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U-M Energy Institute Director Mark Barteau to become VP for Research at Texas A&M

U-M Energy Institute Director Dr. Mark Barteau will leave U-M to join Texas A&M University as Vice President of Research, effective February 15. Dr. Bart Bartlett, Associate Professor of Chemistry in U-M’s College of Literature, Science, and the Arts and the Energy Institute’s Associate Director for Science and Technology, will serve as Interim Director.

The U-M Office of Research (UMOR) has convened a team of faculty from across campus to mount a search for the next Director.

A unit of UMOR, the U-M Energy Institute (UMEI) builds on the University of Michigan’s strong energy research heritage to develop and integrate science, technology and policy solutions to pressing energy challenges. With over 130 faculty affiliates conducting over $50 million in research each year, Institute initiatives span 19 disciplines, several countries, and a range of industries.

“During the past five years, Mark has shepherded an important period of maturation and growth for the Energy Institute, and has launched key projects that have broadened its impact at U-M and around the country,” said U-M Vice President for Research S. Jack Hu. “We are grateful for his contributions to the Institute, which have laid a firm foundation for its continuing success.”

At Michigan, Barteau launched a number of initiatives that have attracted national attention, including creation of a comprehensive Battery Fabrication and Characterization User Facility, the University of Michigan Energy Survey, and Beyond Carbon Neutral – a university-wide initiative integrating technological, biological and policy solutions to reduce greenhouse gas concentrations. He has been a leader in addressing energy and environmental policy at all levels, serving as co-chair of President Schlissel’s greenhouse gas reduction committee, championing the Energy Institute’s 2015 study of Michigan’s Renewable Portfolio Standard, and leading a National Academies’ study of pipelines in addition to working on two ongoing National Academies’ studies on research agendas for carbon removal, sequestration and utilization. Under his leadership, the Energy Institute organized national symposia on shale gas and on nuclear power, and established its annual conference on Transportation, Economics, Energy and the Environment. He is a frequent contributor of perspectives on energy and environment to The Conversation, Fortune, and NPR, among other media outlets.

Prof. Bartlett has served as UMEI’s Associate Director since January 2014. His research focuses on using inorganic synthesis to control the composition and morphology of compositionally complex materials. Student and postdoctoral scholars on his team use these materials to answer fundamental science questions to correlate atomic/molecular structure with electronic structure or reactivity.

These materials have broad impact in the applications of solar energy conversion and electrical energy storage, and Bartlett has been deeply involved in the Energy Institute’s Battery Lab since its inception. He also coordinates the Institute’s Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) program, which has grown to allow over 20 undergraduates to participate in energy research each year. 

“I am honored to serve as the Interim Director of the Energy Institute, and I am thankful for Mark’s terrific leadership,” said Bartlett. “I look forward to collaborating with the talented faculty, support staff, and students across all parts of campus to sustain and expand the visibility and impact of the work of UMEI.”

Bartlett joined the University of Michigan’s Chemistry Department in 2008, after completing the President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship at UC Berkeley. He received his PhD in inorganic chemistry from MIT in 2005, and earned his undergraduate degree at Washington University in St. Louis.