Rose of APS and CNM One of Four DOE Early Career Award Winners

MAY 16, 2012

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Volker Rose with the prototype high-resolution microscope at the nanoprobe beamline on APS Sector 26.

Volker Rose, assistant physicist with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science’s Advanced Photon Source X-ray Science Division (XSD) and Center for Nanoscale Materials (CNM) at Argonne National Laboratory is one of four Argonne researchers to receive 2012 Early Career Research Program awards, granted by the DOE to exceptional researchers beginning their careers.

“Argonne is extremely proud that four of our young researchers have been chosen for this important award,” said Eric D. Isaacs, Argonne National Laboratory Director. “These young scientists and engineers will play a vital role in our nation’s future, helping to assure that invention and innovation continue to fuel America’s global competitiveness in the years to come."

Rose’s award will allow him to develop a novel high-resolution microscopy technique for imaging nanoscale materials with chemical, electronic, and magnetic contrast. The technique will combine sub-nanometer spatial resolution of scanning probe microscopy with the chemical, electronic, and magnetic sensitivity of synchrotron radiation. Drawing upon experience from a simple prototype that demonstrates general feasibility, the development will drastically increase the spatial resolution of current state-of-the-art x-ray microscopy from only tens of nanometers down to atomic resolution. This technique will enable fundamentally new methods of characterization, which will be applied to the study of energy materials, nanoscale magnetic systems, and site-specific heterogeneous catalysis. A better understanding of these phenomena at the nanoscale has great potential to improve the conversion efficiency of quantum energy devices, lead to advances in future data storage applications, and yield more efficient catalytic reactions.

Rose holds an advanced degree in physics and received a doctoral degree from RWTH Aachen, Germany in 2005. During this time he conducted research at Research Center Julich, the largest interdisciplinary research center in Europe. After a postdoctoral appointment at the CNM, he joined the XSD Microscopy Group at the Advanced Photon Source as an assistant physicist in 2007. He currently holds an interdivisional appointment between the APS and the CNM. Dr. Rose’s earlier research achievements include an International Student Exchange Program Award, sponsored by U.S. Department of Energy and American Nuclear Society in 2004, as well as a prestigious R&D 100 award in 2009.

In addition to Rose, the other three Argonne winners are Pavan Balaji, computer scientist, Mathematics and Computer Science Division; Victor Zavala, assistant computational mathematician, Mathematics and Computer Science Division; and Richard Wilson, assistant chemist, Chemical Sciences and Engineering Division.

The four are among 68 selectees announced by the DOE’s Office of Science, and were chosen based on peer review from about 850 nominations submitted last November. The selectees for 2012 are from 47 different institutions in 25 U.S. states.

The five-year awards are designed to bolster the nation’s scientific workforce by providing support to outstanding researchers during the crucial early years of their careers, when many scientists do their most formative work.  The awards also aim to provide incentives for scientists to focus on mission research areas that are a high priority for the DOE and the nation.

The Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory is one of five national synchrotron radiation light sources supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science to carry out applied and basic research to understand, predict, and ultimately control matter and energy at the electronic, atomic, and molecular levels, provide the foundations for new energy technologies, and support DOE missions in energy, environment, and national security. To learn more about the Office of Science x-ray user facilities, visit http://science.energy.gov/user-facilities/basic-energy-sciences/.

The CNM is one of five U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science Nanoscale Science Research Centers (NSRCs) dedicated to nanoscience and nanotechnology. It was constructed under a joint partnership between the DOE and the State of Illinois, as part of DOE's Nanoscale Science Research Center program. Together the NSRCs comprise a suite of complementary facilities that provide researchers with state-of-the-art capabilities to fabricate, process, characterize, and model nanoscale materials, and they constitute the largest infrastructure investment of the National Nanotechnology Initiative.

The U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory seeks solutions to pressing national problems in science and technology. The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne conducts leading-edge basic and applied scientific research in virtually every scientific discipline. Argonne researchers work closely with researchers from hundreds of companies, universities, and federal, state and municipal agencies to help them solve their specific problems, advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for a better future. With employees from more than 60 nations, Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.