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CAES June 2022 Newsletter

College of Engineering Faculty Receive Multi-Million Dollar Research Grant from United States Air Force

Harish Subbaraman, Ph.D. and Dave Estrada, Ph.D.

The Boise State Advanced Nanomaterials and Manufacturing Laboratory and NextFlex, a Department of Defense-sponsored Manufacturing USA Institute, received a $4.3 million grant from the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base to enable advanced manufacturing of flexible hybrid electronics using mixed dimensional materials.

David Estrada, Boise State’s Associate Director for the Center for Advanced Energy Studies and Associate Professor in the Micron School of Materials Science and Engineering, leads the program to enable the fundamental science necessary to expedite the manufacturing, maintenance, and repair of sensors and systems critical to ensuring global persistent awareness, resilient information sharing, and the speed and reach of U.S. Air Force missions. Harish Subbaraman, Associate Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Director of Advanced nanomaterials and Manufacturing Laboratory is the Co-Investigator.

“This award will position our team to advance semiconductor manufacturing techniques which may currently not be well suited for processing atomically thin films,” said Estrada. “We hope with this research infrastructure we can overcome challenges that limit large scale synthesis of 2D materials and make them compatible with the full semiconductor device process flow.” A major portion of the grant funds new infrastructure at Boise State University, including an AIXTRON Close Coupled Showerhead ® Metal Organic Vapor Phase Epitaxy system (CCS® MOVPE) which will be housed in the Micron Center for Materials Research. The carbon-neutral company’s tool is capable of wafer-scale growth of atomically thin semiconductor materials as well as more traditional semiconductor films.

Full Story Here: Multi-Million Research Grant

CAES REU Program Begins!

CAES REU Program Participants traveled to Boise on Monday, May 23rd for Orientation. They met with several INL staff members and some of the Project PIs. They spent time exploring Boise State University campus and the downtown Boise area. They traveled on to Idaho Falls on Wednesday to begin lab training and working on their Summer Research Projects.

We’ll be posting updates throughout the Summer and are very excited for our first ever REU Cohort!

Cyber Informed Engineering Training

The Cyber Operations and Resilience Program is offering a synchronous online course for professionals and educators to learn how to incorporate cybersecurity in their designs and coursework. This course will be offered June 28 to August 14, 2022.

For Idaho Educators – this training is available at no cost. You can participate through professional development or through non-degree seeking pathway by earning 1-credit hour of graduate course work for the Cyber Operations and Resilience (CORe) MS degree. Seats are limited for both options. Please contact Sin Ming Loo at

Virtual Kick-Off Meeting:

June 24, 2022 9-10am MST

Professional Development (Enroll by June 24, 2022)

Earning Graduate Credit as Non-Degree Seeking: (Start the application by June 20, 2022)


Sin Ming Loo, PhD, is the Director of the Cyber Operations and Resilience Program and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Boise State University. He holds a joint-appointment with Idaho National Laboratory.

More Information Here: Cyber Informed Engineering Training (PDF)

Researchers Publish Work on New Material Discovery for Lithium-Ion Battery

“Lithium ion batteries are the market leader for sustainable energy storage technologies, but innovative battery materials through novel processing methods are in urgent need to meet surging demand for high performance batteries,” said Hui (Claire) Xiong, an associate professor in the Micron School of Materials Science and Engineering. One of the grand challenges in lithium ion batteries is the anode material for fast charging applications.

Xiong is an affiliated faculty with the Center for Advanced Energy Studies and a CAES fellow. The team involves 13 Boise State researchers from diverse backgrounds including professors from materials science and physics, research scientists from materials science and geoscience, and doctoral students and undergraduate student from materials science. The work is jointly led by the group of Professor Shyue Ping Ong at University of California – San Diego. The team also collaborated with Drs. Sungsik Lee, Justin Connell, Hua Zhou, and Yuzi Liu from Argonne National Laboratory and Drs. Yingge Du and Zihua Zhu from the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

Full Story Here: New Material Discovery

Upcoming Events

The Nuclear Energy Student Club formally recognized by the American Nuclear Society

Earlier this month, the ANS Board of Directors approved the creation of two new student sections — Reed College in Portland, Ore., and Boise State University in Boise, Idaho.

Professor Brian Jaques, a Center for Advanced Energy Studies fellow and faculty advisor of the Boise State University student section, shared the following:

The new ANS student section at BSU is a great opportunity for students to engage and network with other sections in the state of Idaho, as well as nationally and internationally. The section brings awareness and excitement [about] Idaho’s rich nuclear energy history to the community, in addition to introducing our future nuclear energy workforce to the vast opportunity and promise of [the field].

Timothy Phero of the BSU student section added, “When we started the Nuclear Energy Club [here] a couple years ago, I don’t think any of us imagined that we would hit such a high level of engagement, interest, and support at the quick rate that we did. This growth shows that our local community not only has an interest in nuclear energy but is eager to learn more about how to engage and advocate for this clean, carbon-free energy source.”
Full Story Here: Nuclear Energy Student Club

DOE Announces Clean Energy Innovator Fellowship Program to Help Build a Diverse U.S. Workforce to Decarbonize the Electricity Sector

The global energy playing field is at the center of many of today’s agendas, as international developments affect security, safety and sustainability. The Russian invasion of Ukraine highlights challenging choices for importers of Russian natural gas and oil. Operators of critical energy infrastructure are also on alert for cyber-attacks. Battles for the control of nuclear plants similarly raise questions about safety.

Alongside these developments, clean energy is highlighted as a way to minimize pressures over resources and to address net zero carbon goals.

This course examines the complex intersection of energy and international politics. Students interested in energy from all disciplines are welcome. No prerequisites.
More Information Here: DOE Clean Energy Innovator Fellowship Program

Student COMSOL Workshop Complete

Boise State students were invited to join Dr. Zhangxian (Dan) Deng for a free COMSOL workshop this Summer sponsored by CAES.

This workshop provided a two-week long training on COMSOL Multiphysics, which is a commercial finite element analysis tool.

After completing this workshop, participants were able to gain a basic understanding of simulating mechanical, electrical, thermal, and magnetic systems. A couple of lectures also covered more advanced topics, such as multiphysics coupling, nonlinear material properties, and solving general partial differential equations.

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