Life at the Frontiers of Energy Research Video Contest

Frontiers are extraordinary places. That's especially true for those serving at the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Energy Frontier Research Centers (EFRCs).

To provide a sense of the remarkable science, innovation and people at the EFRCs, all 46 centers were invited to create short YouTube videos in the Life at the Frontiers of Energy Research video contest. The contest is part of the upcoming Science for Our Nation's Energy Future: Energy Frontier Research Centers Summit & Forum, to be held on May 25-27, 2011 in Washington, DC.

Twenty-six teams took up the challenge, and submitted highly creative, informative, and inspiring videos. Today, the Office of Science is pleased to announce the five winning videos:
  • "Excited About Excitons" for outstanding portrayal of young scientists
    Center for Excitonics led by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • "Heart of the Solution - Energy Frontiers" for exemplary explanation of the role of an Energy Frontier Research Center
    Center for Solar and Thermal Energy Conversion led by the University of Michigan
  • "Light Matters" for striking photography and visual impact
    Light-Material Interactions in Energy Conversion led by the California Institute of Technology
  • "Carbon in Underland" for entertaining animation and engaging explanations of carbon sequestration
    Center for Nanoscale Control of Geologic CO2 led by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
  • "Battle against phonons" - Special Award: Best with popcorn
    Solid-State Solar-Thermal Energy Conversion Center led by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

You can see all of the entries here:

Click to enlarge photo.Enlarge Photo

In "Liquid Sunshine to Fuel your Car," students from the "Center for Lignocellulose Structure and Formation" dance to explain how lignocellulose is formed and structured.

Please take a look, since it's your turn to vote for your favorites. The video that receives the most votes by 5:00 p.m. EST on May 24th will win the People's Choice Award. Like the other winning videos, it will be screened at the EFRC Summit on May 25th.

The five other winning videos were selected by a distinguished panel of judges that included Paula Apsell, Senior Executive Producer, NOVA, and Director of the WGBH Science Unit; William Phillips, National Institutes of Standards and Technology Fellow and recipient of the 1997 Nobel Prize in Physics; and Ivan Amato, senior communications officer in the Pew Health Group of the Pew Charitable Trusts, and author of the books Stuff: The Materials The World Is Made Of and Super Vision: A New View of Nature.

Each winning team will be called up to the Summit stage for the awards presentation. And two members from each winning team will enjoy a free trip to the Summit and Forum.

For more information about the Energy Frontier Research Centers program, visit the official website. To attend the free Science for Our Nation's Energy Future event, register here. All the videos can be viewed at Don't forget to vote for your favorites.

This article was written by Robin Hayes, PhD, a AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow in the Office of Basic Energy Sciences working with the EFRCs. She initiated and developed the Life at the Frontiers of Energy Research Video Contest.