Chemistry Ph.D. Graduate Shruti Hariyani Receives Dan E. Wells Outstanding Dissertation Award

Award Recognizes Significance and Impact of Research

Each semester, the Dan E. Wells Outstanding Dissertation Award is presented to a graduating doctoral student who has performed outstanding research and submitted the best dissertation to the College of Natural Science and Mathematics. The Spring 2023 recipient was Shruti Hariyani, a chemistry Ph.D. graduate.

Shruti Hariyani & Dean Dan Wells
Dan E. Wells Outstanding Dissertation Award winner Shruti Hariyani with Dean Dan Wells.

The award was announced on May 12 at the University of Houston Commencement for the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. Hariyani received a certificate and an award of $1,000.

Hariyani’s dissertation was “Expanding the Crystal Chemistry of Rare-Earth Substituted Oxide and Mixed Anion Inorganic Phosphors.” Her dissertation topic is the design and discovery of new luminescent phosphors that are used in LED bulbs and touchscreen displays.

The goal throughout her Ph.D. was to develop new materials that could be paired with violet LEDs to minimize the impact of blue light exposure, which is known to impact human health. Her advisor was Jakoah Brgoch, associate professor of chemistry.

In the course of this research, Hariyani discovered many new compounds, including those that absorb in the violet portion of the visible spectrum instead of the blue and some that are more highly performing than those currently on the market.

For the award, nominated dissertations are evaluated for the:

  • Significance and impact of the research
  • Originality of the work
  • Quality of the scholarship, and
  • Quality of the presentation and organization of the dissertation

- Kathy Major, College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics