After earmarking nearly $850,000 to support cutting-edge interdisciplinary research activities across the Texas A&M University campus in its previous two rounds, the College of Science and its partners are committing an additional $275,352 toward six new projects under its collaborative R&D initiative known as the Strategic Transformative Research Program (STRP).

The proposals detailing collaborations between 14 faculty in the Colleges of Science, Engineering, Agriculture and Life Sciences, Liberal Arts and Architecture have been selected to receive seed funding in the program's third call for submissions, which concludes year two of this initiative launched in March 2017. Project selection is based on the innovative and interdisciplinary nature of the work and the subsequent plan for future proposal development and submission.

During the past two years, the STRP has provided nearly $1.1 million in support of 58 Texas A&M faculty involved in both new and established collaborative projects that cross-cut traditional research themes. To date, 24 one-year awards in amounts ranging from $25,000 to $50,000 have been presented to further innovative studies in a variety of research-related areas. The projects are jointly funded between the Office of the Vice President for Research and in cost-sharing partnership with the colleges of the participating principal investigators.

Texas A&M chemist Dr. James D. Batteas, who serves as associate dean for research in the College of Science and as STRP coordinator, says the goal of the funding is two-fold: to demonstrate the feasibility of new research directions and to encourage project development for later submission for major funding opportunities through the federal agencies, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTFA), and the Department of Energy (DOE).

"It has been exciting to see the range of new cross-cutting projects being brought forth by the faculty," Batteas said. "We are grateful to the Office of the Vice President of Research and the other colleges for their continued support of these new research directions. We plan to launch the third year of funding through this program in October 2018."

The projects selected for funding in the program's third round are listed below:

  • "Development of a Web-Based Modeling and Visualization System to Support Extended Casual Inference Theory," PI: Derya Akleman (STAT/CLSC); Co-PIs: Dylan Shell (ELEN/CLEN), Ergun Akleman (VIZA/CLAR) and Takashi Yamauchi (PSYC/CLLA) - $35,000

  • "Hypervalent Iodine Based Chameleonic Electrodes for Electroorganic Chemistry," PI: David Powers (CHEM/CLSC); Co-PI: Jodie Lutkenhaus (MSEN/CLEN) - $50,000

  • "Ion Channels as a New Class of Drug Targets in Bacteria," PI: Steve W. Lockless (BIOL/CLSC); Co-PI: Thomas D. Meek (BCBP/CLAG) - $50,000

  • "New Data Analytic Approaches for Topological Electronic Materials," PI: Joseph H. Ross Jr. (PHYS/CLSC); Co-PI: Tahir Cagin (MSEN/CLEN) - $50,000

  • "Plasmonic Nanostructures for Subwavelength Focusing of Light with Twisted Wavefront," PI: Alexei Sokolov (PHYS/CLSC); Co-PI: Philip Hemmer (ELEN/CLEN) - $50,000

  • "Searching for New Physics with Coherent Neutrino-Nucleus Scattering," PI: Bhaskar Dutta (PHYS/CLSC); Co-PI: Samiran Sinha (STAT/CLSC) - $40,352

  • To learn more about the Strategic Transformative Research Program or research in the Texas A&M College of Science, visit http://www.science.tamu.edu/research or contact Batteas at (979) 845-7361.

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    About Research at Texas A&M University: As one of the world's leading research institutions, Texas A&M is at the forefront in making significant contributions to scholarship and discovery, including that of science and technology. Research conducted at Texas A&M represented annual expenditures of more than $905.4 million in fiscal year 2017. Texas A&M ranked in the top 20 of the National Science Foundation's Higher Education Research and Development survey (2016), based on expenditures of more than $892.7 million in fiscal year 2016. Texas A&M's research creates new knowledge that provides basic, fundamental and applied contributions resulting, in many cases, in economic benefits to the state, nation and world. To learn more, visit http://research.tamu.edu/.


    Contact: Shana K. Hutchins, (979) 862-1237 or shutchins@science.tamu.edu or Dr. James D. Batteas, (979) 845-7361 or batteas@chem.tamu.edu

    Hutchins Shana

  • Dr. James D. Batteas

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