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Cullen Grad Students Chosen for Prestigious Program
Bryan Luhn
Farzana Likhi.
Farzana Likhi.
Leo Jiang.
Leo Jiang.
Caleb Broodo.
Caleb Broodo.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science has chosen three University of Houston graduate students for its prestigious graduate research program.

UH Ph.D. candidates Farzana Likhi, Caleb Broodo and Leonard Jiang were among 86 students from 31 states selected for Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) program which provides world-class training and access to state-of-the-art facilities and resources at DOE national laboratories.

“I commend these outstanding students on their selection to the DOE’s Graduate Student Research program,” said Sarah Larsen, vice provost and dean of the UH Graduate School. “This recognition is a testament to their hard work and dedication to pushing the boundaries of science and to our commitment to fostering excellence in research and innovation.”

Broodo, a second-year Ph.D. candidate and former Cougars basketball player whose research focuses on heavy ion nuclear physics, will work at Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York. He also earned an undergraduate degree in electrical and computer engineering from the Cullen College of Engineering.

“I’m excited to investigate the properties of extreme matter created in high-energy collisions through the speed of sound,” Broodo said. “Such a parameter has the potential to enhance our working knowledge of the physics of extreme matter, ultimately giving us new insights into the behavior of the interior of neutron stars and the universe itself just microseconds after the Big Bang.”

Likhi, a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in the materials science and engineering program, will do her research on microelectronics at Oak Ridge Laboratory in Tennessee.

“For this specific project, I will conduct a systematic fundamental study on the filler-matrix interfacial dynamics based on variable domain structured polymer utilizing broadband dielectric spectroscopy (BDS),” Likhi said. “This study will advance microelectronics to meet our nation’s need for compact and efficient power electronics while serving as guiding principles for designing hybrid solid-state capacitors for next generation flexible electronics.”

And Jiang, a third-year Ph.D. candidate in materials science and engineering, will head to Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois to work on research related to electrochemistry.

“My research is on the utilization and characterization of organic molecules as electrochemically active electrode materials for different systems,” Jiang said. “Compared to the electrode materials that are currently commercialized, organic molecules offer major advantages such as high energy density, low cost and environmental friendliness.”

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