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2013 Student and Postdoc Competition

Graduate Student and Postdoctoral Researcher Competition

From the more than 1800 graduate students and postdoctoral researchers involved in the EFRC program, each of the 46 EFRCs was invited to nominate one graduate student and one postdoctoral researcher to present a talk at the 2013 EFRC Principal Investigators’ Meeting. The DOE EFRC management team then selected 22 finalists to present a talk at the EFRC Principal Investigators’ Meeting in Washington, D.C. on July 18 – 19, 2013. At the meeting, teams of DOE program managers selected the top three graduate students and postdoctoral researchers based on how well the research exemplified the opportunities provided by the EFRC funding modality and scientific excellence. The winners received an award certificate from Harriet Kung, Associate Director of the DOE Office of Basic Energy Sciences, during a ceremony at the end of the meeting.

The abstracts of all the finalist talks can be found here.

Graduate Student Winners

Preventing Helium-Induced Damage through Interface Engineering

Abishek Kashinath1, Michael J. Demkowicz1

1Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Center for Materials at Irradiation and Mechanical Extremes (CMIME)

Coherent Phonon Heat Conduction in Superlattices

Maria N. Luckyanova1; Jivtesh Garg1; Keivan Esfarjani1; Adam Jandl1; Zhiting Tian1; Bo Qiu1; Mayank T. Bulsara1; Aaron J. Schmidt2; Austin J. Minnich3; Shuo Chen4; Mildred S. Dresselhaus1; Zhifeng Ren4; Eugene A. Fitzgerald1; Gang Chen1

1MIT; 2Boston University; 3California Institute of Technology; 4University of Houston

Solid-State Solar-Thermal Energy Conversion Center (S3TEC)

Concerted Processes in Organic Photovoltaics: The Related Challenges of Generating and Collecting Charge in a Disorder Environment.

Brett M. Savoie1; Henry Heitzer1; Brian S. Rolczynszki1; Bijan Movaghar1; Stephen Loser1; Sylvia Lou1; Luping Yu1,2; Lin X. Chen1,3; Tobin J. Marks1; Mark A. Ratner1

1Northwestern University; 2University of Chicago; 3Argonne National Laboratory

Argonne-Northwestern Solar Energy Research Center (ANSER)

Postdoctoral Researcher Winners

Probing Light Harvesting and Photosynthetic Productivity in Cyanobacteria

Michelle Liberton1, Lawrence Page1*, Aaron M. Collins2, William B. O’Dell3, Hugh O’Neill3, Volker S. Urban3, Jerilyn A. Timlin2, and Himadri B. Pakrasi1

1Washington University, St. Louis; 2Sandia National Laboratories, NM; 3Oak Ridge National Laboratory; *Current address: Terra Biologics

Photosynthetic Antenna Frontier Research Center (PARC)

Adsorbate Induced Adatom Mobility in a Model Catalyst: Pd/Fe3O4

Gareth S. Parkinson1

1Vienna University of Technology, Vienna, Austria

Center for Atomic-Level Catalyst Design (CALCD)

Nanoscale Atoms in Solid-State Chemistry

Xavier Roy1, Chul-Ho Lee1, Andrew C. Crowther2, Christine L. Schenck1, Tiglet Besara3, Roger A. Lalancette5, Theo Siegrist3,4, Peter W. Stephens6, Louis E. Brus1, Philip Kim1, Michael L. Steigerwald1, Colin Nuckolls1

1Columbia University; 2Barnard College; 3National High Magnetic Field Laboratory; 4FAMU-FSU College of Engineering; 5Rutgers State University; 6SUNY Stony Brook

Re-Defining Photovoltaic Efficiency Through Molecule Scale Control (RPEMSC)

Graduate Student Finalists

Veronica Augustyn


Zoey R. Herm

UC Berkeley

Rene L. Johnson

UC Davis

Khim Karki

U. Maryland

Christopher Lee

Penn State

Joseph H. Montoya


Brandon O'Neil

U. Wisconso

Lance M. Wheeler

U. Minnesota

Shuo Zhang

UC Berkeley

Mao Zheng

U. Illinois

Postdoctoral Researcher Finalists

Roman Gautier


Lingfeng He

U. Wisconsin

Bryce Sadtler


Daniel Steiauf

UC Santa Barbara

Nicole Trease

Stony Brook

Shane R. Yost