This past summer Matthew Frame and Lukas Glist, students in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, had the opportunity to perform cutting-edge research in Sheffield, England as part of The International Research Experiences for Students (IRES).
“The IRES program is a fantastic opportunity for students to engage in important research while gaining a global perspective on advanced materials for sustainability,” said Beth Dickey, principal investigator for the IRES program.
IRES focuses on increasing students’ awareness of the environmental and societal impacts of the materials lifecycle. Each student undertakes an individual research project related to sustainable materials development in the University of Sheffield’s laboratories.
“My research was in functional ceramics, and I worked on cold sintering lanthanum doped strontium titanate for use as a thermoelectric. I worked with a Ph.D. student at the University of Sheffield who was also working on the material, who trained me and guided the research process,” explained Glist, a junior in MSE. “I learned that the research process isn’t linear, and that science can take you down different pathways you didn’t think were related at all.”
The IRES program is a fantastic opportunity for students to engage in important research while gaining a global perspective on advanced materials for sustainabilityElizabeth Dickey, Principal Investigator for IRES program
Four professors at the University of Sheffield participated in the program, each putting forth a research project for the students to choose from. Frame, a senior who had been working with ceramics at CMU, enjoyed using x-ray characterization techniques to understand new battery cathode materials.
The program runs for ten weeks, enabling students to become a part of the international materials research community. Both students were able to explore England on the weekends. In July, they traveled to London together to participate in the 8th International Materials Science and Smart Materials Conference. Students also had the opportunity to participate in the New Ceramic Technologies for the Move to Net Zero conference.;
“Being on a different continent was character building,” said Frame. “I feel like I gained a lot more responsibility and was able to learn more about who I am and who I want to be.”
The program is supported by the National Science Foundation, under Award Number 1854928.
Students interested in participating in the 2023 program can find more information and apply here.