Biological and Agricultural Engineering

Celebrating 100 Years: 1915-2015

BAE 100th Anniversary Graphic V3

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Dr. William Chancellor won the Lifetime Achievement award at the centennial gala. Photo by Joan Cusick.

The Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering (BAE) held its first celebration of 100 years of engineering excellence with a gala dinner on Saturday, October 3 at the Shields Library Courtyard. 

The event was a lovely evening of food, drink, talks and awards that honored the department’s past achievements while looking forward to how the department will contribute in helping solve great challenges and opportunities ahead.

View our photo gallery from the centennial gala.

During the day of the gala, guests had the option to tour the research labs in Bainer Hall as well as the Western Center for Agricultural Equipment.

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Visitors learned about BAE’s various research labs on student-led tours. Photo by Ken Giles.

BAE is one of the oldest departments on campus, starting in the University Farm era. Over the last century the department’s engineers helped change California agriculture. Faculty innovations include the inertial tree shaker for mechanical harvesting of many tree fruits and nuts, forced air cooling of produce, and a rollover protection structure for tractor drivers. The department revolutionized the tomato industry with the mechanical tomato harvester. In addition to agricultural and natural resource engineering, the department has programs in biotechnology and food engineering that have helped the department integrate engineering and life sciences for more sustainable production of food, energy, and materials.

Whether you’re reading about the gala or just here to revisit old times, we’d like to hear about you.
Ours is an ongoing story, and you are a part of it!

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Be sure to read the department history, and check out our historical timeline using the links on the left.


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The Farm Machine Lab in 1923.  Photo courtesy of UCD Shields Library Special Collections.