Agricultural and Biological Engineering graduate students Shirin Ghatrehsamani and Yulin (Patrick) Zheng have been selected by the College of Engineering to receive the University of Florida International Center Certificate of Excellence. This award honors the top international students whose visa is sponsored by the University of Florida International Center.
Originally from Iran, Shirin Ghatrehsamani is a Ph.D. student in UF/IFAS Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABE) department studying Agricultural Machinery/ Machine Vision with her advisor, Assistant Professor Yiannis Ampatzidis.
In her research, Ghatrehsamani developed integrated computational modeling to simulate and analyze heat distribution throughout the tree canopy and improve the supplementary heat thermotherapy system to generate a uniform temperature. This serves for the evaluation of the system to increase the yields and reduce labor works. The outcome of this project and other relevant projects at UF has the potential to save Florida’s large citrus industry from further devastation by the citrus greening disease, huanglongbing (HLB).
Ghatrehsamani chose the ABE department for its academic reputation in this field. She found after joining the department that ABE is not only a great place for academics, but it is also a friendly environment with supportive people.
“ABE has given me the best level of teaching, work ethic, and research leadership. I have learned a lot from my instructors and mentors at ABE and UF,” Ghatrehsamani said.
Yulin (Patrick) Zheng
Originally from China, Yulin (Patrick) Zheng is a Ph.D. student in the ABE department studying nanotechnology with his advisor, Professor Bin Gao.
Zheng’s research focuses on reclaiming phosphorus from wastewater with a biochar-based remediator for both water purification and sustainable reuse of phosphorus. Phosphorus is an important nutrient in fertilizer for agricultural production. Phosphorus, as non-renewable natural reserves, is increasingly being depleted. Meanwhile, plenty of phosphorus fertilizers trend to release into the surface water system. Excessive aqueous phosphorus directly contributes to eutrophication, which causes various environmental pollution problems.
Zheng chose to continue his studies in Florida for its large and diverse agricultural industry and in the ABE department because of its broad and multidisciplinary research opportunities that inspiring him as an enthusiastic engineer.
“I yearn to convert agricultural waste to value-added products to ensure the sustainability of agriculture, environment, and natural resources. Under Dr. Bin Gao’s guidance, I am passionate about developing a novel approach to remediate the environment with biochar and nanotechnology,” Zheng said.
UFIC Certificate of Excellence awards will be presented at the 2019 International Student Achievement Award Ceremony on Tuesday, November 19th, 2019.
Read more from UF/IFAS Agricultural and Biological Engineering on our blog.