Two researchers from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering are part of 41 interdisciplinary teams across Johns Hopkins to receive support from the university’s 2020 Discovery Awards program. Established in 2015, the program aims to inspire interdisciplinary teams to tackle complex problems and expand the horizons of knowledge.

Materials Science and Engineering Professor Jonah Erlebacher is teaming up with Ben Hobbs of the Whiting School’s Department of Environmental Health and Engineering and Sarah Jordaan of the Paul A. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies to analyze the policy and techno-economic ramifications of new technologies to decompose natural gas into hydrogen fuel and solid carbon. The title of their project is “The Carbon Age: Prospects for Lowering CO2 Emissions in the Short Term by Increasing Fossil Fuel Use?!”

Luo Gu, assistant professor of materials science and engineering, is partnering with Dwight Bergles of the School of Medicine on an investigation into how glial cells contribute to the modulation of extracellular matrix in the brain. Their project is titled “Regulation of Brain Stiffness by Glia.”

Erlebacher and Gu’s team’s projects were part of a record pool of 274 proposals competing for the 2020 awards. The recipients include 136 individuals representing 11 JHU entities.

A complete list of recipients and their projects is available here.