May 19, 2022


Born to play

Q&A with the Great Lakes Research Center’s Timothy Havens

Timothy Havens is the new director of the Good Lakes Investigation Centre.

Timothy Havens arrived to Michigan Technological University as an electrical and computer
engineering researcher. As of January 1, he’s now the director of the Great Lakes
Investigation Centre (GLRC), in addition to continuing his roles as director of the Institute
of Computing and Cybersystems (ICC) and the William and Gloria Jackson Professor in
Laptop Science. Havens succeeds outgoing GLRC director Andrew Barnard.

“I am really pleased that Tim has stepped up and recognized the directorship of the
Wonderful Lakes Investigation Heart,” explained Dave Reed, Michigan Tech’s Vice President for Exploration.
“Tim has been a incredibly successful leader of the Institute of Computing and Cybersystems
for numerous several years and I am confident he will provide that experience and strategy to
the GLRC.”

We not too long ago sat down with Havens to go over the long term of the GLRC and his function at
Michigan Tech.

“The GLRC is striving to become the leading study institution on campus, both in
phrases of the excellence in investigation staying executed and also in the assist that GLRC
staff members deliver to campus researchers. The school and workers and their varied exploration
are at the top rated of their fields.”

Timothy Havens

Director, Great Lakes Research Centre

Q: Why were being you selected as the up coming GLRC director?

TH: My expertise in remaining a researcher and exploration administrator plays properly with
remaining the director of the GLRC. I’m now the director of the ICC and was the
affiliate dean of investigate for the University of Computing, with both units observing considerable
advancement for the duration of my leadership. A person of our ambitions in the ICC has been to mature into a sustainable,
self-supporting unit with superb assist for our scientists, frequently using the GLRC
as an example. We have designed substantial strides toward this objective, recently choosing
a full-time assistant director for research progress. I’m energized I now get the
prospect to direct the centre we have been working with as a part design.

Q: Your past exploration has been targeted on computing and cybersystems. What does
that have to do with Good Lakes analysis?

TH: To be a successful study administrator, one wants to be a powerful researcher
but not always in any specific place. My encounter lets me to appear into the
directorship with the large-level see essential to leverage sources in resourceful
techniques, this kind of as new vessels and exploration platforms, following-technology computing and specialist
personnel. Study centers are corporations, and the facets of balancing individuals, infrastructure
and methods are typically the identical, no make a difference the investigate aim.

That mentioned, I do Wonderful Lakes investigation. I have labored with the U.S. Navy for a number of yrs,
producing sign processing for detecting objects beneath and on the water and ice
employing acoustics. The link of my investigation to the GLRC is a lot more on the techy aspect,
but I’m cognizant of and strongly support all of the center’s research and I’m actually
thrilled to study a lot more about the parts I haven’t yet had immediate connections with.
On top of that, I glance ahead to connecting my land-dependent robotics research to the GLRC:
marine autonomy, clever ships and the Marine Autonomy Analysis Internet site.

Q: What do you do in your get the job done?

TH: I guide the Pattern Recognition and Intelligent Equipment Engineering lab. For several
decades I’ve been functioning with the Office of Defense and market associates on challenging
sensing complications. For illustration, detecting explosive hazards, building AI that can
forecast car malfunctions effectively before a test engine light turns on, and how to
make robots additional sturdy to sensor malfunctions or malfeasance, to identify a handful of.

In my research I’m investigating how to pull information and facts out when beneficial facts are
concealed guiding the sounds. I choose people information and turn them into decisions — “You must
most likely acquire your vehicle in to check out its transmission within just the next 1,000 miles,”
for instance.

Tim Havens stands next to the research vessel Agassiz outside the Great Lakes Research Center
Tim Havens is the new director of the Good Lakes Exploration Middle.

Q: How does your get the job done relate to the other investigate at the GLRC?

TH: Device understanding is applicable nearly almost everywhere. I take details and develop implicit
products that can make choices with those data: predictions, assessments, diagnostics,
and so on. Dr. Pengfei Xue and I have presently commenced chatting about how we can merge my
AI investigation with his hydrodynamic designs, enabling both improved or a lot more efficient
predictions about important indicators of weather alter in the Wonderful Lakes. When I boil
down what I adore about exploration, it is that I appreciate to remedy puzzles — there are tons
of difficult and critical puzzles to clear up with GLRC scientists and I appear forward
to the collaborations.

Q: What is your vision for the long term of the GLRC?

TH: We really should certainly consider about expanding our constructing! The GLRC is striving to
develop into the premier investigate establishment on campus, both of those in conditions of the excellence
in analysis staying performed and also in the aid that GLRC employees convey to campus
researchers. The college and staff and their varied study are at the top rated of their
fields. The centre will not only go on to drive the envelope about what can be discovered
about Excellent Lakes and coastal oceans units, but also glance for alternatives in the
uncharted waters of sophisticated, authentic-environment troubles that need many-disciplinary
methods to take care of.


Michigan Technological College is a public exploration university started in 1885 in Houghton, Michigan, and is dwelling to more than 7,000 students from 55 nations around the world all over the world. Consistently ranked between the best universities in the nation for return on investment decision, the College features a lot more than 125 undergraduate and graduate degree courses in science and technological innovation, engineering, computing, forestry, business and economics, health professions, humanities, arithmetic, social sciences, and the arts. The rural campus is situated just miles from Lake Remarkable in Michigan’s Higher Peninsula, supplying 12 months-round alternatives for out of doors experience.