NAE Awards The Grainger Foundation Frontiers of Engineering Grants for Advancement of Interdisciplinary Research


Fri, March 15, 2019

Washington , DC, United States, March 15, 2019 —

Two Grainger Foundation Frontiers of Engineering Grants of $30,000 each have been awarded to attendees of the National Academy of Engineering’s (NAE) 2018 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering (FOE) Symposium.

Andrew Detor (General Electric Co.) and Corey Trobaugh (Cummins Inc.) have received a Grainger Grant for mechanical testing of an aluminum-cerium alloy that has the potential to positively impact the transportation industry. This commercially available alloy has high temperature capability and excellent castability that could lead to improvements in fuel efficiency and performance.  Cummins is currently evaluating the aluminum-cerium alloy but with advanced characterization and mechanical testing at GE Global Research facilities, the process can be accelerated. This alloy may be useful in automotive, aerospace, and power generation applications.

The second Grainger Grant has been awarded to Lee Bassett (University of Pennsylvania) and Andrew Tsourkas (University of Pennsylvania) for a project titled “Engineering Quantum-Biological Interfaces for Nontoxic Theranostic Agents.” Through their combined expertise, Basset and Tsourkas plan to engineer a new class of nanoparticles that can be programmed to interact within a biochemical environment in a very targeted way. These agents could become diagnostics for disease, sensors to monitor treatment efficacy, and probes to study biochemical pathways and cellular dynamics in basic scientific research.

 “Young engineers never fail to excite me with their innovative creations,” said NAE President C. D. Mote, Jr. “These two winners of the Grainger Grants are no exception to the extraordinary contributions resulting from a free exchange of ideas. They also demonstrate how the Frontiers of Engineering Program fosters advancements in our society by early-career engineering talents.”

Frontiers of Engineering is an NAE program that brings together outstanding early-career engineers from industry, academia, and government to discuss pioneering technical work and leading-edge research in various engineering fields and industry sectors. The goal is to facilitate interactions and exchange of techniques and approaches across fields and facilitate networking among the next generation of engineering leaders. The Grainger Foundation Frontiers of Engineering Grants provide seed funding for U.S. FOE participants who are at U.S.-based institutions to enable further pursuit of important new interdisciplinary research and projects stimulated by the U.S. FOE symposia.

The Grainger Foundation, an independent, private foundation based in Lake Forest, Illinois, was established in 1949 by William W. Grainger, founder of W.W. Grainger Inc.

Founded in 1964, the U.S. National Academy of Engineering is a private, independent, nonprofit institution that provides engineering leadership in service to the nation. Its mission is to advance the well-being of the nation by promoting a vibrant engineering profession and by marshalling the expertise and insights of eminent engineers to provide independent advice to the federal government on matters involving engineering and technology.

Janet  Hunziker
Contact Janet Hunziker
Director, The Grainger Foundation Frontiers of Engineering
National Academy of Engineering