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April 17, 2008

Center for Energy created

Pitt this week announced the creation of a new Center for Energy.

Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg said the center is a response to “the increasing need to address the complex energy challenges of our time, which call for more reliable, efficient and environmentally friendly energy sources.”

The Center for Energy, housed in the Swanson School of Engineering, comprises more than 40 faculty members and their research teams who will apply diverse expertise across a broad spectrum of energy-related projects as well as education and outreach activities.

The center’s areas of research are energy diversification, renewable energy, clean coal technologies, hydrogen and environmental solutions.

Areas of energy research at Pitt already include subjects ranging from harnessing solar energy and creating clean coal technologies to developing synthetic and biomass-derived fuels, gas hydrates, high-temperature coatings and fuel cells. Faculty from chemical and petroleum engineering, chemistry, civil and environmental engineering, electrical and computer engineering, geology and planetary science, physics and mechanical engineering and materials science are participating in the new center.

U.S. Steel Dean of Engineering Gerald Holder said the center’s mission will include partnering with industry, government and other universities.

Brian Gleeson, Harry S. Tack Chair in Materials Science and a professor of mechanical engineering and materials science, will be director of the center. Laura Schaefer, associate professor of mechanical engineering and materials science, is the assistant director.

The center will be linked to the Pitt-Bradford energy initiative, which facilitates education and outreach programs in energy, particularly the regional resources of petroleum and renewables.

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