UC Berkeley researchers awarded Pew Innovation Funding

The Pew Charitable Trusts has announced the 2020 grantees of the Pew Innovation Fund which supports research collaborations among alumni of their biomedical programs. This year, six pairs of researchers will partner on some of the most complex questions in human biology and disease. From neuroscience and virology to biophysics and computational biology, the 2020 Innovation Fund teams are combining their expertise to explore a variety of research areas.

Pew Scholars Polina Lishko, from the University of California, Berkeley and Buck Institute for Research on Aging and Ke Xu, from the University of California, Berkeley and a Chan-Zuckerberg Biohub Investigator, will collaborate to investigate the role of steroid hormones in Alzheimer’s, a disease affecting more than 5.8 million Americans aged 65 or older in 2020.

Ripples in Space-Time: Nano-Imaging Functional Materials at their Elementary Scales

Functional materials—like molecular electronics, biomaterials, light-emitting diodes, or new photovoltaic materials—gain their electronic or photonic properties from complex and multifaceted interactions occurring at the elementary scales of their atomic or molecular constituents. In addition, the ability to control the functions of these materials through external stimuli , e.g., in the form of strong optical excitations, enables new properties in the materials, making them appealing for new technological applications. However, a major obstacle to overcome is the combination of the very fast time (billionths of a second) scales and the very small spatial (nanometer) scales which define the many-body interactions of the elementary excitations in the material which define its function. The extremely high time and spatial resolutions needed have been extremely difficult to achieve simultaneously. Many physicists have, therefore, struggled to visualize the interactions within these materials. In a paper recently published in Nature Communications, JILA Fellow Markus Raschke and his team report on a new ultrafast imaging technique that could solve this issue.

Congratulations to Naomi Ginsberg for Receiving the Carol D. Soc Distinguished Graduate Student Mentoring Award for Later-Career Faculty

The Carol D. Soc Distinguished Graduate Student Mentoring Awards are administered by the Graduate Division in collaboration with the Graduate Council of the Academic Senate, funded by a generous bequest from the estate of Carol Soc, a former employee of the Graduate Division. The mentoring awards were a part of the Sarlo Awards Teaching for Excellence program, established in 1997 to honor outstanding faculty at outstanding Northern California colleges and Universities.

The Prime Suspect: Hot Band Absorption

In a new paper published in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, Jimenez and his team report a new experimental setup to search for the cause of a mysterious fluorescent signal that appears to be from entangled photon excitation. According to Jimenez: “We built a setup where you could use either a classical laser or entangled photons to look for fluorescence. And the reason we built it is to ask: ‘What is it that other people were seeing when they were claiming to see entangled photon-excited fluorescence?’ We saw no signal in our previous work published a year ago, headed by Kristen Parzuchowski. So now, we’re wondering, people are seeing something, what could it possibly be? That was the detective work here.” The results of their new experiments suggested that hot-band absorption (HBA) by the subject molecules, could be the potential culprit for this mysterious fluorescent signal, making it the prime suspect.

Congratulations to Charlie Bevis for Receiving a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship (MSCA-IF)

The European Commission will support a total of 1156 experienced post-doctoral researchers with €242 million to work at top universities, research centres, private organisations and small and medium-sized enterprises in Europe and the rest of the world. The European Research Executive Agency (REA) received 8356 applications for this call. The Commission will award €206 million to 1025 researchers through European Postdoctoral Fellowships, allowing them to carry out their projects in the EU or countries associated to Horizon Europe. The action provides support to excellent individual researchers to implement an original and personalized research project, while developing their skills through advanced training, international, interdisciplinary and inter-sectoral mobility.

Congratulations to Heather Lewandowski for Being Designated as a CU President’s Teaching Scholar

The University of Colorado President’s Teaching Scholars Program recognizes CU faculty who skillfully integrate teaching and research at an exceptional level. The title of President’s Teaching Scholar recognizes excellence in and commitment to learning and teaching, as well as active, substantial contributions to scholarly work. President Saliman solicits annual nominations of faculty across the four campuses for the designation, which is a lifetime appointment.

Congratulations to Quynh Nguyen for Being Awarded the Stanford Q-FARM Bloch Postdoc Fellowship

Q-FARM (Quantum Fundamentals, ARchitectures and Machines) is Stanford’s initiative in quantum science and engineering. The QFARM student fellowships are awarded to advanced graduate students working in quantum science and engineering. Fellowship criteria are excellence in their research, and demonstrated potential for building new links within the Stanford quantum community. Each awardee receives two years of funding.

Congratulations to Anne-Barrie Hunter for Being Promoted to Senior Research Associate in Ethnography & Evaluation Research at CU Boulder

Anne-Barrie Hunter has been promoted to Senior Research Associate within Ethnography & Evaluation Research at CU Boulder. Ethnography & Evaluation Research (E&ER) is an independent research unit at the University of Colorado Boulder. E&ER is skilled in conducting and disseminating research and evaluation that is useful for faculty and institutions seeking to improve their STEM education practices. Congratulations, Anne-Barrie!

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