News and Announcements

Rutgers University has set a new record by having 2 teams from one university as titleholders of the Hult Prize Regionals Competition. Today, the Hult Prize is the world’s biggest engine for the launch of for-good, for-profit startups emerging from universities with over 2,500 staff and volunteers around the world. In nearly a decade, the movement has deployed more than $50M of capital into the sector and mobilized more than one million young people to rethink the future of business as it continues to breed disruptive innovation on college and university campuses across 100 plus countries. The Hult Prize Foundation been called the “Nobel Prize for Students” and has been featured in a TIME Magazine Cover Story highlighting the “Top 5 Ideas Changing the World.” This year’s challenge focuses on harnessing the power of energy to transform the lives of 10 million people by 2025. ( )

Hult Prize at Rutgers held a pitch competition in December 2017 and the first-place winner, Sulis, continued to the Boston Regional competition in March 2018. There, Sulis competed against 45 universities from around the world and won first place, beating teams from Yale University, Brown University, Harvard University, University of Michigan, New York University, Duke University, the University of Pennsylvania, and others. LivingWaters applied through the online application of the competition and made it to the Shanghai regional finals, there beating out over 50 of the top Asian universities to advance to the summer accelerator. Read more...


Women in Energy & Environmental Leadership

An event to foster leadership and careers of women in the industry

22-Mar-2018, 7:30-9:00AM
Join for a FREE breakfast at GLOBALCON presenting case studies of successful women businesses owners and national program leaders as they discuss the unique barriers, opportunities and challenges they encounter in their work. The meeting is presented by the Council on Women in Energy and Environmental Leadership (CWEEL). CWEEL seeks to develop a prominent voice for women in the industry, and to contribute to the advancement of women in leadership positions throughout the industry.

Learn more about CWEEL -

Register -

Join the Rutgers Energy Institute for a Women in Energy (WIE) networking and mentoring event. Dean Jacquelyn Litt, of Douglass Residential College and Douglass Campus, will discuss initiatives and programs at Douglass College and how YOU can participate.

Education and Career Paths in Energy

The focus is on female leadership in the energy and STEM sector, with participants sharing their experiences, career paths, and advise. Attendees will be provided the opportunity to network and/or mentor with female faculty, alumni, government and corporate leaders, post-doctoral fellows, and undergraduate students both during the speed networking and reception portion of the evening.

Rutgers University Busch Student Center - The Cove, 604 Bartholomew Road  Piscataway, NJ 08854

Wednesday, April 4, 2018 6:00pm to 8:00pm ET

Parking: Visitors may park in Lots 51, 59, 60B & 67 without permits. Special event parking is only for visitors to the University and does not include free metered parking. Faculty, Staff, and Students must park only in lots they are authorized to park in.


Jacquelyn Litt

Jacquelyn Litt:

Jacquelyn Litt is Dean of Douglass Residential College and the Douglass Campus, and is Professor of Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University-New Brunswick. She has expertise in women in STEM, was a P.I. and consultant for the ADVANCE program to advance women in STEM at the National Science Foundation and a grant reviewer for innovative STEM pedagogy projects at the Association of American Colleges and Universities. Litt received the “Leaders in Faculty Diversity” in 2016 from The Committee to Advance Our Common Purpose at Rutgers University in recognition of her outstanding leadership in building new opportunities for students at Douglass to share diverse perspectives in a safe and inclusive environment. Litt was honored in 2016 with a Joint Legislative Resolution from the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey, honoring her leadership of Douglass Residential College and her research on women’s issues that have made a positive impact on the lives of women and children.

M. Silvina Tomassone: Tomassone is an Associate Professor in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering who is recently working on catalysis at the nexus of food energy and water, nanoscience, nanotechnology, energy storage,and grapheme oxide anodes for lithium ion batteries. Tomassone is the recipient of several teaching awards including Professor of the Year Award in Engineering (2016) and Teaching Excellence Awards in 2006, 2010,2011 and 2013.

About the Women in Energy Program: The Rutgers Energy Institute (REI) is sponsoring a new multidisciplinary networking group called Women in Energy (WIE).  WIE is aimed at increasing the presence of women in the energy sector, and over the mid to long term, the presence of women in senior and management roles across the energy space - energy and environmental research and policy. The WIE seeks to empower women to realize their full potential, building a thriving community of professional women - we hope you can join us at our events.

Event is Free but

Registration will be required - Click Here

If you are interested in participating as a mentor or have any questions please contact Johanna Bernstein at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Beatrice Birrer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


March 2nd


Douglass Student Center, Douglass Lounge *

* note recent change in location (event no longer at CSC)

(Lunch served)

Interested in participating in an interdisciplinary research proposal team on innovations in food, energy and water?  Have relevant work you’d like to build on or extend?  Please join us! 

The National Science Foundation has indicated it will likely release a RFP for Innovation in Food Energy and Water Systems (INFEWS) in the spring of 2018.  Sponsored by the Rutgers Energy Institute (REI), this workshop is meant to help Rutgers researchers network and form interdisciplinary teams around FEWs research questions of interest.

RSVP is recommended to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 2/28


10:45-10:55am             Introduction to FEWS and past RFP Requirements  (Rachael Shwom, Associate Director REI)

10:55-11:50am             3-5 minute introductions by workshop participants on their FEWs related research and questions of interest.

                                     Identification of overlapping interests.

11:50am-12:30pm        Roundtable lunch to sit with researchers with similar interests in research questions

Please contact Rachael Shwom (REI Associate Director) with any questions, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Paul Falkowski 5 portrait 580x870The 2018 Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement – often described as the ‘Nobel Prize for the Environment’ – has been awarded to Paul Falkowski and James J. McCarthy, for their decades of leadership in understanding – and communicating – the impacts of climate change. Paul Falkowski is a Rutgers distinguished professor in the departments of Earth and Planetary Sciences and Marine and Coastal Sciences as well as director of the Rutgers Energy Institute. James J. McCarthy is from the Department of Biological Oceanography at Harvard University.

Read more at Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences.

Read more at the SEBS Newsroom.


REI Student Travel Awards

The Rutgers Energy Institute (REI) Travel Award, offered annually, has been developed with the goal of enhancing the scholarship and success of our students and to provide richer and broader exposure to the topics and challenges in energy. Travel awards, open to both undergraduate and graduate students, are given in recognition of good scholarship for those seeking to enter the clean energy /environmental field. Students in any discipline related to energy are eligible including physical sciences, engineering, economics, social sciences, and policy.

Quick facts:

  • To offset the cost of travel and meeting attendance, travel awards are awarded to eligible students in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences (SEBS), School of Arts & Sciences (SAS), School of Engineering (SOE), Bloustein School of Planning & Public Policy (BSPPP), and Rutgers Business School (RBS).
  • Open to Undergraduate and Graduate Students.
  • Applications may be submitted once in the spring and once in the fall semester. However, a student may only receive one award in any 12-month period.
  • Eligible expenses include meeting registration, lodging, meals, and transportation.  

The funds are primarily intended for the following activities:

  1. Presentation of papers at scientific meetings.

In order to be eligible for scientific meeting funding, a formal abstract acknowledging Rutgers Energy Institute as a research funder must be submitted and accepted by the conference organizers. The research must be part of the approved dissertation proposal or capstone/research project. Graduate and undergraduate applicants are required to present a poster or paper at a meeting. Projects involving multiple faculty advisors, with expertise spanning both scientific/engineering and societal/policy aspects, will be encouraged.

  1.  Research related activities such as spending a brief period in another lab to learn a new technique or a research internship.
  1.  Career and training activities such as an internship to learn career skills.

To apply for the REI undergraduate or graduate student travel award, please send the following materials as one single pdf package to Beatrice Birrer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please use the following email subject line: REI Travel Award: [Your Name].

  1. A cover sheet listing your full name, email address, current and undergraduate institutions, academic discipline(s), faculty advisor(s), the name of the meeting/research or career related activity, start and end dates and location must be submitted.
  2. A current CV for graduate students, optional for undergraduates
  3. An essay describing your interest in the field of energy and how the proposed activities are critical to your education (500 words maximum)
  4. A letter of support from your faculty advisor
  5. An itemized budget
  6. Identification of any prior REI travel support
  7. Corresponding proof of acceptance by organization or host. Submitted abstract must be included.

Please consider making a donation to the REI Student Support Fund by clicking here to help our students improve their communication skills and develop scholarly collaborations to enhance their education. 

Application Deadlines

Students are eligible for one travel grant per academic year, based on the availability of funding.

For travel and related expenses that will occur between January 1 and June 30, applications are due by November 1.

For travel and related expenses that will occur between July 1 and December 31, applications are due by May 1.

By submitting an application, the student acknowledges that if awarded, upon completion of the supported travel, the student will submit a brief report to REI. The report is to include a description of the experience/activities, photographs, and the benefits to the student's scholarship.


Rutgers researchers co-author first study on biological impacts of abruptly ending efforts to cool Earth’s climate.

Volcanoes, nuclear war, and solar geo-engineering.

With a research portfolio that includes all three, Alan Robock is used to thinking about sudden, catastrophic change. A professor of environmental science at Rutgers University, Robock studies the movement of small particles and liquids through Earth’s atmosphere. In that role, he researches some very large and particle-producing events: the sudden extrusion of many tons of sulfur from an erupting volcano, or the global convection of smoke and ash from the firestorms that would follow a nuclear war. Read more of The Atlantic article...

Georgios Tsilomelekis- assistant professor, Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, School of Engineering, is the principal investigator of an award totaling $292,193. The project, titled Elucidating Solvent Effects in Biomass Conversion Reactions by Means of Operando Spectroscopy, is being supported by the National Science Foundation. Learn more about Tsilomelekis here.

Richard Riman, distinguished professor, Rutgers University, of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering is one of this year's HIVE 50 Honorees in the Building Technology category. The HIVE 50 are drawn from the top people, products and processes that are leading the charge to inspire creativity, higher performance, and innovation in housing. Honorees are separated into five categories – building technology, capital, design, intel and strategy. Read more...

The latest Annual Report published by the Office of Research and Economic Development highlighting Rutgers research achievements for Fiscal Year 2017 is now available to view and download. Read more...

The newly formed Honors College at Rutgers University was envisioned as “a living-learning community focused on tackling complex problems and global challenges.” Four students and their faculty advisors just put that theory into practice. Honors College students Yuki Osumi ('20/School of Arts and Sciences), Sarah Pomeranz ('20/Rutgers Business School), and Anurag Modak ('20/SAS), with Ari Mendelow (‘18/School of Engineering) won the Hult Prize at Rutgers University Competition on December 8. Johnson & Johnson, one of the sponsors of the competition donated the $1,000 first prize.

Rutgers Business School student Sarah Pomeranz said that she and the team were ecstatic over the win, and very grateful to their advisors. “We had a Board of Advisors comprised of Rutgers faculty and professionals spanning the campus; we learned so much from them and our experiences in the Rutgers Eco Complex and the Innovation Lab .”

SULIS (solar ultraviolet light-induced sterilization) is a solar powered water purification system for communities without access to clean water, whether they are in developing countries or recovering from natural disasters. The team’s research shows that using ultraviolet light the technology could sterilize 12 liters of water in seven hours.  Read more....

Making fuel from plants has long been a goal of scientists and engineers hoping to limit wild swings in fuel prices and availability and to prepare for a time when fi nite supplies of petroleum dry up.But the promise of obtaining abundant and sus-tainable supplies of liquid fuel from biomass, by and large agricultural crops, is a challenge that still vexes scientists and engineers after decades of research.

Rutgers School of Engineering assistant professor Shishir Chundawat...Read more.

Assistant Professor - Atmospheric Chemistry

Rutgers University–New Brunswick, New Jersey

Applications will be begin to be reviewed January 31, 2018

The Department of Environmental Sciences ( at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, NJ, invites applications for a tenure-track Assistant Professor in the area of Atmospheric Chemistry. The successful candidate should have a Ph.D. in atmospheric chemistry, chemical engineering, or a related environmental discipline and demonstrated ability to conduct research in a university setting; teach at the graduate and undergraduate levels in atmospheric chemistry or other courses relevant to research interests; and mentor students. We seek applicants with research interests in areas including, but not limited to, interactions between climate change and air quality, and the role of atmospheric chemistry in biogeochemical cycles. We especially encourage applicants who desire to develop interdisciplinary projects and to collaborate with faculty from other programs and departments at Rutgers, including Earth and Planetary Sciences, Ecology and Evolution, Geography, Marine and Coastal Sciences, Biochemistry and Microbiology, the School of Engineering, and the Rutgers Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute. The successful applicant will be eligible for membership in the Institute of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, which unites faculty, researchers, and graduate students studying Earth's interior, continents, oceans, atmosphere, and biosphere, their interactions through Earth history, and their effects on human civilization today. Applicants will be expected to develop a strong, externally-funded research program and to contribute to the Department's education and research missions at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

The facilities of the Department of Environmental Sciences include local and remote supercomputing and an array of state-of-the-art laboratory instrumentation. As a member of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, we have access to the computing and research facilities of the National Center for Atmospheric Research. Locally, our Photochemical Assessment Monitoring (PAM) Site ( supports continuous, real-time measurements of various physical and chemical properties of the lower boundary layer, including surface energy fluxes. Through the PAM Site, the department has a strong working relationship with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Air Quality, which controls over 100 air monitors at 33 different field sites throughout the state. A member of the Big Ten and the Association of American Universities, Rutgers-New Brunswick is America’s eighth oldest institution of higher learning and New Jersey’s premier public research university. The city of New Brunswick sits in the center of America’s vibrant northeast corridor, which runs from Boston to Washington, D.C. We are close to NOAA’s Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory in Princeton and NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, NY, and our faculty members collaborate with scientists at both. We host one of the most diverse student bodies in the United States. As our 2016 commencement speaker President Barack Obama said, “America converges here.”

Qualified applicants should apply at with a cover letter, curriculum vitae, statements of research and teaching interests, and the names and contact information for three references. Review of applications will begin January 31, 2018, with an intended start date of September 1, 2018. Applicants from underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply. Questions may be addressed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Rutgers University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. Qualified applicants will be considered for employment regardless of race, creed, color, national origin, age, ancestry, nationality, marital or domestic partnership or civil union status, sex, pregnancy, gender identity or expression, disability status, liability for military service, protected veteran status, affectional or sexual orientation, genetic information, or any other category protected by law. As an institution, we value diversity of background and opinion, and prohibit discrimination or harassment on the basis of any legally protected class in the areas of hiring, recruitment, promotion, transfer, demotion, training, compensation, pay, fringe benefits, layoff, termination or any other terms and conditions of employment. For additional information please see the Non-Discrimination Statement at the following web address:

This report was prepared by Rutgers University in consultation with the New Jersey Climate Change and Public Health Working Group of the New Jersey Climate Adaptation Alliance. A draft version of this report was issued in February 2017.  The Alliance received public comments on the draft report and made revisions to address the comments in this final version.

The Consulate General of Canada (CGC) in New York, which includes New Jersey as part of its territory, reached out to the Rutgers Energy Institute for participants in an oil sands tour. Oil sands is a naturally occurring mixture of sand, clay or other minerals, water and bitumen.

The CGC, which is responsible for energy- and climate-related advocacy, organized the tour to Alberta for a group of energy experts drawn from academia, think tanks and sector organizations from within the Consulate General’s territory.

Representing the Rutgers Energy Institute (REI) was Nirav Patel, research scholar and director of experiential learning at Rutgers Honors College, who sat down for a Q&A following the four-day tour to Alberta.

Why did you go on the tour? Patel: I study the role of energy education on fostering environmental behavior. The trip was a significant opportunity to discern the facts from myths and misunderstandings that are often reported in popular press on energy production and specifically as it relates to Oil Sands of Alberta. Secondly, given that the trip was being organized by the public policy arm of the Consulate General of Canada in New York, I was representing Rutgers Energy Institute’s mission to offer policy advice to government, business, and civic leaders on energy...


The Rutgers Energy Institute and Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy partnered for the first Women in Energy program at Rutgers University on November 8. The goal of the program is to empower students to take on leadership roles in the energy sector and realize their full potential, while building a thriving community of professional women. 

The program, which centered on a moderated panel discussion and open question and answer period featuring the all-female leadership drawn from the energy sector, can be viewed here.  The panel of experts included Serpil Guran, director of Rutgers EcoComplex, the “Clean Energy Innovation Center” at the university; Alissa Park, Lenfest Chair in Applied Climate Science and director of The Lenfest Center for Sustainable Energy at Columbia University; Ellen Morris, adjunct professor in the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University and president and founder of Sustainable Energy Solutions; Jeanne Fox, member of Rutgers Board of Trustees and an adjunct professor in School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. Fox is also a former commissioner at the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities as well as the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Energy. Rounding out the panel, as moderator, was Rachael Shwom, associate professor in the Department of Human Ecology at Rutgers and associate director of the Rutgers Energy Institute.

Panelists shared their experiences and career paths and offered advice for students seeking to enter the energy and environment field.

Ashley Pennington, a Ph.D. candidate at Rutgers...



The Rutgers Energy Institute expressed sincere gratitude to Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy for their partnership and generous support of the panel discussion and the networking reception. The events moderated panel discussion and open question and answer period can be viewed at or the video above.


TechAdvance, an early-stage technology development fund, provides grants of up to $100,000 to advance Rutgers research projects toward commercialization. Recently, Rutgers inventors G. Charles Dismukes; Martha Greenblatt; Anders Laursen; Karin Calvinho were awarded for their project "A New Catalyst for Generation of Carbon Feedstocks & Fuels from Carbon Dioxide".

Summary: This project focuses on transition metal phosphide catalysts used to selectively generate valuable hydrocarbons for fuel or chemical feedstocks for production from CO2. Using renewable electricity for power, the process can be fully sustainable and a carbon neutral technology.

Market Applications:

  • Renewable feedstocks and fuels
  • Methane and ethylene production for the chemical industry
  • CO2 gas to solids via polymeric [CH2O]n (3>n>100), CO2 emissions recycling/mitigation, electrical energy storage;

Download: Technology Details (pdf)

Learn more about TechAdvance Fund - click here

Q&A with Rutgers Professor Robert E. Kopp, coauthor of “the most up-to-date comprehensive report on climate science on the planet”

The Climate Science Special Report, released last week by the U.S. Global Change Research Program, details the science behind global warming and its current and potential impacts on the American economy, communities, public health and infrastructure.

One of the report’s lead authors is Robert E. Kopp, a professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, director of Rutgers’ Institute of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences and codirector of Rutgers’ Coastal Climate Risk and Resilience Initiative.

Rutgers Today asked Kopp to discuss the report, which serves as Volume 1 of the U.S.’s Fourth National Climate Assessment, and what it says about the future of our planet. Read more Rutgers Today article - click here.

By Dave D'Alessandro

The most comprehensive climate science report in the world was released last Friday, and not surprisingly, it is filled with omens and portents dire.

The National Climate Assessment, an 18-month process involving 51 scientists and 13 federal agencies, found that human influence is the "dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century," and that only a significant reduction in emissions will curtail rising temperatures.

That isn't a surprise to anyone who has been paying attention, but to understand the report's nuances, we turned to a world-class climate scientist.

Robert Kopp, the climate policy scholar at Rutgers' Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences and the director at the Institute of Earth, Ocean and & Atmospheric Studies, has done groundbreaking research on the impact of intensified coastal flooding. His comments below were edited for brevity.

Q. Let's start with the parochial: What does the report say about New Jersey, long considered a sea-level hot spot?

Click here to read entire Star-Ledger article and learn more.

View YouTube interview with Bob Kopp by NJTV.


Energy is the lifeline of humanity. Can you build scalabe, sustainable social enteprises that harness the power of energy to transform the lives of 10million people by 2025 ?

The Hult Prize Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to bringing together the world’s next wave of social entrepreneurs.

Hult Prize at Rutgers Pitch Competition

December 8th at Rutgers University, New Brunswick

Challenge: “Transform: Harnessing the Power of Energy to Transform Lives

Register for the event at

Student teams (undergraduate, graduate) will advance directly to regionals if they win

Learn more at:


Seeking a better way to capture radioactive iodides in spent nuclear reactor fuel, Rutgers-New Brunswick scientists have developed an extremely efficient “molecular trap” that can be recycled and reused. Read more.

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