UT Energy Bulletin | October 2022

Energy@UT News

UT Austin’s Call for Innovation Funds Two Student-founded Energy Startups 

Genesis, the startup fund for UT Austin students, recently partnered with the Energy Institute, Affinity Engineering, Shell Global, and Chevron Corporation to invest in two startups innovating on smart energy: Sweetwater Mining Co. and Gazelle Ecosolutions. 

New Student Entrepreneurship Program Launched 

UT Austin and several other Texas universities have partnered with Greentown Labs and MIT to launch the Texas Entrepreneurship Exchange for Energy (TEX-E), in order to create a powerful student-driven entrepreneurship ecosystem in Houston. Learn about the program here.


Moriba Jah Awarded ‘Genius Grant’ by MacArthur Foundation 

Moriba Jah, an associate professor in the Cockrell School of Engineering at UT Austin who is also chief scientist and a co-founder at Privateer, was recently awarded a MacArthur Fellowship. Jah’s work focuses on space environmentalism and collecting data on objects in orbit around the earth. 


Transportable Renewable Energy Research at UT Austin 

At the Resasco Catalysis lab, Joaquin Resasco, assistant professor of chemical engineering, leads research on using ethanol to store energy generated from renewable sources. Read a news story in the Daily Texan. 


UT Energy Symposium: University Fossil Fuel Divestment Debate 

At a recent UT Energy Symposium, participants debated whether or not universities should divest from the fossil fuel industry. Read a news story about the debate in the Daily Texan or watch the recording here. 

News from Around Campus  
  • Cockrell School of Engineering | Webber Energy Group: Joshua Rhodes led research on ERCOT cost savings from renewables in Texas during the first eight months in 2022. Read the story in The Eagle.

  • Cockrell School of Engineering | Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering: Zoltan Nagy spoke with KOAA NEWS5 about increasing energy prices and home weatherization recommendations. 

  • Energy Institute: Jorge R. Piñon was quoted by AP News about how deteriorated thermoelectric plants contributed to a widespread power outage in Cuba during Hurricane Ian. 

  • Bureau of Economic Geology: Scott Tinker wrote an opinion piece discussing the impacts of reducing energy options on energy prices in the U.S. and Europe. 

  • Cockrell School of Engineering | Mechanical Engineering: Michael Webber was quoted by Bloomberg about how many more people would have lost power in the wake of Hurricane Ian without the significant investments Florida utilities made to upgrade the state’s grid in recent years. 

  • Energy Institute: Jorge R. Piñon spoke on CNN Dinero about who loses and who gains from the recent Nord Stream gas pipeline leak (video in Spanish). 

  • Cockrell School of Engineering | Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering: Arvind Ravikumar contributed to an op-ed in The Hill about methane emissions and the need to discuss this greenhouse gas at the UN climate talks in Egypt next month. 

  • Cockrell School of Engineering | Webber Energy Group: Joshua Rhodes spoke with BBC’s Future Planet about clean energy and green technologies on the pathway to net-zero carbon emissions. 

Upcoming Events

Net-Zero CO₂ by 2050 Debate 
November 3, 6:00pm 

Join the Salem Center for Policy on November 3 at 6pm for an in-person debate on net-zero CO₂ by 2050 government policies. Find more information here. 


Cryptocurrency Mining in Texas Debate 
November 9, 6:00pm – 8:30pm 
Austin Central Library
Should policymakers encourage cryptocurrency mining in Texas? Attend this Oxford-style public debate on November 9 to hear from experts both for and against expanding cryptocurrency mining in Texas. For more information and to RSVP, go to this website. 

John B. Goodenough Energy Storage Lecture Series 
November 10, 2:00pm – 3:30pm 

Attend Jonathan Chen’s lecture titled “Fabric Supercapacitor for Energy Storage” on November 10. See this event webpage for more information. 


Master Class: “Introduction to the Wonderful World of Wind & Solar Energy” 
November 11, 10:00am – 12:00pm via Zoom 

Join the UT Austin Law School’s Institute for Transnational Law on November 11 via Zoom for this master class by Professor Rod Wetsel. See the event page here. 


Exploring the Potential of Hydrogen Energy in Latin America and the Caribbean 
December 1-2, 7:00 am – 4:00 pm via Zoom 

Co-sponsored by UT Austin’s Bureau of Economic Geology and the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG), this virtual symposium will focus on challenges associated with developing a hydrogen economy in the region. Find registration information here. 

The International Battery Materials Association 2023 International Conference 
This conference will be held at the Engineering Education and Research Center (EER) of The University of Texas at Austin on March 5-10, 2023. For registration and abstract submission information, visit the website here. 

Save the Date:
March 5 – 10, 2023 

UT Energy Week 2023

UT Energy Week is an annual event that showcases the depth and breadth of energy research that makes The University of Texas at Austin the world’s premiere energy university.

Save the Date: 
March 28 – 31, 2023 

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