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Immediate Release

Department of Defense Announces 2022 Class of Laboratory-University Collaboration Initiative Fellows

The DoD announced today the 2022 class of Laboratory-University Collaboration Initiative (LUCI) Fellows.  The LUCI Fellowship program supports collaboration between DoD laboratory scientists and DoD-funded academics, such as recipients of the Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship or Principal Investigators (PIs) of a Multi-Disciplinary University Research Initiative award. 

“The Department’s investments in our science and technology workforce is foundationally critical to our security, just as important as developing and transitioning emerging technologies to our warfighters. To stay ahead, we need to excel in basic research and a strong collaboration between the DoD and academia makes that possible,” said Heidi Shyu, Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering.  “The groundbreaking research by our LUCI awardees is supporting, maintaining, and advancing our scientific and technological advantage.”

The review process for this competitive fellowship involved program officers across the Tri-Services (Army, Navy, and Air Force), Office of the Secretary of Defense personnel, and technical experts from supporting Defense contractors. Out of 61 white papers and 20 applicant interviews, 12 Fellows supporting 10 projects were selected (some projects have two co-Fellows supporting them).  Below is a list of selected Fellows, their projects and collaborators. Each project will receive $200,000 later this year.

To learn more about the Laboratory-University Collaboration Fellowship Program, visit

PI Project Title Collaborator
Sebastian Diaz (Naval Research Laboratory [NRL]) Hierarchical DNA-Peptide Liquid-Liquid Condensates and Hybrid Nanostructures Rein Ulijn (City University of New York [CUNY])
Jesse Frantz (NRL) High Speed Analog Photonic Computing with Spatio-Temporal Metamaterials    Andrea Alu (CUNY)
Jennifer Elle (Air Force Research Laboratory [AFRL]) Atmospheric Propagation of Broadband, Ultrashort-Pulse Lasers in the Mid-IR Atmospheric Propagation of Broadband, Ultrashort-Pulse Lasers in the Mid-IR  
Kurt Jacobs (Army Research Laboratory [ARL]) Using Color Centers to Control Microwaves: Quantum-Enhanced Sensing and Microwave Information Processing Dirk Englund (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Mark Roberts (NRL) A Goal-Biased Learning Agenda for Robotics Dana Nau (U. Maryland), George Konidaris (Brown University)
Blake Simpkins (NRL) Cavity Modification of Vibrational Modes for Tailored Photochemical Catalysis Wei Xiong, Joel Yuen-Zhou (University of California San Diego)
Mark Twigg and Sarah Brittman (NRL) Understanding and Controlling Grain Boundary Diffusion in Nanocrystalline Films Marc DeGraef (Carnegie Mellon University)
Jeffrey Warrender (ARL) Novel Group IV Alloys for Optoelectronic Applications Shui-Qing Yu (University of Arkansas)
Charles Kamhoua (ARL)  Attack Graph – Based Deception Techniques using Game Theory Jon Kleinberg (Cornell University)
Madeleine Phillips and Stephen Hellberg (NRL)  Interacting Electrons in Twisted Moiré Chalcogenide Bi-Layers Philip Kim (Harvard University)

About USD(R&E)

The Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (USD(R&E) is the Chief Technology Officer of the Department of Defense. The USD(R&E) champions research, science, technology, engineering, and innovation to maintain the United States military’s technological advantage. Learn more at, follow us on Twitter @DoDCTO, or visit us on LinkedIn at