News and Announcements

The Rutgers Energy Institute and Columbia University's Center on Global Energy Policy partnered for the first Women in Energy event at Rutgers University on November 8th . The program centered on a panel discussion and reception focused on female leadership in the energy sector.  The panel of experts included  Serpil Guran, Director of Rutgers EcoComplex “Clean Energy Innovation Center”; Jeanne Fox, Rutgers Board of Trustees, Adjunct Professor in School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University, former Commissioner at New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, and former Commissioner at New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Energy; 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 School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University and President and Founder of Sustainable Energy Solutions; and Rachael Shwom, Associate Professor in Department of Human Ecology at Rutgers University, Associate Director of The Rutgers Energy Institute as moderator.

The panelists shared their experiences, career paths, and offered advice for students seeking to enter the energy/environment field.

Ashley Pennington commented "As a PhD Candidate at Rutgers I enjoyed attending the Women in Energy event because it opened doors both for me to find a mentor and be a mentor. I was able to learn from wonderful women who were further along in their career, and in addition, during the networking reception I was able to speak with younger women interested in energy. The WIE event gave me a chance to both get advice and offer advice in the same night -- while learning more about the various facets of working in energy."

Among the outcomes of the evening was to empower students to take on leadership roles in the energy sector and to encourage them realize their full potential, while building a thriving community of professional women. 

Panelist Serpil Guran, director of Rutgers EcoComplex says that “currently, the energy and environment sector is heavily dominated by men. In order to increase the women carrier employees we need educated women in this sector. Young girls should be encouraged in STEM education and women overall through their education and in their carriers should be provided mentoring. The Mentor –mentee partnership in energy sector is invaluable and will help new comers to learn from other women’s experience. There is benefit to hear lessons learned from others. Efficient networking will be beneficial for a successful energy carriers for women. ”

Rachael Shwom, associate director of the Rutgers Energy Institute and moderator of the event noted “This was such a fun event for me. The sheer amount of energy expertise and experience on the panel was amazing.  It was a great opportunity for those in attendance to learn about energy and energy careers.”

The events moderated panel discussion and open question and answer period can be viewed at https://youtu.be/e3K8Hx4csjo or the video below:

The Rutgers Energy Institute (REI) thanks Columbia University's Center on Global Energy Policy for their partnership and generous support.

 

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.

2018 CHALLENGE: HARNESSING THE POWER OF ENERGY

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

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.

Prof. Bob Kopp, Director of Rutgers Institute of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences (EOAS), is an author of the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s Climate Science Special Report: Fourth National Climate Assessment, Volume I, released November 3 and currently the most up-to-date comprehensive report on climate science in the world.

Prof. Kopp and other authors will participate in a AAAS Facebook Live webinar at 3pm on November 8. The report is currently described in the following:

In the startup ecosystem in New Jersey, not enough founders have heard of the Rutgers EcoComplex, in Bordentown, which is part of the New Jersey Business Incubation Network.

The mission of the EcoComplex is to promote the development of the environmental and alternative energy industries, including the testing and verification of innovations in alternative energy, the remediation and protection of environmental quality, and the promotion of compatible sectors of the food industry and innovative agriculture.

New to the incubator is the EcoIgnite Clean Energy Proof of Concept Center and Accelerator Program, which will be headed by Serpil Guran, director of the EcoComplex, and which received a grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Authority, “which recognized the importance of clean energy business development in the mid-Atlantic Region.” Rutgers has been at the forefront of research and business development in New Jersey in this field. Read more.

jieun yangThe Rutgers Energy Institute (REI) is proud to announce that Jieun Yang is one of this year's Materials Research Society (MRS) Postdoctoral Award recipients.The REI  proudly funded Jieun Yang as a REI research fellow for her work in the Nano-materials and Devices Group under Dr. Manish Chhowalla.  The MRS Postdoctoral Award recognizes postdoctoral scholars who are showing exceptional promise that may include, for example, excellence in scientific research, leadership, advocacy, outreach, or teaching, during their postdoc assignment. 

The award citation is: “for creative research in chemically exfoliated 2D materials and tireless dedication to mentoring women in science and engineering”. The award consists of a $2,000 honorarium, a citation certificate, and complimentary meeting registration to attend the 2017 MRS Fall Meeting. This year’s MRS Postdoctoral Awards,  will be presented during the 2017 MRS Fall Meeting in Boston.

Save a Watt, Save the World

Campus vs. Campus Energy Reduction Competition for 2017

31 days of energy conservation for the month of October. Are you up for the challenge?

Guidelines for Energy Competition

  1. Check out: http://facilities.rutgers.edu/about-ufcp/sustainability/energy-conservation-tips to find out what you can do to save energy on your campus.
  1. University Facilities will collect electrical energy readings for each campus from October 1-31, and compared to October the previous year.
  1. The campus that reduces its energy usage by the greatest percentage wins the energy trophy!
  1. Rankings will be posted after the trophy presentation.

Trophy will be awarded at a home Football game.

Flyer available for posting

Sponsored by:  University Facilities and Capital Planning

 

 

Smart cities— where different utilities and services are interconnected via the Internet of Things(IoT) — may be especially beneficial during times of emergency.

Narayan Mandayam, a Distinguished Professor and Chair of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Rutgers University, said by utilizing the IoT to connect different telecommunications platforms and utility services, municipalities can enhance communication between first responders while also handling any potential problems to the water, gas or power services faster.

“A smart city is where every device, every entity and every object can connect wirelessly for whatever the needs,” Mandayam said in a statement. “To make a smart city happen, a tremendous amount of investment in infrastructure will be needed, but the benefits will likely far outweigh the costs. It scares me to think what it would mean for congestion, pollution and quality of life if we don’t start doing things to mitigate them.”

Mandayam, who lives in New Jersey, said he was inspired by what he saw during superstorm Sandy, which devastated the state on Oct. 29, 2012. He said he personally was without power for five days, while others in the state did not have power for at least two weeks. Read more.

The Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering’s Marianthi Ierapetritou was recently advanced to the ranks of distinguished professor—a title reserved for faculty who have achieved “scholarly eminence” in their field, according to the university.

Marianthi Ierapetritou

Ierapetritou has published over 150 papers and received over 50 conference invitations to discuss her research, which focuses on process operations, flexible manufacturing systems, modeling of reactive flow processes, and metabolic engineering. She has served as chair of the Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering since 2013.

Among Ierapetritou’s many awards are the prestigious NSF Career Award (2000-2004), NASA’s New Jersey Space Grant Consortium (2000-2001), Rutgers’ Teaching Excellence Award (2002), and the School of Engineering’s Outstanding Faculty Award (2012).

Highly active in the scientific community, Ierapetritou serves as vice president of Computer Aids in Chemical Engineering (CACHE) and vice chair/program coordinator for the Computing and Systems Technology (CAST) division of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). She is also a member of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS), the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM), the Rutgers Energy Institute (REI), and the Engineering Specific Career Advisory Problem-Solving Environment (ESCAPE).

 

Continuing to pave the way in innovation, Rutgers is launching a new program to bridge the gap between the lab and marketplace.

Materials Science and Engineering Professor Dunbar Birnie recently received a $500,000 grant to support Rutgers' inventions for the next five years through the NSF I-Corps program. According to the NSF, the I-Corps program works to bring research projects to the marketplace, thereby fostering a national ecosystem of innovation.

“Our program is aimed very broadly to help Rutgers students and faculty take their innovations and help them move toward commercialization,” said Birnie, whose research interests revolve around solar technology.

Birnie is working in collaboration with the Rutgers Office of Research Commercialization, Rutgers Business School, and Rutgers Entrepreneurship Coalition to nurture Rutgers’ inventions through a Rutgers’ NSF I-Corps Site. 

The NSF has established dozens of I-Corps Sites across the country to provide the infrastructure and resources groups need to prepare their work for commercialization.

“The real impact—we hope—will be in new technologies, new jobs, and where Rutgers will be known as the place where these new technologies arose.”

Rutgers funds over $600 million in research per year, which generates over 150 patents and more than $15 million in licensing income annually. Project leaders hope that the program will help to successfully transition research outcomes to the commercialization stage.

Birnie said that since the program is just getting underway, there are no specific innovations to report yet.

“We are targeting inventive Rutgers students and faculty far and wide,” he said.

 

The Rutgers Energy Institute and Columbia University's Center on Global Energy Policy are excited to announce the first Women in Energy event being held at Rutgers University. Please join us for a panel conversation focused on female leadership in the energy sector. Panelists will share their experiences, career paths, and offer advice for students seeking to enter the energy/environment field. This is a public event open to all and will be followed by a small reception. 

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

Wednesday, November 8, 2017 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.

Our panel of experts will include:

  • Serpil Guran, Director of Rutgers EcoComplex “Clean Energy Innovation Center”  
  • Jeanne Fox, Adjunct Professor in School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University; former Commissioner at New Jersey Board of Public Utilities; former Regional Administrator at U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 2; former Commissioner at New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Energy
  • 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 School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University and President and Founder of Sustainable Energy Solutions
  • Rachael Shwom, Associate Professor in Department of Human Ecology at Rutgers University; Associate Director of The Rutgers Energy Institute (moderator)

About the Women in Energy Program: The WIE program 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 through a (1) variety of public outreach, networking and community building activities, (2) leadership training and mentorship, and (3) facilitating opportunities for paid internships and full-time career opportunities.The program seeks 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. 

Event is Free but

Registration will be required - Click Here

Press Contact: Jamie Shellenberger-Bessmann (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.). For more information contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Scott Glenn, distinguished professor in the Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences and co-director of the Center for Ocean Observing Leadership, has been named a Fellow of the Marine Technology Society. This honor recognizes his career of developing novel technologies that have been used to forecast the Gulf Stream dynamics, developing integrated ocean observatories, improving the ability to sample and forecast hurricane intensity, and his focus on integrating undergraduate education into his research. Learn more about Dr. Glenn's work.

More than two dozen state leaders have prepared a plan to help the next administration get right to work cleaning up New Jersey's environment... New Jersey's Global Warming Response Act requires the state to reduce carbon pollution to 1990 levels by 80 percent by 2050, a target that many say will be difficult to achieve. Last week, the Rutgers Climate Institute said the state must reduce emissions by 76 percent from today's levels to achieve the 2050 target.

The Center for Energy, Economic & Environmental Policy at the Bloustein School is offering professional development courses for those interested in learning more about electricity markets, the electric power industry, and energy efficiency.

  • Two-Day Course: In-depth Introduction to Electricity Markets October 24-25, 2017
  • Workshop: Renewable Energy and Markets October 26, 2017
  • Learn more by clicking here

 

 

New Jersey has met its near-term requirement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, but reaching its 2050 goal will require much deeper reductions to meet this goal, according to a report released by researchers at the Rutgers Climate Institute and Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University-New Brunswick.

The 2007 New Jersey Global Warming Response Act required an 80 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 from 2006 levels, or about 75 percent lower than today. Significant new policies and enhancements of current strategies will be needed to achieve such a dramatic reduction, but no new legislation is necessary, the report says.

The report, An Examination of Policy Options for Achieving Greenhouse Gas Emissions, examines the status of New Jersey’s greenhouse gas emissions; the policies needed to achieve the reductions required by the 2007 law; and innovative efforts in other states that might benefit New Jersey. It is a collaboration of researchers from the Rutgers Climate Institute, Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, Georgetown Climate Center and World Resources Institute.

The New Jersey Global Warming Response Act set statewide legal limits on greenhouse gas emissions such as carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide. The report, among other findings, concludes that the state’s limits continue to represent the latest science, including the science underlying the 2015 international Paris Agreement ratified by 160 parties so far.

“The good news in New Jersey is that there’s a lot of existing authority and programs to advance the sort of climate action we need to meet the 2050 limits,” said Jeanne Herb, associate director of the Environmental Analysis and Communications Group at Rutgers-New Brunswick’s Bloustein School and one of the report’s authors. “We don’t need new legislation to make a significant impact.”

The authors also stress the health and economic benefits linked to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, including cleaner air, technological innovation and job creation.

“Our examination of programs in states such as California, Colorado, and Washington – as well as New Jersey – shows that science-based climate policy can deliver a wide range of public benefits that go well beyond reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” said report co-author Marjorie Kaplan, associate director of the Rutgers Climate Institute. “This is also an opportunity to address the needs of vulnerable populations – people with existing medical conditions, the elderly, the disabled, those with limited access to healthcare – and the low-income and minority communities that historically bear a disproportionate burden with respect to environmental contaminants.”

The report suggests pursuing three main “pathways to decarbonization” consistent with the 2015 Paris Agreement: (1) transitioning to a low-carbon energy system; (2) sequestering carbon through forests, soils and carbon dioxide removal technologies; and (3) reducing non-carbondioxide emissions such as methane, nitrous oxide and hydrofluorocarbon emissions in other sectors of the economy, including transportation.

The report notes that transportation is the largest source of emissions in New Jersey, accounting for 44.2 percent, followed by electricity generation (20 percent) and fossil fuels used in the residential (11.6 percent), industrial (9.8 percent) and commercial (9.7 percent) sectors, mainly for heating. For the transportation sector, the report identifies policy options that involve increasing the efficiency of vehicles, switching to fuels that are less carbon-intensive and reducing vehicle miles traveled through mass transit, smart growth and other policies. Read more.

The report and additional information can be accessed at climatechange.rutgers.edu  and the link below:

An Examination of Policy Options for Achieving Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reductions in New Jersey - September 2017

Glenn Amatucci, research professor and director, Energy Storage Research Group, is the principal investigator of an award totaling $1,077,157. The project, titled Self-Forming Thin Interphases and Electrodes Enabling 3-D Structured High Energy Density Batteries, is being supported by the U.S. Department of Energy. Learn more about Amatucci here.

Rutgers University has licensed a technology that allows for the mass production of high-quality graphene at a reduced cost to Everpower International Holdings Co., Ltd. (“Everpower”).

Invented by a team led by Manish Chhowalla, professor of materials science and engineering in the School of Engineering at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, the method uses microwaves to produce high-quality graphene from graphene oxide, and has the potential to generate large quantities of it at low cost. Chhowalla is a leading expert in the field of graphene research and has been developing graphene manufacturing technologies for more than a decade.

Graphene is a nano-material with remarkable thermal conductivity, electric conductivity and mechanical strength. As a result, graphene has the potential to be used in enormous industrial applications, including semiconductor, battery and composite materials, providing the basis for improving many traditional industries by replacing less efficient materials.

The Rutgers Energy Institute (REI) has supported Chhowalla's research as well as Jieun Yang, REI post-doctoral associate. Read more.

Richard E. Riman, distinguished professor of materials science and engineering in the School of Engineering at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, has been elected as a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

The Academy announced its 2016 Fellows on December 13.  The Academy's fellows include more than 94 presidents and senior leaders of research universities, as well as 28 Nobel Laureates.

“Professor Riman’s research in materials science has resulted in two promising start-up companies and has real potential for positively impacting the concrete and ceramics industries,” said Christopher J. Molloy, senior vice president for research and economic development at Rutgers. “Forward-thinking science like this is important for economic future and we are pleased that Professor Riman is receiving such a prestigious national recognition.” Read more.

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