Four ORNL Researchers Receive Presidential Early Career Award
ORNL researchers are among 85 scientists to receive the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers Jeremy Busby, De-en Jiang, Sergei Kalinin and Rahul Ramachandran are among 85 scientists to receive the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, or PECASE. One of the nation's top honors for young scientists, The PECASE was designed to recognize researchers who demonstrate exceptional potential for leadership at the frontiers of scientific knowledge.
"Science and technology have long been at the core of America's economic strength and global leadership," President Obama said. "I am confident that these individuals who have shown such tremendous promise so early in their careers will go on to make breakthroughs and discoveries that will continue to move our nation forward in the years ahead."
Busby, Jiang and Kalinin were recognized as Department of Energy awardees, and Ramachandran, who recently arrived at ORNL, was honored as a NASA PECASE recipient. The awardees, who are for the year 2009, will be recognized in a White House ceremony.
Energy Secretary Steven Chu said, "These gifted young scientists and engineers represent the best in our country. The awards recognize ingenuity, dedication, diligence and talent. I congratulate the 2009 PECASE awardees and wish them continued success toward new discoveries and advances in science, energy research and national security."
ORNL Director Thom Mason said this year's winners demonstrate the lab's continued commitment to attracting and retaining young scientific talent. "These awards recognize the outstanding creativity that early career researchers bring to the community of science at ORNL," Mason said.
Busby, a member of ORNL's Materials Science and Technology Division, focuses his research on structural materials for nuclear reactors, including the testing and development of advanced reactor materials. His research contributions have been both substantial and diverse, ranging from support for light-water reactors to space reactor systems as well as research for the ITER fusion project.
Jiang was recognized for internationally acknowledged and pioneering computational research, which probes novel properties of nanostructures and chemically modified interfaces. Since he joined ORNL's Chemical Sciences Division in 2006, his versatile applications of computational methods have been applied to solving chemical problems in materials such as grapheme and thiolated gold nanoclusters.
Kalinin's research at ORNL's Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences focuses on advanced scanning probe microscopy methods and applications. His innovative work has introduced several novel analytical and experimental advances in scanning probe microscopy that expand the range of physical phenomena that can be explored with nanoscale precision, including polarization dynamics, ionic motion, electronic transport and energy dissipation.
Ramachandran, a member of ORNL's Computational Sciences and Engineering Division, comes to ORNL from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. His primary research interest focuses on earth science informatics. His award recognizes his work in applying informatics to address NASA's need to make high-value geospatial data sets discoverable, accessible and usable by the science community.