Our Personnel 

The D3TaLES team consists of over 20 researchers from 5 colleges and universities! 

Principal Investigators & Senior Personnel

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Scott K Shaw
The University of Iowa

Scott is an associate professor of chemistry at the University of Iowa. His research group focuses on improving measurment science at chemical interfaces, especially as they apply to materials, energy, and environmental sciences. Scott teaches several analytical chemistry, and has a passion for showing students how the lab instruments work. He also founded the Rural Scholars Research Program, which recruits first year undergraduates from rural areas to participate in genuine, laboratory reserach experiences.

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Judy Jenkins
Eastern Kentucky University

Judy Jenkins’ research focuses on the fundamental chemistry of materials relevant to solar energy conversion platforms. Specific topics include the synthesis and characterization of doped semiconductor nanocrystals that convert the energy in sunlight into storable fuels.

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Soumik Sarkar
Iowa State Universtiy

Dr. Soumik Sarkar joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Iowa State as an Assistant Professor in Fall 2014. Previously, he was with the Decision Support & Machine Intelligence group at the United Technologies Research Center for 3 years as a Senior Scientist. Dr. Sarkar’s research interests include Machine Learning, Sensor Fusion, Fault Diagnostics & Prognostics, Distributed Control and Complexity Analysis with applications to applications to complex Cyber-Physical Systems such as aerospace, energy & smart building systems, transportation, manufacturing and agriculture systems. He co‐authored more than 152 peer-reviewed publications including 57 journal papers and 6 book chapters.

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Sara E. Mason
University of Iowa

Prof. Mason leads a research group at the University of Iowa that uses theory and modeling to understand structure, properties, and reactivity of materials. She teaches a rage of courses from high-enrollment freshmen chemistry to graduate-level quantum mechanics. She is currently the Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Chemistry at Iowa. and is also a Counciloe of the Iowa Local Section of the American Chemical Soceity.

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Baskar Ganapathysubramanian
Iowa State Universtiy

Dr. Ganapathysubramanian's group is particularly interested in energy and environment related phenomena. Recent examples include flow physics across complex geometries (buildings, vehicles), charge transport in organic electronic devices and electrochemical systems, coupled phenomena during soft matter manufacturing, and enabling resilient agriculture. We develop mathematical techniques and computational tools — model reduction, multiscale frameworks, multiphysics simulators, control algorithms, data-driven methods — to efficiently represent these systems.

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Susan Odom
University of Kentucky

Susan Odom is an Associate Professor of Chemistry at the University of Kentucky. Her research involves exploration and characterization of new battery materials with a focus on liquid energy storage systems. Prof. Odom teaches organic chemistry lecture at the 200 level. She serves on the University Appeals Board and is the chair of the Chemistry Departments Academic Integrity Committee. She is also the faculty mentor of UKs Energy Club.

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David Eaton
University of Kentucky

Dave is a Research Program Manager at the University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research. His work focuses on advanced carbon materials for structural and electrochemical applications, especially in the areas of utilization of biomass and waste carbon materials. He has a decade and a half of experience in industrial R and D, developing products and processes for various industries. He supervises and mentors graduate and undergraduate student, and works extensively with UK's diversity and inclusion programs.

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Craig Teague
Cornell College

Craig Teague is Professor of Chemistry at Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa. He and his students are interested in energy-related research such as liquid-based energy storage and carbon dioxide capture using both experimental and computational methods. This work includes studying structure and function of ionic liquids. He teaches physical chemistry and a range of other courses, and he is active in Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) and the POGIL Project as well as physical chemistry education communities.

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Chad Risko
University of Kentucky

Chad Risko is an Associate Professor of Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Kentucky (UK) and an affiliated faculty member of the UK Center for Applied Energy Research. Chad received his PhD at the Georgia Institute of Technology working with Professor Jean-Luc Brédas, and undertook postdoctoral research with Professors Mark Ratner and Tobin Marks at Northwestern University. Chad’s research is centered in computational materials chemistry and aims to understand how molecular design ultimately impacts materials properties.

Research Scientists

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Asmund Vego
University of Kentucky

Asmund holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Kentucky and has spent the past 23 years working in industry in various R&D and product development roles. In his free time Asmund enjoys cycling, cross-country skiing, and he is an avid yoga practitioner.

Postdoctoral Students

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Balaji Pokuri
Iowa State University

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Siamak Mahmoudi
University of Kentucky

Siamak recently received his PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Kentucky. He joined the Risko team as a postdoctoral scholar where his research focus is on automated experiments in the context of electrochemical materials characterization. In his free time he enjoys reading and playing with his dog.

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Hussein Hijazi
University of Kentucky

Hussein received his Ph.D. from the laboratory of molecular electrochemistry (LEM) at the Université Paris Diderot. He then undertook postdoctoral research in the “Solid State and Energy” Lab with Prof. Jean-Marie Tarascon at Collège de France, focusing on the development of sodium-based electrolytes for enabling high-temperature performance of sodium-ion batteries. Currently, he is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Kentucky working in Prof. Chad Risko’s group. His research focuses on the development of new materials for organic redox-flow batteries.

Graduate Students

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Andy Horvath
University of Iowa

Andy Horvath is a 5th year PhD candidate in the Shaw reseach group in the University of Iowa Chemistry Department. He receieved his bachelor's degree in chemistry from the University of Wisconsin River Falls in 2015. His research is focused on the electrochemical and spectroscopic interactions of ionic liquids and surfaces. In his free time he enjoys kayaking, reading, camping, and trivia.

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Souradeep Chattopadhyay
Iowa State University

Souradeep obtained a bachelor's degree in statistics and a Masters degree in statistics from University of Calcutta. He joined the Department of Mechanical Enginnering, Iowa State University in January 2021 as a PhD student. His research interest lies in machine learning and high dimensional data analysis. He has also a keen interest in astronomy and have published papers on applications of unsupervised learning methods to astronomical data. In his free time he enjoys singing and reading.

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Taylor Matthews
Eastern Kentucky University

Taylor Matthews received her Bachelor's degree in Chemistry in 2019 and is currently a second year graduate student at Eastern Kentucky University. Her research is focused on exploring the relationships between molecular structure and stability of redox-active molecules using spectroelectrochemistry. In her free time, she enjoys going to the gym and hammocking with her cat.

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Vinayak Bhat
University of Chemistry

Vinayak obtained his Masters degree in Chemistry form Indian Institute of Science Eductiona and Research (IISER) Thoruvananthapuram. His reasearch is in data-driven organic semiconductors. He is one of the lead developers of OCELOT.

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Chih-Hsuan(Bella) Yang
Iowa State University

Chih-Hsuan Yang (Bella) is a second-year Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at the Iowa State University, and also is minoring in Computer Science and Applied Math. She received her bachelor's degree from National Taiwan University in 2019. Her research is focused on machine learning and recently emphasizes inversed physical informed neural networks. She loves to travel, visit Museums and go to zoos to observe animals in her free time.

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Amelia Sweet
University of Iowa

Amelia Sweet is a 1st year graduate student in the Mason and Leddy reseach groups at the University of Iowa. She receieved her bachelor's degree in chemistry from Saint Mary's University of Minnesota in 2020. Her research is focused on computational studies of surface chemistry. In her free time she enjoys cooking, running, and reading.

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Rebekah Duke
University of Kentucky

Rebekah obtained a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Lipscomb University in May of 2020. Her current research focuses on polymeric dihedral angle rotations. Rebekah is a researcher and developer for D3Tales. Outside of the lab, she enjoys cooking and baking, exploring the outdoors with her husband, and dabbling in amateur philosophy.

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Ramin Ordikhani
University of Iowa

Ramin is a 4th year PhD candidate in the Shaw research group at the chemistry department, University of Iowa. Ramin got his bachelor's in chemistry and his master's in physical chemistry from University of Tabriz, Iran. Ramin uses in-situ spectro-electrochemical techniques to study the interfaces in his research. In his free time Ramin enjoys flying his drone, camping, biking, and photography.

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Ethan Herron
Iowa State University

Ethan received a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Iowa State University in May of 2020. His research interests involve applying deep learning and reinforcement learning to engineering problems, particularly those involving generative modeling. Outside of research he enjoys various outdoor activities, reading and cooking.

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Nathan Stumme
University of Iowa

Nathan graduated from Wartburg College in 2019 with a Bachelor's degree in Chemistry with minors in Spanish and Leadership. He is a second year chemistry graduate student in the Shaw research group at the University of Iowa. His research includes making air-sensitive electrochemical measurements as well as a variety of vibrational spectroscopic techniques. Aside from chemistry, he likes mountain biking, spending time outdoors, playing board games, and trying to cook.

Undergraduate Students

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Chad Dzierba
Cornell College

Chad Dzierba is an undergraduate at Cornell College. He is pursuing a degree in chemistry and is part of Craig Teague's research team. He hopes to become a pharmacist. Outside of research he enjoys playing baseball and spending time outdoors.

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Alie McEndaffer
Cornell College

Alie McEndaffer is a rising senior at Cornell College. She is pursuing dual degrees in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. She is a part of Craig Teagues research group. In her free time Alie enjoys taking underwater photography and playing volleyball.

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Evan Mills
Cornell College

Evan Mills is an undergraduate at Cornell College with a double-major in physics and secondary education. He is currently pursuing endorsements to teach chemistry and physics at the high school level. He is part of Craig Teague’s research team studying molecular and ionic fluids.

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Parker Sornberger
University of Kentucky

Parker Sornberger is an undergraduate at the University of Kentucky pursuing dual degrees in chemistry and mathematics with a minor in computer science.

Evaluation Team

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Mary Losch
University of Northern Iowa

Dr. Losch is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Social and Behavioral Research (CSBR) at the University of Northern Iowa. In addition to her administrative and teaching activities, she has designed and directed over 100 survey, evaluation, and applied social science research projects including a number in the areas of STEM education, public health, transportation, and public policy issues. She has directed numerous multi-year NSF project evaluations as well as program evaluations at the state and local level. Her research publications span survey and evaluation methods, social science and health disciplines. She is adjunct clinical associate professor at the University of Iowa College of Public Health and also serves on the Advisory Board for the University of Iowa College of Public Health. She is active in the leadership of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR), the Association of Academic Survey Research Organizations. Dr. Losch also has an extensive background in human research participant protections including previous service as chair of the University of Northern Iowa IRB. In the D3TaLES project, she leads the CSBR external evaluation team that includes Erin Heiden, Kyles Endres, Lisa Green and Pam Musoke.

D3TaLES Universities

NSF Cooperative Agreement Number: 2019574

Data-enabled Discovery and Design to Transform Liquid-based Energy Storage

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