Liu named Statler Endowed Chair of Engineering

Liu leads the Electrochemical Systems Research Center at WVU and has done extensive research in solving various energy problems through electrochemical applications including fuel cells, sensors and batteries. He envisions expanding ESRC’s efforts in the area of natural gas utilization, focusing on its conversion to electricity, chemicals and fuels.

Milsmann earns prestigious NSF CAREER Award

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Carsten Milsmann, assistant professor in the C. Eugene Bennett Department of Chemistry at West Virginia University, has earned the National Science Foundation’s prestigious CAREER Award for research that could help develop solar energy applications that are more efficient and cheaper to produce.

“In general, we are interested in so-called photosensitizers because these molecules can absorb light and convert it into chemical energy,” Milsmann said.

WVU opens new research facility to extract valuable rare earths from acid mine drainage

Through a collaborative research and development program with the National Energy Technology Laboratory, part of the U.S. Department of Energy, WVU is opening the Rare Earth Extraction Facility to bolster domestic supplies of rare earths, reduce the environmental impact of coal-mining operations, reduce production costs and increase efficiency for processing market-ready rare earths.

Additionally, the technology could create jobs, helping to revive economies that have been historically dependent on the coal industry.

WVU researchers receive funding from the Alpha Foundation to study mine safety and health

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - A pair of research teams from West Virginia University have received close to $500,000 in funding from the Alpha Foundation for the Improvement of Mine Safety and Health.

The first team, led by Derek Johnson, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, will look at cost-effective ways to measure methane in longwall coal mining operations in hopes of preventing the most feared hazards in underground coal mines: methane and dust explosions. Joining Johnson on the team are Nigel Clark, George B. Berry Chair of Engineering and professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, Yi Luo, associate professor of mining engineering, and Mark Sindelar, research assistant professor of mining engineering.

US DOE Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy to speak at WVU rare earths research ceremony July 18

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Please join us for the commissioning of the Rare Earth Extraction Facility at West Virginia University, 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, July 18th, NRCCE High Bay, WVU Evansdale Campus, Morgantown.  Comments by Steven Winberg, U.S. Department of Energy Assistant Secretary of Fossil Energy,  WVU President Gordon Gee and our research partners. 

RSVPs appreciated but not required. RSVP Link:

WVU researcher receives NIH grant to explore effects of fracking on cardiovascular health

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Building and operating a hydraulic fracturing well site can emit airborne particles in multiple ways. But scientists still don’t fully understand how these particles impact human health.

Travis Knuckles, assistant professor in the West Virginia University School of Public Health, has received $450,000 from the National Institutes of Health to investigate these questions.

WVU researcher developing innovative process to improve environmental sustainability and water quality

Morgantown, W.Va. - West Virginia University could be at the forefront of solving a $57 billion pollution problem and finding new ways to transform forestry waste into a cash crop for the state and region. 

Kaushlendra Singh, associate professor of wood science and technology in the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design, is leading a multidisciplinary research team to develop innovative biochar, a specialized form of charcoal that can be used to improve soil quality. It is produced by heating organic matter, such as wood chips or pine needles, to high temperatures under controlled conditions.  

Register for PTTC workshop "Hydraulic Fracturing in Horizontal Wells,” July 17-18


This is a relevant, timely and academically exciting topic, and should be of great interest to the petroleum geological and engineering communities – anyone who deals with considerations such as optimal well-planning, production, economics and reservoir behavior – and to students and their professors.  With the recent Superior Court opinion in PA regarding “fracking trespass,” there should be additional interest from the legal community in how to reasonably measure the lateral extent of induced fractures.