A monthly newsletter that includes a collection of important news and updates from Telluride Science.


New Month, New Website

Telluride Science kicked off March with an exciting new development – a new website. This would not have been possible without the generosity and guidance of Elliot Steinberg and his expert team at the Saul Zaentz Charitable Foundation. We are so grateful to have a new site that reflects the impactful work that we do. The new website is modern, user-friendly, and provides a platform for us to showcase our accomplishments, engage with our scientists, and our community inside and outside the box canyon. It is designed to be a hub for information, news, and events related to our organization. We will be introducing a new, streamlined registration system for our scientists that will be active on the new site by the end of the month. 

Our winter workshops are winding down with the final session Intermolecular Interactions: New Challenges for Ab Initio Theory taking place March 20-24. Understanding intermolecular interactions is crucial in many fields of science, including materials science, chemistry, and physics. The insights gained from this workshop may lead to the development of new materials with desired properties, improved understanding of chemical reactions, and advancements in ultra-cold physics and chemistry. Our summer workshops start on June 5.  


Renovations at the Depot are on track for a summer 2024 opening. We continue to work on our capital campaign and still need to raise an additional $4.35M to transform this historic building into the state-of-the-art Telluride Science & Innovation Center.

If you have friends or colleagues who might be interested in supporting the Telluride Science & Innovation Center, please email Annie Carlson.



Chancellor’s Professor

Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Materials Science, Engineering & Chemistry

University of California, Irvine

Challenges do not intimidate one of our newest board members, Plamen Atanassov. This is good news for the fight against global warming as Atanassov is using his four decades of experience as an electrochemist to develop catalysts for hydrogen technology which have the potential to revolutionize the energy industry by providing a sustainable, carbon-neutral source of power. He believes hydrogen is a integral part of the complex solution to provide clean energy and to decarbonize the ENTIRE economy--the electric grid, the transportation sector and the manufacturing industry. Addressing all three sectors is necessary to slow climate change and create a sustainable future. As President-elect of the International Society of Electrochemistry (ISE), Atanassov serves as an “ambassador” to organizations and governments around the world on science-based approach for roadmaps towards hydrogen economy. He also participates in ARCHES (Alliance for Renewable Clean Hydrogen Energy Systems),which is a multi-billion Department of Energy and State project in the making.

That is a big idea and a big task, the types of ideas that take shape in Telluride. Atanassov was in Telluride last week leading a workshop on electrocatalysis for energy technologies. “The wonderful combination of coziness of a small gathering and the vastness of the sky over Telluride gives us the ability to think in different ways. The organization deserves to be recognized for the large impact that it has on pushing science and new developments forward.”

Learn More 


What is your scientific field of study? How is the science you are studying applied outside of the lab?

More and more of my time is spent outside of the lab and the classroom. I have been an electrochemist all my life. In the 36 years of my academic career, I have developed biomedical and environmental sensors, rapid immunosensors for infectious diseases including the development of sensors for detecting bacterial and viral infections. Since about 2000, I have worked mostly on the development of materials for fuel cells and electrolyzers. Later, I moved to working on materials and catalysis for CO2 reduction and valorization, including synthesis of chemical industry feedstock. Recently, I have been working on integration of those materials solutions into critical devices and systems for energy technologies. Electrochemical energy technologies are the core solution to decarbonize industry. The hydrogen economy is at a pivotal moment and will shape our future. 

Is there a grand challenge that your field of study could potentially solve?

Decarbonizing the entire economy is addressable through electrochemical science. We must decarbonize all aspects of our economy -- the electric grid, the transportation sector, and the manufacturing sector. The need for processing steel and cement at lower temperatures is startling. Manufacturing of cement, ammonia, and steel combined with the rest of the chemical industry has the same CO2 footprint as the entire transportation sector. In order to slow down climate change, all three sectors – energy production, transportation, and mass manufacturing – must be decarbonized as they all have a similar CO2 footprint. If we only address the electrical grid or the transportation piece, we are not going to make a big enough impact. Living the life we are accustomed to will require a massive overhaul of all sectors of human economic activity. 

Complete Q & A


JULY 18 - 28, 2023

Help us keep this amazing group in Telluride!

If you have a home that can house several young scientists for 10 days and/or lodging for a family of four (2 small children), please email Annie Carlson.


Since 2015, an extraordinary group has gathered at Telluride Science to further the understanding of how information is transferred and transformed at the nanoscale. Their ground-breaking work on the thermodynamics of information will have significant applications ranging from biological systems to quantum devices.

With federal grant funding from the Army Research Office, the workshop organizers have supported the participation of emerging scientists, but it is not enough. It is becoming increasingly difficult to bring all the right people to Telluride, and we'd love to find a way to make this important workshop more affordable. This unique 10-day meeting brings together revered scientific leaders, including our co-founder Peter Salamon, and promising new scientists. The progress resulting from their conversations and collaborations has been outstanding.


As a science-writing intern for Telluride Science in 2020, Hannah Docter-Loeb showed exceptional promise. We loved having her on our team, and we are proud to here share her first article for Scientific American. Congratulations Hannah! Great work!




Thursday, March 16 at 5:30 pm

Best-selling science writer David Quammen will be at the Wilkinson Public Library for a booksigning and in-person talk about his new book, Breathless: The Scientific Race to Defeat a Deadly Virus. The library has five free copies of the book to give away for the first five folks who sign up by Tuesday, March 14. The physical book, audiobook, and ebook are available for checkout.

Breathless is a “gripping” (The Atlantic) but “clear-eyed analysis” (Time) of SARs-CoV-2 and its fierce journey through the human population, as seen by the scientists who study its origin, its ever-changing nature, and its capacity to kill us. David Quammen expertly shows how strange new viruses emerge from animals into humans as we disrupt wild ecosystems and how those viruses adapt to their human hosts, sometimes causing global catastrophe.



March 14


March 15

Telluride Ski Resort 50th Bash

March 24-25

Telluride Theatre's Burlesque

March 31

Last Telluride Science Ski Date

April 2

Last Day of Ski Season & Gondola closes for off-season

The last Telluride Science ski date of the season will be Friday, March 31. Our ski dates are informal ski sessions with Executive Director Mark Kozak, Meet at the sundial next to Tomboy Tavern in Mountain Village at 11 am.

Telluride Inside & Out has a robust event calendar with an abundance of information on events and things to do in Telluride and Mountain Village.

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