Research Experience for Undergraduates
CALLING ON ENGINEERING UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS TO HELP INCREASE THE POWER DENSITY OF CURRENT MOBILE ELECTRIFIED SYSTEMS!
The Center for Power Optimization of Electro-Thermal Systems (POETS) offers a 10-week summer research program that provides undergraduate students with an opportunity to explore careers in research. Students gain an experience that will help strengthen their knowledge, skills and understanding of research methodologies as well as graduate school.
In the summer of 2024, we are planning an in-person REU program with students paired with a faculty member and graduate student mentors at one of its partner institutions: Howard University, Stanford University, University of Arkansas, and University of Illinois.
REU students work on a POETS research project under the guidance and mentorship of a faculty member and graduate student or post-doctoral mentor. In addition to research, students will participate in bi-weekly research seminars, professional development workshops, and a variety of social activities. Students will be required to present their research results at their research group meeting, a final summer research symposium and at POETS' annual meeting. The goal of the POETS REU program is to provide a unique summer experience that encourages students to pursue graduate studies in engineering.
POETS is making way for more electrified future, working with "more" electrified cars, construction equipment, and airplanes. For any mobile system, size and weight are primary considerations. Improving performance of modern, electrified mobile systems frequently demands substantial increases in power density, but electrical power density is subject to thermal limits. Power density limits exist because of the fundamental mismatch between the ability of a system to generate heat in local electronics and its capacity to dissipate that heat in a given local volume. Power limits occur across a range of electrically powered systems, from road vehicles to data centers and consumer electronics. The challenge is that an engineered systems approach is required to break these limits and intertwine electrical and thermal power flows at small scales. The students’ research activities will thus be focused on solutions to the problem of power and heat management in mobile systems. REU projects are built around the intellectual themes of (1) materials and fabrication, (2) electrical and thermal management, and (3) optimization and controls with goal of creating electrical systems with ability to have increased power density.
POETS REU Student Experience
Eric Allee, a senior student from the Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Arkansas has shared his last summer research experience as a POETS REU student.
- In person research experience
- Faculty/peer mentoring
- Professional development
- Networking opportunities
- $6,000 stipend
- Airfare and transportation to/from REU Site
- Housing and meal plan
- Loaner research equipment as needed
- All expenses paid to POETS annual meeting
- Conference allowance to present REU research during school year (i.e. ASME, SHPE, NSBE), including virtual conferences
The POETS research team conducts dozens of projects at any given time. Many of these provide opportunities for undergraduate research engagement. Some projects have specifically requested REU students, and the current list can be found here. Many projects are collaborative across multiple POETS sites and partners, and REU students are hosted at all four partner universities.
- Undergraduates majoring in science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) disciplines.
- Must be a current undergraduate student during the summer of 2024 (i.e. graduation date in Dec. 2024 or later)
- Students with an average GPA of 3.0/4.0 or higher
- U.S. citizenship/national or permanent residency is required
- Students from underrepresented minority groups, women, persons with disabilities and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply
The 2024 POETS REU Application opens December 1, 2023.
This year, the POETS REU program's application will go through the NSF REU Common Application: https://etap.nsf.gov/award/5710/opportunity/7363
The application materials consist of:
- A 5000 character Personal Statement: Please describe your academic and career goals and how the REU program will help you to achieve these goals
- A copy of your unofficial transcript
- CV or resume
- Provide two references
Our application deadline is February 20, 2024.
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