NSF Grant Advances Green Chemistry at UC Berkeley

Photo: Green Chemistry students discuss the extraction of natural dyes from carrotsPhotos: Green Chemistry students discuss the extraction of natural dyes from carrots

The National Science Foundation awarded a $3 million grant from the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship Program (IGERT) to UC Berkeley scientists. The grant will train five PhD students per year from four separate research programs in the principles of green chemistry and the design of clean energy technologies.

The primary goal of UC Berkeley’s IGERT grant is to prepare the next generation of scientists, engineers, toxicologists, policy-makers, and business leaders to shape the country’s green chemistry and clean energy economy. Using a Systems Approach to Green Energy, or SAGE, the program will foster technology innovations in solar energy, biofuel, and energy storage systems using principles of green chemistry and engineering.

The IGERT students who will extend their graduate studies into green chemistry will be recruited from UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health, the College of Chemistry, the College of Natural Sciences, and the Haas School of Business. IGERT candidates add course work and research to their core program that is interdisciplinary and relates to green chemistry. They will also be required to form an interdisciplinary dissertation committee.

In addition, the grant will support a Green Energy K-12 Outreach Program. Graduate students, working in interdisciplinary teams, will develop lessons related to their research for use in San Francisco Bay Area schools.

Chris Vulpe, associate professor in the Department of Nutritional Science and Toxicology, is principal investigator (P.I.) of the grant. Thomas McKone from COEH is co-P.I. He is an adjunct professor in the School of Public Health and a senior staff scientist in Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Environmental Energy Technologies Division. Other co-P.I.’s include John Arnold, a professor in the Department of Chemistry and Alastair lles, an assistant professor of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management in the College of Natural Resources.

back to top