Category Archives: Meetings

How many organizations last 100 years?

The Technical Society of Knoxville was founded in 1921 and it has met over 4000 times and discussed the application of technology from early Knoxville’s coal smoke and traffic problems to present Knoxville’s transportation air pollution and the impact of electric car technology.

What was it like back then?

We are planning a 100 year celebration on June 14,2021 at the Crowne Plaza. The public will be invited. Dinner will be about $40 and checks will need to be mailed to treasurer Bruce Webb at 511 Emory Valley Rd., Oak Ridge, TN 37830.

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Posted by on April 16, 2021 in Meetings


April 12, 2021 ZOOM Meeting of the Technical Society

What is a crucially important thing in the trend toward electric cars- and any portable electric devices?

Better batteries.

Lithium and hydrogen pack more energy per weight than anything else but there are many challenges in making good rechargeable lithium batteries.

Attend the Technical Society ZOOM meeting on April 12 and learn more.
Password TSK

On April 12, 2021  Jianlin Li will present via Zoom a presentation on overview of state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery manufacturing, the research activities in energy storage at ORNL and some perspectives on future directions.
Jianlin Li is a senior R&D Staff and University of Tennessee Bredesen Center Adjunct Faculty Member at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). He also leads the Energy Storage and Conversion Manufacturing group at ORNL. His research area includes materials synthesis, processing and characterization, electrode engineering, cell manufacturing and prototyping for energy storage and conversion. Dr. Li received his dual B.S. in Materials Chemistry and Electronic Information Engineering in 2001 and his M.S. in Materials Science in 2004. All were from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC). He also received his Maaterials Sciences and Engineering from the University of Florida in 2009. He is the recipient of several prestigious awards including 2 R&D 100 awards and Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC)award. He is the inventor of 9 patents and 5 patent applications four of which have been licensed. He has authored more than 100 referred journal articles and 3 books.

The meeting ZOOM link is
Password TSK

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Posted by on March 24, 2021 in Meetings


March 8, 2021 ZOOM Meeting of the Technical Society

The next ZOOm Meeting of the Tehnical Society of Knoxville is entitled: “Problems in Forensic Engineering”. Technical Society President  Steve Hillenbrand will be the speaker.

Forensic engineering has been defined as “the investigation of failures – ranging from serviceability to catastrophic – which may lead to legal activity, including both civil and criminal”.[1] It in cludes the investigation of materialsproductsstructures or components that fail or do not operate or function as intended, causing personal injury, damage to property or economic loss. The consequences of failure may give rise to action under either criminal or civil law including but not limited to health and safety legislation, the laws of contract and/or product liability and the laws of tort. ( And sometimes people try to cheat). This will be a very interesting presentation.

The ZOOM link to the meeting is

password TSK

Steve is a retired engineer, having been employed by NASA (engineering COOP during the first moon landing), TVA (mechanical, structural and environmental), and Doran Engineering (forensic engineering). He is a graduate of the University of Tennessee with a BS in Mechanical Engineering, a MS in Engineering Administration, and a MS in Environmental Engineering.
David Carver, our scheduled speaker will join us at a later date. Thanks to Steve for stepping in for us.

The meeting will start at 11:55 am on March 8.

Technical Society Members may wish to join in for general discussion of other TSK business at 11:30 am.

The link to the meeting is

password TSK

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Posted by on February 22, 2021 in Meetings


February 8, 2021 ZOOM Meeting of the Technical Society HTTPS:// pw TSK

The Technical Society of Knoxville speaker for the meeting on February 8, 2021 will be David Brenner, Director of Center for Radiological Research at Columbia University. He will speak on Far UV light sources that will destroy coronaviruses without harming personnel present. It can be used for indoor spaces such as schools, labs, offices and hospitals. Dr.Brenner has presented 3 TED talks on this subject and he  has published 300 papers.

The program will begin at 11:55 am. This will be a ZOOM meeting and visitors are welcome.

Does this technology have the potential to radically change our public health? Should the Technical Society respond or take action?

Germicidal ultraviolet light, typically at 254 nm, is effective but, used directly, it can be a health hazard to skin and eyes. By contrast, farUVC light (207–222 nm) efficiently kills pathogens potentially without harm to exposed human tissues.

The ZOOM link for this meeting is password is TSK (in capitals)

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Posted by on January 22, 2021 in Meetings


January 11,2021 Technical Society ZOOM meeting!

Allen Coggins will be the speaker for the Technical Society of Knoxville ZOOM meeting on January 11, 2021..

The meeting will begin at 11:55 am on January 11, 2021.

Allen Coggins is a freelance researcher and writer. The talk is titled Sylvan Facts and Factoids. It originally was presented at Wilderness Wildlife Week in 2019. It features information on 21 common trees( origins, facts, myths, medical use and pioneer and Native American uses of these trees.Includes apple, ash, basswood, American beech, dogwood, eastern hemlocks, red cedar, resbud, hackberries, haws, hickories, locust, maples, oaks, persimmon, sugar maple, tulip poplar, willows, white pine, American holly, and even the non-indigenous ginkgo.Discusses forest types in TennesseeDescribes the effects of altitude, temperature, precipitation and latitude on trees and forest types.Covers ecological forest diversity within forest systems.Accounts for the vast array and diversity of tree species in Tennessee and some adjoining states.Includes an introductionto the “Doctrine of Signatures.”Discusses the fact that trees communicate with one another through their root system and through the air to literally control and regulate the forest ecosystems.

Allen Coggins is the author of three books and is working on a fourth. Much of his career was working as an emergency management specialist with Oak Ridge Associated Universities.inn a previous life he served as Chief Naturalist for both Georgia and Tennessee State Parks.

 The Zoom link to the meeting is
Passcode: TSK

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Posted by on January 8, 2021 in Meetings


December 14, 2020 Technical Society ZOOM meeting!

State Senator Richard Briggs will be the speaker for the December 14 , 2020 Technical Society of Knoxville meeting. He has said too many people are ignoring the COVID-19 guidelines, and overlooking the larger economic impacts. This is an opportunity for understanding!

Dr.Briggs is a person who is willing and able to give an educated and unbiased discourse on this topic with his medical experience and time as a state legislator.

The meeting will begin at 11:55 am on December 14, 2020.

password “TSK” in capital letters

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Posted by on November 10, 2020 in Meetings


November 9, 2020 Technical Society ZOOM meeting! “TSK”

On November 9, 2020 the Technical Society of Knoxville will have a ZOOM meeting with Dr. Dustin Crouch speaking about Bionic Limbs PDH). The meeting will begin at 11:55 am

The link for the program is password (in capital letters) is “TSK”

Dr. Crouch is an Assistant Professor in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

It is an indication of the changes taking place in technology when what was once a Mechanical Engineering department is now involved in aeronautics and biology and is called the Mechanical, Aerospace and Biomedical Engineering department.

Dr. Crouch has a PhD and BME from Virginia Tech – Wake Forest University School of Biomedical Engineering & Sciences and a BS and AE from North Carolina State University.

He has worked as a Design Engineer at the Rotating Parts Center of Excellence of GE Aircraft Engines and he has been a Research Scientist in a Neuromuscular Rehabilitation Engineering Lab. A variety of interests and studies!He is a member of the American Society of Biomechanics (ASB), IEEE-Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBS), and the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES). He was recognized with the 2020 Louis and Ann Hoffman Endowed Excellence in Research Award.

December 14: ZOOM meeting: Senator Dr. Richar\d Briggs: On the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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Posted by on October 14, 2020 in Meetings


October 12, 2020 Technical Society ZOOM meeting! “TSK”

On October 12, 2020 the speaker will be Terrell Hendren P.E.

One of the strengths of the Technical Society has been the informal contact between members at the lunch meetings. Obviously this is gone with the virus. But we will try to have an informal discussion using zoom before the official start of the Technical Society meeting. Members may sign into the meeting at 11:30 for an informal discussion prior to the start of the official meeting at 11:55 am.

Terrell Hendren P.E.,Environmental Consultant, will be the speaker.

He is with the Division of Water Resources of the TN Department of Environment & Conservation. He will speak on the safety of low head dams.

the ZOOM number is

A passcode will be needed “TSK” (I hope this is not a challenge) IT HAS TO BE CAPITAL LETTERS ID: 899 4729 0521
Passcode: TSK

Low head dams are deadly- REALLY DEADLY- for swimmers and boaters when there is enough water flowing over them to create backflow and turbulence.

The Division of Water Resources describes dam failures on their website. Hundreds of dam failures have occurred throughout U.S. history. These failures have caused immense property and environmental damages and have taken thousands of lives. As the nation’s dams age and population increases, the potential for deadly dam failures grows.

National Dam Safety Awareness Day occurs each year on May 31 to commemorate the failure of the South Fork Dam in Johnstown, Pennsylvania on May 31, 1889.

Future Technical Society programs:

November 9, 2020: ZOOM meeting: Dr. Dustin Crouch, Prof., UT: On bionic limbs.

December 14, 2020: Senator Dr. Richard Briggs: On the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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Posted by on September 17, 2020 in Meetings


September 14, 2020 Technical Society ZOOM meeting!

 Mr. Gabriel Bolas, CEO, Knoxville Utilities Board (KUB), will speak to the Technical Society of Knoxville in a ZOOM meeting on September 14 on the KUB cost structure, specifically on the justification for the fixed costs on electrical and water rates, and other possibly interesting  activities of KUB. PDH by arrangement.

The ZOOM link is

Mr. Bolas has worked at KUB for 26+years and he is now the CEO. He was educated at the University of Tennessee with a BS degree in electrical engineering and a MS degree in Electrical/ Industrial Management.

Utilities are having to cope increasingly with customers generating a part of their own electricity. It may be in the best interest of KUB customers to generate only a part of their electrical needs themselves and rely on KUB for continuity. KUB has to balance the best interests of the customers and the KUB organization.

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Posted by on August 24, 2020 in Meetings


August 10, 2020 Technical Society ZOOM meeting!

Dr. James E Beavers will be the Technical Society of Knoxville zoom meeting speaker on August 10, 2020. The title of his presentation will be: “November 30, 1973, Knoxville Area Earthquake and Future Earthquakes.”

Go to

Jim Beavers is an internationally recognized authority on earthquakes and earthquake resistant structures. He gave the Technical Society an excellent program on structures subjected to earthquakes in June 2017. The description of his 2017 talk included “Seismic activity is more common in east Tennessee than most of us realize and anyone interested in our safety and building ( public and private) integrity is invited to attend.

James Earl Beavers currently works at James E Beavers Consultants and has been a university professor, private consultant, corporate manager, author, and editor during his 50 year career. He is currently writing the book: Earthquakes and Earthquake Engineering – the central and eastern United States. His current research is vulnerability of countries and their people to earthquakes. The current aspects of that research is with Professor John Nichols at Texas A&M University on the subject of life losses during earthquakes around the world.

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Posted by on July 22, 2020 in Meetings