Solberg works at Iowa State’s BioCentury Research Farm near Boone, Iowa.
“I do everything from grounds keeping to assisting in facility research projects in regards to biomass production and processing,” Solberg said.
Andy Suby, who is Solberg’s supervisor and an associate scientist of the Center for Crops Utilization Research, nominated Solberg for the award. According to Suby, Solberg contributed to installing and commissioning unique equipment that is now used for research projects.
He adds that Solberg was instrumental to a successful multi-week project where the BioCentury Research Farm fermentation team created modified dried distillers grain with solubles for a project funded by Direvo Industrial Biotechnology GmbH.
As part of the project, Solberg helped install new custom equipment that tested the performance of Direvo’s products. “We ran into problems testing some of the pilot scale equipment, and I helped troubleshoot and resolve the issues as they arose,” he said.
While his work has made a significant impact at the farm, Solberg remains humble about his contributions. “I was really surprised when I heard that I had won the award,” he adds.
The award also recognized Samantha McGinnis, senior in biosystems engineering, as a student of distinction.
Click here for the full list of past winners and students of distinction.