Giri Group News

    UVA Team Advances to Semifinal Round of $4 Million Clean-Energy Technology Competition

    January 06, 2022

    A research team led by members of the Department of Chemical Engineering faculty at the University of Virginia has advanced to the second phase of a three-phase, $4 million competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy. The DOE’s American-Made Geothermal Lithium Extraction Prize is designed to speed development of technologies and techniques for direct extraction of lithium from geothermal brines found in California’s Salton Sea. Lithium – of which all but 1% of the U.S. supply is imported – is a critical material in batteries for electric vehicles and grid-scale electricity storage.

    Associate professors Geoffrey Geise and Gary Koenig and assistant professor Gaurav “Gino” Giri, with industry partner PowerTech Water, make up Team TELEPORT, named for the project’s title, Targeted Extraction of Lithium with Electroactive Particles for Recovery Technology. The team’s concept is one of 15 selected for a $40,000 award and eligibility for the competition’s second phase.

    Giri Group Update Up to Oct. 2021

    October 31, 2021

    1. Steve got one fellowship and one award from US-KOREA Conference on Science, Technology, and Entrepreneurship (UKC) fellowship and Hanwha Solution/Hanwha Total (National Competition), respectively.

    2. Two new graduate students (Ankit and Meagan) joined to our Lab.

    Faculty Excellence

    July 02, 2021


    Associate professor Geoff Geise, shown in his lab working with undergraduate chem-e major Anna Harris, is one of three faculty members recognized by UVA for research in 2020.

    UVA chemical engineering faculty excel in both teaching and research, and the department is rooted in a philosophy that the two go hand in hand. Below are examples of recent accolades, undergraduate student-oriented research and teaching projects, and recognition for work well done.

    2021 ChemE Graduate Awards Announced

    April 30, 2021


    Congratulations to the recipients of this years chemical engineering graduate student awards, Kevin Chang, Kevin Gu (pictured), Luke Huelsenbeck, Lu Yang and Mara Kuenen. Find award details here.

    Giri Group Update Up to Apr. 2021

    April 05, 2021

    1. Both Stephanie and Steve's papers are published and citable!

    2. Stephanie & Luke graduate! Stephanie becomes Senior Scientist at Allogene Therapeutics & Luke becomes an investigator- Materials Science at GSK.

    3. Steve accepted his internship to Form factor (Livermore, CA) and he won't be around for summer.

    4. Karl was one of 48 out of 900 applicants to make it to the final round of interviews for a coveted Hertz Fellowship, worth up to $250,000.

    5. Steve's paper that was collaborated with Dr. Hopkins group has been submitted to Adw. Chemie Int. Ed. Keep working hard, Steve!!


    ChemE Presenters Adjust as UVA Graduate Engineering Research Symposium Goes Online

    April 04, 2020

    UVA Engineering and the Department of Chemical Engineering, like the rest of world, is coping with the COVID-19 pandemic in large measure by conducting classes, meetings and as much research as possible online. The Graduate Engineering Student Council’s 16th annual University of Virginia Graduate Engineering Research Symposium is no exception. The symposium, known as UVERS, will go on as planned on April 7, except that it will be conducted through webinars. Details and registration information may be found here.

    As in the past, presenters for each UVA Engineering department were selected through a competitive process based on submitted research abstracts. One podium presenter and three poster presenters from each department will compete for prizes ranging in value from $100 to $1,000. Additionally, the posters will be available for viewing April 7-14 in the online poster gallery, and participants and attendees are encouraged to cast their vote for the People’s Choice Award here.


    Naomi Miyake (left), a Ph.D. student in William Mynn Thornton Professor Robert J. Davis’ catalysis lab, will represent chemE in the podium session, presenting her research, “Understanding the role of Ag and ZrO2 in the catalytic activity of the Ag/ZrO2/SiO2 catalyst for the ethanol to butadiene reactions.”

    ChemE students presenting in the poster sessions are:

    Beverly Miller (Steven J. Caliari lab): “Addressing a Clinical Need: Tissue Engineering to Improve Pelvic Organ Prolapse Repair”

    Devanshi Gupta (Gary Koenig lab): “Analysis of Chemical and Electrochemical Lithiation/Delithiation of a Lithium-Ion Cathode Material”

    Prince Verma (Gaurav Giri lab): “Controlling the orientation of NU-1000 crystals”

    There also will be a Young Professional Panel comprised mostly of recent Ph.D. alumni, including Zachary Young, a former member of Davis’ lab who now works for Exxon Mobil.

    ChemE Welcomes Promising Ph.D. Students Thanks to New Fellowships

    June 09, 2019

    The Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Virginia School of Engineering has welcomed the first Gaden, Gainer and Kirwan fellowship recipients to Grounds. The newly arrived Ph.D. students met two of the fellowships’ namesakes, retired chemical engineering professors John Gainer and Donald Kirwan and their wives, and Jenny Gaden, wife of the late Elmer Gaden, at a lunch in the students’ honor. Also attending were department chair Bill Epling and their faculty advisors Matt Lazzara, Chris Highley and Gaurav “Gino” Giri. The fellowship recipients are Prince Verma (Kirwan Fellowship), William Hart (Gainer Fellowship) and Greg Grewal (Gaden Fellowship).

    The fellowships, created in 2018 through donations in honor of Gaden, Gainer and Kirwan, will support the graduate students during their first year. The fellowships provide additional funding to bring talented Ph.D. students to the chemical engineering program, boosting the volume and impact of the department’s research while enriching undergraduate education as teaching assistants and mentors.

    Gaden Gainer Kirwan Fellowships 2019_IMG_5451.jpg

    Back row, from left: Greg Grewal, Assistant Professor Chris Highley and Chair and Professor Bill Epling. Middle row, from left: Associate Professor Matt Lazzara, Will Hart, John Gainer, Assistant Professor Gino Giri, and Mary and Donald Kirwan. Front row: Jenny Gaden, Susie Gainer and Prince Verma.