Eleven Georgia Tech Faculty Members Receive NSF CAREER Awards

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Eleven Georgia Tech faculty members have been chosen to receive National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER awards in the latest round of funding provided to faculty members in the early stages of their research careers. CAREER awards are considered among the NSF’s most prestigious honors.

In all, the NSF is investing more than $250 million in nearly 700 Faculty Early Career Development recipients from 193 institutions across 47 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico for Fiscal Year 2019. The faculty members will use the award funds to carry out plans to advance their field and educate the next generation of researchers.

"Investment in exemplary faculty members early in their careers is key to achieving the National Science Foundation's mission to enhance the United States' science and engineering ecosystem," NSF Director France Córdova said in a statement announcing the agency’s 2019 awardees. "Congratulations to this year's CAREER awardees for their outstanding service as researchers and teacher-scholars. We look forward to your discoveries and innovations that will advance the frontiers of scientific understanding."

The early stages of a research career are some of the most critical. Early career support can help researchers pursue work or ideas that they will build on for years or decades. Because of the importance of building this foundation for a lifetime of contributions to research and education, NSF has several programs that support early-stage researchers, including CAREER.

“We appreciate the investment that the National Science Foundation is making to help develop our next generation of researchers,” said Chaouki Abdallah, Georgia Tech’s executive vice president for research. “The recipients reflect a broad cross-section of Georgia Tech’s multidisciplinary research program from mathematics, physics and the biological sciences to computer science, civil and environmental engineering, mechanical engineering, and electrical and computer engineering.”

Georgia Tech’s 2019 CAREER recipients and their topics include:

  • Katherine Fu, George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, “Characterizing Error Management Cognitive Bias in Design — A Path to Better Design”
  • Marta Hatzell, George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, “The Role of Nitrogen Photofixation on Agriculture and K-12 Science”
  • Yuhang Hu, George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, “Mechanics and Physics at the Boundary Between Solid and Fluid: Probing the Thermodynamic and Kinetic Properties of Gels”
  • Elisabetta Matsumoto, School of Physics, “What a Tangled Web We Weave — Topology and Mechanics of Textiles”
  • Sigal Nitzan, School of Mathematics, “Bases in Hilbert Function Spaces and Some of their Applications”
  • Yang Peng, School of Computer Science, “Scalable Algorithmic Primitives for Data Science”
  • William Ratcliff, School of Biological Sciences, “Examining the Role of Nascent Multicellular Life Cycles on the Evolution of Organismal Complexity”
  • Molei Tao, School of Mathematics, “Multi-scale Control of Mechanical Systems: Theory, Computation, and Applications”
  • Xing Xie, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, “Locally Enhanced Electric Field Treatment (LEEFT) for Chemical-Free Water Disinfection”
  • Yao Yao, School of Mathematics, “Transport Equations in Fluids and Biology: Singularity, Dynamics, and Mixing.”
  • Shimeng Yu, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, “Scaling-up Resistive Synaptic Arrays for Neuro-inspired Computing”

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In Fiscal Year 2019, its budget is $8.1 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 50,000 competitive proposals for funding and makes about 12,000 new funding awards.

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