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9/13/2010 10:34:51 AM
Workshop to assess nano's role in energy's future

A workshop scheduled to take place in Iacocca Hall on Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 13 and 14, will explore how nanotechnology can help the drive to develop alternative sources of energy while improving the efficiency of existing methods of energy generation.

Sponsored by the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science, the event is titled “Nanotechnology for Energy Applications.” It will feature presentations by 15 world-renowned experts and a poster session by more than 20 Lehigh graduate students conducting research in nanotechnology-related fields.

“There’s a widespread belief that nanotechnology has a major role to play in the future of energy generation and storage,” says Chris Kiely, professor of materials science and engineering and a member of the workshop’s organizing committee.

“The federal government has made this an area of high emphasis. The goal of the workshop is to get a snapshot of the state-of-the-art in nanoenergy applications from some individuals who are leaders in the field.”

The workshop is comprised of presentations and discussion sessions in four areas in which Lehigh’s scientists and engineers are already conducting research:

  • Nanoscale Electronics and Optics for Energy-Efficient Information Technology, chaired by Tom Koch, director of Lehigh’s Center for Optical Technologies (COT), and Slava Rotkin, associate professor of physics
  • Solar and Energy-Efficient Technologies, chaired by Nelson Tansu, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering
  • Catalysts, Sorbents, and Membranes for Energy and the Environment, chaired by Israel Wachs, professor of chemical engineering, and Bruce Koel, professor of chemistry
  • Emergent Nanomaterials for Energy Applications, chaired by Kiely and Dmitry Vezenov, assistant professor of chemistry

“Significant research efforts are already underway at Lehigh in each of these four areas,” says Kiely. “We’re hoping to gain insight from the speakers regarding new opportunities for these distinct communities to overlap and work even more closely together.”

The workshop will feature three plenary addresses. Eli Yablonovitch, professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences at the University of California at Berkeley, will discuss “Energy-Efficient Electronics.”

Ralph Cavin, chief scientist with the Semiconductor Research Corp., will speak on “Nanoelectronics and Information Technologies,” and Alexis Bell, the Dow Professor of sustainable chemistry and faculty senior scientist in chemical and biomolecular engineering at Berkeley, will discuss “Nanocatalysis for Energy Applications.”

The remaining speakers represent Arizona State, Harvard and Texas Technological Universities; the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; the Georgia Institute of Technology; Sandia, Argonne and Oak Ridge National Laboratories; IBM’s T.J. Watson Research Center; and the Instituto de Catalisis in Madrid, Spain.

The workshop will be opened by S. David Wu, dean of the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science.

Other members of the workshop organizing committee are Koch, Rotkin, Tansu, Vezenov and Wachs.

For more information about the workshop, visit the event’s website.

Other Headlines from Lehigh University ...
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 - Lehigh researchers slow broadband light waves with nanoplasmonic structures
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 - Workshop to assess nano's role in energy's future

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