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CSE Research

Research areas of study at the Penn State University, Department of Computer Science and Engineering

Topics of Research:

A summary of current research activities at the the Department of Computer Science and Engineering preformed by the Institutes, Centers, and Groups below

Publications and Technical Reports:

A list of publications and technical reports by CSE faculty and graduate students.


ICS: Institute for CyberScience

Director(s): Padma Raghavan

The Institute for CyberScience at Penn State (ICS@PSU) is organized under the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research. ICS@PSU is under the leadership of Padma Raghavan, director.

Dr. Raghavan is assisted by an Executive Committee comprised of the deans of core colleges and representatives from participating institutes, and a Steering Committee consisting of University faculty.

INSR: Institute for Networking and Security Research

Director(s): Thomas F. LaPorta

The INSR provides a research and education community at Penn State for professors, students, and collaborators from industry interested in networking and security. It also provides a unique avenue for interaction with industry; the members of the INSR actively consult with industry and participate as partners on funded projects. Member companies enjoy benefits for sponsoring research and having access to the latest results and technical reports from the INSR. 

The expertise of the members includes mobile networking, protocol design, performance analysis and simulation, wireless communication, networked applications, and large networking software systems. The INSR also boasts experts on Internet security, policy, secure operating systems, and access controls. Additionally, members of the INSR actively collaborate on projects on secure wireless ad hoc and sensor networks, high performance wireless networks, and secure telecommunication systems.


EMC^2: Embedded and Mobile Computing Center

Director(s): Anand Sivasubramaniam

EMC^2 brings together researchers and practitioners of embedded and mobile systems from several disciplines ranging from those who build the underlying platforms to those who use them in the field.


ALISA: Advanced Laboratory for Information System and Analysis

Director(s): Raj Acharya

The Advanced Laboratory for Information System & Analysis aims at providing solutions to challenges in the areas of Bioinformatics and Netcentric Computing.

CHIP: Chip Lab

Director(s): Kyusun Choi

This description is currently unavailable.

CSL: Computer Systems Lab

Director(s): Anand Sivasubramaniam, Bhuvan Urgaonkar

We work at the intersection of cutting-edge technologies in hardware, networks, systems software and applications spanning a diverse spectrum of environments - from those in the high-end server space to those in the embedded domain. While evolving technologies can provide answers to traditional problems, they can introduce new Achilles' Heels to innovation, which our research intends to fix. In addition to enhancing performance which has been the norm, these new problems mandate reducing power consumption, improving reliability/availability, and making systems easier to use and manage. Our research uses a combination of experimentation on actual platforms, simulation and mathematical models in order to evaluate the pros and cons of ideas that we propose.

Our research areas include: architectures for high performance, high confidence, and low power, resource management and systems software for enterprise computing, storage sub-systems, scalable cluster computing, and resource-constrained and mobile computing.

HPCL: High Performance Computing Lab

Director(s): Chita R. Das

In the Department of Computer Science and Engineering High Performance Computing has been growing quickly and is rapidly becoming one of our largest computing areas. We strive to maintain custom computing environments for both computation and experimentation. Many of our users demand an environment where they have direct access to the kernel for driver and scheduler development. Each research group has different requirements and expectations. Staff members provide support from conception through deployment and manage day to day operations.

LPAC: Laboratory for Perception, Action, and Cognition

Director(s): Robert T. Collins, Yanxi Liu

The Laboratory for Perception, Action and Cognition (LPAC) has a wide range of research topics, including low-level motion perception, real-time control of active sensors, design of multi-sensor surveillance networks, analysis of human body motion, recognition of activities and events, and mathematical group theory-based modeling of machine and human texture perception for image understanding and manipulation, dynamic near-regular texture tracking, and texture-based localization. Current application areas include moving object detection and tracking from unmanned air vehicles, recognition of human identity and action within smart spaces, real-time stereo-motion analysis for autonomous navigation, quantified 3D/4D facial asymmetry for gender/expression classification, computer aided diagnosis, large biomedical image database indexing and retrieval, and analysis and synthesis of active crowds or near-regular textures on deformable media such as cloth or through transparent fluid.

MDL: Microsystems Design Lab

Directors(s): Mary Jane Irwin, Vijaykrishnan Narayanan

The Microsystems Design Lab is a research group at The Pennsylvania State University in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. MDL research focuses on specific architectural and system-based research fields, ranging from the design of thermal and power aware circuits and systems, reliable systems, and embedded systems to nanotechnology. Research projects are supported by the National Science Foundation, the MARCO FCRP Gigascale Systems Research Center, DARPA, the Pennsylvania Technology Collaborative, Microsoft Research, Honda, and Toyota.

MCN: Mobile Computing and Networking Lab

Director(s): Guohong Cao

The Mobile Computing and Networking (MCN) lab conducts research in many areas of wireless networks and mobile computing, with an emphasis on designing and evaluating mobile systems, protocols, and applications. Our mission is to prepare the next generation of researchers, developers, and educators in these areas by working on cutting-edge technologies and investigating high-impact research projects. Our projects span a large spectrum: wireless sensor networks, wireless network security, data dissemination, distributed fault tolerant computing, and power aware resource management in mobile computing systems. Protocols, algorithms, and systems developed within the lab are typically tested through analysis, simulation and/or implementation. The lab is supported by NSF (CAREER, ITR, NeTS/WN, NOSS, CT), Army Research Office, DoD/Muri, PDG/TTC, HK CERG, and industry companies Cisco, Narus, Telcordia, IBM and 3ETI.

iPDA: Intelligent Pervasive Data Access Group

Director(s): Wang-Chien Lee

The PDA group performs cross-area research in database systems, pervasive/mobile computing, and networking. The group is particularly interested in developing data management techniques (including mining, accessing, indexing, caching, aggregation, dissemination, and query processing) for supporting complex queries and knowledge discovery in a wide spectrum of networking and mobile environments such as peer-to-peer networks, mobile ad-hoc networks, wireless sensor networks, and wireless broadcast systems. Many leading-edge techniques developed by this group are applicable to location based services, in-situ sensing, telecommunications, information sharing and dissemination, information filtering, and information retrieval.

SCL: Scalable Computing Lab

Director(s): Padma Raghavan, Suzanne Shontz

In our Scalable Computing Lab, we develop new algorithms, applications, and software for solving scientific problems on high-performance parallel computers. The emphasis is on scalability, the ability of applications to scale their performance with the number of processors while solving larger problems.

SIIS: Systems and Internet Infrastructure Security

Director(s): Trent Jaeger, Patrick McDaniel

The SIIS Laboratory broadly studies topics in theoretical and applied security.  This includes security at all levels of systems design, from theoretical cryptography to physical hardware.

Theory: Theoretical Computer Science Group

Director(s): Martin Furer

Faculty working in theoretical computer science apply mathematical foundations and techniques to study, understand, explain, and solve a wide range of problems fundamental to computing. They support the educational mission of the department through instruction in core and advanced principles of computer science. Their research advances the basic knowledge of computing and directly supports applied research areas. The expertise of the faculty includes graph algorithms, approximation algorithms, sublinear-time algorithms, computational complexity, randomized algorithms, computational geometry, coding theory, computational molecular biology, cryptography, privacy, computational logic, type theory, and programming languages semantics. Their work has connections to diverse applications such distributed databases, property testing, biological computing, information theory, combinatorics, quantum mechanics, program verification, and compiler technology.


Special Projects/Working Groups

NSF: Visual Cortex on Silicon

Director(s): Vijaykrishnan Narayanan

The project envisions a holistic design of machine vision system that will approach or exceed the capabilities and efficiencies of human vision, enabling computers to not only record images, but also understand visual content, at up to a thousand times the efficiency of current technologies. The institutions collaborating on the effort include the University of Southern California; Stanford University; York College of Pennsylvania; the University of California, San Diego; the University of California, Los Angeles; the University of Pittsburgh; and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.



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