Rachel Richardson, faculty representative from the School of Nursing, welcomed everyone as she convened and chaired the meeting, standing in for Ken and Tracy.

4:00 – 4:05 – Announcements

  • ITAC meeting minutes from March 8th, 2018 attached to the agenda, were motioned upon, seconded and approved.
  • New Student Representative Shrey Majmudar, freshman from Austin Texas, introduced himself and was warmly welcomed.
  • The DukeCard team will be on hand to help anyone in getting started with Mobile DukeCard on their devices after the ITAC meeting.

4:05 – 4:35 – Duke Electric Vehicles, Gerry Chen, Shomik Verma

What it is: Duke Electric Vehicles (DEV) is a student-run organization that tests the limits of vehicle efficiency by focusing on the design, manufacturing, and testing of very fuel efficient vehicles. This July, DEV broke a 13-year-old Guinness World Record for the most fuel-efficient vehicle in history, with a hydrogen fuel cell car that gets the equivalent of 14,573 per gallon. We will discuss their record-breaking run, as well as what achievements they are targeting next.

Why it’s relevant: Using creative engineering to engage and inspire progress in electric mobility, DEV offers an interdisciplinary, co-curricular opportunity for Duke Students to apply technology know-how to a real-world problem. Their efforts are producing meaningful results with a global impact.

Shomik Verma and Gerry Chen, Duke Seniors in Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, Co-Presidents of Duke Electric Vehicles, talked about their World Record in building and competing with other schools for the most fuel-efficient vehicle in history. It was noted that all other Schools in the competition have Automotive Engineering Programs but Duke has “Spirit”.

The goals of Duke EV are to develop high-efficiency vehicles, raise awareness that ultra-efficient energy vehicles are possible and continue to compete in the Shell Eco-Marathon as done for the last 7 years.

DEV recently broke the world record for the most fuel-efficient vehicle as the car “Maxwell” travelled 14 km using 0.6 g of hydrogen which is equivalent to 14,573 MPGe.

The motivations for competing included use of clean energy technology to reduce energy consumption and promote sustainable fuels as well as developing the future of transportation by improved aerodynamics and aesthetics, and autonomous operations.

During the year we train new members, design the body of the car, do lots of research and optimization, and finally manufacture and test the vehicle thoroughly.

Design considerations included aerodynamics, body and shape of the car, drive train, steering system, wheel knobs, and machine internals. The tires have no inner tube as the outer tube has sealant to prevent air from leaking. Enhanced Metric System uses batteries and the Hydrogen Fuel cell controller built by the team added more efficiency points.

Our Optimization Process focused on budgeting our time and money and breaking down the cost of every single part, increasing Fuel cell efficiency, and applying several numeric simulations since fuel cells have high power density.

Improved Path Optimization was gained by:

  • Increasing Motor efficiency – RPM Vs. Efficiency 85-86%
  • Tilting tires and wheels to improve turnaround radius
  • Knowing the location of the vehicle at all times and tracking a map
  • A good driver that can significantly improve efficiency by 23%

Manufacturing and Testing Processes involved:

  • Ordering a Styrofoam mold and constructing a negative mold from Fiber Glass
  • Sanding down to make the body as smooth as possible and applying a clear top coat
  • Layering it with Carbon Fiber and resin and re-sanding it several times
  • Reducing the weight as much as possible

The next step is to beat the battery electric vehicle efficiency record that was set by TUfast Eco Team in 2016 at 25,772 MPGe.

The team hopes to achieve improvements by at least 5% in the following areas:

  • Electronics - Motor upgrade and optimization
  • Body - New layup process to reduce resin buildup, Finite Element Methods for composite modeling and structural analysis, and HDPE (High Density Polyethylene) Styrofoam for enhanced aerodynamics
  • Aerodynamics - Computational Fluid Dynamics and shape optimization with sponsorship from Altair and Wind tunnel testing and design to validate the CFD simulations
  • Internal Parts - Additive manufacturing to reduce the weight but also provide structural support

Shomik and Gerry had the following questions to receive feedback from the audience:

  • How to form and establish industry connections?
  • How to educate and retain knowledge within the club?
  • How to share our knowledge and findings with other teams and enthusiasts?
  • How to create knowledge repositories?
  • How to divide projects?


Q1: From a Technology Support point of view, what resource, if Duke magically made something else available to you, what would make your life easier, IT and otherwise, what would that be, what is not readily available at hand?

A: We bought a $1500 computer to do the Computational Fluid Dynamics simulations last year which took 6 hours each but this year one of our professors let us use his Compute Clusters managed by Duke Compute Clusters. The power of the Compute Clusters is going to help considerably.

Q2: What are your plans for the FAB space and Carbon Fiber Manufacturing?

A: We’ve been trying to reach out to companies who potentially have products like Autoclave epoxy.

Q3: Who’s funding this project as far as supplies and meetings?

A: We get funding from GM and Lord primarily, and we are also looking for more sponsors this year like Exxon, Advance Auto Parts, and NC State.

Q4: Is there a nearby track where you can test drive?

A: Yes, there’s a drive strip about an hour away and we need a smooth track with low elevation change. We can also contact an airport because concrete is harder than asphalt so we can get a better score there.

Comment: It may be worthwhile to check with the Regional airport authorities in Danville VA and also the Marine base at Cherry Point VA.

Q5: Do you guys do any real racing?

A: We try to go as slow as possible due to fuel efficiency but there is a separate Race car club.

Q6: What kind of top speeds are we talking about in the World Record?

A: 15 miles an hour. The car can actually go 30-35 miles an hour but it would be painful as there is no suspension.

Q7: How many wheels do you have?

A: Three. Two wheels would be more efficient but less safe.

Q8: How do you decide the driver?

A: Size is important so we find the lightest/smallest person.

Q9: Does the driver control the acceleration?

A: The motor has a very specific optimal power level and if we can have the vehicle know where it is, we can get it to throttle by itself achieving the optimal curve with 60 – 75 watts. The car only uses 21 watts on average.

Q10: How do you retain knowledge within the club and pass that on to the next cohort?

A: Currently, that’s suboptimal as there are only two juniors per year who are learning everything and there’s always a possibility that the club will not exist if there are no participants. We haven’t found a better way to organize the information as we use several different repositories.

Q11: Do you get the alumni to come back and help out?

A: Typically we don’t but the past president has helped us out.

Q12: Do you have any videos showing what other teams have done to preserve the oral history?

A: We have a website where we post a lot and also hosted the energy focus clubs and EGR-101 class. Both Duke and Pratt Communications teams have promoted this as a huge story.

Q13: Have you’ve considered having a scribe, someone who can tell a story and sell a project like this to sponsors?

A: May be a YouTube video channel will be a good documentation tool. This is a tremendous skill and would be a great portfolio for someone to do. They would keep a running list of contacts and events and how to keep all information up-to-date.

Q14: Is there any exchange between the teams?

A: Yes, there is a lot of collaboration on knowledge and also exchange of tools and parts. It is very time consuming to write everything in text and it’s also not qualitatively very beneficial as we usually call the industry professionals if we have any questions.

Gerry and Shomik received thanks, congratulations and a thunderous applause from the audience.

4:35 – 4:55 – TechFairs: Art + Tech, Faculty, Staff, Katy Clune, Jeannine Sato

What it is: Now in its second year, Duke’s TechFair initiative recently expanded to include the first-ever Art + Tech Fair at the Rubenstein Arts Center – targeting students of all majors to explore the intersection of art and technology. We will review the evolution of this initiative, as well as the latest successes and opportunities.

Why it’s relevant: Communicating IT offerings to faculty, students, and staff across campus is an important but challenging endeavor. We welcome ITAC’s feedback on the recent events: the Art + Tech, Faculty, and Staff TechFairs.

Duke has held several TechFair events in the past year and a half on campus to engage end-users with a total of about 1000 attendees. The goal is to promote IT@Duke in a multidisciplinary way and to expose users to little known services in the IT Makerspaces at the Technology Engagement Center as well as the Rubinstein Art Center, facilitating IT as a helpful partner in teaching & learning.

Activities at the fairs have included Passport & Art + Tech raffle, OIT and Security Info Tables, and Pop up exhibits while shedding light on the Collaborative sculpture in the Makerspace, Tech demos such as drones, VR t-shirt, and 3D Artscapes. There were 260+ attendees at the last event despite Hurricane Florence and 95% of attendees were students with the majority from Trinity and Pratt School of Engineering.

The following success factors were noted from the survey results:

  • Partnership with Duke Arts, growth potential
  • TEC location is great for staff/faculty events although the space is limited.
  • Workshops and registered demos for staff
  • Food, promotional items work with staff and students
  • Good facetime for IT groups/staff
  • Good partnerships with outside groups
  • High engagement and satisfaction of attendees

Some of the challenges include time & planning demands, low participation by faculty, difficulty in engaging participants due to time and space constraints. There is also a need for more partners.

In conclusion, the fairs are a great example of smart strategic partnerships that benefit all and we hope to make this an annual event as future Duke TechFairs will operationalize planning processes for staffing and represented groups while finding partnerships for faculty events or combine with staff events, and also grow Student Art + Tech partnership. The Rubinstein was the perfect venue for this fair because of its architecture and beautiful spaces encompassing both Art and Technology.


Q1: Have you thought of combining Faculty and Students together where the faculty can come and see the students engaged?

A1: Some faculty did attend but timing of the day is a big factor in planning these events, however, it would be worth exploring that option.


We need to make sure the humanities engage with co-curricular activities in future events.

If the events can be brought to the Departments or Schools as a field trip, it would be helpful.

4:55 – 5:10 – ePrint Update, Michael Faber, Mark-Everett McGill

What it is: ePrint is Duke’s institutional paper printing service. It is used widely across campus and is administered by OIT and departmental units. This presentation will provide an update on statistics and trends, recent changes to policy, and comparisons with our peer institutions.

Why it’s relevant: The ePrint team is regularly evaluating its policies and services to ensure it is balancing the needs of campus and students with the responsibility to be good financial and environmental stewards. Because this service crosses so many departmental units, getting feedback from ITAC members is key to helping set direction for the program.

We are printing around 120 million sheets of paper using 240 printers including both OIT and other departmental printing. To put the numbers in perspective, it is 8300 sheets per tree and quite a few trees at this rate.

Previous Adjustments in printing included the following:

  • Prior to 2007 there were no quotas
  • In 2007 soft quota $36 @ 1 cent per side
  • 2009 quota lowered from $36 to $32 via request from DSG which had no effect on the volume of printing.
  • Working with DSG in 2014 we doubled price per page and reduced overall printing starting 2015

Requirements for ePrint Systems in Residential Spaces constitute the following factors:

  • Accessibility – printers are available in every other building
  • Print Volume – more printers are added as needed
  • Funding for placing printers in the ePrint system and maintenance agreements with vendors, toners etc.
  • Proximity to Current Devices
  • Data, Network connectivity & Power
  • Supplies & Storage of several reams of paper
  • Hardware suggestions as in device drivers available
  • Renovations in buildings causes us to move out printers and review if the printer will be brought back after renovation completes.
  • Sustainability – we need to review how this is impacted
  • Vandalism – we determine if a printer needs to be relocated from a site of vandalism.

There are fewer requirements for Departmental ePrint Systems and we only make hardware recommendations.

We charge 4 cents per sheet for black and white and 15 cents for color. The students are provided 1000 sheets per semester.

This was part of a two-prong approach to first address the undergraduate printing volume first and the address the graduates. With Apple’s Campus ID initiative there are several ways to release print jobs.

In 2013, we were leading in Sustainability and standing amongst our peers but based on the recent numbers we need to review our goals and take active measures to reduce printing.


Q1: What fraction of printing is done by grads Vs. undergrads?

A1: It’s close to half and half but we will get the actual numbers.

Q2: Do we know how much printing is due to coursework?

A2: We don’t have that data as of yet.

Q3: Is there a distribution that shows 20% of the people are printing 80% of the volume?

A3: We do have that and also there are a few outliers due to loopholes that we plan on closing.

Q4: Is this an initiative that DSG would like to take up?

A4: We think it will need to be a cultural shift and a strong effort from all groups.

In conclusion, we need to understand the magnitude of the problem and change the culture. A macro effort is needed to lower printing.

5:10 – 5:20 – Common Solutions Group, John Board, Charley Kneifel, Mark McCahill

What it is: The Common Solutions Group works by inviting a small set of research universities to participate regularly in meetings and project work. These universities are the CSG members; they are characterized by strategic technical vision, strong leadership, and the ability and willingness to adopt common solutions on their campuses.

Why it’s relevant: CSG meetings comprise leading technical and senior administrative staff from its members, and they are organized to encourage detailed, interactive discussions of strategic technical and policy issues affecting research-university IT across time. We would like to share our experiences from the recent Fall 2018 meetings.

Some of the highlights from a recent CSG sessions were as follows:

  • The Univ. of Washington is using Digital transformation with course dashboards and instrumentations in an aggregate way that shows the faculty what classes students in their course are taking along with other historical demographics and things like GPA.
  • Richard Biever presented a session on Services and devices on the Edge of the wireless networks and the Internet Of Things.
  • Digital herding of people by providing good Wi-Fi.
  • Use of Apache Support clusters for mining and security logs showed strong motivation to roll our own with open source tools.
  • One of our peers implemented 4000 Wireless Door Locks which is similar to our approach.
  • About a ¼ to a 1/3 of the schools are using EduRoam as their SSID which will need to simplicity.
  • Another session noted that we need to be sensitive to our language while addressing “Retiring Vs. Killing” a service or Application.
  • “Pick-pocket” style illustration for introducing new tools.

5:20 – 5:30 – Getting Started with Mobile DukeCard

What it is: The new Mobile DukeCard is now available for iPhone and Apple Watch. Upgrade your device to iOS 12 or watchOS 5 prior to the meeting, and bring it to this interactive help session. The DukeCard team will be on hand to help you get started with Mobile DukeCard before (starting at 3:30 PM) and after the ITAC meeting.

Why it’s relevant: Duke is one of three universities involved in the initial rollout of this service, which allows access to buildings, dining halls, campus events, and more, using only your iPhone or Apple Watch.

A few attendees stayed back to take advantage of this offering and were happy to get the Mobile DukeCard on their devices.