Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU)

The Renewable Energy Materials Research Science and Engineering Center’s (REMRSEC) Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program invites exceptional undergraduate engineering, math, and science students to participate in a ten-week summer research program addressing fundamental materials issues related to the science and technology of renewable energy. 

These highly interdisciplinary studies focus on multiple areas that are open to all materials science, engineering, physics, chemistry, mathematics, and computer science majors that will complete undergraduate degrees in December 2018 or later.

An Overview of the Colorado School of Mines

An Overview of REMRSEC

Repository of REU posters, 2010-2017

An Overview of research experiences through REU:

Chemical Bath Deposition of Hematite Nanostructures for Photo-electrochemical Water Splitting

Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition Synthesis of Metal Carbide Membranes for High Temperature H2 Separations

A Facile Method for Making Monodispersed Colloidal Platinum Nanocrystals



April 3, 2018 - All positions for the 2018 REU program have been filled.


2017 Renewable Energy REU Student Won First Prize at 2017 AIChE Student Poster Competition

November 3, 2017 - Renewable Energy Materials Research Science and Engineering Center’s (REMRSEC) Research Experiences for Undergraduates program (REU) student Rileigh Casebolt (a senior, majoring in Chemical Engineering at Bucknell University) won the Student Poster Competition at the 2017 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Conference (AIChE) Annual Student Conference which was held October 29–November 3, 2017 in Minneapolis.

Rileigh Casebolt with her poster at the 2017 AIChE CompetitionHer winning poster, titled "Atmospheric Pressure Raman Investigation of Binary Clathrate Hydrates in Their Role in New Energy Applications," was based on her research work during the 2017 REU program at Center for Hydrate Research under Professor Carolyn Koh supervision. Rileigh was also the recipient for best poster oral presentation award during the 2017 REU program (organized by Chuck Stone).

“Thanks to the REMRSEC REU program at Colorado School of Mines, I had the opportunity to work in Professor Koh's lab and do meaningful and interesting work on binary clathrate hydrates," said Rileigh.

“When I presented my research at the 2017 AIChE Student Conference last October in Minneapolis, I ended up placing 1st in the Fuels, Petrochemicals, and Energy I division. I think that it is so easy for me to talk about my research from the 2017 REU program because I really enjoyed what I was doing and I learned so much while I was there. My REU experience just further confirmed my interest in pursuing renewable energy research, and I am so thankful for the experience.”


Posters from all REU program, 2010-2017, are now available online through the Colorado School of Mines library:

Colorado School of Mines REU poster repository


Two 2016 Renewable Energy REU Students Publish Paper in 2017 Journal

 Miranda McCeig2016 Renewable EnerAlice Brennengy REU students Alice Brennan (pictured, left) (a sophomore, majoring in Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering at University College Dublin) and Miranda McCeig (pictured, right) (a junior, majoring in Materials Science and Engineering at Rutgers University) co-authored a paper with faculty mentors Colin Wolden and Yongan Yang titled “Reactive Precipitation of Anhydrous Alkali Sulfide Nanocrystals with Concomitant Abatement of Hydrogen Sulfide and Cogeneration of Hydrogen” that appears in the June 21, 2017 issue of ChemSusChem, a biweekly peer-reviewed scientific journal covering sustainable chemistry.  The paper reports a potentially energy-sustainable, green technique that produces high-purity battery materials of alkali sulfide nanocrystals, cogenerates valuable hydrogen, and abates hazardous hydrogen sulfide.  The thermodynamically favorable two-step process presents easy product separation and facile recycling of auxiliary reagents.


Li, X., Zhao, Y., Brennan, A., McCeig, M., Wolden, C. A. and Yang, Y. (2017), Reactive Precipitation of Anhydrous Alkali Sulfide Nanocrystals with Concomitant Abatement of Hydrogen Sulfide and Cogeneration of Hydrogen. ChemSusChem. doi:10.1002/cssc.201700532


Anhydrous alkali sulfide (M2S, M=Li or Na) nanocrystals (NCs) are important materials central to the development of next generation cathodes and solid-state electrolytes for advanced batteries, but not commercially available at present.  This work reports an innovative method to directly synthesize M2S NCs through alcohol-mediated reactions between alkali metals and hydrogen sulfide (H2S).  In the first step, the alkali metal is complexed with alcohol in solution, forming metal alkoxide (ROM) and releasing hydrogen (H2).  Next, H2S is bubbled through the ROM solution, where both chemicals are completely consumed to produce phase-pure M2S NC precipitates and regenerate alcohol that can be recycled.  The M2S NCs morphology may be tuned through the choice of the alcohol and solvent.  Both synthetic steps are thermodynamically favorable (ΔGmo<−100 kJ mol−1), proceeding rapidly to completion at ambient temperature with almost 100 % atom efficiency.  The net result, H2S+2 m→M2S+H2, makes good use of a hazardous chemical (H2S) and delivers two value-added products that naturally phase separate for easy recovery.  This scalable approach provides an energy-efficient and environmentally benign solution to the production of nanostructured materials required in emerging battery technologies.

Former REU participant is a named author on a paper published in Nature Communications

Former REU participant Donal Finegan is a named author on a paper published in the April 28, 2015, issue of Nature Communications, "In-operando high-speed tomography of lithium-ion batteries during thermal runaway."

REMRSEC REU Director named a Fellow of the American Association of Physics Teachers

Chuck Stone, REMRSEC REU Director, was named a Fellow of the American Association of Physics Teachers in 2014. Quoting from the AAPT award letter: "Fellowship is a distinct honor signifying recognition by one's professional peers and is awarded to individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to AAPT's mission to enhance the understanding and appreciation of physics through teaching."




Donal Finegan – 2011 REU Student

Donal completed his PhD at University College London in December 2016. He will start working for NREL and NASA in March 2017, splitting time between Golden, Colorado, and Houston, Texas. He will work on combining X-ray CT of Li-ion battery micro-structures with electrochemical and thermal modelling at NREL. At NASA, he will be working with Li-ion battery manufacturers to test and develop safer battery designs and modules, to improve the safety of the battery systems in NASA space suits and exploration robots.


Karen Ficenec – 2016 REU Student

Poster Winner: Won “Best Technical Presentation” in the REMRSEC REU for her poster, “Arc Discharge Synthesis of Exotic Group IV Allotropes” for best exhibiting outstanding science.


Andrés Gardner - 2016 REU Student

Poster Winner: Won “Best Presentation” in the REMRSEC REU for his poster, “Emulsion Behavior in Brine/Anti-Agglomerant/Oil Systems” for best communicating the nature, impact and results of his research.

Andrés recently sent along a note thanking Dr. Stone


Meredith Sharps - 2013 REU Student

Meredith Sharps has been awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, and will conduct materials research at the University of Oregon, Eugene. Meredith won the Best Technical Achievement Award during her summer at Mines for her project, titled "Silyl Ether Passivation of Silicon Quantum Dots Via Catalytic Dehydrocoupling Reactions." Her mentor was Associate Professor of Chemistry Alan Sellinger.


Jann Grovogui - 2013 REU Student

Jann Grovogui has been awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, and will conduct materials research at Northwestern University. Jann worked with Physics Professor Reuben Collins during the 2013 REU, with a project titled "Incorporation of Silicon Nanoparticles into Silicon Based Solar Cells."


Phoebe Yeoh - 2013 REU Student

Phoebe Yeoh has been awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, and will conduct electronic materials research at Carnegie-Mellon University. Phoebe worked with Chemical and Biological Engineering Assistant Professor Ning Wu during the 2013 REU, on a project titled "Scalable Nanoparticle Arrays for Thin-Film Solar Cells."


Erich Meinig - 2012 and 2013 REU Student

Erich Meinig, a participant in the 2012 and 2013 renewable energy REUs, graduated with his degree in engineering physics at Mines in May 2015. Reuben Collins and Tom Furtak served as over-the-top mentors for Erich during his REU experiences and senior design work. After taking a year off, he has been accepted into MIT's mechanical engineering graduate program for Fall 2016.


Jann Grovogui - 2013 REU Student

Jann presented his REU research at the National Society of Black Engineers' (NSBE) 2013 Fall Regional Conference. His poster, found here, tied for first place. He also presented his research at the NSBE National Convention in Spring 2014.

Mr. Grovogui also received first place for his poster at the Pittsburgh American Society of Metals Chapter's Young Member's Night.  Congratulations Jann!!



I just heard that I'm one of Purdue's nominations for the Goldwater Scholarship this year! I wrote my application essay on the research I did at Mines this summer, so thank you for helping to make that possible!

Just an update, I applied to SULI at NREL, and I have an unofficial offer from the Silicon PV Group that I'll be accepting as long as the paperwork goes through
correctly. More 14ers for me! Thanks for the help!

Theresa Saenz - 2014 REU Student


I know I was not in the program originally, and I cannot thank you enough for being so inclusive towards me. I feel incredibly lucky to have been a part of this program. I’ve learned that sometimes, things end up being better than you ever thought they could be, corny as that sounds. Anyways, I can’t thank you enough!

Amy Goldstein - 2014 REU Student



Dear Professor Stone,

...I just wanted to keep you updated on how the program has impacted me thus far. I am extremely grateful to have had the privilege of meeting the great people of CSM and being able to work beside some of them. Before the program at CSM, I wasn't a confident student and really wasn't sure where in the scientific community I would ever fit in. At this program I found confidence and direction in my life, an awaking if you will. The program helped me learn to believe in myself to understand that I am capable of working and thinking with the greatest minds in the world. I found my passion for materials science and realized that I want to pursue this field into research. I was awarded a SACNAS travel scholarship to the LA conference recently. There because of my experience at CSM I was able to secure internships for the next summer. Along with this, the abstract I submitted on the research I conducted at CSM landed me a poster presentation at the Materials Research Society's Spring 2015 Meeting in San Francisco. My grades have gotten much better because I am excited about studying materials science and I see connections everywhere. I am transferring next fall to the University of California. I have worked close with Berkeley counselors and organizations to make my application the best it possibly can. And thanks to the confidence I gained from CSM I approached top professors in the Materials Science and Engineering Department to talk about their research and my possibility of transferring. My chances are good but I'll have to wait to find out. You and the faculty I met at CSM changed my life in the most positive way possible. Thank you for everything.

Anthony Salazar - 2014 REU Student, January 6, 2015

Update from Anthony:

Dear Professor Stone,

I am really excited to be updating you on how I have been.  I have just graduated with my bachelors of science in materials science and engineering from UC Berkeley.  I have grown a lot since I was in the program but my goals have not changed and I still plan to pursue a PhD in materials science and engineering with the immediate goal of obtaining a postdoctoral research position at a national lab, and eventually becoming a professor in the University of California system.

As you read this I am preparing to begin my internship at UC Santa Barbara working in Professor Chris Palmstrom’s group investigating potentially topological Heusler alloys.  I am coming off of two years working in Professor Alex Zettl’s group at UC Berkeley where I was the lead undergraduate investigating strain-engineering the band gap of monolayer WSe2.  When I return from Santa Barbara in the fall I am excited to begin my graduate school applications and start my internship with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory working with Professor Oscar Dubon.

This journey has been beyond my expectations and I am ecstatic to see where I go next and what I might accomplish in the future.  I am extremely grateful for the wisdom and experience I have gained from the REMRSEC REU program and everyone I have encountered.  The REMRSEC REU program has contributed directly to my success and development of who I am today.  Thank you for your continued support.  I hope we can continue to strengthen our relationship, as I grow further as young materials scientist.

 Best Regards,

 Anthony Carlos Salazar - 2014 REU Student, June 13, 2017 


Rebecca Pinals - 2014 REU Student

Rebecca won third place in the Materials Engineering and Sciences V subgroup at the 2014 AIChE National Meeting. She presented a poster entitled, “Band-Gap Tuning of Colloidal Silicon-Based Quantum Dots by Surface Functionalization Using Conjugated Organic Ligands.” Her poster was based on research she conducted over the summer at the REU program.