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NASA Awards Fellowships to Two Eastern Students

Written by Emily Bonoyer


  ees-nasa armistead.JPG                                                    Lauren Armistead



            Willimantic, CT -- Two Eastern students, Lauren Armistead '12 a business administration major from Lisbon, and Connor Morrison '11 an individualized major from Coventry, have been awarded undergraduate fellowships from the Connecticut Space Grant College Consortium, (CSGCC), a member of the NASA-funded national Space Grant College and Fellowship Program. CSGCC promotes and supports aeronautic-and space-related research in Connecticut.



                                                     Connor Morrison


The two students are conducting this research under the guidance of Professor Alevtina Smirnova, who teaches sustainable energy science in the Environmental Earth Sciences Department. Smirnova is a leading research scientist in a rapidly developing field that uses nanotechnology to develop fuel cells, solar cells, and high-density storage devices.

            Armistead will use her fellowship to develop miniature fuel cell components from ceramic materials. Fuel cells convert fuels such as hydrogen, methane hydrates and natural gas directly to electricity with high efficiency. Morrison will synthesize new aerogels that will be used to make super-capacitors. Capacitors store electric energy; and super-capacitors have the potential to replace batteries as the main storage device used in renewable energy applications.

            Armistead and Morrison, working under the supervision of Smirnova, will conduct their research in the new environmental earth science research facilities in Eastern's Science Building. The results of both projects will be presented at the School of Arts and Science Reasearch and Exhibition in March 2010 and at the Materials Research Society national meeting in Boston during the spring 2010 semester.


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