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Dartmouth Engineering PhD Student Receives NSF Fellowship

Apr 09, 2020   |   by Julie Bonette

Andrew Hamlin, an engineering PhD candidate at Dartmouth, has won support from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP). Hamlin’s research in materials science focuses on developing low-cost fabrication methods of thin-film solar photovoltaics (PV) for solar power systems.

Andrew Hamlin
Andrew Hamlin

“It is motivating and rewarding to explore interesting scientific concepts and apply them to the direction of implementing renewable energy generation,” said Hamlin. “This NSF Fellowship is exciting because it will enable me to focus on large scale production methods of low-cost solar PV for grid applications.”

GRFP recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees at accredited US institutions. NSF Fellows are anticipated to become knowledge experts who can contribute significantly to research, teaching, and innovations in science and engineering, according to the organization.

“Andrew is now building off his undergraduate background and his interest in energy technologies to develop scalable fabrication methods and novel architectures for a new breed of low-cost and lightweight solar energy. He is aiming to solve some of the critical technological barriers such as mechanical reliability that are currently limiting commercial applications of these promising energy materials,” said Dartmouth engineering professor Will Scheideler who is Hamlin’s advisor.

Hamlin was also recently named a winner of the Dartmouth Innovation Fellowship, and last fall he was named an Arthur L. Irving Institute Mini-Grant Recipient and Fellow. Before arriving at Dartmouth in 2019, Hamlin received his BS in mechanical engineering from Union College, where he was the president of the Engineering Ambassadors Network and a mechanical engineering tutor with Pi Tau Sigma.

“My work here at Dartmouth is particularly intriguing because the field of solar energy capture and conversion lies at the intersection of fundamental concepts from materials science, electrical engineering, quantum physics, and chemistry,” said Hamlin.

Fellows benefit from a three-year annual stipend of $34,000 along with a $12,000 cost of education allowance, opportunities for international research and professional development, and the freedom to conduct their own research at any accredited US institution of graduate education they choose. These individuals are crucial to maintaining and advancing the nation's technological infrastructure and national security as well as contributing to the economic well-being of society at large, according to NSF.