March 23, 2017  

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Southern Miss Chemistry Professor Receives National Science Foundation Award

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Dr. Song Guo

Dr. Song Guo, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at The University of Southern Mississippi, has been awarded the National Science Foundation’s Early Career Development Award (CAREER) for his project “Morphology and Property Correlations of Chemically Doped 1D Conjugated Polymer Aggregates.”

The CAREER award is the NSF’s most prestigious award to support junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through the integration of education and research. Guo received $497,884 to conduct research over a 5-year time span starting on July 1, 2016.

“This award is a confirmation from our peers across the country that acknowledge our contribution to this field. They trust us and make an investment in us to conduct the scientific explorations we proposed,” said Guo. “It will also support us to reach out to K-12 students in local communities and increase their exposure to the STEM fields. We will closely collaborate with local libraries and high schools to accomplish our educational projects.”

The market of organic electronics is growing rapidly, evidenced by the emerging products such as curve televisions, wearable solar panels, and flexible cell phone displays that are becoming affordable now. Guo explained that chemical doping, i.e., adding additives to the host material, is a much easier, cheaper, and more efficient way to gain new and enhanced properties from organic electronic materials.

By aiming to understand the impacts of chemical doping on the morphology-property correlation of organic electronic materials, Guo’s work could lead to discovery and design of more efficient organic electronic materials as well as better processing and fabrication techniques for future organic electronic devices.

Dr. Sabine Heinhorst, chair of the Chemistry Department, said she was ecstatic to learn of Guo’s NSF award. “Song Guo is highly regarded; he is a young faculty member that participates in all aspects of departmental mission,” said Heinhorst. “This will be a huge boost to him building his independent research program. He can actually concentrate on doing research without worrying about where the funding will actually come from.”

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at The University of Southern Mississippi has an extensive history of this prestigious award granted to its faculty members. Guo is the sixth USM faculty member to receive the NSF CAREER award.