PhD, MBA, Assistant Professor University of West Florida - Welcome

De-Rad Lab

Design Engineering Research and Development Lab

The DE-RaD lab consists of an interdisciplinary (i.e., ME, EE, Biology) group of graduate and undergraduate students with varied interests including functional mechanism prototyping, additive and advanced manufacturing, complex system optimization, and sustainable building design.

Diversity in the De-Rad Lab

I welcome potential students regardless of race, religion, gender identification, sexual orientation, age, or disability status. Creative thinkers who are respectful and open to others are welcome here.

Current Research

Using stereo-video camera systems on unoccupied aerial vehicles (UAVs) to measure both surface and underwater targets

I am the PI on a project to develop a functional proof-of-concept stereo-video camera (SVC) equipped UAV to take accurate measurements of both surface and underwater objects from the air.  This prototype allows for a larger sample area and increased sample sizes of objects, compared to traditional methods.

Lab Openings

I am currently looking for a new M.S. Mechanical Engineering student, to begin at the University of West Florida in Fall 2021, to continue research on the Stereo-Video Unoccupied Aerial Vehicle research. Two-year tuition wavier and annual stipend is available. Please contact me at jpiacenza [at] for more details.

Graduate Students

University of West Florida: Tabitha Siegfried (MS Biology, Expected Spring 2021) – Tabitha’s research focuses on developing the methodology for using underwater stereo-video cameras to obtain length measurement data on local sea turtles in the Northern Gulf of Mexico.

Tabitha Siegfried, M.S. Biology Student

Cal State Fullerton: Sean Lin (MS ME, Spring 2017) – Understanding the impact of student users in sustainable building on college campuses, and exploring methods for accurate prediction models regarding energy usage.

Sean Lin
Sean Lin

Cal State Fullerton: Bahad Albarhami (MS ME, Fall 2016) – Evaluating the impact of occupant diversity factors (instantaneous energy usage/energy capacity) in sustainable building models.

Bahaa Albarhami
Bahaa Albarhami

Cal State Fullerton: Dereck Ferdaws (MS ME, Fall 2015) – Design, manufacture, and validation of a portable test bench for catheter nozzle testing.

Dereck Ferdaws
Dereck Ferdaws
Undergraduate Research Assistants

Updates in progress.