Postdocs honored for their achievements, diverse expertise
Seven postdoctoral appointees received the 2019 Postdoctoral Performance Award at a recent reception held in their honor. Laboratory Director Paul Kearns and Leadership Institute Director Philip Anderson presented awards in three categories, Basic Research, Applied Research, and Engineering Research.
Paul Kearns told those gathered at the reception, “Postdocs are an essential part of laboratory. Their achievements in basic research, engineering research, and applied research reflect diverse expertise among Argonne’s postdoctoral community and support our mission to accelerate science to drive U.S. prosperity and security.”
The winners included:
- Arun Mannodi Kanakkithodi (NST), whose research increased understanding of the electronic properties of semiconductor materials. As a postdoc, he managed five large projects at the lab — ranging from the development of innovative computational databases and machine-learning models to research for the newly proposed concept of transverse thermoelectric. He was able to make outstanding progress without compromising the quality of his work.
- Cunming Liu (XSD), who, as a principal investigator for advanced photophysics and photochemistry studies, has been allocated more than 20 beamtimes at the Advanced Photon Source and used ultrafast optical spectroscopy at the Center for Nanoscale Materials to advance knowledge of materials for catalysis and energy conversion. Both areas are critically important to the scientific mission of Argonne and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).
- Marco Tulio Fonseca Rodrigues (CSE), who excelled in applied research for electrochemical energy storage. He made major contributions to multiple lithium-ion battery projects. Many of his research accomplishments enhance the life and safety of batteries and are being incorporated in next-generation development.
- Yingjie Li (CSE), who significantly contributed to applied research for electrochemistry of battery cathode materials, which is especially important to the mission of Argonne and DOE. She worked on a project that partners with Tesla, where she researched and developed the cathode material additive that will be implemented in new products.
- Niranjan Parab (XSD), who was responsible for major developments in multiple laser additive manufacturing projects. His pioneering research on additive manufacturing established Argonne as an important player in this field. GE, GM, Boeing, Raytheon, NASA, and many other companies and laboratories are now looking to collaborate with Argonne due to Niranjan’s research.
- Jianzhe Liu (ES), who performed pioneering work that resulted in major breakthroughs in the modernization of the electrical grid. His research advances the key technical areas of security and resilience and system operations, power flow, and control. He developed the methodologies, technologies, and tools that are needed for the next-generation grid.
- Qi Li (ES), who showed great ingenuity in developing a set of methods, metrics, and tools related to quantify and propagate uncertainty in building energy models. His research supports critical DOE missions and has led Argonne to become known as the premier lab for studying uncertainty in building energy modeling.
At the reception, Tina Henne, postdoctoral program lead, acknowledged the 2019 board members of the Argonne Postdoctoral Society (PSA) for their service by presenting each member with a Core Values Shout-Out button recognizing their Impact. Board members include:
|Lorenzo Nocivelli||ES||Vice President|
|Tony Montoya||CSE||Liaison Officer|
|Ahmed Farghaly||CSE||2019 Symposium Committee Chair|
|Laura Boon||ASD||Board Member|
|Chris Otolski||CSE||Board Member|
|Moncy Yang||CSE||Board Member|
|Hales Swift||ES||Board Member|
|Vallary Bhopatkar||HEP||Board Member|
|Mojammel Khan||MSD||Board Member|
|Toru Hatsukade||MSD||Board Member|
|Kalyan Mutyala||NST||Board Member|
|Steve Letourneau||AMD||Immediate Past Liaison Officer|
|Max Gebhard||AMD||Past Board Member|
|Aaron Oaks||CFC||Past President and Board Member|
|Neelima Bayyapu||MCS||Past Board Member|
|Carolyn Tomchik||NSE||Past Secretary and Board Member|
Henne recognized the PSA board members for their efforts to:
- Develop resources and organizing a seminar to support the needs of international postdocs;
- Build stronger ties with the University of Chicago to enable networking;
- Create community and learning opportunities through organizing monthly events;
- Provide a chance for postdocs to explore career opportunities and showcase their research through the annual Postdoctoral Research and Career Symposium; and
- Make an impact on the Argonne community through lab-wide committee service and contributing to the Core Values forums.
The PSA presented Director Kearns with a certificate of appreciation and a gift of special Italian roast coffee, which the PSA officers learned was a favorite of his, to thank him for his efforts to increase engagement with the lab community and for being attentive to the needs of postdocs.