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Research Funding Opportunities

Tuesday, April 18
5:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Sheraton, Second Level, Maryvale AB

The Research Funding Opportunities session has been refreshed in order to provide more interaction between the government agency presenters and our membership.  Invited talks will consist of a 15-minute introduction centered on the overall focus of the agency's materials science research efforts, programmatic descriptions of how to collaborate or apply, and other general details. These talks will be followed by four roundtable discussions (maximum) of a 10-minute Q&A between the agency presenters and MRS Members. 

Speakers

Lynnette Madsen
Lynnette D. Madsen

Division of Materials Research—
National Science Foundation
Navigating Funding Opportunities in Materials Research at NSF

Andrew Schwartz
Andrew Schwartz
U.S. Department of Energy—
Office of Science
Materials Research Directions and Opportunities in the Office of Basic Energy Sciences

Lenny Tinker
Lenny Tinker

U.S. Department of Energy—
Solar Energy Technologies Office
Department of Energy SunShot Initiative Materials Challenges

Thomas Rieker
Thomas Rieker

W.M. Keck Foundation
W.M. Keck Foundation—Who We Are, What We Do

Pani (Chakrapani) Varnasi
Pani (Chakrapani) Varnasi

Materials Science Division—U.S. Army Research Office
Basic Research Programs at the Materials Science Division of the Army Research Office


Navigating Funding Opportunities in Materials Research at NSF

An overview of the Division of Materials Research, one of the largest and most diverse divisions at the National Science Foundation, will be described and funding opportunities in materials research presented.

About Lynnette D. Madsen

Lynnette D. Madsen has worked at the National Science Foundation (NSF) as a program director in materials research since 2000. Additionally, she has completed three detail assignments at NSF dealing with international efforts with Africa, increasing the advancement of women in academic careers, and strategic human capital analysis and planning. She has led new co-operative activities with European researchers in materials; been part of the driving force in program development and initiatives in nanotechnology, manufacturing, and sustainability; and has maintained an active independent research program. Previously, she was on faculty at Linköping University and held a visiting/adjunct faculty position at Carnegie Mellon University. Earlier, she spent a decade working in industry in Canada.


Materials Research Directions and Opportunities in the Office of Basic Energy Sciences

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Basic Energy Sciences (BES) supports fundamental research that provides the foundations for new energy technologies and supports DOE missions in energy, environment, and national security. The research crosses the full spectrum of materials and chemical sciences with a focus on understanding, predicting, and ultimately controlling matter and energy at electronic, atomic, and molecular levels. In addition, BES builds and operates national user facilities for x-ray, neutron, and nanoscale sciences. This presentation will provide an overview of the BES materials sciences research portfolio, including strategic directions for the future, and the grant application process.

About Andrew Schwartz

Andrew Schwartz is currently Senior Technical Advisor for Energy Frontier Research Centers (EFRCs), leading the BES team that manages the EFRC program, and was previously the BES Program Manager for the Experimental Condensed Matter Physics Program. Prior to joining DOE in 2008, Schwartz spent seven years in industry, leading a multi-disciplinary scientific and engineering team in the development of a new technology for semiconductor metrology.


Department of Energy SunShot Initiative Materials Challenges

The Energy Efficiency and Renewal Energy Offices (EERE) within the U.S. Department of Energy support applied research and development to overcome technical challenges and sustain American leadership in the transition to a global clean energy economy. In this presentation, an overview of the materials challenges within the EERE Solar Energy Technologies Office SunShot Initiative will be described.

The SunShot Initiative is a collaborative national effort to reduce the price of solar energy to make solar-generated electricity available to everyone. Due to the success of the industry as a whole, the utility component of SunShot 2020 target of $0.06/kWh for U.S. installations with a moderate solar resource is clearly in sight. In order to accelerate increased access to solar energy, the SunShot Initiative recently set a 2030 goal of $0.03/kWh, which is expected to result in a doubling of the U.S. solar deployment in 2050 compared to the original target. To achieve this ambitious 2030 target, the SunShot Initiative directly supports national labs, universities, nonprofit organizations, and industry through competitively selected awards and prizes to support a variety of endeavors spanning soft costs, advanced business models, grid integration, and the development of new PV materials and technologies. In this presentation, the materials challenges related to the SunShot Initiative and its research goals, such as increasing and understanding durability, reducing or passivating defects to facilitate manufacturing, and increasing efficiency to help reduce the overall cost of solar, will be described. This will be provided in context of the current SunShot programs that support materials development.

About Lenny Tinker

Lenny Tinker is the Acting Program Manager for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) Photovoltaics Team that funds and manages applied research and development programs to develop advanced photovoltaic systems. He has been working on the SunShot Initiative at SETO since September 2011, and started as an AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow. Prior to his position at the DOE, Tinker was an Alexander von Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellow at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität in Münster, Germany, where he designed inorganic complexes to be used in organic light-emitting diodes and to promote triplet-triplet upconversion processes. Tinker obtained a PhD degree in Chemistry from Princeton University and a BS degree from Beloit College. His doctoral research focused on visible light-induced water reduction using iridium(III) chromophores and colloidal catalysts to produce a portable fuel using sunlight.


W.M. Keck Foundation—Who We Are, What We Do

The W.M. Keck Foundation programs support high risk/high-reward fundamental science, engineering and medical research; undergraduate education in western states; and service and arts organizations in Southern California.This is an opportunity for you to learn about science funding through this private philanthropy and hear what makes a proposal competitive.

About Thomas Rieker

Thomas Rieker is the Senior Program Director for Science and Engineering at the W.M. Keck Foundation. Rieker is widely recognized in the materials community from his 12 years as a program director in the Division of Materials Research (DMR) at the National Science Foundation.  

Rieker is a soft condensed-matter physicist expert on the structure and electro-optic properties of ferroelectric liquid crystals and the nanostructure of a wide range of materials. He was a founding member of the MRS Diversity Committee and contributed to the creation of Strange Matter, the Traveling Interactive Museum Exhibition.


Basic Research Programs at the Materials Science Division of the Army Research Office

The Materials Science Division of the U.S. Army Research Office (ARO) seeks to realize unprecedented materials properties by embracing innovative, long-term, high-risk, high-payoff basic research opportunities for the U.S. Army with special emphasis on four programs: Materials by Design, Mechanical Behavior of Materials, Physical Properties of Materials, and Synthesis and Processing. The novel discoveries of extraordinary material properties are anticipated to enable revolutionary devices and systems for future soldiers. In this presentation, an overview of the current research thrusts within each program of the ARO Materials Science Division will be presented. A summary of the various opportunities for basic research awards through ARO will also be discussed. Details of various other divisions and their program thrusts can be found at the ARO website.

About Pani (Chakrapani) Varnasi

Pani Varanasi received his PhD degree in Materials Science & Engineering from the University of Notre Dame in 1994. He currently manages a program (Physical Properties of Materials) focusing on electronic, photonic, magnetic and thermal properties of materials at the Army Research Office (ARO). He also conducts research in the area of functional materials at Duke University as an adjunct faculty. Prior to joining ARO, he has worked at APL Engineered Materials Inc./Advanced Lighting Technologies Inc., and at UDRI/Air Force Research Labs, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. He has so far authored/co-authored about 100 papers, one book chapter and four patents in the area of functional materials.