21-Jul-2010 - European Research Council (ERC)

Two BGU Researchers Awarded prestigious ERC Starting Grants

Two University researchers have been selected to receive Starting Grants from the European Research Council (ERC). The highly-competitive grants are considered Europe’s most prestigious research awards. They were created, according to the ERC’s mission statement, to encourage “pioneering frontier research in any field of science, engineering and scholarship.” This is the fifth ERC grant awarded at BGU and is a confirmation of the rising quality of the University's researchers and research facilities.

The two BGU recipients - Prof. Yoav Tsori, a member of the Department of Chemical Engineering and Dr. Lital Alfonta of the Department of Biotechnology Engineering - were selected for their “promising track-record of early achievements appropriate to their research field and career stage, including significant publications (as main author) in major international peer-reviewed multidisciplinary scientific journals, or in the leading international peer reviewed journals of their respective field,” as per ERC criteria.

Tsori is a member of the University's Ilse Katz Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology and Reimund Stadler Minerva Center. His research focuses on the “theoretical description of ways to control structures at the sub-micron scale, in particular, how external fields induce new types of phase-transitions in liquids, polymers and other ordered phases of soft-matter.” In 2007, he was awarded a Krill Prize for Excellence in Scientific Research.

Alfonta's research focuses on "the development of novel microbial biofuel cells and biosensors based on genetically engineered bacterial cell surface for enhanced communication with electrodes, site specific chemical modification of bacterial cell surface, and evolution and characterization of new functionalities in enzymes." She is a member of the Safra Center for the Design and Engineering of Functional Biopolymers.

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