The US National Science Foundation (NSF) has a special program to encourage both interdisciplinary work and communication with the public, the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program which is holding an online video (and poster) competition. From the May 22, 2012 news item on Nanowerk,
The 2012 IGERT Online Video and Poster Competition is showcasing the cutting-edge interdisciplinary research of 180 graduate-school students from 114 graduate programs funded by the National Science Foundation’s Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program. Through this competition, up-and-coming scientists use videos and posters to communicate their innovative, interdisciplinary research, which bridges traditional disciplines such as physics, engineering, nanotechnology, computer science, biology, and the social sciences to address complex challenges of our time. The online platform designed by TERC [Technical Education Research Centers] enables the public to view the videos and posters, ask the researchers questions, and vote for the Public Choice Award by “liking” their favorite presentations on Facebook.
The deadline for voting on the Public Choice Award is May 25, 2012 12 noon EDT. Winners will be announced June 1, 2012. I was unable to login directly at the IGERT website so found access through the Nanowerk links. Here’s one of the nanotechnology videos,
Here’s how the students, Kristy Jost and Carlos Perez from Drexel University (Pennsylania, US) describe the work on the IGERT webpage hosting their video,
Energy Textiles: a Multidisciplinary Approach to Integrated Electronics in “Smart” Garments
Fashionable Technology is a multidisciplinary field of study, focusing on the fabrication of wearable electronics by combining fashion design techniques with advanced nanotechnology. Applications of fashionable technology range from wearable and soft bio-sensors to integrated circuitry that can monitor human vitals in hospitals, combat, or in space. Beyond the engineering perspective, the field has shown applicability in the aesthetic realm as a transformable means of expression on the body, including clothes that change color and shape while performing electronic functions similar to an iPhone. However, previous designers and researchers in the field of “smart” textiles still struggle with the challenge of finding seamless solutions to currently available, and bulky, power sources. Therefore, the focus of our presentation will be on one of the fundamental components to all electronics: energy storage. We will present cutting edge research on textile energy storage, the design and engineering challenges researchers like ourselves still face, and how textile energy storage fits into the world-scope of research on flexible energy technologies. We will also elaborate on the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration and how it has been a key element to the success of our research.
I last posted about about nanotechnology-enabled textiles, which harvest energy in my May 9, 2012 posting about a project at the University of Utah for the US Army.