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Federal stimulus spurs science and technology development at UD

Federal stimulus spurs science and technology development at UD

University of Delaware researchers have won over $41 million in federal stimulus funds, to date, for leading-edge science, engineering, and technology projects with the potential to create jobs and foster long-term economic growth. The University has received the funds through competitive grants awarded by federal agencies as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), enacted by Congress in February.

As of Sept. 15, a total of 36 projects involving UD faculty have been funded by ARRA grants, according to Mark Barteau, senior vice provost for research and strategic initiatives.

“This funding is advancing initiatives in energy, health science, and the environment that are critical to Delaware and to the nation,” Barteau noted. “The innovation in our laboratories will help drive the economy of the future, while also preparing the graduate and undergraduate students who will become our next generation of scientists, engineers, healthcare professionals, and teachers.”

The single largest grant received by UD to date -- $17.5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy -- is for a new Energy Frontier Research Center. Under the direction of Dion Vlachos, Elisabeth Inez Kelley Professor of Chemical Engineering and director of the Center for Catalytic Science and Technology, the center's scientists and engineers will develop new catalytic technologies for converting biomass such as grasses and trees into electricity, fuels, and chemicals and help prepare the workforce for future biorefineries.

The National Science Foundation has awarded more than $11 million to UD investigators for 17 research projects on topics ranging from cosmic ray physics to petascale computers, as well as oceanographic equipment for the University's 146-foot coastal research vessel Hugh R. Sharp.

Among the 12 research grants supported by over $10 million from the National Institutes of Health is $8 million for the renovation and expansion of animal care facilities, and expanded research on “UD2,” a miniature power chair with a robotic brain that enables infants with disabilities to safely explore their world.

Through a $98,876 grant from the Department of Health and Human Services, the University's involvement in the successful New Directions Early Head Start program will continue. Operated by the Center for Disabilities Studies, the program brings the University and a diversity of nonprofit community agencies together to provide child care and disability support services to over 100 children and families in New Castle and Kent counties.

Visit this Web site for UD's complete list of stimulus-funded projects, as well as more information on selected initiatives. Established by UD's Stimulus Working Group, the Web site provides a public record and serves as an ongoing resource for UD researchers seeking information on federal stimulus-funded grant opportunities and guidelines. The list of awards received by UD researchers will be updated every two weeks.

For more information about research at the University of Delaware, visit the UD Research Office Web site or download the inaugural issue of the UD Research magazine.