Young Scientist Award Presented to Two of our Academics
Jun 12, 2017

Among the names on the list of the Young Scientist Award winners, given by the Science Heroes Association, are Assoc. Prof. Dr. Behçet Uğur Töreyin of our Institute of Informatics and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hazım Kemal Ekenel of our Computer Engineering Department.

Institute of Informatics faculty member, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Behcet Uğur Töreyin has contributed to the development of the Forest Fire Early Warning System, which has been established in 100 locations in the our country, and in more than 250 regions throughout the world. Thanks to this innovative system, a savings of 40 million TL has been achieved between 2007 and 2014. Our academic, who pioneered this system during his doctoral studies, focuses his research on signal processing and pattern recognition, image and video compression - analysis, communication systems and data processing applications.

Another winner of this year's award, Department of Computer Engineering faculty, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hazım Kemal Ekenel, is known for his work on image processing, computer vision, pattern, and object recognition. In addition to Ekenel’s much-cited work in facial recognition, facial modeling, emotional state, age, gender and health status extracted from facial images, he is also the founder of ITU SIMIT Lab, where scientific research is supported by national and international industrial funds. It is expected that our academic’s work in these areas will aid in the identification and surveillance of mental health, determination of hormonal disorders from facial images, making follow-up more possible and, in particular, facilitating the social integration of disabled persons.

These awards are presented to young scientists under the age of 38, whose work has contributed to international science and engineering fields, raising our country’s in these fields, in order to encourage our academics and support them in their work. The award aims to encourage young scientists who have contributed to science, to its dissemination, and to its use for the benefit of society, to strive for new successes.

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Who is Assoc. Prof. Dr. Behçet Uğur Töreyin?

Our faculty member who completed his undergraduate studies in Electrical and Electronics Engineering in 2001 at Middle East Technical University, obtained his master’s degree in 2003 and his doctorate degree in 2009 from Bilkent University. After his postdoctoral studies, our academic worked as a researcher at the University of Minnesota and the University of Texas A&M-Qatar, followed by work at the Çankaya University Faculty of Engineering between 2011 and 2013. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Behçet Uğur Töreyin continues his academic career at our Informatics Institute, focusing on the development of original methods for understanding and compression of signals from many sensors including visible, red, and hyperspectral cameras, passive infrared detectors, microphones, vibration detectors, spectral detectors, etc. Dr. Töreyin, has served as a project coordinator, researcher, and consultant on more than 17 research projects in signal processing areas for image and video analysis applications and communication systems; he also has a book, a patent, and much-cited works including more than 80 peer-reviewed journal articles, reports, and book chapters.

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Who is Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hazım Ekenel?

Akademik kariyerini Bilgisayar Mühendisliği Bölümümüzde sürdüren öğretim üyemiz bir yandan da Lozan Federal Politeknik Okulu’daki (École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne – EPFL) proje yürütücülüğü görevini sürdürüyor.

Dr. Ekenel, completed his undergraduate education at Bosphorus University, Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering in 2001, followed by a master’s degree in 2003 and in 2009, a doctoral degree from the Department of Computer Engineering at the University of Karlsruhe (TH). Between 2009 and 2011, he worked as a research group leader at the same university. Dr. Ekenel also won the European Biometric Research Award in 2008 and the Young Researcher Support in 2010, given by the German Research Council (DFG) under the German Excellence Initiative. Our faculty member, who started to work at our Department of Computer Engineering in 2011, participated in the Facial Expression Recognition and Analysis Challenge that same year, and two years later, the Emotion Recognition in the Wild Challenge, having his work selected as Europe's best facial expression analysis systems. Dr. Ekenel added to his international achievements by winning first prize in facial recognition at the International Challenge on Biometric Recognition in the Wild contest, in 2016. Our faculty member who continues his academic career at the ITU Department of Computer Engineering is also continuing his work as a project coordinator at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne - EPFL.