Many Americans are still not following physical distancing guidelines issued by state and federal authorities that are designed to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Erratic compliance is just one of the trends registered by a new interactive analytics platform developed by researchers at the University of Maryland’s A. James Clark School of Engineering that measures the impact of COVID-19 on mobility, health, the economy, and society. 
Inspired to help healthcare facilities fight COVID-19, Alumnus Alex Scott (‘18, electrical engineering) and his team of four engineers have been repurposing used breast pumps. Their innovation consists of reversing the suction that is created by the pumps, and developing them into an “intermittent positive pressure ventilation” device that safely replicates the job of a ventilator.

University of Maryland scientists led by Liangbing Hu have reinvented a 26,000-year-old manufacturing process into an innovative approach to fabricating ceramic materials that has promising applications for solid-state batteries, fuel cells, 3D printing technologies, and beyond. The research team invented an ultrafast high-temperature sintering method.

Physicists working with Andreas Elben, Jinlong Yu, Peter Zoller and Benoit Vermersch, including Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor Mohammad Hafezi and former Joint Quantum Institute (JQI) postdoctoral researcher Guanyu Zhu, presented a new method for identifying and characterizing topological invariants on various experimental platforms, testing their protocol in a quantum simulator made of neutral atoms.

Students and Faculty Inventions Make 'Mpact'
The concept was simple: announce a call for innovative projects that could advance a technology or solve a major societal challenge. Students and faculty who could produce a compelling concept, team, and plan of execution would receive funding to pursue their idea. There were virtually no restrictions, other than a two-year time period to complete it. They called it the Mpact Challenge.

In response to COVID-19, researchers at the University of Maryland's A. James Clark School of Engineering are working tirelessly to create solutions and pool resources in efforts to minimize the spread of the disease, provide critical aid to health care workers and their patients, and monitor the impact of social distancing and travel restrictions.