Meeting Our Global Obligations: Hurricane Maria Energy and Health Project

Speaker: Lilo Pozzo, Professor, University of Washington
Host: Energy Graduate Group
Date: 10/9/2020
Time: 10:30am to 11:50am
Watch Video

Abstract: In September 2017, Hurricane Maria devastated the island of Puerto Rico and left its residents without power, water and sanitation systems. In response to the developing emergency, a group of UW students and faculty initiated a combined research, education and service project to assess the disaster’s impact on the healthcare of rural residents. The project aimed to study the potential for small-scale emergency clean energy systems (nano-grids) to help vulnerable people when centralized power grids fail. This talk will outline the main outcomes of the project as well as discuss challenges and opportunities that exist for faculty and students to lead and engage in meaningful service activities with underserved communities while simultaneously enriching their academic experiences and contributing to the real-world research that is needed to bring long-lasting and necessary change.

Bio: Prof. Pozzo is the Weyerhaeuser Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University of Washington, where she has served since 2007. Her research interests focus on expanding the uses of nanotechnology in clean energy and healthcare applications. She leads the entrepreneurship education program within Chemical Engineering and, along with her students, has founded numerous technology ventures. Prof. Pozzo is also the leader of the Puerto Rico health and energy emergency response field-study project with student and faculty participants from numerous disciplines. Prof. Pozzo grew up in San Juan PR, obtaining a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh PA. She has also worked at the NIST Center for Neutron Research as a post-doctoral fellow.