2020 MRS Spring Meeting

MRS Awards and Recognition Program

Featuring Lightning Talks and Panel Discussion with Award Recipients

Monday, April 13
6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Sheraton, Second Level, Encanto AB

Join us to honor our distinguished award recipients!

Following the awards recognition, be sure to stay for the Lightning Talks and Panel Discussions to capture hot topics and current trends featuring lively discussion from recipients of Innovation in Materials Characterization, Mid-Career Researcher, Outstanding Early-Career Investigator, and E-MRS EU-40 Materials Prize.

This is a fun way to meet up with your colleagues, network with Society Members and jump-start your meeting week!

Lightning Talks

Innovation in Materials Characterization Award

The Innovation in Materials Characterization Award honors an outstanding advance in materials characterization that notably increases knowledge of the structure, composition, in situ behavior under outside stimulus, electronic behavior, or other characterization feature, of materials. It is not limited to the method of characterization or the class of materials observed. (MRS acknowledges the generosity of Professors Gwo-Ching Wang and Toh-Ming Lu for endowing this award.)

Jinghua GuoJinghua Guo, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
"for pioneering in situ/operando soft x-ray spectroscopy characterization of interfacial phenomena in energy, catalysis and chemical materials science"

In Situ/Operando Electronic Structure View of Interfacial Phenomena
Soft x-ray spectroscopy offers electronic structure characterization of materials in energy conversion, energy storage and catalysis in regards to the functionality, complexity of material architecture and chemical interactions. The presentation briefs the in situ/operando soft x-ray spectroscopy development and characterization of interfacial phenomena and how to reveal the mechanism of charge transfer and chemical transformation of solid/gas and solid/liquid interfaces of energy storage and catalytic materials in a realistic environment.


Mid-Career Researcher Award

The Mid-Career Researcher Award recognizes exceptional achievements in materials research made by mid-career professionals. It is not limited to the method of characterization or the class of materials observed.  (MRS acknowledges the generosity of MilliporeSigma for endowing this award.)

Xiangfeng DuanXiangfeng Duan, University of California, Los Angeles
“for contributions to rational design and assembly of layered materials for electronic, photonic and energy devices”

Van der Waals Heterostructures from 2D Materials and Beyond
The heterogeneous integration of dissimilar materials is a long pursuit of the materials science community and has defined the material foundation for modern electronics and optoelectronics. The typical material integration approaches usually involve strong chemical bonds and aggressive synthetic conditions, and are often limited to materials with strict structure match and processing compatibility. Here I will discuss the exploration of the van der Waals force for bond-free integration of highly disparate materials without lattice and processing limitations, thus producing a new generation of artificial heterostructures with atomically clean interface and electronic structure by design to unlock new physical limits and enable high-performance devices beyond the reach of existing material systems.


E-MRS EU-40 Materials Prize

The European Materials Research Society award is reserved for researchers showing exceptional promise as leaders in materials science, having performed the research for which this prize is awarded while working in Europe.

MRS and E-MRS have agreed to highlight achievements of the EU-40 Materials Prize recipient and the MRS Mid-Career Researcher recipient at each respective Society Meeting. MRS would like to thank E-MRS for this important transatlantic exchange.

Laura Na LiuLaura Na Liu, Universität Heidelberg

DNA Origami Nanotechnology for Dynamic Plasmonics
A fundamental design rule that nature has developed for biological machines is the intimate correlation between motion and function. One class of biological machines is molecular motors in living cells, which directly convert chemical energy into mechanical work. They coexist in every eukaryotic cell, but differ in their types of motion, the filaments they bind to, the cargos they carry, as well as the work they perform. Such natural structures offer inspiration and blueprints for constructing DNA-assembled artificial systems, which mimic their functionality. In this talk, I will discuss a variety of DNA-assembled plasmonic architectures with different motion and optical functions. I will also outline ongoing research directions and conclude that DNA nanotechnology has a bright future ahead.


Outstanding Early-Career Investigator Award

The MRS Outstanding Early-Career Investigator Award recognizes outstanding, interdisciplinary scientific work in materials research by an early-career scientist or engineer. The award recipient must also show exceptional promise as a developing leader in the materials area.

Jonathan RivnayJonathan Rivnay, Northwestern University
“for innovative research on an organic semiconductor microstructure and charge transport for electronics and bioelectronics”

Designing Soft Bioelectronic Active Materials
Conjugated polymers possess characteristics that make them ideal active materials for bioelectronic applications. However, designing high-performance materials and composites requires a delicate interplay of electronic properties, swelling, mass transport and cell–materials interactions. By investigating the role of molecular design, microstructure and electrolyte environments on performance, we can guide materials design and enable new opportunities in sensing and tissue electronics.



MRS Impact Award

The MRS Impact Award honors outstanding individuals who have displayed excellence in areas of science communication, education, advancing diversity, mentoring, or community engagement, which reflect the Society’s pursuit to advance materials science and technology to improve the quality of life.

Foskey_TakiyaTakiya J. Ahmed Foskey, DuPont
“for leadership, mentoring and substantive contributions toward creating and organizing educational opportunities to prepare the next generation, in particular underrepresented and economically disadvantaged youth, to strive for STEM education and careers and be role models in the future"


MRS Postdoctoral Awards

The MRS Postdoctoral Awards recognize postdoctoral scholars who show exceptional promise that may include, for example, excellence in scientific research, leadership, advocacy, outreach, or teaching during their postdoc assignment.  (MRS acknowledges the Jiang Family Foundation and MTI Corporation for their generous contribution to support this award.)

TianLiTian Li, University of Maryland

“for the innovative and pioneering research in wood nanotechnology and nanocellulose toward energy, water and sustainability”


XianwenMaoXianwen Mao, Cornell University

“for developing fabrication strategies and operando imaging techniques for nanoscale electrochemical materials systems important for environmental and energy applications”


MRS Woody White Service Award

This award honors “outstanding individuals who have embodied the Materials Research Society's Mission, Vision and Values for an egalitarian interdisciplinary community advancing materials science and technology to improve the quality of life. It may be given in recognition of long-term, impactful service to the Society, as well as for special projects/programs that significantly impacted the Society.”

Terry AselageTerry Aselage, Sandia National Laboratories (retired)

“for his focused leadership and vision at the helm of the Meetings Committee, moving the Society toward a more agile, responsive and inclusive community. Aselage also worked to create a stronger partnership between Meetings and Publications, driving the Society forward with more consistent, yet fresh approaches”