Research

The Joule Fellows will play an important role in the research programs, performing measurements, collecting and analyzing data, and presenting the results in a report that will become part of the deliverables of the research project. Faculty advisors and the graduate students will serve as caring and dependable research guides for the Fellows.

Click on any research field to view its description and details.

2021

More projects to be added soon

  1. Estimate contaminant uptake and toxicity to aquatic organisms
    • Faculty: Dr. Tim Vadas 
    • Description: A Joule fellow would help set up experiments to estimate contaminant uptake and toxicity to aquatic organisms. This would involve the sampling protocols for water freshwater stream samples and analysis for organic matter and trace metals; organic matter and trace metals analysis and interpretation of data; macroinvertebrate assessment in the stream to determine stream health. The fellow would review papers on contaminant uptake and toxicity, and help conduct experiments on Copper and Zinc uptake into periphyton and mayflies from streamwater.
  2. Examine how to enhance the treatment of nitrogen and metals in stormwater effluent from a stormwater detention basin by discharging that water to the floodplain
    • Faculty: Dr. Tim Vadas 
    • Description: A Joule fellow would help with a field experiment to examine the how-to enhance treatment of nitrogen and metals in stormwater effluent from a stormwater detention basin by discharging that water to the floodplain. Two plots are established in a local floodplain where stormwater will be pumped and intensive sampling events will occur following storm events. A fellow would help with the sampling events and the analysis of samples following each event, as well as establish experiments in the lab to look at what soil amendments are most favorable to enhancing treatment of nitrogen and metals in the floodplain.
  3. Investigating the biomechanics of collagen and cartilage
    • Faculty: Dr. David Pierce
    • Description: Isolating single components of biological tissues can increase the understanding of individual contributions of these components to the overall mechanical integrity of the tissues. Articular cartilage is a highly hydrated tissue comprised of a solid matrix of networked collagen fibers and densely packed proteoglycans with only a scattering of living cells to maintain this matrix. To investigate fiber-network mechanics Joule Fellows will perform tensile testing on thin specimens of collagen networks isolated from bovine cartilage. We will also start collecting data from full-joint compression testing to connect weight-bearing movements to intra-tissue mechanics using digital image correlation (intra-tissue level) and force data (joint level). Ultimately, we will generate novel data and analyze these to establish quantitative conclusions.
  4. STEAM Solar Tree – The Learning Tree (Virtual Project)
    • Faculty: Dr. Jasna Jankovic
    • Description: STEAM Solar Tree is a solar tree that is being built at UConn, with the target completion in May 2021. Our diverse team of engineers, scientists, artists, and social scientists is planning, designing, and building the tree, that is envisioned to serve as a multidisciplinary research instrument, teaching tool, and most importantly a beautiful, functioning clean energy-harvesting power source that would promote social interactions and understanding through public engagement. This Joule Fellow and daVinci project will involve the participation of the teachers in “Micro-projects” where they will propose, plan, design, and test a small project related to the tree. The project could be the design of a solar tracking system, or a virtual lecture about the tree or clean energy, a short movie about solar power, or anything else that the participant is interested in. The teacher will also participate in our regular STEAM Team meetings. We will develop a plan on how
      to include the “Micro-projects” in the teachers’ classroom environment.
  5.  Project TBA
  6. Harnessing biological communities to remove plastic nanoparticles from wastewater (UConn & Avery Point Campus)

2019

The 2019 program will be postponed to Summer 2021

  1. Cloud Device for 3D Cell Culture, Observation, and Manipulation 
  2. Investigating the biomechanics of collagen networks within human/bovine articular cartilage
  3. Developing a novel platform for teaching programming of models for nonlinear elastic materials
  4. The Biomechanics of Visceral Pain
  5. Design and Construct an Autonomous Quadcopter
  6. Advanced shape-memory alloys for structural resiliency
  7. The Life Cycle of Trade-Wind Cumulus Clouds
  8. Lipid Nanocomplex Enhancing Fluorescence
  9. Designing Nanocarriers for Carbon-Derived Materials
  10. Hydrogen Production by Steam Electrolysis
    • Faculty: Dr. Prabhakar Singh

2018

  1. Clean Energy Through Fuel Cells- From Nanoparticles to Cars
  2. Cloud Device for 3D Cell Culture, Observation, and Manipulation
  3. Investigating the biomechanics of human/bovine cartilage: Combining mechanical and histological assessments
  4. Advanced Power Electronics and Drives Laboratory (APEDL)
  5. Understanding pain and pain management: bioelectricity of the nervous system and electrical neuromodulation
  6. Design and Construct an Autonomous Quadcopter

2017

2017

  1. Low-Cost Solar Cells
    • Faculty: Dr. Alexander Agrios
  2. Building a Solar Photovoltaic Energy System: Panel Characterization, Power Electronics, and Control
    • Faculty: Dr. Ali Bazzi
  3. Understanding pain and pain management: bioelectricity of the nervous system and electrical neuromodulation
    • Faculty: Dr. Bin Feng
  4. Cloud device for 3D cell culture, observation, and manipulation
    • Faculty: Hoshino Kazunori
  5. Persuasion in the Context of Cyber Security
    • Faculty: Mohammad Khan
  6. Effect of Design Rules on the Cost of 3D-Printed Components Designed with Topology Optimization
    • Faculty: Julian Norato
  7. Thermal and Electrical Energy Interconversion
    • Faculty: Dr. M. Pettes
  8. Electrochemical Energy Storage in Batteries
    • Faculty: Dr. M. Pettes
  9. Investigating the biomechanics of human/bovine cartilage: Combined mechanical testing and microscopy imaging
    • Faculty: Dr. David M. Pierce
  10. Electrochemical sensing in paper-based microfluidics and their clinical applications
    • Faculty: Savas Tasoglu
  11. Selective Adsorption of Sulfur Species for the Production of Environmental Diesel
    • Faculty: Dr. Ioulia (Julia) Valla

2016

  1. 3D printing of Inexpensive, Portable, Cell-phone Based Microscopy and Cell Separator as an Educational Tool
  2. Self-Assembled Lipid-Based Nanoparticles for Biomedical Purpose
  3. Cloud device for 3D cell culture, observation and manipulation
  4. Selective Adsorption of Sulfur Species for the Production of Environmental Diesel
  5. Thermal and Electrical Energy Interconversion
  6. Building a Solar Photovoltaic Energy System: Panel Characterization, Power Electronics, and Control
  7. a)Biomechanics of human cartilage b)Multi-axial shear testing
  8. Earthquake Engineering
  9. Smart Ocean Wave Power Generator for Ocean Microgram (not offered this year)

 

2015

  1. Design a smart sensor network for detection of moving targets in a building or urban environment
  2. Design a 3-D underwater robotic simulation platform based on existing software package
  3. Seismic Performance of Modular Buildings
  4. Building and optimizing a thermoelectric waste-heat generator using advanced nanomaterial components
  5. Smart Ocean Wave Power Generator for Ocean Microgrid
  6. Smart Microgrid for Supplying Clean, Resilient and Low Cost Electricity
  7. Cloud device for 3D cell culture, observation and manipulation.
  8. Self-Assembled Lipid-Based Nanoparticles for Biomedical Purpose
  9. Algorithms for Discovering the Genetic Basis of Complex Traits
  10. Smartphone Sensor Data for Depression Screening
  11. EEG Signal Analysis to Evaluate Memory Performance
  12. Multihazard Resilient Infrastructure Group: Characterization of Hybrid Composite Material
  13. Investigating Design for Manufacturing Rules for Components Designed with Computational Topology Optimization and Fabricated via Fused Deposition Modeling

2014

  1. The significance of carbon and coke formation in catalytic processes
  2. Novel chemical-looping systems
  3. Electron beam melting process modeling and experiment
  4. Mechanical characterization of tissues using ultrasound technique
  5. Building a Solar Photovoltaic Energy System: Panel Characterization, Power Electronics, and Control
  6. Inkjet and 3-D Printing: From Flexible Electronics to Human Organs
  7. Multihazard Resilient Infrastructure Group
  8. Electrochemical Devices for Energy and Fuels
  9. Lithium Ion Battery Characterization for Energy storage systems
  10. Modeling of Ocean Wave Generation Systems
  11. Machine Learning Approach to Predicting Power System Blackout
  12. Biomass conversion to Energy
  13. RET Project
  14. Single Step Manufacturing of Low Catalyst Loading Electrolyzer MEAs
  15. Phase-change Memory

2012

  1. Nanostructures for low-cost solar energy conversion
  2. Biogeography of Protozoa
  3. Understanding Nanoparticle-Laden Interfaces for Better Emulsion Formulations
  4. Kinetic Behavior of Enzyme Catalyzed Starch Decomposition
  5. Battery Energy storage systems (BESS)
  6. Investigation of Oxidation Kinetics using Carbon Blacks and Diesel Engine Soot for efficient Diesel Particulate Filters (DPFs) Operations
  7. Converting wood (lignocellulosic biomass) to liquid fuels (deoxygenated bio-oils)
  8. Processing of Waste CO2 to Solid Carbon and Liquid Fuels
  9. Controlling Hydrophobicity through Nanostructure Design

2011

  1. Biofuels from Non-Food Feedstocks
  2. Converting wood (lignocellulosic biomass) to liquid fuels (deoxygenated bio-oils)
  3. Energy Harvesting from Structural Vibrations
  4. Evaluation of Novel Porphyrin Dyes in Low-Cost Solar Cells
  5. Making High Value Chemical with Low Energy Input
  6. Measurement of surface coating contamination by optical methods
  7. Nanfabrication for Sustainable Energy
  8. Performance Analysis of Micro Heat Pipes
  9. Renewable Energy Power Conversion System
  10. Sustainable Hydrogen Production from Renewable Bio-derived Fuels
  11. Investigation of Thermal and Electrical Properties of Geologic Materials
  12. Pore Scale Effects of Microbes on Soil Water Retention

2010

  1. 3-D Imaging of Flame Emission Using Narrow-Depth of Field Optics
  2. Biofuels and Protein-Based Plastics
  3. Directed Conditioning of Proton Exchange Membranes to Improve Conductivity
  4. Electrochemical Reactor for Spontaneous Power Conversion and CO2 Capture
  5. Environmentally Friendly Hydropower Generation
  6. Functionalized Nanomaterials for Electro-oxidation of Alcohol
  7. Nanodesign of Surfaces for Sustainable Energy
  8. Novel Processes and Materials for Water Treatment and Desalination
  9. Solid Oxide Electrolysis Cell (SOEC) Development for Hydrogen Production
  10. Thermoelectric Generators for Waste Heat Recovery and Solid-State Refrigeration

2009

  1. Biofuels Production Engineering
  2. Characterization of Anion Exchange Membranes for Fuel Cells
  3. Characterization of Flame Dynamics for use in Power Generation Systems
  4. Composite Membranes for Hydrogen Extraction from Renewable Fuels
  5. Computational Fluid Dynamics with Practical Fuels
  6. Dynamic Effects and Optimization in Charging and Power Utilization
  7. Effect of Nano-Scale Material Characteristics on Water Management in Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells
  8. Pore Structure Characterization of Fuel Cell Electrodes
  9. Quantitative Imaging and Data Analysis of Combusting Flows in a Jet Engine
  10. Scrubbing of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide to Synthesize Biofuel
  11. Supercritical Fluids for Synthesis of Catalytically Active Materials