.

Dr. Yavari has more than 20 years of engineering and management experience in aerospace industries. He has been the program manager/principal investigator for major Air Force and Navy contracts such as "Metal Forming Simulation" - $2.1 million, "Stretch Forming Simulation" - $1.3 million, "Advanced Aluminum Fighter Structures" - $8 million, "Advanced Light Weight Airframe Structures" - $14 million, and "J-UCAS Metalworking Technologies" - $1 million.

He has received a number of CSULB teaching and research awards, including the Northrop Grumman Excellence in Teaching and Scholarship Award, Overall Outstanding Faculty Member in the College of Engineering, Outstanding Manufacturing Engineering Technology Faculty, Outstanding Quality Engineering Technology Faculty and Most Inspiring Faculty. In 2007, he was awarded a "Faculty Grant" by the American Society of Non Destructive Testing (ASNT).

Dr. Yavari received his Ph.D. degree in Materials Science from the University of Southern California.

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