UAH

Computer Science Department Research Areas

Algorithms and Numerical Methods

Algorithms and Numerical Methods are one of the most critical fields to study in order to develop suitable solutions in many problem domains across science and engineering. In the computing arena, a pertinent focus for algorithms and numerical methods is networked computation, especially for internet-based activities. Study of algorithms and numerical methods can yield vital insights to the achieving of efficiency and reliability in the networked computation.

Faculty: Dr. Peter Slater, Dr. Huaming Zhang

Project:

  • Mobile Monitoring - We are investigating the challenges associated with collecting data from disconnected mobile hosts.

Bioinformatics

Bioinformatics changed the means of studying molecular biology; the use of computer technology in learning, understanding and exercising the fundamental molecules of life has brought in a new era of biological science. Some of our research interests in this area are gene sequences and analysis of gene databases.

Faculty: Dr. Ramazan Aygun

Project: 

  • Searching in miRNA Databases

Distributed Technologies and Computer Security

Distributed technologies are rapidly becoming the key enabling field for new environments that take advantage of available distributed data and computing resources. These technologies are the key to removing the close coupling of data and services commonly found today in many scientific information systems.

Faculty: Dr. Sara J. Graves, Dr. Feng Zhu

Project:

  • Mobile Monitoring - We are investigating the challenges associated with collecting data from disconnected mobile hosts.

High Performance Computing and Networking

UAH researchers are investigating protocols, topologies, and routing schemes that enable higher performance in networking and/or in computing. UAH Computer Science faculty have also been in the forefront of keeping the university's infrastructure at the leading edge of technology. Computer Science faculty have also investigated efficient parallel computing algorithms for solution of problems in many scientific and engineering areas.

Faculty: Dr. Sara J. Graves, Dr. Tim Newman, Dr. Dan M. Rochowiak, Dr. Feng Zhu

Research 

  • Pervasive Computing - Portable devices, sensors, RFIDs; Wireless and mobile computing; Location/context aware computing 
  • Cross-layer Design- Physical and logical layer co-design; Power-aware routing (Wireless); Siginal quality aware routing (Optical)
  • Planning and Routing- Optical and wireless network architecture; Network deployment and scaling algorithms; Resource/capacity optimization; Distributed and multi-domain routing
  • Network Reliability- Failure restoration algorithms & protocols; Reliability analysis; Post-failure operation & management
  • Cluster Computation- Cluster computation for effecient scientific visualization and combustion simulation and physical modelling of outer atmosphere.
  • Vector Supercomputing - Ray-tracing algorithms; Feature Discovery/Extraction (with multi-threading) 

Project: 

  • High Performance Isosurfacing (Dr. Tim Newman) - We are exploring efficient mechanisms for isosurface extraction, especially in large data sets. We have explored efficiency questions in many environments, including in/on vector-parallel architectures, multi-threading environments, cluster computers, and supercomputers.

Image Processing

Image processing has impacted almost every technical area, its techniques assisted many applications in the fields like medical imaging, space imaging and defense imaging. Over the years, the department has done enormous research work in these fields. Optical imaging and target recognition were among the others on which the department has focused its attention.

Faculty: Dr. Ramazan Aygun, Dr. Sara J. Graves, Dr. Ranganath S. Heggere, Dr. Tim Newman

Projects: 

  • Visualization and Graphics Interest Group 
  • Shape-Based Inspection (Dr. Tim Newman)- We have developed a collection of methods suitable for shape-related inspection, particularly of manufactured items. Methods for evaluating physiology and anatomy of certain body parts have also been investigated.
  • Aurora Image Processing (Dr. Tim Newman) - Methods to allow the detection of the aurora and of particular classes of aurora in satellite imagery have been developed. The methods are being incorporated into a web accessible tool for scientists.
  • Artifact Correction in Over-Sampled DVR - Direct Volume Rendering (for Volumetric Data) is a method of correction which allows observation of internal structures. Newer methods are faster and more powerful than prior state-of-the-art techniques and feature adaptation to GPU implementation.

Modeling and Simulation

Modeling and Simulation technologies are in use today to design complex military weapon systems, space systems, space hardware, new manufacturing plants and even seaside ports. It helps in design, and provides the engineer with the ability to make changes before anything is built.

Faculty: Dr. Ramazan Aygun, Dr. Letha Etzkorn, Dr. Tim Newman

Projects: 

  • Runtime evaluation and prediction for complex simulations - Large-scale simulations can often have unpredictable runtimes, making it difficult to use them in a time-constrained planning cycle. In this project, we developed tools for a simulation that allow planners to predict how long a particular simulation would run and also identify the performance bottlenecks in the simulation.
  • Signal-data processing analysis support for multi-mode seeker red team - In this project, we are supporting the development and testing of a new missile. Our job includes reviewing the results of flight tests and analyzing the on-board control processing to identify causes of flight test anomalies.
  • Model Checking of Multimedia Synchronization - One major question is whether the specified multimedia presentation is correct or not. A synchronization specification may yield different results on different presentation tools. It is important whether the presentation is actually played correctly by the synchronization model.

Visualization and Graphics

Computer-generated animation is a critical component for understanding in many industrial, scientific, engineering, medical, and entertainment applications. The visualization and graphics thrust of the department has focused on development of new techniques for display of information, on the efficient generation of end renderings, and on the understanding of graphical presentations.

Faculty: Dr. Ramazan Aygun, Dr. Tim Newman

Projects:

  • Visualization and Graphics Interest Group
  • Imaging the Plasmasphere (Dr. Tim Newman) - Although computer vision and image processing techniques improved significantly, the subjective user evaluation of video and image data as well as unsatisfactory object recognition methods made it necessary incorporation of fuzzy, uncertain, and imprecise data in multimedia databases.
  • High Performance Isosurfacing (Dr. Tim Newman) - The data whether stored in the database or not has to be transmitted over networks shared by many users. The congestion of the network and the compressed video data affect the quality of presentations drastically. Especially, the loss of a frame does not only affect the display of the frame, it also affects the display of the dependent frames.
  • Fast and Accurate Direct Volume Rendering (Dr. Tim Newman) - Most of the multimedia research is devoted on video. The video data challenges researchers in compression, information retrieval, and transmission and led many research areas. We have developed a novel video application to spatially browse recorded video data. The users are allowed to perform pan left and right, tilt up and down, and zoom in and out, if the necessary information can be extracted from various portions of the video.

Cognitive Science

Cognitive Science is the study of mind and intelligence; it is an interdisciplinary study which collaborates with psychology, artificial intelligence, linguistics, philosophy and logic. The human mind cannot be modeled using a single computational model, we need to examine different models to know the mechanics of it and thus the study of this field is vital in developing next generation systems.

Faculty: Dr. Dan M. Rochowiak, Dr. Harry Delugach, Dr. Letha Etzkorn 

Projects:

  • Conceptual Modeling of Cognitive Processes - conceptual graphs, artificial intelligence, and knowledge representation techniques applied to real-world problems.
  • Team Mental Models - Using formal techniques to compare team members' mental models of their roles, processes and tasks with respect to other team members' models, with an aim toward understanding and improving team performance.

Data Mining

Researchers at UAH conduct research in the areas of machine learning, phenomena detection, knowledge discovery and distributed mining technologies. Particular emphasis is directed toward problems involving large heterogeneous spatial data sets, such as remotely sensed data.

Faculty: Dr. Ramazan Aygun, Dr. Sara J. Graves, Dr. Ranganath S. Heggere, Dr. Tim Newman

Projects:

  • EVE Embedded On-board Mining and Data Processing (ITSC) - The modular character of ADaM enables its application to special environments such as embedded On-Board processing systems, satellite, airborne, and ground-based sensor platforms, as well as PDAs. Through the EnVironmEnt for Onboard Processing (EVE) program data mining is used for classification and feature extraction that contribute to Earth science research applications, including natural hazard detection and prediction, fusion of multi-sensor measurements, intelligent sensor control, and the generation of customized data products for direct distribution to users.
  • F-MASS Mining Space Science Data (ITSC) - ITSC is employing ADaM to build a data mining framework for the space science community. The interdisciplinary research team is investigating several Sun-Earth Connection Science research problems, such as the identification of polar cap boundary and determination of polar cap size, the recognition of some types of auroral activity, and the identification of magnetospheric substorms, as guiding scenarios for the development of this research.
  • Scientific and Medical Phenomena (Dr. Tim Newman) - Discovery of knowledge from scientific and medical datasets can be aided by pattern recognition and computer vision techniques. Professor Newman and his students have developed new techniques for detecting cardiac irregularities, certain types of kidney troubles, and for determining anatomical parameters of the brain ventricular system from medical datasets. New methodologies for discovery of anamolies in scientific datasets have also been developed by Newman and his students through the coupling of visualization and mining.
  • Detecting and Tracking Structures/Phenomena in Satellite Data (Dr. Tim Newman) - We are investigating mechanisms for automatic and semi-automatic detection of structures and phenomena in satellite data for missions related to the Earth and to the Sun. We are especially interested in utilizing shape-based model information to assist the detection process.
  • Shape-Based Inspection (Dr. Tim Newman) 
  • Aurora Image Processing (Dr. Tim Newman)

Knowledge Representation And Understanding

Knowledge representation is one of the well-known concepts in Artificial Intelligence. Graphic Representation like conceptual graphs serves as a formal design and specification language. CGs have been implemented in a variety of projects for information retrieval, database design, expert systems, and natural language processing.

Faculty: Dr. Harry S. Delugach, Dr. Letha Etzkorn, Dr. Dan Rochowiak 

Projects:

  • CharGer (Dr. Harry Delugach) - Conceptual Modeling Tool for Conceptual Graphs
  • Patricia system (Dr. Letha Etzkorn) - to support semantic understanding of program code and comments to support re-use and testing.

 


Database And Multimedia

The multimedia data challenges researchers in compression, information retrieval, and transmission. The multimedia systems research do not only provide effective strategies for processing stand-alone media data, but also provides methodologies for the integration of strategies from video, audio, image, text, graphics, and other databases. The research interests of the faculty embrace video processing, multimedia databases, multimedia data modeling, multimedia information retrieval, multimedia networking, multimedia synchronization, and MPEG video standards.

Faculty: Dr. Ramazan Aygun

Projects:

  • Multimedia Databases - Although computer vision and image processing techniques improved significantly, the subjective user evaluation of video and image data as well as unsatisfactory object recognition methods made it necessary incorporation of fuzzy, uncertain, and imprecise data in multimedia databases.
  • Multimedia Networking - The data whether stored in the database or not has to be transmitted over networks shared by many users. The congestion of the network and the compressed video data affect the quality of presentations drastically. Especially, the loss of a frame does not only affect the display of the frame, it also affects the display of the dependent frames.
  • Video Processing - Most of the multimedia research is devoted on video. The video data challenges researchers in compression, information retrieval, and transmission and led many research areas. We have developed a novel video application to spatially browse recorded video data. The users are allowed to perform pan left and right, tilt up and down, and zoom in and out, if the necessary information can be extracted from various portions of the video.
  • Interactive Multimedia Presentation Management - The user interactions are core elements of multimedia presentations. The loss and delay of the data over networks complicates the synchronization if user interactions that change the course of the presentations are enabled. The event-based or constraint-based synchronization models provide powerful mechanism to handle synchronization in distributed systems.
  • Model Checking - One major question is whether the specified multimedia presentation is correct or not. A synchronization specification may yield different results on different presentation tools. It is important whether the presentation is actually played correctly by the synchronization model.

Software Design, Reuse, And Ontology Analysis

Software Engineering is a study of the process of large-scale software development. The software engineering faculty in UAH's Computer Science Department has a combined total of over 75 years of combined experience in software development, analysis, and software engineering within commercial, academic and governmental organizations. The department is creating new tools to find reusable code in legacy software.

Faculty: Dr. Harry Delugach, Dr. Letha Etzkorn, Dr. Wei Li

Projects:

  • Use of CORBA Notification Service and Current Status of Real Time CORBA
  • Analysis of the Current Status of CORBA ORBs
  • Conceptual Modeling For Software Development in Moving Target Indication (MTI)
  • Software Process Maturity Assessment
  • An Object-Oriented Prototype for Praxis Architecture
  • Research Equipment for Software Engineering and Performance Measurement andVisualization
  • A Javabean Prototype of a Component Framework for Data Products
  • Ontology metrics
  • Code clone analysis
  • Information retrieval / knowledge-based program comprehension

Software Metrics

Software Metrics is important for companies to improve their productivity and quality. Metrics can be used to predict the reusability of a software component which is one of the critical aspects of the software reuse process.

Faculty: Dr. Letha Etzkorn, Dr. Wei Li, Dr. Tim Newman

Projects: 

  • Metrics for the Advanced Engineering Environment of the 2nd Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program - We have developed a collection of methods suitable for shape-related inspection, particularly of manufactured items. Methods for evaluating physiology and anatomy of certain body parts have also been investigated.
  • Semantic Metrics for Object-Oriented Design - Allows a seamless quality analysis using the same metrics from requirements through maintenance without having the same problems traditional metrics have with being code syntax dependent. Requirements and design documents are processed via natural language understanding into a knowledge representation. Software is processed via a program comprehension engine into a knowledge based representation. Semantic metrics are calculated on the knowledge-base.
  • 3D Visualization of Object-Oriented Software Design Structural Metrics (Dr. Tim Newman) - An internet-viewable tool that exploits mechanisms for software structure metric determination has been created by researchers in the Visualization Lab, under Dr. Newman's direction. The tool provides developers with the ability to quickly see the characteristics of their software and to identify where potential structural hot spots are.

Software Testing and Correctness

Software Testing is an imperical process which can provide stakeholders with information concerning the quality of the product or service under test. Software Testing is used to validate and verify that the software fullfils certain requirements. Presently, the computer science department at UAH is working on a method which demonstrates the use of graph-based testing on all levels: unit, integration, and system. The department is also focused on establishing more effecient means to design and code software.

Faculty: Dr. Harry Delugach, Dr. Letha Etzkorn, Dr. Wei Li

Projects: 

  • Graph-based testing at all levels: unit, integration, and system
  • Design and code walkthrough or inspection
  • Model Checking - Model Checking checks every software state and verify specs are met. In particular, we are addressing critical problems in model checking: minimizing the effects of state explosion by design patterns, developing improved design patterns, incorperating a system where user interactions affect the course of the model, checking the correctness of specification using Linear Temporal Logic, and creating a SPIN model checker using the Event-Condition-Action Framework (e.g, synchronization).