BiSSL Student Varuneswara Panyam Gives Seminar Presentation for the Energy and Power Group

The presentation (in A&M’s Electrical & Computer Engineering department on November 26th at 3pm in ETB 1003) will cover preliminary research from his MS on redesigning the modern power grid for robustness following principles from Nature’s ecosystems. All are welcome!


Abstract: Extreme events continue to show that current power grid configurations, designed for efficiency, are vulnerable to disturbances. Naturally robust ecological networks present a potential source of robust design guidelines for modern power grids. Ecosystems balance pathway efficiency with redundancy to achieve robust network structure. Structural similarities between these two system-types support the application of ecological properties and analysis techniques to power grid design. In the talk, I will discuss the analogy between the two systems and an optimization model that our group has created to reconfigure a power grid to mimic ecosystems’ robust behavior.

Bio: Varuneswara Panyam is an MS student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M University. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Shiv Nadar University in 2016. His Ph.D. research is focused on bio-inspired design of power systems.

Texas A&M’s GradSWE Faculty Panel Luncheon

BiSSL head Dr. Astrid Layton will be joining three other awesome women engineering faculty for GradSWE’s Faculty Panel Luncheon Event on Wednesday, Nov 14, in ETB 3002 from 12:30-2pm, to discuss how to choose the right career path. Some topics we will discuss include:

1- How professors chose their career path (academia, industry, national lab, etc.)
2- What considerations they took into place when making those decisions.

Lunch will be provided!

RSVP link:

The panel will include:

Matrix Tray Student Design Competition

BiSSL is one of two research labs cohosting an A&M student weekend design concept competition coming up November 2nd-7th, with prizes of $1000 (first prize) $500 (second prize) and $200 (third prize). Texas A&M students with winning designs will have the opportunity to work with Dr. Astrid Layton and Dr. Ahmed Ali’s multidisciplinary research team (both Mechanical Engineering and Architecture departments).

General Motors is committed to becoming landfill-free by 2020 and to achieve this, they are seeking to divert byproducts from ending up in landfills by generating potential applications for their more challenging materials. This includes the matrix trays used to package electronics through the automated manufacturing process. Texas A&M Architecture and Mechanical Engineering are pairing with General Motors to host a design competition to promote byproduct reuse and sustainable industry practices, specifically looking for design concepts that generate new applications for these matrix trays. Deliverables are a short (1 page or less) description and a visual aid (computer generated drawing or neat hand drawing) explaining the design concept.

For more information on the competition please visit

Registration is open to A&M student individuals or teams, with a deadline of November 1st at midnight, registration can be done here.