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Sustainable Biomass Production and Processing Systems REU

Primary Institution: Iowa State University
City: Ames
State: IA
Job Duration: May 29- August 3, 2012
Class Requirement: Completed Sophomore Year
Citizenship Requirement: U.S. Citizen or U.S. Permanent Legal Resident
Position Type: Research
Discipline(s): Biology/Life Science
Other Engineering
Description: Biomass?derived fuels are a promising source of renewable energy with potential to reduce energy imports while decreasing net atmospheric emissions of CO2 and biomass-derived chemicals have similar attractive qualities. Making the production and processing of biomass more cost?effective and ecologically sustainable is a key goal on the road to building a sustainable industrial society in the 21st century. Attaining this goal requires significant advancement in our understanding of mechanical, biochemical, thermodynamic, and hydrological processes within the complex natural and engineered systems associated with biomass production and processing.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has provided funds to Iowa State University's Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Department for an Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program that helps address sustainability of biomass production and processing. Student participants will select project areas that match their academic background and interests, and spend ten summer weeks at Iowa State University working on hypothesis?driven research projects. Project topics are contributed by faculty researchers, while faculty and graduate students mentor each student's research. The REU students become a part of a team involved in areas that address critical, long-term national needs in sustainable biomass production.

In 2012, the SPBB REU program will enroll a class of nine students, with these students becoming part of a team involved in areas that address critical, long-term national needs in sustainable biomass production. REU students will work in the following areas:

1. Harvest, Transportation and Storage of Biomass
2. Biomass Conversion and Processing
3. Modeling and Analysis of Bioproduction Systems
4. Hydrological Modeling for Sustainable Biomass Production
5. Water-Quality Impacts of Biofuel Related Biomass Production

Students selected for the program will work on interdisciplinary teams with faculty, graduate students, post-docs, and in some cases industrial partners. They will also engage with students participating in other Iowa State University based REU program in seminars, short courses, research tours, field trips and social events with mentors, graduate students, postdoctoral associates and others involved in related research. Students will be expected to work in a research lab for 40 hours per week, participate in weekly lab meetings and all other scheduled events. At the end of the program they will be required to present their research findings both orally and in the form of a poster.
Stipend: $4500
Benefits: Housing
Travel Reimbursement
Subsistance Allowance
Application Deadline: 02/20/2012
Job Website:

Research/Internship Opportunity Contact Information

Primary Contact: Dr. Raj Raman
Iowa State University
3222 NSRIC
Ames, IA 50011
Phone: 515-294-0465
Secondary Contact: MaryAnn Moore
Iowa State University
3144 NSRIC
Ames, IA 50015
Phone: 515-294-4249
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