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2017 Student and Postdoc Team Science Contest

Early Career scientists are a significant component of the Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC), Energy Innovation Hub (Hub), and Computational Materials Sciences Award (CMS) programs. Altogether, these programs involve more than 900 graduate students and 800 postdoctoral researchers. To highlight their accomplishments and further the development of the future scientific energy workforce, the Department of Energy’s Office of Basic Energy Sciences (BES) sponsored a Student and Postdoc Team Science Contest as part of the 2017 EFRC-Hub-CMS Principal Investigators’ Meeting in Washington, D.C. on July 24-25, 2017. Each Director was invited to nominate a team of two or more graduate student and/or postdoctoral researchers to present a joint talk about their center research that included both theory and experiment. The DOE EFRC, Hub, and CMS management teams selected 16 finalists from more than 25 nominations. At the meeting, teams of DOE program managers selected the top six teams based on how well the research exemplified the opportunities provided by the center funding modality, scientific excellence, integration of theory and experiment, topical diversity, and quality of the presentation. 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.

Team Science Winners

Team Science Winners

(From left) Iqbal B. Utama, Diana Y. Qiu, Felipe H. da Jornada

Environmental Screening Effects in 2D Materials: Renormalization of the Bandgap, Electronic Structure, and Optical Spectra

[CMS – C2SEPEM] Diana Y. Qiu, Felipe H. da Jornada, M. Iqbal B. Utama, Feng Wang, Steven G. Louie

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory / University of California, Berkeley

Center for Computational Study of Excited-State Phenomena in Energy Materials (C2SEPEM)

Team Science Winners

(From left on top) Robert Warburton, Bruno Nicolau, Kendra Letchworth-Weaver; (From left on bottom) Xiao Chen, Kan-Sheng Chen

Understanding and Controlling the Reactivity of LiMn2O4-Electrolyte Interfaces

[EFRC – CEES] Robert Warburton1, Bruno Nicolau2, Kendra Letchworth-Weaver4, Kan-Sheng Chen3, Aaron Petronico2, Laila Jaber-Ansari3, Xiao Chen4, Yasaman Ghadar4, Maria Chan4, Ralph Nuzzo2, Andrew Gewirth2, Jeffrey P. Greeley1, Mark Hersam3, Paul Fenter4

1Purdue University; 2University of Illinois; 3Northwestern University; 4Argonne National Laboratory

Center for Electrochemical Energy Science (CEES)

Team Science Winners

(From left) Manual A. Ortuna, Ana E. Platero-Prats, Zhanyong Li

Post-functionalized Metal–Organic Frameworks for Catalysis

[EFRC – ICDC] Manuel A. Ortuño1, Zhanyong Li2, Ana E. Platero-Prats3, Karena W. Chapman3, Joseph T. Hupp2, Omar. K. Farha2, Christopher J. Cramer1, Laura Gagliardi1

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

Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center (ICDC)

Team Science Winners

(From left) Zachary W. Ulissi, Daniel A. Torelli, Maryam Farmand, Jeremy T. Feaster, Sean W. Fackler

Materials Discovery, Theory, and Characterization of Intermetallics for Electrochemical CO2 Reduction

[Hub – JCAP] Jeremy T. Feaster1,4, Daniel A. Torelli2,4, Zachary W. Ulissi1,4, Maryam Farmand3,4, Sean W. Fackler3,4, J.W. Beeman3, A. Mehta1, R. Davis1, A.T. Landers1,4, J.C. Lin1,4, D.C. Higgins1,4, S.A. Francis2,4, J.C. Crompton2,4, A. Javier2,4, J.R. Thompson2, M.T. Tang1,4, J. Xiao1,4, X. Liu1,4, M. Karamad1, R. Sandberg1,4, K. Chan1,4, C. Hahn1,4, B.S. Brunschwig2,4, M.P. Soriaga2,4, W.S. Drisdell3,4, J. Yano3,4, T.F. Jaramillo1,4, N.S. Lewis2,4, J.K. Nørskov1,4

1Stanford/SLAC; 2Caltech; 3LBNL; 4JCAP

Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP)

Team Science Winners

(From left) David Bierman, Veronika Stelmakh

Tailoring Thermal Emission for High Performance Solar Thermophotovoltaic Devices

[EFRC – S3TEC] David M. Bierman1, Veronika Stelmakh1, Andrej Lenert1,2, Veronika Rinnerbauer1,3, Walker R. Chan1, Ivan Celanovic1, Marin Soljacic1, Evelyn N. Wang1

1Massachusetts Institute of Technology; 2Currently at University of Michigan – Ann Arbor; 3Currently at Johannes Kepler University Linz

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

Team Science Winners

(From left) Joshua D. Howe, Robert M. Marti

Understanding Structure and Dynamics of CO2 Adsorbed in Open-Site Metal-Organic Frameworks

[EFRC – UNCAGE-ME] Robert M. Marti1, Joshua D. Howe2, Cody R. Morelock2, Krista S. Walton2, Mark S. Conradi1,3, David S. Sholl2, Sophia E. Hayes1

1Washington University; 2Georgia Institute of Technology; 3ABQMR

Center for Understanding and Control of Acid Gas-induced Evolution of Materials for Energy (UNCAGE-ME)



Team Science Finalists

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Gihan Kwon, Nathan T. La Porte, Kelly L. Materna, Benjamin Rudshteyn, Jiyun Hong

The Pyridine Alkoxide Ligand Works for Water Oxidation Catalysts Both in Theory and in Practice

[EFRC – ANSER] Benjamin Rudshteyn1, Kelly L. Materna1, Nathan T. La Porte2, Katherine J. Fisher1, Ke R. Yang1, Svante Hedstrom1, Jose F. Martinez2, Gihan Kwon3, Jiyun Hong2, David M. Tiede3, Lin X. Chen2,3, Michael R. Wasielewski2, Robert H. Crabtree1, Gary W. Brudvig1, Victor S. Batista1

1Yale University; 2Northwestern University; 3Argonne National Laboratory

Argonne-Northwestern Solar Energy Research Center (ANSER)

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Jonathan Yuly, Diep Nguyen

Mechanistic insights into energy conservation by flavin-based electron bifurcation

[EFRC – BETCy] D. Nguyen1, J. Yuly2, C. Lubner3, D. Jennings4, D. Mulder3, G. Schut1, O. Zadvornyy5, J. Hoben6, P. Zhang1, M. Tokmina-Lukaszewska7, L. Berry7, G. Lipscomb1, B. Bothner7, A. Jones4, A. Miller6, P. King3, D. Beratan2, M. Adams1, J. Peters5,7

1University of Georgia; 2Duke; 3National Renewable Energy Laboratory; 4Arizona State; 5Washington State; 6University of Kentucky; 7Montana State

Center for Biological Electron Transfer and Catalysis (BETCy)  

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Rebecca Siegelman, Alexander Forse

Rational Design of New Materials for Carbon Dioxide Capture

[EFRC – CGS] Rebecca L. Siegelman1, Alexander C. Forse1, Phillip J. Milner1, Thomas M. McDonald1, Miguel I. Gonzalez1, Tomče Runčevski1, Jeffrey D. Martell1, Jarad A. Mason1, Jung-Hoon Lee1,2, Bess Vlaisavljevich1, Walter S. Drisdell2, Jeffrey B. Kortright2, David Prendergast2, Jeffrey B. Neaton1,2,3, Berend Smit, Jeffrey A. Reimer1, Jeffrey R. Long1,2

1University of California, Berkeley; 2Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; 3Kavli Energy NanoSciences

Center for Gas Separations Relevant to Clean Energy Technologies (CGS) 

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Hui Yang, Jason Burris, Xiaoran Xin, Abhishek Singh

The Nanomachine that Synthesizes Cellulose in Plants

[EFRC – CLSF] Abhishek Singh1, Yaraslova Yingling1, Jason N. Burris1, Jonathan K. Davis1, Alison W. Roberts2, Candace H. Haigler1, Xiaoran Xin3, Ying Gu3, Hui Yang3, James D. Kubicki4, Jochen Zimmer5

1North Carolina State University; 2University of Rhode Island; 3Pennsylvania State University; 4University of Texas at El Paso; 5University of Virginia

Center for Lignocellulose Structure and Formation (CLSF) 

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Shijun Zhao, Taini Yang, Shi Shi

Effects of Alloy Complexity on Defect Production and Microstructural Evolution in Concentrated Alloys

[EFRC – EDDE] Shijun Zhao1, Taini Yang2, Shi Shi3, Chenyang Lu2, Eva Zarkadoula1, Hongbin Bei1, Lumin Wang2, Ian Robertson3, Yanwen Zhang1

1Oak Ridge National Laboratory; 2University of Michigan; 3University of Wisconsin-Madison

Energy Dissipation to Defect Evolution (EDDE)  

Team Science Finalists

(Standing from left) Yu Zhang, Matt Thompson; (Seated from left) Kun Liu, Katie Van Aken, Naresh Osti, Justin Neal

Understanding Room Temperature Ionic Liquids and their Performance in Supercapacitors

[EFRC – FIRST] Justin Neal1, Kun Liu1, Naresh Osti2, Matthew W. Thompson3, Katherine Van Aken4, Yu Zhang3

1University of California, Riverside; 2Spallation Neutron Source, Oak Ridge National Laboratory; 3Vanderbilt University; 4Drexel University

Fluid Interface Reactions, Structures and Transport Center (FIRST)

Team Science Finalists

(Top from left) Laura Dalton, Samantha Fuchs, Gabriela Dávila; (Bottom from left) Pooyan Kabir, Mary Tkach, Zhuofan Shi

Geochemical Reactions During Geological Carbon Sequestration Can Decrease Fracture Toughness of Reservoir Rock and Contribute to Microseismic Events

[EFRC – GSCO2] L. Dalton1, M.G. Davila Ordonez2, S. Fuchs3, P. Kabir2, Z. Shi4, M.K. Tkach1, A. Akono2, D.M. Crandall1, J. Druhan2, A.L. Goodman1, K. Jessen4, T. Tsotsis4, C.J. Werth3

1National Energy Technology Laboratory; 2University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; 3University of Texas at Austin; 4University of Southern California

Center for Geologic Storage of CO2 (GSCO2)

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Marc Francis Hidalgo, Yuh-Chieh (Paul) Lin, Shawn Sallis

Thermodynamic Stability, Voltage and Diffusion Kinetics of LixVOPO4 (x=0,1,2) Vanadyl Phosphate Polymorphs: Joint First-principles and Experimental Study

[EFRC – NECCES] Yuh-Chieh Lin1, Iek-Heng Chu1, Marc V. Hidalgo2, Carrie Siu2, Fredrick Omenya2, Natasha A. Chernova2, Linda W. Wangoh2, Shawn Sallis2, Louis F. J. Piper2, M. Stanley Whittingham1, Shyue Ping Ong1

1University of California San Diego; 2Binghamton University

NorthEast Center for Chemical Energy Storage (NECCES)

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Xin Ma, Gen Yin

Magnetic skyrmions in ferromagnetic/heavy-metal multi-layers

[EFRC – SHINES] Gen Yin1, Xin Ma2, Kang L. Wang1, Xiaoqin Li2

1University of California, Los Angeles; 2University of Texas at Austin

Spins and Heat in Nanoscale Electronic Systems (SHINES)

Team Science Finalists

(From left) Lesheng Li, Taylor Moot

Identification and passivation of the defect states in NiO for photovoltaic and Solar Fuel applications

[EFRC – UNC] Taylor H. Moot1, Lesheng Li1, Aaron D. Taggart1, Bing Shan1, Shannon M. McCullough1, Carrie L. Donley1, Thomas J. Meyer1, Yosuke Kanai1, James F. Cahoon1

1University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Center for Solar Fuels (UNC)