Morgan State showcases breakthrough research at Sixth Annual ‘Innovation Day’


As part of a sustained commitment to pioneering breakthrough advancements offering an economic benefit to the State of Maryland, Morgan State University (MSU) recently celebrated its 6th Annual ‘Innovation Day’ in Annapolis, Md. at the Miller Senate Office Building. Morgan Innovation Day (MID), which serves in part as an annual progress report on the State’s premier public urban research institution, brought together Maryland legislators, students, faculty, staff and alumni for an engaging first-hand look at new research, innovation and partnership initiatives incubated in the classrooms, laboratories, and offices of MSU.

This year’s MID event was themed “Partners in Innovation” and featured 22 impactful research and outreach projects geared toward improving the quality of life for Marylanders. MID 2016 also included a special ‘Morgan and Baltimore exhibit’ that demonstrated how the University provides services to the community with the expectation of accelerating the revitalization of surrounding neighborhoods and beyond.

“Taking the lead in innovation and providing a pipeline to new technologies is consistent with Morgan’s strategic goals and our historical mission of preparing a diverse student body to help the world meet tomorrow’s challenges,” said Morgan President David Wilson. “Hosting this annual showcase provides an exclusive opportunity for our elected officials and Maryland citizens to experience research and development in an engaging forum and witness for themselves what an investment in Morgan can mean for the good of our state and nation.”

Innovations at this year’s MID-focused on medical research, energy production, environmental protection, transportation and the study of the human condition among others. Some of the standout innovations on display included:

Dr. Mahmudur Rahman of Morgan’s Department of Computer Science and his work on the detection and diagnosis of breast cancer, the second leading cause of death among women. Dr. Rahman’s research will assist medical professionals in making an early and correct breast cancer diagnosis, reducing the number of mammograms women need to undergo. Ultimately, the proposed decision support tool could potentially offer much-improved services for clinical diagnosis, research and education that will significantly enhance the well-being of women and minority populations not just in Maryland but around the world.

The CycloBurnTM system, created by the Industrial and Systems Engineering Department’s Seong W. Lee, Ph.D., is a clean, efficient, and cost-effective biomass combustion system that converts poultry waste into usable energy such as heat or electric power. This cutting-edge technology will have a significant impact on Maryland’s industrial agriculture community by reducing pollution while simultaneously reducing energy costs. Downstream commercialization of this research will prove valuable to the overall Maryland economy and will offer a viable path for Maryland’s poultry industry to thrive alongside the state’s greatest resource, the Chesapeake Bay.

Morgan student Caitlin Cunningham’s research on an ecologically friendly wastewater treatment process presents an opportunity to clean up the Chesapeake Bay, preserve wildlife, and potentially save Maryland taxpayers millions. According to Cunningham, who is currently enrolled in the School of Architecture and Planning’s Landscape Architecture Program, a reimagining and redesign of our current water infrastructure is necessary because of disrepair and increasing impacts of climate change. Management of urban wastewater, especially during storms, is critical to protecting the health of residents and the value of environmental resources in Maryland and with the process she proposes, it can bolster the ecologic function of the state’s wetlands while providing jobs and revenue through agricultural sales.

This year’s inaugural MID Innovation Award was presented to Dr. Eugene DeLoatch, the long-time dean of Morgan’s Clarence M. Mitchell School of Engineering. The Innovation Award will be presented annually to a person or organization that epitomizes excellence and longstanding accomplishment in their support of innovation. Dean DeLoatch, one of America’s most respected engineering school deans, is credited with significantly increasing the number of African-American engineers in the profession around the world during his tenure at Morgan.

Founded in 1867, Morgan State University is a Carnegie-classified Doctoral Research Institution offering more than 70 academic programs leading to bachelor’s degrees as well as programs at the master’s and doctoral levels. As Maryland’s Public Urban Research University, Morgan serves a multiethnic and multiracial student body and seeks to ensure that the doors of higher education are opened as wide as possible to as many as possible. More information about the university is available at