Discipline: Chemistry & Chemical Sciences
Subcategory: STEM Research
Feimeng Zhou - California State University Los Angeles
Co-Author(s): Arturo Pacheco-Vega, California State University Los Angeles
The NSF-CREST Center for Energy and Sustainability (CEaS) was established at CSULA in 2009 with the mission to conduct research on and to increase awareness of sustainable energy and mentor and prepare for advanced degrees a group of students who have been underrepresented in the STEM fields. CEaS was recently renewed for Phase II in 2016. Faculty in the center (CEaS), are making significant strides in various areas such as (1) Photovoltaics: where multiple methodologies and materials are being tested to develop novel photovoltaic materials; (2) Fuel cells: where the broad goals of are to develop a novel microfluidic-based direct methanol fuel cell (µDMFC) and to assess its efficiency; (3) New superconducting materials and applications, which correlate the structures to functions of both low- and high-temperature superconductors and enhance the critical densities and irreversibility fields of superconductors for high-current applications such as power cables and high-field applications; and (4) System modeling: where the focus is on the development of mathematical models, algorithms and numerical simulations of different energy-related phenomena and systems investigated by other research thrusts. Our success in achieving the mission of the center is reflected by: (a) the number of publications by the Center faculty: over 150 during Phase I ; (b) 41 of our 87 graduating students are pursuing M. S. and Ph. D. degrees in STEM; (c) the Center faculty were successful in obtaining more than 34 grants exceeding10 million dollars in external funding and; (c) research infrastructure at CSULA has been updated to the tune of over 3 million dollars, with many of the instruments being directly related to materials and energy research. These accomplishments demonstrate the efforts and determination of the CEaS faculty and the institutional support for energy research. CSULA currently operates the largest university hydrogen fueling facility (4.4 million dollars through a combination of university investment and grants) in the US. Bolstered by the enhanced research infrastructure and elevated productivity during Phase I, and with the renewal of Phase II, CSULA has set as an institutional goal to develop CEaS as a premier and sustainable research center among all masters level institutions in the Western US.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): National Science Foundation-HRD-1547723
Faculty Advisor: None Listed,