Jennifer Francis, M.S.

Congratulations to Jennifer Francis, who successfully defended her M.S. Thesis “Determining Thresholds of Annoyance to Tones in Noise” on October 17, 2014, advised by Dr. Lily Wang!  We are looking forward to the UNL December Commencement, as we are expecting more than one NAG graduate this semester … more defense news coming soon then!

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NAG Meetings 10-8-14 and 10-22-14

At our 10-8-14 NAG meeting, Brenna Boyd presented on the summer research she conducted under Ellen Peng’s mentorship, on “Analysis of Subjective Perception Results from Speech Comprehension Studies”.  Brenna will be presenting this work at the upcoming ASA meeting (her first!) in the Undergraduate Research Poster session.  The highlighted Acoustic Nugget was one posted recently by IFL Science!, on “Does My Voice Really Sound Like That” which links to a great short video on the topic.  At the 10-22-14 NAG meeting, Madeline Davidson discussed the work she had done as a summer intern at Trane, on qualifying their hemi-anechoic chamber.  We highlighted another cool web link (an Animagraff!) that shows how loudspeakers work, shared with us by alum Andrew Hathaway.  Many of us are looking forward to the upcoming ASA meeting in Indianapolis … we’re planning a Nebraska Acoustics Group Halloween Party on Thursday evening, after the TC Noise meeting – many of us will be in costume!  We’ll be sure to post a photo after the event…

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NAG Meetings 9-10-14 and 9-24-14

A new school year has started, and the Nebraska Acoustics Group has been active the past few months!  At our first NAG meeting of the year on 9-10-14, we welcomed new members and shared summer experiences.  The acoustic nugget was news from MIT about how they can reproduce sound from visual recordings of vibrations of objects in the room (e.g. your potato chip bag)!  Our second meeting on 9-24-14 featured a guest, Di Mainstone, who will be a resident at the Bemis Arts Center in Omaha in the coming year, working on her Human Harp project with the Bob Kerrey pedestrian bridge.  Di is a Global Ambassador for Sennheiser’s Momentum Campaign, and we are thrilled to have a chance to collaborate with her during her residency in Nebraska!

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Dr. Erica Ryherd joins Nebraska Engineering

Welcome to Dr. Erica Ryherd!

Welcome to Dr. Erica Ryherd!

We are pleased to welcome Dr. Erica Ryherd as one of the newest faculty members in the Durham School of Architectural Engineering and Construction at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln!  Dr. Ryherd received a BS in Architectural Engineering from Kansas State University and a PhD in Architectural Engineering from UNL in 2006, specializing in acoustics.  She was a postdoctoral researcher in Occupational & Environmental Medicine at the Gothenburg University Sahlgrenska Academy of Medicine in Sweden, funded by the Acoustical Society of America F.V. Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship in 2006-07.  Prior to joining UNL, she was on the Mechanical Engineering faculty at Georgia Tech.  One of her primary research interests is in understanding and improving hospital soundscapes.  As a matter of fact, Dr. Ryherd will be presenting “Healthy Soundscapes: Bridging the Gaps between Engineering, Architecture and Medicine”, this Thursday September 11, 2014 at 2 PM EST, as part of the Center for Health Design’s ICONS and Innovators Webinar Series.  Click here to register now!

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NAG members at CHRG Summer Institute in Chicago, August 4-7, 2014


Joonhee Lee, Ellen Peng, Brenna Boyd, Hyun Hong, Matt Blevins, and Lily Wang at the Pritzker Pavilion, CHRG 2014

A number of NAG members attended the CHRG Summer Institute in Chicago from 4-7 August 2014.  In particular, we enjoyed the close study of the Pritzker Pavilion at Millenium Park.  Other NAG alums in attendance included Dr. Michelle Vigeant (Penn State) and David Manley (D.L.Adams Associates). Photos from the event can be found on our Picasa webpage. Many thanks to the CHRG Summer Institute organizers for putting together an excellent program: Robin Glosemeyer-Petrone, Scott Pfeiffer, and Tim Foulkes.  Dr. Lily Wang is one of the few who has attended each of these summer institutes since their inception in 1999:  Tanglewood 1999, Saratoga Spring 2003, Aspen 2006, Sante Fe 2010, Chicago 2014.  Next CHRG … Omaha 2018???

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Research highlighted in Sheet Metal Journal feature article

SMJ-figureThe research conducted by Dr. Wang and her research group on linking classroom acoustic conditions to student achievement was highlighted in a recent article, featured in Sheet Metal Journal.  The interview for this article occurred as a consequence of Dr. Wang presenting an ASHRAE Distinguished Lecture to the Victoria ASHRAE Chapter this past spring.  Spreading the news about the work we do in academia isn’t typically on the top of the ‘To Do’ list, but it is a task that our research group has been more attuned to, after Dr. Wang attended an NSF workshop on “Science: Becoming the Messenger”.  (It’s one of the reasons we started this blog!)

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Lee and Peng receive Inter-Noise 2014 Young Professionals Grant

INTERNOISE_bannerCongratulations to Joonhee Lee and Zhao ‘Ellen’ Peng, who have both received Young Professional Grants to attend the Inter-Noise 2014 conference in Melbourne, Australia, from November 16-19, 2014!  Lee is presenting a paper on “Assessment of Noise-Induced Annoyance by Tones in Noise from Building Mechanical Systems” while Peng’s paper is on “Effects of Room Acoustics on Comprehension of Foreign-Accented Speech by Native and Non-Native English-Speaking Listeners”.  Dr. Lily Wang will also be attending and presenting a Keynote Lecture at the conference, entitled “The Impact of Building Acoustics on Speech Comprehension and Student Achievement.”

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NAG at ASHRAE Seattle (June 2014)

NAG members with friends at the Mason Industries Dinner during the ASHRAE Seattle Conference

NAG members with friends at the Mason Industries Dinner during the ASHRAE Seattle Conference

NAG members enjoyed participating in the recent ASHRAE Annual meeting in Seattle. Jenn Francis presented a Conference Paper on “SE-14-C043: Determining Annoyance Thresholds of Tones in Noise” and Joonhee Lee presented a Seminar talk on “The Presence of Tones in Environmental Noise“. A highlight of the conference was the Mason Industries-hosted dinner at Blue Acre Seafood; alums Lauren Ronsse (now with Colombia College in Chicago) and Josh Thede (starting with SSA Acoustics this summer) were also there.

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NAG at ASA Conference in Providence (May 2014)

A gaggle of NAG alums at the NCAC Student Reception during the ASA Conference in Providence

A gaggle of NAG alums at the NCAC Student Reception during the ASA Conference in Providence

NAG members had an excellent time at the recent ASA conference in Providence, Rhode Island (May 2014).  In addition to presenting four technical papers, some of our memorable moments included: Hyun Hong receiving an NCAC Student Travel Grant, NAG Game Night ending ‘early’ due to a noise complaint (!), a successful NAG Karaoke Night, and seeing the large number of NAG alums at the NCAC student reception (see photo at left).  More photos can be found on our Picasa webpage.  At the conclusion of the conference, Dr. Lily Wang officially began her 3-year term as ASA Vice-President.  We’re particularly excited by this news shared by the General Chair of the next ASA meeting, Dr. Patricia Davies (Purdue): they’re planning a HALLOWEEN-themed social in Indianapolis (costumes welcome)!  We are DEFINITELY there!

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Hong receives 2014 NCAC Student Travel Grant

Hyun Hong and Dr. Lily Wang at the NCAC Student Reception during the ASA meeting in Providence (May 2014)

Hyun Hong and Dr. Lily Wang at the NCAC Student Reception during the ASA meeting in Providence (May 2014)

Congratulations to Hyun Hong, a PhD student in our group, who received a 2014 Student Travel Grant Award from the National Council of Acoustical Consultants (  to present his paper “Subjective Perception of Varying Reflection Densities in Room Impulse Responses” at the recent Acoustical Society of America meeting in Providence, RI (May 2014)!

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