Energy Frontier Research Center Launched

August 27, 2009

UC Santa Barbara’s Energy Frontier Research Center, the Center for Energy Efficient Materials (CEEM), has been officially launched. The Center will receive $19 million over five years to support research on materials that control the interactions between light, electricity, and heat at the nanoscale. Center director John Bowers characterized the center’s goal as “to develop novel materials that will improve the efficiency of generating electricity, storing electricity, and generating light from electricity.”

Funding has been released to the center by the Department of Energy, sponsor of the 46 Energy Frontier Research Centers across the nation.

The center is led by UCSB and currently comprises 21 faculty members from UC Santa Barbara, UC Santa Cruz, and Harvard University, and four research scientists from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The Center’s website is up and running at ceem.ucsb.edu. Initial support staff has been hired, and recruiting is underway for an Associate Director.

The Center will be continuously evaluating its research programs, and funding will be dynamically reallocated to the most promising efforts. In addition to its research efforts, CEEM will be undertaking substantial outreach and educational activities in conjunction with the California Nanosystems Institute and the Materials Research Laboratory, and will be presenting a series of seminars beginning in the fall.

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