Roper Appointed Leader of Engineering Program, Network at NSF

D. Keith Roper, University of Arkansas
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D. Keith Roper, University of Arkansas

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – D. Keith Roper, associate professor of chemical engineering at the University of Arkansas, has been appointed leader of the Engineering Research Centers Program and the Network for Computational Nanotechnology in the Engineering Division of Engineering Education and Centers at the National Science Foundation.

Roper, who holds the Charles W. Oxford Endowed Professorship in Emerging Technologies at the U of A, will retain his faculty position at the university. He has been a program director in the Engineering Research Centers Program and the Network for Computational Nanotechnology since joining the National Science Foundation as a temporary program director in 2012.

“I appreciate the opportunity to support the Engineering Research Centers Program in its mission to advance fundamental knowledge in strategic engineering fields that promote U.S. competitiveness and build tomorrow’s leaders with today’s best engineering practices,” he said. “I will also support the Network for Computational Nanotechnology in providing worldwide access to linkages between nanoscale computation, experiment and pedagogy.”

Temporary program directors, called rotators, are placed on off-campus duty assignment at their current institution. Program directors have numerous roles in fulfilling the National Science Foundation’s mission to promote the progress of science and engineering, advance national health, prosperity and welfare and secure the national defense. 

Rotators coordinate recommendations from scientific peer reviewers about which proposals to fund, identify and articulate new directions in the fields of science, engineering, and education, advance cutting-edge interdisciplinary research and mentor researchers and thought leaders in programs that they support. Rotators work for the National Science Foundation from one to four years under a mechanism created by the 1970 Intergovernmental Personnel Act.

At the U of A, Roper directs the Nano-Bio Photonics lab, which focuses on the interactions among particles and waves on the nanoscale in order to design nanoscale architectures with enhanced performance in biosensing, solar energy, optoelectronics, microthermalfluidics, spectroscopy, diagnostics and therapeutics.

Roper’s research has led to one textbook, two book chapters, 53 peer-reviewed publications, 28 proceedings and abstracts, 135 presentations including 47 invited lectures, three U.S. patents, one European patent, one viral and three bacterial vaccine products, and 16 good manufacturing process documents.

He is active several professional organizations and is a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering and a member of the Arkansas Academy of Science.



Camilla Shumaker, director of science and research communications
University Relations


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