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Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis - Energy Frontiers Research Center

Staff Accomplishments

samantha johnson wins award

CME Researchers Honored with Team Science Award

CME investigators Daniel Martin (Yale) and Samantha Johnson (PNNL) received a team science award at the 2019 EFRC Principal Investigators' Meeting in Washington, D.C. in July.

Yogi Surendranath

DOE Awards Presidential Early Career Award to CME Researcher Yogesh Surendranath

Yogi Surendranath was honored with a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers in a ceremony in Washington D.C. in July 2019.

Jim Mayer receiving his award at Max Planck Institute

Max Planck Institute Names CME Researcher, Jim Mayer, 2019 Frontiers Award Recipient

Jim Mayer, CME’s thrust lead for heterogeneous interfaces, was recently honored with the 2019 Frontiers Award from the Max Planck Institute. He traveled to Germany to accept the award and give four lectures at the research center.

Samantha Johnson

Samantha Johnson Receives Award for Poster

Samantha I. Johnson, a post-doctoral researcher working in the Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis, Catalysis Science Group (PCSD), recently won an award for her poster, "Using Computational Methods to Design Ammonia (NH3) Oxidation Catalysts for Use in Fuel Systems," from the Clean Energy Education and Empowerment (C3E) Initiative at their 2018 symposium, held in December.

CME researcher Brandi Cossairt honored with National Fresenius Award

Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis (CME) researcher Brandi Cossairt is the 2018 recipient of the National Fresenius Award. This award is administered by the American Chemical Society and sponsored by Phi Lambda Upsilon, the National Chemistry Honor Society.

Sharon Hammes-Schiffer Elected to the National Academy of Sciences

Sharon Hammes-Schiffer

Congratulations to Prof. Sharon Hammes-Schiffer, Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis, on being selected as a member of the National Academy of Sciences. A world leader in theoretical and computational chemistry, Hammes-Schiffer studies proton-coupled electron transfer reactions at the Energy Frontier Research Center, funded by DOE's Office of Basic Energy Sciences. She is the Swanlund Professor of Chemistry at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Established 150 years ago by President Abraham Lincoln, the National Academy of Sciences is an official adviser to our nation's government, upon request, in any matter of science or engineering. This prestigious organization furthers science through the election of its members and through original research in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
(May 2013)

American Chemical Society Symposium to Honor Catalysis Research of Dan DuBois

Dan DuBois

Given his scientific successes and caring personality, the opportunities to speak at the 1.5-day symposium honoring the career of Dr. Dan DuBois, Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis, filled quickly. The event honors DuBois American Chemical Society's Award in Inorganic Chemistry. Dr. Aaron Appel and Dr. Monte Helm at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, along with Dr. Jenny Yang at the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, organized the symposium.
(March 2013)

Morris Bullock Named Geek of the Week

Morris Bullock

Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis Director Dr. R. Morris Bullock was selected as Geek of the Week. Bullock was chosen for this honor for his foundational research in affordable, earth-abundant catalysts. You can learn more about Bullock's inspirations, aspirations and role models in GeekWire's article.
(February 2013)

Dan DuBois Quoted in ScienceNow

Photo of Daniel DuBois

Dr. Dan DuBois of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory was quoted on Nov. 8, 2012, in ScienceNow, published by the American Assocation for the Advancement of Science. The article, "A Wet Way to Better Burning," discussed a new catalyst recently developed by chemists at the University of Rochester that uses the energy in sunlight to generate hydrogen gas. DuBois commented on this contribution and remarked favorably on the durability of the new catalyst. (November 2012)

Tianbiao Liu and Morris Bullock Featured in Physics Today

Tianbiao Liu and Morris Bullock

The work of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory scientists, Dr. Tianbiao Liu and Dr. R. Morris Bullock was featured in the September 21 issue of Physics Today. The article was written by Rachel Berkowitz and titled "Plant-inspired Catalysts Smooth the Path to Cleaner Energy." It discussed research being conducted by Liu and Bullock at the Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis at PNNL, an Energy Frontier Research Center funded by Department of Energy. The focus of this work is to gain an understanding of how hydrogenase reactions function so that scientists will be able to design iron-based fuel cell catalysts that will perform the role of platinum at a much lower cost. This research is made possible through the efforts of the team members Shentan Chen, Molly O'Hagan, Mary Rakowski DuBois and Dan DuBois.
(October 2012)

Dan DuBois Receives National Inorganic Chemistry Award

Dan DuBois

Congratulations to Dr. Daniel DuBois at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory on receiving the American Chemical Society's Award in Inorganic Chemistry, a prestigious national honor. DuBois was chosen for his unique approach to designing inorganic molecular complexes to speed reactions. Instead of taking a hit-or-miss approach based on creating and testing endless variations to find the properties needed, he answered the fundamental questions, showing the scientific community "why" these materials behaved as they did, and how to use that knowledge to rationally develop improved catalysts. The work he led allows researchers to design these molecular complexes or catalysts to speed reactions under the right conditions. (Full Story | (August 2012)

Morris Bullock Quoted in National Academy of Science Workshop Report

Morris Bullock

Dr. Morris Bullock, Director the Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, was quoted in The Role of the Chemical Sciences in Finding Alternatives to Critical Resources: A Workshop Summary. Bullock spoke at the 2011 workshop on the need to develop catalysts based on earth-abundant metals, creating catalysts that can replace those based on noble metals. Bullock is quoted in the workshop report, which was published by the National Academy of Science through the Chemical Sciences Roundtable.
(July 2012)

Chuck Peden and Morris Bullock Named American Chemical Society Fellows

Congratulations to Dr. Chuck Peden and Dr. Morris Bullock at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory on being named American Chemical Society Fellows. Peden and Bullock are among distinguished researchers nationwide recognized in 2012 by the American Chemical Society, also known as ACS, for their "outstanding achievements in and contributions to science and the profession of chemistry." (July 2012)

Monte Helm featured in NewScientist

Monte Helm

The work of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's scientist, Dr. Monte Helm and his team was featured in the cover story of the April 16 issue of NewScientist (subscription required). The article described the challenges of artificial photosynthesis and discussed various options for catalysts. Monte and his team developed a new catalyst that uses nickel and discovered that it worked much faster than the hydrogenase found in nature, which utilizes two atoms of iron to stir up the electrons. While Helm's concept has not been actually used in a photosynthetic system, it shows promise due in part to nickel's abundance and cost-effectiveness. (April 2012)

Wendy Shaw Selected to Attend First U.S-Indonesia Symposium

Wendy Shaw

Congratulations to Dr. Wendy Shaw of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory on being one of 31 distinguished young researchers from the United States selected by the National Academy of Sciences to attend the first Indonesian-American Frontiers of Science symposium that took place in Bogor, Indonesia, in July 2011. The U.S. participants, representing universities, government laboratories, and institutions, joined 40 young Indonesian researchers selected by the Indonesian Academy of Sciences. (January 2012)

Morris Bullock in Chemical and Engineering News

Morris Bullock

R. Morris Bullock, Director of the Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis, discussed research carried out at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in an article in C&E News on reducing the nation's reliance on precious metals and rare earths. Alternatives to these and more efficient use of these rare elements were the topics of a two-day National Academy of Sciences workshop, where Bullock gave an invited talk at the workshop. (October 2011)

Bridging the Catalysis Divide

Bridging the Catalysis Divide

Congratulations to Dr. Donghai Mei and Dr. Roger Rousseau, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Dr. Wei-Xue Li, Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, on organizing a week-long symposium to connect across the various divides in catalysis. The symposium will cover molecular and heterogeneous catalysis, theory and experimentation, and fundamental science and applied research in biofuels, batteries, and other energy sources. (August 2011)

Wendy Shaw Featured in DOE Blog

Photo of Wendy Shaw

Dr. Wendy Shaw, at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, was featured on the Department of Energy's Energy Blog. In the article, titled "10 Questions for Biophysical Chemist," Shaw discusses her catalysis and bio-mineralization research, the value of good communication skills, and why Ayla, in Jean Auel's prehistoric novels, is her favorite fictional scientist. Shaw works in the Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis, a DOE Energy Frontier Research Center. (May 2011)

Dr. Roger Rousseau

Photo of Roger Rousseau

Roger Rousseau Elected to Advise National User Facility
Congratulations to Dr. Roger J. Rousseau, Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's Institute for Integrated Catalysis, on being elected to the User Advisory Committee at the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory. Rousseau, an active EMSL user, is well known for his expertise in molecular science computation with current applications in homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis. (February 2011 )

Dr. Daniel DuBois

Photo of Daniel DuBois

Daniel DuBois Selected as Laboratory Fellow
Dr. Daniel DuBois was chosen as a Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Fellow, the highest rank our science and engineering staff can attain. DuBois is an internationally recognized expert in metal inorganic catalysts for building and breaking hydrogen. (July 2010)

Researchers used elephant toothpaste and diet soda to explain catalysis to local students

Photo of Aaron Appel

Reaching Out to the Next Generation of Scientists
The Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis participated in the Salmon Summit in May 2010, with the activity "Green Power!" and "Water Chemistry." (May 2010)

Wendy Shaw Awarded Early Career Grant for Catalysis Research

Photo of Wendy Shaw

Wendy Shaw received a prestigious DOE Early Career Research Program grant to fund her work in designing effective, inexpensive catalysts that mimic enzymes. (February 2010)

Photo of Balsam

Scientists Turn To Nature For Clues On Building Better Fuel Cells

The Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis was featured in Northwest Science and Technology (Spring 2010), an award-winning regional science news magazine. Learn about the research being done by our team in the quest for alternative energy solutions.

Photo of Jim Mayer

Jim Mayer Named a Debye Lecturer at Cornell University

Congratulations to Dr. Jim Mayer on being named a Debye Lecturer at Cornell University for 2010/2011. Sponsored by the Cornell section of the American Chemical Society, the Debye Lectures bring scientists to the department for a series of lectures and discussions among all members of the department. Mayer is the Alvin L. and Verla R. Kwiram Endowed Professor of Chemistry at the University of Washington. His research with the Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis focuses on catalysts for reducing oxygen.

Photo of Bruce Parkinson

Bruce Parkinson Named 2009 AAAS Fellow

Congratulations to our unviersity collaborator Bruce Parkinson, University of Wyoming, on being elected a AAAS Fellow. A renowned solar energy researcher and a professor in the Department of Chemistry and at the University's School of Energy Resources, Parkinson was recognized for significant contributions to fields such as photoelectrochemical energy conversion, materials chemistry, surface science, scanning probe microscopies and nanomaterials.

Photo of Michel Dupuis

Michel Dupuis Elected AAAS Fellow

Congratulations to Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's Dr. Michel Dupuis on being named a Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The AAAS is the world's largest general scientific society and publishes the prestigious journal Science.

Graphic of Blue Ribbon

Roger Rousseau and Team Awarded 4 Million Hours on Supercomputers to Study Water's Chemistry

Congratulations to Christopher Mundy, Roger Rousseau, Greg Schenter, and Shawn Kathmann at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Alessandro Curioni at IBM Research-Zurich on being selected for a 2009 INCITE award.

Photo of Sharon Hammes-Schiffer

Sharon Hammes-Schiffer Receives American Chemical Society Akron Section Award

- Proton and hydride transfer reactions in enzymes
- Proton-coupled electron transfer reactions
- Development of mixed quantum/classical molecular dynamics methodology

Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis


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Our scientific mission is to establish the fundamental principles needed for efficient interconversion of electrical energy and chemical bonds through precise control of electron and proton transfers.


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