A West Virginia University researcher’s work has been recognized by a prestigious consortium of major academic institutions that works in partnership with the renowned Oak Ridge National Research Laboratory.

Ed Sabolsky, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at WVU, was selected to receive the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement award by the Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) organization.

“WVU is proud of Sabolsky’s achievement in being selected for this award,” said Curt M. Peterson, vice president for Research and Economic Development at WVU. “This year, only 114 researchers were considered for the award and only 32 were given. That reflects the high regard this outstanding organization has for Sabolsky’s work.”

Sabolsky’s research is dedicated to “High Temperature Nano-Derived Micro-Chemical Sensors.” One of the applications for the sensors is measurement of emissions from power plants. He said the work adds to WVU’s commitment to help pursue environmentally responsible fossil-based energy systems.

“We are delighted to hear this wonderful news about this prestigious achievement by Dr. Sabolsky,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. “As one of our new faculty members, he brings new expertise and experience that will benefit our educational and research programs. I am confident that Dr. Sabolsky will make excellent contributions to the college and University over the coming years in high temperature materials research.”

Sabolsky said the award will provide an outstanding opportunity for WVU students to work with a famous research institute.

“This award provides an invaluable opportunity for our students to work with a renowned research institute, such as Oak Ridge National Laboratory, on a technology that will assist in implementing environmentally responsible fossil-based energy systems,” he said.

The Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards provide seed money for research by junior faculty at ORAU member institutions. These awards are intended to enrich the research and professional growth of young faculty and result in new funding opportunities. There are more than 120 highly regarded research universities in the consortium including WVU, Auburn, Ohio State, Michigan State and the University of Pittsburgh.

According to ORAU officials, relevant, hands-on research like Sabolsky’s connects classroom instruction to real world applications. ORAU works to maximize the potential of talented faculty and students by investing in programs that inspire and support academic excellence, technological innovation and creative problem solving.

Sabolsky’s work received three independent reviews by ORAU councilors and scholars with expertise in the discipline of his research. The final decision on the award was made by the ORAU Policy Committee.

Funding for the award is provided exclusively from non-federal monies by ORAU. The award amount provided by ORAU is $5,000. The applicant’s institution is required to match the award with at least an additional $5,000.