NSF CAREER Grant for Materials Chemist Jesús Velázquez

Assistant professor of chemistry Jesús Velázquez

Jesús Velázquez, assistant professor of chemistry, has received a prestigious CAREER grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) program funds junior faculty who perform outstanding research, are excellent educators and include outreach in their work.

Velázquez’s lab creates new materials for use in nanoelectronics, green energy and environmental remediation. The grant will support research on compounds called chalcogenides, which contain the elements sulfur, selenium or tellurium. Many chalcogenides are semiconductors, and can harness sunlight to create fuels from carbon dioxide or convert solar energy into electricity. Velázquez and his students will use computational modeling to help develop new chalcogenides for energy conversion uses. The team will collaborate with researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder, the Molecular Foundry at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. Velázquez will also design educational programs that support first-generation and underrepresented students at the high school and university levels.

Since joining the UC Davis Department of Chemistry in 2016, Velázquez has received several early career honors. These include recognition as a Royal Society of Chemistry emerging investigator; a Research Corporation for Scientific Advancement Scialog Fellow and Cottrell Scholar; and a faculty scholar in the UC Davis Center for the Advancement of Multicultural Perspectives on Science (CAMPOS).

Becky Oskin, content strategist in the College of Letters and Science