CE-CERT Announces 2019-2020 NCST Fellowship and Dissertation Awardees

CE-CERT is proud to announce the winners of the 2019-2020 National Center for Sustainable Transportation Fellowship and Dissertation Awards. Three graduate students were awarded $20,000 each to support their research in sustainable transportation.

The National Center for Sustainable Transportation (NCST) is one of five national centers funded by the US Department of Transportation’s Office of the Secretary for Research and Technology under the University Transportation Centers (UTC) program. NCST brings together six innovative universities with the goal to move the US towards a more economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable transportation system.


David Oswald
Roland David Oswald, Electrical Engineering
NCST Fellowship Award

David is a member of CE-CERT’s Transportation Systems Research Group, where he works with connected vehicles. His research interests include mathematics, mobile robotics, and control theory, and he is currently working on the Eco-Approach and Departure (EAD) application. His future research goals include the development of a portable version of the EAD testing system that can be set up quickly on any vehicle. David plans to pursue a career and research and development post-graduation.




Priya Sengupta
Priya Sengupta, Chemical and Environmental Engineering
NCST Dissertation Award

Priya works with the CE-CERT Aqueous Biomass Processing Research Group on cellulosic ethanol production from hardwood poplar, which involves chemically breaking down the biomass by a recently developed technology called Co-Solvent Enhanced Lignocellulosic Fractionation (CELF). One of her research goals is to recover most of the pure wood lignin from the liquid stream produced from wood fractionation and further incorporate it in making high-value products such as plastics.

After graduation, Priya sees herself in academia inspiring future STEM students to continue the work on sustainable energy. She also has a strong desire to make a significant contribution to the field of sustainable aviation fuels from lignocellulosic biomass, as well as creating high quality bioplastics by incorporating the lignin recovered from bio-refineries.


Chao Wang
Chao Wang, Electrical Engineering
NCST Dissertation Award

Chao is currently working with the CE-CERT Transportation Systems Research Group on a US DOE funded project that will estimate the impacts of Connected and Automated Vehicles (CAVs) and shared mobility on California’s traffic in terms of mobility and energy use. A California-based simulation environment has been created using BEAM (the Modeling Framework for Behavior, Energy, Autonomy, and Mobility), and simulations are being implemented to test the impacts of different CAV and shared mobility applications such as Eco-Approach and Departure (EAD) and ride sharing.

Being enthusiastic about computers and the autonomous vehicles industry, Chao sees himself working on research and development in an autonomous vehicle company after he graduates. His future research goal is to become an expert in the domain of vehicle perception and urban big data mining, where he can combine his interests in physics, mathematics, and electrical engineering.


Congratulations to our recipients for this recognition of their research achievements!