MRSEC Seed Grant Program

Solicited annually, the UC San Diego MRSEC Seed Grants are intended to provide short-term funding to initiate exciting collaborations within one of the two thematic areas – the Interdisciplinary Research Groups (IRGs) – of the UC San Diego MRSEC. IRG1 focuses on synthetic and computational aspects of the mesoscale assembly of materials. IRG2 seeks to develop stimuli-responsive ‘living materials’ by merging polymer science with synthetic biology.

The program is open to all faculty members within the UC San Diego materials research community. Successful execution of the proposed research is expected to lead to additional federal grants and the potential for long-term MRSEC funding. It is anticipated that each Seed Grant will provide $25,000-$75,000 direct costs for a one-year project, with the potential for renewal for a second year or for continuous IRG support, subject to review. Each Seed Grant must include one faculty-level PI, plus one or more faculty collaborators.

Proposal Submission for 2021-2022 Seed Projects - Now Closed
Call for Proposals for 2022-2023 Seed Projects to be posted in Fall 2022. Please stay tuned!

2021-2022 MRSEC Seed Grant Recipients


Zheng Chen, Assistant Professor, Nanoengineering (Continued Seed Funding from 2020-2021)
Proposal Title: Hierarchical Assembly of Structurally Oriented Metal-Organic Frameworks as Novel Ionic Conductors

David Fenning, Associate Professor, Nanoengineering
Proposal Title: Dynamic Microenvironments at Electrocatalytic interfaces using Acoustoelectronics


Shaochen Chen, Professor & Chair, Nanoengineering
Proposal Title: Photosynthetic 3D printed materials for on-demand production of microalgal bioproducts

Lisa Poulikakos, Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Proposal Title: Rationally Designed Nanophotonic Materials for Non-Invasive Imaging of Soft and Living Matter

Valerie Schmidt, Assistant Professor, Chemistry & Biochemistry
Proposal Title: Synthesis of fully bio-sourced polyurethane materials

2020-2021 MRSEC Seed Grant Recipients


Alina Schimpf, Assistant Professor, Chemistry & Biochemistry
Proposal Title: Precise Synthesis of Nanocrystal Building-Blocks

Zheng Chen, Assistant Professor, Nanoengineering
Proposal Title: Hierarchical Assembly of Structurally Oriented Metal-Organic Frameworks as Novel Ionic Conductors


Donald Sirbuly, Associate Professor, Nanoengineering
Proposal Title: Nanofiber optics for in situ real-time nanometrology

For further questions or to request additional information please contact Professor Jon Pokorski (email).