In The News

NSF Graduate Research Fellow featured in Science 360

NSF Graduate Fellow Sean Mealin is featured in Science 360! His research focuses on non-visual monitoring of service animals (dogs). He is in the Computer Science Dept at North Carolina State University. He has developed three prototype interfaces for his non-visual canine physiological monitoring system. The first uses audio to allow a user to monitor heart and respiration rate, the second uses vibrotactile feedback, and the third uses force feedback. The process has included initial interface design, hardware construction including working with embedded computers and electronics, and integrating feedback. Significant software design has also been done; both the software that runs the interfaces, and the design and implementation for a virtual canine have been implemented and tested.


2013 NSF Graduate Research Fellow leads study of liquid water on Mars.

A new study led by scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology, funded in part by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program award, provides the strongest evidence yet that there is intermittent flowing liquid water on present-day Mars. Researchers used instruments on board NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) to measure spectral signatures of hydrated minerals on slopes where mysterious, possibly water-related streaks are found on the red planet.


2015 NSF GRFP Fellows are diverse in terms of backgrounds and areas of study.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has announced this year's recipients of Graduate Research Fellowships (GRF). NSF awarded the GRF to 2,000 individuals from among 16,500 applicants in 2015. Awardees represent a diverse group of scientific disciplines and come from all states, as well as the District of Columbia, and commonwealths and territories of the United States. They are also a diverse group of individuals. Among the 2,000 awardees, 1,053 are women, 494 are from underrepresented minority groups, 43 are persons with disabilities, and 31 are veterans.


2011 Fellow Prineha Narang co-authors in Nature Journal regarding theoretical description of plasmonic hot-carrier generation in real materials.

Plasmons, which are collective oscillations of electrons support intense electromagnetic field concentration and provide a pathway to capture light from free space in nanoscale systems.The decay of surface plasmon resonances is usually a detriment in the field of plasmonics, but the possibility to capture the energy normally lost to heat would open new opportunities in photon sensors and energy conversion devices. This paper reports a detailed theoretical description of plasmonic hot-carrier generation in real materials.


T. Rex times seven: New dinosaur species is discovered in Argentina by GRFP Fellow and Alumni.

Scientists have discovered and described a new supermassive dinosaur species with the most complete skeleton ever found of its type. At 85 feet long and weighing about 65 tons in life, Dreadnoughtus schrani is the largest land animal for which a body mass can be accurately calculated. The new dinosaur belongs to a group of large plant eaters known as titanosaurs. The fossil was unearthed over four field seasons from 2005 through 2009 by [Kenneth] Lacovara and a team including Lucio M. Ibiricu of the Centro Nacional Patagonico in Chubut, Argentina; the Carnegie Museum of Natural History's Matthew Lamanna, and Jason Poole of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, as well as many current and former Drexel students and other collaborators. These included three current NSF Graduate Research Fellows--current GRF Kristyn Voegele, and former GRFs Elena Schroeter and Paul Ullmann--all co-authors of this paper.


Separated by 60 years, Kate Devlin joins her grandfather, Tom Devlin, as a proud recipient of the GRFP.

On April 1, the National Science Foundation announced this year's class of Graduate Research Fellowship (GRF) recipients--2,000 students representing all states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. commonwealths and territories. For one of this year's awardees, Kate Devlin, the GRF runs in the family: Sixty years ago, Kate's grandfather, Tom Devlin, also received this prestigious NSF fellowship. Although the GRF is fundamentally still the same fellowship, changes in the sciences and academia in the past half century have meant a different experience for grandfather and granddaughter.


GRFP Fellow Kevin Huang joins SERS to create robots that may one day save lives.

This Smart Emergency Response Systems project seeks to move emergency response to the next level—through incorporation of the products of cyber-physical systems research, in order to save lives and reduce costs. In addition, it opens the door to significant new economic and employment opportunities.


Fellow Elizabeth Aguilera follows in her father's footsteps.

This year’s Graduate Research Fellowship class is not only special because it is the largest in NSF history, but also because of one particular fellowship recipient. Elizabeth Aguilera is following in her father’s footsteps: In 1982, Renato Aguilera was one of the first Mexican-Americans to be awarded the fellowship. Additionally, both are alums of the University of Texas at El Paso, and both received the fellowship in the area of microbiology.




On December 5, 2012, the winners of the 2013 NSF GRFP 60th anniversary video contest were announced. First place went to Eric Keen, second place went to Candy Hwang, and third place went to Erica Staaterman. Candy Hwang also won the People's Choice award. Congratulations to all three of them!

2012 marks the 60th anniversary of the GRFP. Please visit the NSF website and special 60th anniversary web page for information about the history of the program, 60th anniversary video contest winners, profiles of past awardees, examples of past GRFP work, and more.

A droplet of clotted human blood plasma flows through a winding microfluidic channel, surrounded by an inert carrier fluid. This system was used to demonstrate that small quantities of activators initiate blood clotting only in plasma that is mixed slowly or not at all, and that rapid mixing slows or prevents blood clotting. This finding may explain some of the variability seen in clinical clotting assays used in hospitals to diagnose diseases, and suggests such assays may be improved by controlling the rate of mixing.

Image is courtesy of Fellow Rebecca Pompano from the University of Chicago.