By MARY DURLAK
Published May 24, 2023
UB PhD student Lili Rassouli is among just 87 graduate students recently selected from applicants across the United States to conduct research at a Department of Energy (DOE) facility.
Rassouli, who is pursuing her doctorate in chemical engineering, intends to further her work at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory this fall.
“Among all the available sustainable sources, solar energy is the largest exploitable energy resource that is abundantly available from sunlight,” Rassouli says. Her research focuses on electron transfer in photoelectrochemical cells, which are used to convert solar energy into clean fuels such as hydrogen and oxygen.
The DOE selected the successful applicants for the Office of Science Graduate Student Research program based on merit review by external scientific experts. The program provides supplemental funds to students as they conduct part of their thesis research at a host DOE site.
Working with the support of her adviser, Michel Dupuis, research professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Rassouli completed fundamental parts of her PhD project using UB’s computational resources. “The collaboration at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory will allow me to gain access to unique computational capabilities and expertise,” she says.
Rassouli is no stranger to the lab. She came to UB with six years of research and industrial lab experience, including two years in manufacturing companies. She has also published five research papers. “My goal is to continue a professional career as an engineer in a manufacturing company,” she says, “where I can create innovations that will benefit our community and the world.”
Students accepted into the Science Graduate Student Research Program work on projects that address critical energy, environmental and nuclear challenges at national and international scales.