Award

Wei Xiong and Maysam Chamanzar Win NSF CAREER Grants

  • By Jennifer Zheng
  • 18 May 2021

 

Wei Xiong and Maysam Chamanzar were both recently awarded NSF CAREER grants for their outstanding work. 

Wei Xiong’s project will study the tradeoff between strength and ductility of alloy components created by additive manufacturing. His team aims to find a way to overcome the problem that the stronger a material is, the less ductile it becomes, and they will design new alloys that can be additively manufactured. This could help reduce the number of alloy powders needed for 3D printing, save the cost of alloy powder production for various engineering purposes, and provide recipes to recycle and reuse existing metal powders. 

Maysam Chamanzar’s research will present a new type of neural probe that uses graphene to change brain signals to electromagnetic waves. This will increase the number of recording channels without increasing the size of the probe since a large probe could cause brain damage. The research could provide insight into treatments for brain disorders like epilepsy, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. 

Congrats Wei and Maysam!

Grant Received for Studying Material Stability

  • By Jennifer Zheng
  • 31 March 2021

Olexandr Isayev, Geoff Hutchison, and their team of researchers received a $1.7 million grant from the Department of Defense’s Office of Naval Research for their Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative. Their project aims to gain a better understanding of how organic molecules and polymeric materials degrade under stress. Isayev’s lab plans to develop a computational framework using fast simulations for degradation pathways, reaction networks and artificial intelligence. Hutchison’s lab will use a variety of methods to make massive automated quantum chemical calculations. The results will not only allow future materials to be better designed for stability, but also offer tools that will help chemists and materials scientists quickly predict degradation pathways and products.

Congrats Olexandr and Geoff!

 

Grant Received for Developing New Type of Quantum Computer

  • By Jennifer Zheng
  • 17 March 2021

Jeremy Levy, Hrvoje Petek, and their team of researchers received a $7.5 million grant from the Office of Naval Research for their Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative to develop more efficient quantum computers. Their project, titled “Topological Spin Qubits Based on Graphene Nanoribbons,” seeks to develop a new type of qubit based on tiny strips of carbon atoms called graphene.

As of yet, no approach has been able to decisively meet all of the requirements for a scalable quantum computer. The team aims to change that by combining lithographic capabilities with synthetic chemistry protocols to create and manipulate atomically precise graphene nanoribbons in ways that may be useful for future quantum computing architectures.

Congrats Jeremy and Hrvoje!

Michael Hatridge receives 2021 Chancellor’s Distinguished Research Award

  • By Jennifer Zheng
  • 10 March 2021

The Chancellor's Distinguished Research Award annually recognizes outstanding scholarly accomplishments of members of the University of Pittsburgh's faculty. Junior Scholars include faculty members who have demonstrated great potential through the quality of their early contributions.

Professor Michael Hatridge is an outstanding researcher and has made significant contributions to the field of quantum information and quantum computing.  He has won multiple awards including the 2020 Alfred Sloan Research Fellowship and the 2019 NSF CAREER Award, and his research has been published by Nature, Science, Applied Physics Letters, and more.

Congratulations Michael!
 

Noa Marom Recieves ACS OpenEye Outstanding Junior Faculty Award

  • By Jennifer Zheng
  • 10 March 2021

Congratulations to Professor Noa Marom for winning the Spring 2021 American Chemical Society (ACS) OpenEye Outstanding Junior Faculty Award! 

This prestigious award is given to junior faculty members who show promise in computational chemistry and modeling. Up to four applicants are selected to win a $1000 prize and the opportunity to present their work at the San Antonio ACS National Meeting. 

Marom’s research uses quantum mechanical simulations, machine learning, and optimization algorithms to design materials with desired properties for various applications. Her award-winning work specifically involves the structure prediction and discovery of molecular crystals with enhanced electronic properties.

Yanan Dai Wins 2020 OCPA Outstanding Dissertation Award

  • By Jennifer Zheng
  • 3 February 2021

Congratulations to a recent graduate from Hrvoje Petek's group, Dr. Yanan Dai, for winning the 2020 International Organization of Chinese Physicists and Astronomers (OCPA) Outstanding Dissertation Award! In addition to this award, his dissertation, “Imaging Light with Photoelectrons on the Nano-Femto Scale,” was also recognized and reprinted in Springer-Nature.

Dr. Dai’s dissertation includes his work on ultrafast microscopy techniques and recent applications. These projects included his development of an ultrafast photoemission microscope with sub-10 femtosecond and nanometer spatiotemporal resolution, which was subsequently utilized to probe for and ultimately discover topological quasiparticles. Using ultrafast optics, Dr. Dai was able to probe and observe topological meron and skyrmion-like plasmonic quasiparticles as well as their dynamics during a phase transition. 

Using these observations and technological developments, he offers an analytical theory of how these newly observed quasiparticles and the microscopy techniques used to address them could have further research applications. 

A reprint of his dissertation can be found in Sprinter-Nature.

Lillian Chong and Collaborators Receive Gordon Bell Special Prize for COVID-19 Research

  • By Jenny Stein
  • 1 December 2020

Prof. Lillian Chong and graduate student, Anthony Bogetti, were part of a multi-institution team effort that won the Association for Computing Machinery’s Gordon Bell Special Prize for High Performance Computing-Based COVID-19 Research, commonly referred to as the Nobel Prize of Supercomputing. A crowning achievement of this effort is the generation of atomically detailed views of how the spike protein of the coronavirus opens up before latching onto cells during infection.

Peyman Givi Receives NSF Award to Study Complex Turbulent Flows

  • By Jenny Stein
  • 18 November 2020

​​​​​​​Mechanical engineering professors Hessam Babaee and Peyman Givi recently received an award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a three-year project titled “Real-Time and Adaptive Chemical Kinetic Model Reduction Coupled with Turbulence.” 

The chemistry of combustion involves understanding how a large number of species behave and evolve in a given operating condition.  The tractability of this technically important problem becomes increasingly difficult when the operation involves turbulent mixing. 

Pitt Engineering Secures NSF Funding

  • By Jenny Stein
  • 29 September 2020

Three projects led by PQI professors in the University of Pittsburgh’s Swanson School of Engineering, James McKone, Feng Xiong, and Nathan Youngblood, recently received funding from the National Science Foundation. Additionally, Ken Jordan in the Pitt Department of Chemistry is Co-PI on an NSF-funded project led by Lei Li to use computational methods to understand the mechanisms of wetting transparency of graphene on liquid substrates and demonstrate the real-time control of surface wettability

 

Gurudev Dutt Wins Award in Million Dollar International Quantum U Tech Accelerator

  • By Jenny Stein
  • 7 September 2020

The Innovare Advancement Center, a partnership between the Air Force Research Laboratory Information Directorate (AFRL/RI), New York State, and others, hosted a unique quantum-focused virtual pitch competition, the “Million Dollar International Quantum U Tech Accelerator,” on September 1-3 to launch their new open innovation campus in Rome, NY.

The goal of the competition was to encourage university researchers that pursue high impact projects in quantum timing, sensing, information processing/computing, and communications/networking to bring a new quantum phenomenon into the military while offering about $1,000,000 to the finalists.

Even with nearly 250 teams from 22 countries submitting proposals to take part in the competition, two PQI faculty, Dr. Tom Purdy and Dr. Gurudev Dutt, were among the top 36 selected to take part in the live pitch event, each giving a 10-minute presentation with Q&A (watch presentations from Tom and Gurudev). Ultimately, 18 finalists were selected for the $1M+ in basic research funds and Gurudev won in the topic of quantum sensing.

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