Agilent Technologies has made a sizable donation of test and measurement equipment to the Engineering Science department at Sonoma State University this semester that will lead to the development of one of the most advanced measurement laboratories in the California State University system.
The gift - the second of two donations this year - benefits SSU's electrical engineering program which is differentiated by the training and research opportunities provided by modern equipment such as the Agilent instruments.
The donation expands the department's abilities to offer new curriculum and provide job-related training to students. Estimates are the donation of the 160 advanced test and measurement devices has a market value exceeding $220,000.
The instruments cover a wide range of applications and can be used in setting up basic electronics and communications laboratories for undergraduate and postgraduate levels as well as opening the doors to practical research at advanced levels.
The first donation enabled the electrical engineering faculty to enhance the existing laboratories and introduce a number of new courses and lab activities to the undergraduate and graduate curriculum this fall. These new courses and laboratory activities considerably improve the quality of courses in areas of electro-magnetics, radio-frequency design and wireless communications.
Much of the donated equipment is specially designed for microwave frequency applications, which can be used in radio frequency measurement applications up to 26 gigahertz as well as instruments for optical fiber measurements.
Several of Agilent's expert engineers are assisting the Engineering Science Department in enhancing its existing radio frequency lab facility and in designing more real-world and comprehensive laboratory experiments.
Engineering professor Farid Farahmand said the new equipment also allowed the department to offer courses through the Open University to working professionals in the community.
"As a part of our commitment to collaborative education and community training, the department is also planning to make many of the donated test equipment units available online in order to offer access to a remote laboratory," Farahmand reported.
Students in other institutions will be able to login to the department web site and access selected state-of the-art RF test equipment.
Engineering Science Department Chair Dr. Meng-Chih Su said "our engineering graduates are getting good employment opportunities partly because of their practical experience using these instruments. They are well trained and ready to join the work force when they graduate from SSU."
According to Jeff Weber, Agilent's Sonoma County public affairs and communications manager, the donation is part of the company's long-standing support for engineering education at SSU.
"Besides giving equipment valued at more than $1 million over the past several years, Agilent provides scholarships for SSU engineering students, and engineers from the company's Santa Rosa facility serve as adjunct faculty members," said Weber.
"We believe a strong engineering program at SSU strengthens the competitiveness of Sonoma County and the North Bay in the global economy."
ABOVE, Receiving the Agilent equipment donation at the Salazar Hall loading dock are (left to right) Salam Marougi, Agilent engineer and adjunct professor, Jeff Weber, Agilent Technologies, Sonoma County Public Affairs and Communications Manager; Tim Nash; Dr. Jack Ou, Assist Professor, Engineering Science Department; and Dr. Meng-Chi Su, Engineering Science Department Chair. (Photo by Shahram Marivani)
HOME PAGE: Dr. Salam Marougi of Agilent works with Masters in Computer Science Engineering student Chia Chen Wei. (Photo by Shahram Marivani)