Defining and Refining the Energy-Water-Food Nexus

May 21 - 23, 2017

Louisville, KY

Workshop Co-Chair

Dr. Delaina Amos 
Associate Professor, Chemical Engineering, University of Louisville

Workshop Co-Chair

Dr. Mahendra Sunkara
Professor & Director, Conn Center for Renewable Energy Research, University of Louisville

Workshop Coordinator

Andrew Marsh
Conn Center for Renewable Energy Research, University of Louisville 


Sunday, 3/22

2:00 - 4:00 pm

Short Course

Medallion Ballroom A (1st Floor)

“Materials Genome Research and Standard Research Tools for Renewables”

Mahendra Sunkara, PhD, UofL
Jacek Jasinski, PhD, UofL
Josh Spurgeon, PhD, UofL

Course Description: The White House’s materials genome initiative states, “Advanced materials are essential to economic security and human well being, with applications in industries aimed at addressing challenges in clean energy, national security, and human welfare, yet it can take 20 or more years to move a material after initial discovery to the market. Accelerating the pace of discovery and deployment of advanced material systems will therefore be crucial to achieving global competitiveness in the 21st century.” The group led by Conn Center at UofL with UK and Iowa State and funded through NSF’s SOLAR initiative has been developing various statistical modeling, materials informatics, first principles computations, and materials synthesis approaches to accelerate the pace of discovery. PIs of this effort will provide pedagogical discussion of various techniques being developed and the status of this effort.

Learn about various research methodologies for understanding structure-property-performance relationships of advanced materials toward use in energy conversion and storage technologies. This short course will cover the following topics: 1) advanced microscopy, diffraction and spectroscopy techniques; 2) electrochemical techniques; and 3) photoelectrochemical techniques. The goal is to show the standard research practices to enable new materials development efforts toward dye sensitized solar cells, lithium ion batteries and solar fuels. 

4:00 - 6:00 

Poster Session, Judging

Medallion Ballroom C-F (1st Floor)


6:00 - 8:00

Welcoming Reception

Medallion Ballroom Foyer (1st Floor)

Monday, 3/23

8:00 - 8:30 am


Medallion Ballroom Foyer (1st Floor) 

8:30 - 10:00

Plenary Session

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

Opening remarks from Workshop Chairs:
Mahendra Sunkara, PhD, UofL
Rodney Andrews, PhD, UK

Neville Pinto, PhD
Dean, J.B. Speed School of Engineering
University of Louisville

"Improving innovation in Kentucky"

Babu Chalamala, PhD
SunEdison Fellow
SunEdison, Inc. 

"Solar-storage integration and commercialization of grid scale energy storage technology"

10:00 - 10:15


10:15 - 11:30

Solar Energy

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

Session Chairs:
Thad Druffel, PhD, PE, UofL
Hemali Rathnayake, PhD, WKU

Paul Lahti, PhD
Co-Director, PHaSE Energy Frontier Research Center
Professor, Chemistry
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

"Self-assembly and heirarchal assembly in organic photovoltaics with donor-acceptor molecules and polymers"

Richard Ahrenkiel, PhD
Research Fellow Emeritus, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Research Professor, Metallurgical and Materials Engineering
Colorado School of Mines

"Recombination physics in photovoltaics: A brief history of lifetime"

11:30 - 12:15

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

Session Chair:
Jagannadh Satyavolu, PhD, UofL 

Dibakar Bhattacharyya, PhD
University Alumni Professor, Chemical and Materials Engineering
Director, Center for Membrane Sciences
University of Kentucky 

"Functionalized membranes for green synthesis of nanoparticles and enzyme catalysis"

12:15 - 1:30 pm

Lunch break - explore 4th Street Live!

Speaker's Lunch 

Walnut Room (Mezzanine Level)

1:30 - 3:15

Energy Materials Discovery

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

Session Chairs:
Jacek Jasinski, PhD, UofL
Madhu Menon, PhD, UK

Priya Vashishta, PhD
Director, Collaboratory for Advanced Computing Simulations
Professor, Materials Science, Computer Science, Physics and Astronomy
University of Southern California

"Massively parallel reactive and quantum molecular dynamics simulations"

Anubhav Jain, PhD
Research Scientist, Electrochemical Technologies Group
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

"New energy storage and energy generation materials from first-principles calculations"

Miran Mozetic, PhD
Head Researcher, Department of Surface Engineering and Optoelectronics
Jozef Stefan Institute, Slovenia

"Materials for Energy – challenges in fusion reactors and nano-structured metal oxides"

3:15 - 4:30 

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

Session Chairs:
Jagannadh Satyavolu, PhD, UofL
Eric Berson, PhD, UofL

Wei-Yin Chen, PhD
Professor, Chemical Engineering
University of Mississippi 

"Light- and acoustics-induced synergisms of carbonaceous material/CO2/H20 sytems"

Jagannadh Satyavolu, PhD
Biofuels Theme Leader, Conn Center for Renewable Energy Research
University of Louisville

"'Drop-in' coal-like product from conversion of wood and biomass"

4:30 - 7:00

Poster Session, Final Judging

Medallion Ballroom C-F (1st Floor)

Tuesday, 3/24

8:30 - 9:00 am

Poster Session Awards

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

9:00 - 10:00

Plenary Session
Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor) 

Opening remarks from Workshop Chairs:
Mahendra Sunkara, PhD, UofL
Rodney Andrews, PhD, UK

David Link, PhD
Group Leader - Research and Development
LG&E and KU Energy, LLC

"Barriers for renewable energy"

Chris Downs
Account Executive - Municipal Solutions
Johnson Controls, Inc.
S. Rao Chitikela, PhD, PE
MUS Water Management
Johnson Controls, Inc.

"Overcoming obstacles to successfully implement efficiency and renewable energy projects"

10:00 - 10:15


10:15 - 12:00

Solar Fuels

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor) 

Session Chair:
Joshua Spurgeon, PhD, UofL

Chengxiang Xiang, PhD
Project Co-Leader for Scale-Up and Prototyping
Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, California Institute of Technology

"Modeling/simulation and prototyping development of a solar-driven water-splitting cell"

Todd Deutsch, PhD
Senior Scientist, Hydrogen Systems
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

"High-efficiency tandem absorbers for economical solar hydrogen production"

Alex Martinson, PhD
Chemist, Materials Science Division
Argonne National Laboratory

"What atomic layer deposition can (and might) do for solar fuels”

12:00 - 1:00 pm

Lunch break - explore 4th St. Live!

Speaker's Lunch

Walnut Room (Mezzanine Level)

1:00 - 2:45

Energy Storage

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

Session Chairs:
YT Cheng, PhD, UK
Gamini Sumanasekera, PhD, UofL

Mark Verbrugge, PhD
Director, Chemical Sciences and Materials Systems Laboratory
General Motors Research and Development

"Demographic trends and technological advancements in personal transportation"

Nancy Dudney, PhD
Group Leader and Senior Scientist, Physical Chemistry of Materials Group
Materials Science and Technology Division
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

"Batteries and battery materials by vapor deposition"

2:45 - 4:15

Entrepreneurship Panel Discussion

Medallion Ballroom A/B (1st Floor)

Session Chair:
Eugene Krentsel, PhD, UofL

Sean O'Leary
Associate Vice President
Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation 

Allen Morris
Director, Office of Technology Transfer
University of Louisville 

Vasanthi Sunkara
CEO and President
Advanced Energy Materials, LLC 

Tim Fogarty
Managing Director
Crimson Hill, LLC 

4:15 pm