The Functional Nanomaterial Research Laboratory directed by Dr. Jennifer Lu is developing material-enabled transducer platforms for a variety of applications including energy conversion, energy storage and high-efficiency actuators that can perform complex tasks. We are looking for proactive and self-motivated students to join our research team. In particular, we invite students with laboratory experience and fundamental knowledge in materials chemistry or physics. Students will have opportunities to interact with scientists or researchers at National Laboratories and conduct research at NASA Ames and NASA Langley. Immediate openings are available on the following two projects as well as other projects not listed here.

  • Carbon-based 3D hierarchical structure design and synthesis for energy storage and conversion;
    • Preferred: students with training in electrochemistry or solid-state physics are highly sought after.
  • Synthesis of small molecules and corresponding polymers in which a novel thermal contractile unit is incorporated for creating a new polymer platform to enable low thermal expansion polymeric materials for electronic packaging, autonomous solar tracking, soft robotics and thermal energy harvesting, just to name a few;
    • Highly desired: students who have received basic organic synthesis training.

Students with bachelor or master degrees in Chemistry, Materials Science and Engineering, Physics or relevant fields are encouraged to apply.

Please contact Jennifer Lu at for additional information.

UC Merced, the tenth UC campus, is located near the foothills of Yosemite. It is a 2-hour drive to the San Francisco Bay Area and the beautiful Monterey bay.