Posted: May 21, 2024

Dr. John Coulter, Senior Associate Dean for Research in the Rossin College, Speaks about research acceleration at Lehigh University

Lehigh’s Institute for Functional Materials and Devices (I-FMD) hosted the annual Lehigh Materials Symposium and Open House event on May 6, 2024, in Whitaker Laboratory. This year, I-FMD was pleased to welcome 10 invited speakers to campus to provide keynote talks around all aspects of cutting-edge materials research and development. The event kicked off with opening remarks from Dr. Himanshu Jain, Director of I-FMD; Dr. Anand Jagota, Vice Provost for Research; and Dr. Steve DeWeerth, Dean of the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science. Dr. Jagota highlighted the work that Lehigh’s Strategic Plan has done to enhance interdisciplinary research across campus, and Dr. DeWeerth emphasized the importance of Lehigh’s Interdisciplinary Research Institutes (IRIs) to support these efforts.

Eliza Erickson from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s newly formed Office of Transformation and Opportunity spoke about the vital role that Universities play in the innovation ecosystem. Dr. John Coulter, Senior Associate Dean for Research in the Rossin College followed her remarks with an overview of the recently awarded $6M NSF Accelerating Research Translation award to Lehigh.

The invited speakers represented both industry (Saint-Gobain, Intel, Northrop Grumman, Evonik, Corning) and academia (Penn State Materials Research Institute, Rowan University and the NSF Princeton Photonics Engine). These speakers provided attendees with a compelling and broad perspective on the challenges and opportunities in materials research. A key theme that appeared throughout the event was the need to consider sustainability, in all its aspects, when pursuing new materials design and commercialization.

The event concluded with a poster session where over two dozen I-FMD faculty and PHD students presented the results of their research in materials science, as well as specific projects of special relevance to industry and academia.