DescriptionProjectsWho is EligibleHow to apply

Are you interested in sustainable materials engineering? Apply to our summer research program!

The ReUSE REU program will train undergraduates in principles of sustainable materials engineering through a 10-week deeply embedded learning experience alongside skilled mentors. All research projects involve sustainability and are broken into three core areas: water, energy, and resources.
All participants will have travel and lodging paid for and will receive a $6,000 stipend as well as some funds to support lab expenses and instrument costs. The 10-week event will run from May 31 until August 4, 2022.
ReUSE Participants will form part of a larger summer research cohort at the University of Utah. Over 100 undergraduate students from across the country including participants from the Physics, Chemistry, and Atmospheric Sciences REUs will meet regularly for cohort-building social activities, professional development, trainings, and the end-of-summer research symposium.

Summer will kick off with a three-day excursion to three different destinations to showcase the three subareas of emphasis for the ReUSE program. Day 1: Students will travel to the Great Salt Lake’s Antelope Island and then to the Red Butte Water Conservation Research Center. The students will visit the island and canyon reservoir to discuss the impact of climate change, growing population, and water consumption on critical environmental systems like the Great Salt Lake and Red Butte Canyon. Day 2: Students will travel to southern Utah to visit the FORGE site (Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy) which is a dedicated underground field laboratory for developing, testing, and accelerating in geothermal research and technology. Students will spend the night near beautiful Bryce Canyon which has excellent hiking and camping options. Day 3: Students will travel to St. George Utah to visit Dixie Metal Recycling where a discussion will be led on resources, recycling, and reducing landfill mass. Before traveling home students will be able to visit nearby Zion National Park and see the incredible beauty of this place by hiking through the Narrows.

Energy: replacing critical, toxic, or expensive elements with more sustainable alternatives in order to enable renewable or low-carbon energy technologies.
Water: providing access to clean water through desalination, water purification, and modeling of potential toxins in water and soil.
Resources: recycling and reducing landfill mass by developing biodegradable packaging and capturing rare metals via recycling of e-waste.

Research Mentors and Projects*

mentor online option project
Ravi Chandran no Materials Science of Si electrodes for Li-ion Batteries
Chen Wang no Upcycle polyester waste plastics to high-value products
Chen Wang no Recyclable-by-design thermosetting polymers
Huiwen Ji no Augmented reality for 3D atomic structure visualization
Mike Free no Separation, and Production of High Purity Rare Earth Elements and Critical Minerals from Coal-Based and Related Resources
Taylor Sparks no Generative machine learning for new energy materials
Jeff Bates yes Sustainable biodegradable alternative packaging materials
Jeff Bates yes Superabsorbent hydrogels
Mike Simpson no Testing High Temperature Reference Electrodes for Molten Salts
Zlatan Aksamija yes Improving Thermoelectric Energy Materials Through Numerical Simulation
Bobby Mohanty no Nanomaterials for sensing and mitigation of contaminants
Ashutosh Tiwari no Synthesis and characterization of high-entropy oxides
Ashutosh Tiwari no Pulsed laser deposition of transparent conducting oxides
Michael Scarpulla no Manipulating Defect Concentrations in b-Ga2O3 to enable Energy-Saving Electronic Devices

ReUSE invites undergraduate applicants interested in sustainable materials research. Applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents. We welcome and support underrepresented students from a variety of backgrounds in a highly inclusive environment. While all eligible applicants will be considered, we strongly encourage Pacific Islander, Latino/a, and refugee applicants.

Applicants have already been selected for the Summer 2022 ReUSE program. We anticipate reopening applicants for the Summer 2023 program in January of 2023. More information will be provided at that time.

ReUSE is sponsored by the National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates Program. Award #1950589