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Research Experiences for Undergraduates
in Automotive Technologies


The engineering economy is becoming increasingly global. To succeed in this new economy, engineers must not only be technically competent and effective at working within multidisciplinary teams, but they must also have the cultural, social, and language skills necessary to effectively interact with colleagues and customers overseas.

Funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), Virginia Tech (USA) and the Technische Universität Darmstadt (Germany) have established a dual international NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) site to encourage US undergraduate students to pursue graduate studies and a research career within an international context and, in particular, within the area of automotive technologies. The sixth cohort of 9 students will enroll in this REU program for Summer 2013.

Two REU students will be located at Virginia Tech (VT) Blacksburg, Virginia, and seven REU students will be located at Technische Universität Darmstadt (TUD) in Darmstadt, Germany. These students will join local graduate research teams in the area of automotive technologies. The objective is to place the REU students, to the extent possible, in joint VT-TUD research projects so they can participate in transatlantic research teams with REU students in both locations.

Language Skills: The research will take place using English. German language skill, while desirable, will not be required. To the extent German language training is available and desired by the individual REU students, the REU student will be given time off with pay to pursue German language training on a part-time basis. The cost of tuition and/or fees for this optional training will be the responsibility of the REU student.

Academic Credit: The REU students will have the option to earn up to six (6) semester credit hours of ME 4994 Undergraduate Research from Virginia Tech for their REU research at VT or TUD. ME 4994 counts as technical elective credits for VT BSME students. The cost of tuition and/or fees for this optional academic credit will be the responsibility of the REU student.

There are no projects for Summer 2014, 2015, 2016.

Research Locations (Summer 2013)

Technische Universität Darmstadt (Darmstadt, Germany):  7 REU positions
Virginia Tech (Blacksburg, Virginia, USA):  2 REU positions


Friday, February 8, 2013:  Application deadline (postmarked)
Thursday, May 16, 2013:Depart USA for Germany
Monday, May 20, 2013:First day of research in USA
Tuesday, May 21, 2013:First day of research in Germany
Friday, July 12, 2013:Last day of research in Germany and USA
Saturday, July 13, 2013:Return home


The REU students will receive a stipend of at least US$4,000 plus free room, board, and travel. The exact amount of the stipend will be determined in April 2013 once the cost of air travel and the currency exchange rates are less uncertain.

More Information

Application materials
Project descriptions
Project personnel
• About this NSF Grant (NSF abstract) [2007,2008,2009] [2011,2012,2013]
Other NSF REU programs
VT-TUD Dual MS Mechanical Engineering degree program

Revised:   Monday, 14-Sep-2015 16:31:25 EDT
Location:  http://www.tud.vt.edu/REU/index.html
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