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Faculty Members Win $23.6 Million in Stimulus Grants

More applications for funding under the ARRA program are still pending

October 23, 2009 —

Faculty researchers at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering have won a total of $23.6 million in funding as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

The act, which was passed by Congress and signed into law in February by President Obama, is designed to fund research projects that will stimulate the economy and create or retain jobs while potentially making significant scientific progress over the next two years.

The success of Viterbi School investigators in capturing these highly competitive awards "speaks well for the quality of our faculty," commented Dean Yannis C. Yortsis.

Large grants include:

  • A $12.5 million Energy Frontiers Research Center grant awarded to a group headed by P. Daniel Dapkus of the Ming Hsieh Department to develop better solar cells and light emitting diodes.
  • Two seven-figure awards to faculty members who are leaders at the Viterbi School's Information Sciences Institute as well as research professors in computer science: $1.6 million to Ewa Deelman for a new interface supporting Grid and Cloud computing, and $1.2 million to  Kevin Knight, to develop tools to decipher unknown scripts.

Other smaller but still substantial grants will support medical engineering research in areas ranging from plaque monitoring for heart patients, better simulations of cell wall lipids; and also work in advanced areas including plasmon resonance, modeling of an astronomical phenomenon called Current Filamentation Instability, green nanocrystal manufacturing,

"In addition to increasing scientific knowledge," noted Viterbi senior associate dean of research Maja Mataric', "this work has the potential to create valuable new job-creating technology, as well as helping to support talented researchers."

The impressive total may still grow: additional Viterbi School applications under the program are active. For more information, see http://federalstimulus.usc.edu