CHEMICAL AND ELECTROCHEMICAL TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION LABORATORY
Founded by Prof. Gerardine G. Botte
Texas Tech University
Department of Chemical Engineering
Electrochemical Innovation for Process Intensification
ECS Texas Tech University Student Chapter
The ECS Texas Tech University Student Chapter has been active since November 2020. The chapter was formed with the goal of educating students in the field of electrochemistry and solid state science and technology, and keeping them informed on the latest trends in the field. Dr. Gerardine G. Botte, Professor and Whitacre Department Chair at Texas Tech University, and Fellow of The Electrochemical Society, has served as the chapter advisor since its founding. Dr. Botte has guided the chapter to great successes, encouraging and motivating students to learn and grow through seminars and research, and to pass that knowledge on to others ECS Texas Tech University Student Chapter through outreach and education. Current chapter officers are Ashwin Ramanujam, President; Behnaz Jafari, Vice President; Maasoomeh Jafari, Treasurer; and Md Alamgir Mojibul Haque, Secretary. The officers meet on a biweekly basis to organize events, tours, and speakers that help educate members and recruit new students.
At a two-day event on July 8 and 9, 2021, the chapter collaborated with the Texas Tech Alumni Association to organize outreach to grandparents and their grandchildren as part of the Legacy University Initiative. As participants were kids aged seven to 13 accompanied by their grandparents as teammates, this was a first-of-its-kind outreach for student chapter members. The 15 participants divided into six teams, each with its own student chapter mentor providing information on electrochemistry’s impact on everyday life. Each team received a fuel cell car to work with, providing hands-on topical experience in the advantages and challenges of fuel cells. The teams performed calibrations and prepared the fuel cell cars for competition. After a close race, the winning team’s car stopped only three inches from the finish line! Winners and runners-up received certificates of recognition. Later that day, the grandchildren graduated as Chemical Engineers from Legacy University
Texas Tech's Explore Engineering Program
On June 30, 2021, the student chapter organized and facilitated an outreach program for 25 highly motivated high school juniors and seniors as part of Texas Tech’s Explore Engineering program. ECS chapter members had the opportunity to mentor and teach young students and support science education in schools around the country. The aim of the outreach program was to teach the students about electrochemical engineering and its real-world applications. The 25 students split into five groups, each receiving its own fuel cell car to work on—giving them hands-on experience in electrochemical energy conversion and technology. At the end of the program, the teams were given a specific distance to race their car. Winners of the event received certificates of recognition
Fuel Cell Car Race
Interactive outreach goes online, transforming electrochemical engineering education. The event took place during the “Explore Engineering” week at the WCOE in June 2020 with over 35 participants from middle and high school.
The event was facilitated by Dr. Botte and graduate students from our lab. Dr. Botte kicked off the event with a short presentation “The Fun Ride of Being a Chemical Engineer” followed by a fuel cell car race “online experience.” Graduate students virtually mentored participants to learn about fuel cell cars and technology. Students were divided into 3 groups: Mercedes, Nikola, and Tesla. Each mentor worked with one group to discuss basic science and engineering principles for making hydrogen and fuel cells. The event concluded with a fuel cell car race, in which team members performed calculations to estimate a distance goal. Participants were very engaged and interacted with the mentors at all times. During the race, the participants cheered their car and watched the race between the fuel cell cars online. The winner this year was the Mercedes team, kudos to them.