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Jennifer L. Bonniwell, Ph.D. - Milwaukee School of Engineering. Milwaukee, WI, US

Jennifer L. Bonniwell, Ph.D.

Associate Professor and EE THL Coordinator | Milwaukee School of Engineering


Dr. Jennifer Bonniwell's research interests include advanced control theory, estimation, Kalman filtering and engineering education.





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Education, Licensure and Certification (5)

Affiliate Professor Certification: PLTW-DE 2016

Ph.D.: Electrical Engineering, Marquette University 2016

Flight Control Systems Program Certification: UCLA Extension 2011

M.S.: Electrical Engineering, Marquette University 2009

B.S.: Electrical Engineering, Milwaukee School of Engineering 2008


Dr. Jennifer L. Bonniwell has been a member of the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science faculty at MSOE since 2016. Dr. Bonniwell is one of the core instructors to teach control systems and digital logic. Much of her technical research examines inherent properties of the extended Kalman filter and its variants. Prior to teaching, she worked as an electrical engineer for Northrop Grumman.

Areas of Expertise (8)

Digital Design With Hardware Description Languages (E.g. VHDL))

Control Systems

Control Theory

Electrical Engineering

Computer Engineering

MATLAB Simulation

Advanced Control Theory

Estimation and Kalman Filtering

Affiliations (2)

  • American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) : Member
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) : Member

Media Appearances (2)

Female Engineers Discuss Work, Lives in Sensor Engineering

ECN Magazine  


The panel included Moderator Carol Smith, market surveillance engineer at Underwriter’s Laboratories, Dr. Jennifer Bonniwell, assistant professor at Milwaukee School of Engineering, Aleksandra Egelja-Maruszewski, director at North America Customer Excellence at ANSYS, Elsa Madrigal, senior principal engineer at Panduit, and Dr. Elina Vitol, staff scientist at Ecolab.

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Sensors Midwest 2018: WISE Program Features Engineering Celebrities

Fierce Electronics  


The session will also feature several other leaders in their respective fields. They include Dr. Jennifer Bonniwell, Professor at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, Carol Smith, Lead Market Surveillance Engineer at UL LLC, Elsa Madrigal, Senior Principal Engineer at Panduit, and Aleksandra Egelja-Maruszewski, Director, North America Customer Excellence, ANSYS, Inc.

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Event and Speaking Appearances (1)

WISE: Women In Sensors Engineering

Sensors Midwest 2018  


Selected Publications (7)

Low-Cost DC Motor System for Teaching Automatic Controls

IEEE American Control Conference

Cook, M.D., Bonniwell, J.L., Rodriguez, L.W., Williams, D.W., Pribbernow, J.

2020 Low-cost DC motor system kits are used by undergraduate students to investigate the basics of automatic controls and enhance their ability to apply classroom theory to real-world applications utilizing Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) simulation. The kits provide students with a range of learning experiences, from controller design to reduced order model verification. Additionally, the low-cost kits allow the students the ability to work on an open-ended controller design problem outside of the laboratory. This manuscript presents (1) the DC motor system bill of materials, (2) a pedagogical approach to introducing automatic controls to undergraduate students utilizing HIL simulations, (3) experimentally determined motor parameters for motors used in the kit, (4) a reduced order model for a motor used in the kit, and (5) results contrasting real-world performance of the DC motor used in the kits with that from simulated models based on experimental motor parameters.

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A Review of Electronic Engineering Logbooks Throughout the Electrical Engineering Curriculum

ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition

Holland, S., Carl, J, Bonniwell, J.L.

2018 Successful engineers must be well versed in communication skills, particularly with respect to written documentation in engineering logbooks. Such logs provide technical records that facilitate the day-to-day work of individual engineers, as well as enable continuity when projects are transferred to other engineers. Due to changes in technology and patent law, as well as the promise of simple archiving and sharing of technical work, many practicing engineers have moved away from traditional bound paper engineering notebooks and have embraced electronic documentation methods. This work details the experiences of junior electrical engineering faculty members implementing electronic engineering logbooks in their courses at the Milwaukee School of Engineering. While the current literature contains some discussion of electronic logbook usage in single courses, this paper takes a broader view by reviewing the use of electronic logbooks in courses that span all aspects of the electrical engineering undergraduate curriculum, from freshman to senior year. With this diverse set of courses, the lab assignments range from prescriptive step-by-step procedures to open-ended design projects. Each faculty member has been teaching for less than six years and joined academia with several years of industry experience. This work shares their experiences and observations on the advantages and disadvantages of electronic notebooks learned through implementation in their courses. Though this paper is primarily focused on electronic notebook usage in the electrical engineering program, the general observations are applicable to a broad range of engineering disciplines.

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Board 80 : Work in progress: Do it early and do it often – engineering math for first-term EE students

ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Wierer, J., Bonniwell, J.L., Ross, S., Kelnhofer, R.W.

2018 This paper analyzes a first-year introduction to electrical engineering course at (REDACTED). The purpose of the course is three-fold: to introduce new students to the major through a number of engaging laboratory exercises, to introduce new students to other students in their cohort and to electrical engineering faculty at the university, and to reinforce high-school-level mathematics in the context of engineering problems.

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Convergence and H2-Property of the Discrete-Time Extended Kalman Filter Used as a Nonlinear Observer


Bonniwell, J.L., Schneider, S.C., Yaz, E.E.

2018 An alternative method of analyzing the convergence of the discrete-time extended Kalman filter used as a deterministic nonlinear observer is shown. This work utilizes Lyapunov analysis techniques on the extended Kalman filter in the direct form to do convergence analysis with reduced assumptions on the system matrix.

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Finite-time mean-square boundedness, H2, and H∞-properties of the discrete-time extended Kalman filter for systems with independent sensor failures

2017 American Control Conference (ACC)

Bonniwell, J.L., Schneider, S.C. and Yaz, E.E

2017 The discrete-time extended Kalman filter designed for systems with independent sensor failures is analyzed for its finite-time mean-square boundedness as a function of initial conditions and its ability to attenuate effects of finite-energy disturbances as a function of the disturbance magnitudes. In addition to this extended Kalman filter being designed as a locally optimal minimum variance estimator, this work proves that it also has local finite-time mean-square boundedness of the estimation error, stochastic H 2 , and H ∞ properties. Simulations are provided that analyze the effect of the initial estimation error and the disturbance magnitude.

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Using the Basys-3 Trainer to support VHDL in Digital Logic Fundamentals course

IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference (FIE)

Bonniwell, J.L., Schneider, S.C

2016 The “bring your own experiment” movement is being incorporated in universities all over the world. This movement is centered on students purchasing low cost hardware for use in their courses. This paper discusses the inclusion of the Basys-3 FPGA Trainer available through Digilent in a lecture only, sophomore year, Digital Logic Fundamentals course. The enhancements to this course also include the introduction of a hardware description language, VHDL, which is becoming an integral part of the Electrical and Computer Engineering curricula. This paper describes the redesign of the course in Spring 2016 as well as the studies to be completed at the end of the semester.

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H∞-property of the discrete-time extended Kalman filter with uncertain measurements


Bonniwell, J.L., Schneider, S.E., Yaz, E.E.

2016 This work analyzes the finite-time H ∞ -property of the discrete-time extended Kalman filter in the presence of uncertain measurements and stochastic ℓ 2 type disturbances. The stochastic analysis provides a bound on the ratio of estimation error energy to disturbance energy. A special case of this result is also shown to be the finite-time H 2 -property of the extended Kalman filter.

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