College of Engineering student Craig Moore has been awarded a prestigious Department of Energy (DOE) fellowship. The fellowship, provided through the DOE’s University Nuclear Leadership Program (UNLP), grants researchers pursuing nuclear energy solutions $169,000 over three years.
A first-year Materials Science & Engineering doctoral student under Professor Dev Chidambaram, Moore is interested in studying the corrosion behavior and surface chemistry of materials in molten salts for nuclear applications.
“In particular, I am interested in researching electrocatalysts (a kind of catalyst that participates in electrochemical reactions) that will assist in enabling molten, salt-based nuclear fuel reprocessing,” Moore said.
Moore began working with Chidambaram in 2021 during his senior year of undergraduate studies at the University.
“This fundamental work has wide applications in clean energy and energy storage,” Chidambaram said. “Craig uses advanced characterization techniques such as X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy amongst others. All our research is on the confluence of electrochemistry and spectroscopy. Very few people work in the area as it requires a specific set of skills; Craig excels in these.”
Moore is one of three recipients at the University to receive this award over the past four years — the other two being Jeremy Moon and Jerry Howard.
“Given that there are only about 30 such prestigious fellowships offered, we are ecstatic that our students at the University of Nevada, Reno are able to compete nationally and succeed,” Chidambaram said. “All three students are in the Materials Science & Engineering (MSE) program, and it speaks volumes to the quality of our MSE degree programs.
“It is an honor to mentor students like Craig,” Chidambaram added.
Recipients of the fellowship are granted an additional $7,000 to finance an internship at an approved research facility.
“After I graduate, my current plan is to work at a national laboratory to continue to research materials that will support the nuclear industry,” Moore said. “I am very grateful to receive this fellowship. This fellowship, along with the support of my advisor and my peers in my lab group, gives me confidence that I will be able to succeed as a graduate student.”