June 13, 2022
Tenth Annual Round of Scott Institute Seed Grants Will Support Five CMU Energy Projects
By Katelyn Haas-Conrad
Carnegie Mellon University research projects exploring green chemistry and reduced greenhouse gas emissions in steelmaking are among the research being supported by the Scott Institute for Energy Innovation’s 2022 Seed Grants for Energy Research.
The annual funding program, now in its tenth year, supports the development of new research in areas such as energy sources, production, efficiency, environmental impacts and energy equity. Additionally, researchers can request awards to perform vital equipment repairs. This year, the Institute awarded $278,000 to five faculty-led projects. 23 requests were submitted with requests totaling $1.42 million as part of this highly competitive process.
The 2022 Seed Funding Winners include the following researchers and projects:
- Faculty Affiliate and Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering Gabriel dos Passos Gomes, along with Scott Institute Energy Fellow Zachary Ulissi, will aim to make advancements in green chemistry by improving sustainable processes in catalysis science with their project, “Design of Bimetallic Oxide Supports for Organometallic Catalysts to Enable Hydrogenolysis with Clean H₂.”
- Faculty Affiliate and Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering Corey Harper, will develop a method to quantify need in terms of public EV charging infrastructure for different communities based on parking space availability, grid resiliency, and socioeconomic factors. His project is titled, “Combining Transportation and Grid Models to Evaluate the Equity Implications of EV Charging and Grid Infrastructure Deployment Decisions in Emergency Evacuation Scenarios.”
- Faculty Affiliate and Professor, Mechanical Engineering Shawn Litster, will use the allotted funds to support assembling an electrolyzer test station to ramp up a new research program in green hydrogen technology and low temperature water electrolysis with his project, “Electrolyzer Test Station for Green Hydrogen Research at CMU.”
- Faculty Affiliate and Co-Director, Center For Iron and Steelmaking Research; POSCO Professor, Materials Science and Engineering P. Chris Pistorius, will aim to decrease CO2 emissions from EAF steelmaking, by better understanding the current practice and by potentially carburizing EAF feed with recycled CO2. His project is titled, “Carbon in electric arc furnace steelmaking: Direct-reduced iron and oxygen use.”
- Faculty Affiliate and Associate Teaching Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering Barry Rawn, will use funds to repair and update an instrument called the Portable Phasor Measurement Unit. This equipment will be used in a project called, “Data-Driven Model Creation for Rwandan Grid Stability – Equipment Repair.” It is slated next for use in Rwanda, where it will be installed in a substation with the co-operation of Rwanda Energy Group (REG).
"This year celebrates the 10th year of the Scott Institute Seed Grant Program. We estimate that over its lifetime the program has fostered the creation of research projects that have subsequently led to around $17M in new externally funded research across the university," said Scott Institute Co-Director Andrew Gellman, who organizes the Seed Grants program.