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General CAER News

CAER Staff at Coal Mine

  • Eighteen CAER staff members took an energy tour of the state for three days in August. The sites visited were: an underground and surface coal mine; a biodiesel plant, an aluminum plant, a cement kiln, a wallboard plant and a power plant.
  • John Dunaway and Greg Copley were recently hired by the CAER to extend its reach to the western and eastern parts of the Commonwealth. John is located in Henderson, while Greg maintains the West Liberty office. See feature story.

UK Interactions

  • The CAER contributed sponsorship toward the Engineering Earth Conference organized by UK's Dept. of Geography.
  • CAER Program Manager, Mark Crocker, recently discussed biofuels with UK President Lee Todd on the radio program "UK Perspectives," which aired August 8th.

Meetings and Special Presentations

  • Rodney Andrews and Shiela Medina attended an Asteroid Mining Conference organized by KSTC.

Outside Interactions

Jose Fernandez at CAER

  • Jose Fernandez is a master's degree graduate student in chemistry from University of Alicante, Spain. He is at the lab as part of an exchange program. He will be at the CAER for three months and is working in the Carbon Materials Group.
  • A Chemistry Professor from Alice Lloyd College located in Pippa Passes, Kentucky, Paul Yeary, was a visiting scientist at the CAER for the second summer working with the Carbon Materials Group.
  • There was a tour of the lab by a group of around 20 people, who were at an Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) meeting in Lexington.

Educational Outreach

C2P2 Award to the University of Kentucky CAER

  • The CAER won first place in the Communication and Outreach category of the 2008 Coal Combustion Products Partnership (C2P2) Awards. The award was for the new ash education web site, which is a general introduction to what coal ash is for the general public. The original funding for the site came from the UK Commonwealth Collaborative Program. The C2P2 Program is a cooperative effort among the U.S. EPA, Dept. of Energy, Dept. of Ag, Federal Highway Administration, EPRI, USWAG, and ACAA to promote the use of coal combustion by-products.

Teaching and Instruction

Biofuels Header

  • The Center's first Biomass to Biofuels Short Course was held August 14-15th. Nearly 90 participants attended from industry, government, and academia. Mark Crocker spearheaded the course. See feature story.

Staff/Student Accolades

  • A patent entitled "Method and System for Beneficiating Gasification Slag" was granted to CAER researcher Dr. Jack Groppo, along with C.E. Price and W.L. Barnwell.
  • CAER's mine mapping group made news not long ago in both the popular press and a trade journal for their online expertise. This was followed up by the Kentucky Mine Mapping Initiative's placement as the front page story in the summer edition of GIS Mine Post.

Proposals and Awards

  • On August 15, Congressmen Hal Rogers and Geoff Davis announced more than $1.426 million in federal funding to support research at the CAER to advance ongoing research into the Fischer-Tropsch (FT) method of converting coal into liquid fuels by allowing the center to build a mini-refinery. See feature story.
  • UK researchers have received a four-year, $2 million grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to study how nanoparticles enter the body. The grant will allow a team of researchers, led by the College of Pharmacy, to define the basic properties of nanoparticles and the effects of those properties in living organisms. The CAER's contribution to this project will consist of studying the effects of ceria nanoparticles using high resolution electron microscopy after the nanoparticles are administered systemically. The nanoparticles will be analyzed to better understand interactions with the host tissues.