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Summer Program

Chemical Engineering Undergraduate Summer Research Program

Summer 2019

Application Deadline: Friday, February 15, 2019 at 11:59 p.m.

Undergraduates from other schools (outside of Stanford) should see the research opportunities provided by the Office of Science Outreach.

The Chemical Engineering Summer Research Program is a 10-week program for current Stanford University undergraduate students.  The purpose of the program is to provide students who have identified a specific research project the opportunity to work one-on-one within a research group.

Students will receive a $7,500 stipend that can be used to pay for the cost of housing, meals, supplies and transportation. This is a 10-week, 40-hour per week program held June 17 – August 23, 2019 (exceptions may be arranged with research advisor). After completion of the program, there will be a poster session to present your research.

Announcement of awards will be made by Thursday, February 28, 2019.

Students who do not have a research project formed have the opportunity to apply to one of the faculty research projects listed below. Application link is at the bottom of the page.

Cheme-VPUE Summer Research Faculty Projects 2019

Prof. Spakowitz lab project: The Spakowitz lab is engaged in projects that address fundamental chemical and physical phenomena that underlie a range of key biological processes and cutting-edge materials applications. Current research in our lab focuses on four main research areas: DNA Biophysics, Protein Self Assembly, Conducting Polymers, and Fuel Cell Membranes. These broad research areas offer complementary perspectives on chemical and physical processes, and our approach draws from a diverse range of theoretical and computational methods. Opportunities for undergraduate research include participation in our modeling of chromosomal organization in living cells with the goal of developing a predictive model of epigenetic regulation.

Prof. Bent lab project: The research in the Bent laboratory is focused on understanding and controlling surface and interfacial chemistry and applying this knowledge to a range of problems in nanoelectronics and sustainable and renewable energy.  Much of the research aims to develop a molecular-level understanding in these systems, and the group uses a variety of molecular probes. Systems currently under study include mechanisms and control of atomic layer deposition, hybrid materials synthesis, area selective processing, photovoltaics, energy storage materials, and catalyst and electrocatalyst synthesis and characterization.

Prof. Cargnello lab project: The Cargnello lab works in the area of nanostructured materials for energy and environmental applications using catalysis. Every project in the group is composed of three parts: 1) synthesis of nanostructured materials and catalysts; 2) characterization of the catalytic performance of the materials; 3) structural characterization of the obtained catalysts before and after catalytic reaction. The goal of the research is to understand how the atomic structure of a catalyst is related to its performance, and use these design rules to develop better materials for reactions such as CO2 conversion to fuels and chemicals, reduction of methane emission through combustion, production of H2 through photocatalysis, and sustainable synthesis of ammonia.

Prof. Bao lab project: The Bao Lab works with polymer and nano materials for a variety of applications, such as circuits, sensors, solar cells and batteries. Projects in the group ranges from materials development, materials processing, materials characterization to device fabrication and testing. Undergraduate students will work closely with a graduate student or postdoc mentor. Conventional metal-oxide battery materials have ushered in an age of low-cost energy storage for a variety of applications. Unfortunately, these metallic battery materials are based on non-earth abundant metals and will become increasingly expensive. We are investigating a new class of battery materials based on low-cost, redox-active organic molecules. These organic-batteries have exciting implications for applications involving printable batteries and wearable electronics. In this project, the student will design and synthesize organic battery materials and employ them in battery devices for wearable electronic applications.

Prof. Dunn lab project: Just as chemical binding acts as a signal that influences cell behavior and fate, a growing body of evidence demonstrates the importance of mechanical forces in various processes, from development to cancer progression. The Dunn lab examines the fundamental mechanics of these processes across length scales, from the molecular to the tissue level. We use techniques like Forster Resonance Energy Transfer and Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence microscopy to study how cells sense and generate force. This project will focus on using superresolution imaging techniques to understand how cells build complex molecular structures in the context of cell-matrix interactions.

Prof. Sattely lab project: The Sattely lab is focused on the discovery and engineering of plant natural products. These compounds have important use as therapeutics in the clinic and contribute to plant fitness mechanisms. This project will focus on characterization of metabolic enzymes that produce molecules of interest using engineering approaches. We are looking for a student with strong interest in chemistry and metabolism and who would like to learn about pathway engineering in plants.

Prof. Tarpeh lab project: The Tarpeh lab designs and evaluates novel processes to convert water pollutants into products. Our major efforts include producing fertilizers from urine, designing electrochemical resource recovery processes, determining contaminant fate, and studying processes to accelerate global sanitation access. We work at several synergistic scales: molecular mechanisms of chemical transport and transformation; novel unit processes that increase resource efficiency; and systems-level assessments that identify optimization opportunities.

Prof. Jaramillo lab project: Electrocatalysts are critical to increase reaction rates and control selectivity in many electrochemical fuel production and consumption reactions. In the Jaramillo Group, we develop new electrocatalyst materials for processes including hydrogen evolution and oxidation, oxygen evolution and reduction, and carbon dioxide reduction. Our approach is to understand the catalyst properties that control activity, selectivity, and stability by combining catalyst synthesis and electrochemical performance testing with physical and chemical characterization as well as computational and theoretical modeling performed by collaborators.

Prof. Qin lab project: The Qin group specializes in the modeling of polymeric materials. This REU project combines chemical synthesis with analysis of thermodynamic properties. The student will be directed to (1) synthesize positively and negatively charged polymers with nearly identical backbones, (2) characterize the polymer size and the dispersity, and (3) measure the miscibility of polymers in aqueous solutions. The results will be rationalized in the context of a molecular model. The experimental work will be conducted in the lab of Prof. Yan Xia in Chemistry department, and the theoretical work will be conducted in the lab of Prof. Jian Qin in Chemical Engineering department. The ideal candidate will have an desire to gain more experiences in organic chemistry, and in solution thermodynamics.

Apply to one of these projects

Application Deadline: Friday, February 15, 2019 by 11:59pm.