Marquette chemistry professor earns early career research grant from Department of Energy

Aug. 1, 2019

Dr. Jier HuangMILWAUKEE — Dr. Jier Huang, assistant professor of chemistry in the Way Klingler College of Arts and Sciences at Marquette University, has received a grant through the United States Department of Energy Early Career Research Program for her research into solar energy sources.

Huang’s research aims to address the challenge of capturing carbon dioxide and converting it into useful chemicals for use in solar energy, such as storing energy produced by solar panels. She will use an interdisciplinary approach that combines innovative material design and synthesis, fundamental mechanistic studies and photocatalytic performance evaluation.

“Solar energy is one of the best solutions to meet future energy demands because it is the most abundant and sustainable natural energy source,” Huang said. “There is a growing desire to develop effective strategies for direct harvest and conversion of solar energy into a usable energy format. The approaches employed in this research would also be easily transferred to other energy technologies.”

 “We are all extremely excited for Dr. Huang in receiving this award as it highlights her research potential and raises the profile of the department of chemistry,” said Dr. James Kincaid, chair and professor of chemistry at Marquette. “The research she is doing on solar energy is promising and this grant will go a long way in help her reach her goals of tackling the issue of utilizing carbon dioxide in renewable energy resources.”

The Early Career Research Program awards at least $150,000 per year to cover summer salary and research expenses. The research grants are planned for five years.

“Supporting our nation’s most talented and creative researchers in their early career years is crucial to building America’s scientific workforce and sustaining America’s culture of innovation,” U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry said. “We congratulate these young researchers on their significant accomplishments to date and look forward to their achievements in the years ahead.”

To be eligible for the DOE award, a researcher must be an untenured, tenure-track assistant or associate professor at a U.S. academic institution or a full-time employee at a DOE national laboratory who received a Ph.D. within the past 10 years. Research topics are required to fall within one of the department's Office of Science's six major program offices: advanced scientific computing research, basic energy sciences, biological and environmental research, fusion energy sciences, high energy physics, and nuclear physics.

Projects announced as recipients are selections for negotiation of financial award. The final details for each project award are subject to final grant and contract negotiations between DOE and the awardees.

About Kevin Conway

Kevin Conway

Kevin is the associate director for university communication in the Office of University Relations. Contact Kevin at (414) 288-4745 or