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Dr. Geyou Ao Receives NSF Career Award

Dr. Geyou (Augyu) Ao, an associate professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering (CBE), has been awarded a five-year, $609,147 Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) award by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The CAREER Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the NSF’s most prestigious awards in support of early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization.

Dr. Ao will use the CAREER award to support fundamental research to develop biopolymer-boron nitride nanomaterial hybrids for multifunctional antimicrobial applications from sensing microbial pathogens to mitigating the spread of infections. Her project is titled “Elucidating the Synergistic Nanoscale and Carbohydrate Interactions of Glyconanomaterials with Bacterial Proteins, Toxins, and Cells.”

Augyu is the fourth CSU faculty member who has received a CAREER award since 2018. Prior to 2018, CSU was awarded only one other CAREER award. Her research at CSU has focused on developing applications for structurally controlled nanomaterials, including carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs), and she has received multiple NSF research grants as well as funding to commercialize discoveries made in her lab.

This article originally appeared in the CSU Research Newsletter, March 2022 issue.

Watch CSU’s Team hBN Sunscreen, led by Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering Geyou Ao and supported by four CSU undergraduate students. The team is applying the customer discovery process to determine the commercial viability of a novel sunscreen comprised of hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) nanosheets in solvents at high concentrations. The nanosheets have enhanced biocompatibility and the high mass potency needed to produce emulsified products at lower material costs while remaining environmentally friendly relative to current products.