ASU Receives Second NSF Engineering Research Center

Aug. 20, 2015
Arizona State University is awarded its second Engineering Research Center from the National Science Foundation.

The National Science Foundation awarded Arizona State University its second Engineering Research Center, making it one of only two universities in the nation to lead two of the prestigious centers. ASU will lead the $18.5 million Center for Bio-mediated and Bio-inspired Geotechnics (CBBG), which will pioneer advances to solve some of the world’s biggest environmental and infrastructure development problems, according to the university. The NSF announced three new centers across the United States, with Arizona State University figuring prominently in two of them.

ASU already leads the Quantum Energy and Sustainable Solar Technologies (QESST) Center, which was awarded in 2011 and recently renewed by the NSF and the Department of Energy.  The center focuses on advancing photovoltaic solar cell science, technology and education.

North Carolina State University is the only other university to lead two NSF Engineering Research Centers. Only six other universities have both leadership and partnership roles in multiple ERCs, according to ASU. The university joins a distinguished group of institutions that, in addition to NC State, includes Stanford, Rice, Berkeley, UCLA and RPI.

ASU will also play a leading partnership role in a third center, the Nanotechnology Enabled Water Treatment Systems (NEWT) Center. The center is focused on developing compact, mobile, off-grid water treatment systems that can provide clean water to millions of people who lack it. Such technology could aid locations ranging from rural communities to remote outposts to disaster zones. NEWT will be led by and based at Rice University and brings together experts from ASU, Rice, the University of Texas at El Paso and Yale University to work with more than 30 partners including Shell, Baker Hughes, UNESCO, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and NASA.

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