Presbyterian College student receives undergraduate research award

Presbyterian College student receives undergraduate research award

Clay Wright, a junior physics major from Clinton, at Presbyterian College received the NASA South Carolina Space Grant Consortium Undergraduate Research Award. The competitive $6,000 award will fund his continuing research at PC this summer.

Wright’s research, “The Effect of Grain Shape on Confined Granular Flows,” studies the force build-up on the side-walls of grain silos from materials of different aspect ratios such as corn, peas, and rice.

“We commonly experience granular physics in our everyday life because granular materials are ubiquitous,” Wright said. “Expanding the current knowledge in the field of granular materials would increase safety levels, as well as provide insight into how granular materials affect natural phenomena.”

After he finishes his bachelor’s degree at PC, Wright plans to pursue a doctorate in physics.

The South Carolina Space Grant Consortium was formed in 1991, designated as a “Capability Enhancement” state. Under the NASA Mandate for “Capability Enhancement” states, the SCSGC works to increase the state’s aerospace-related research infrastructure. The SCSGC members devise programs to encourage research and students to conduct aerospace-related research and to address the science education pipeline problem.

The SCSGC was originally composed of four institutions of higher learning, and in 1996, the consortium grew to 10 member institutions, nine in South Carolina and one in the Virgin Islands. In 2010 Presbyterian College joined the consortium. Now with 15 members, these institutions provide a balanced program of education, research, public service, and include both women and minority student populations. These member institutions provide a NASA contact at nearly all four-year colleges and the three research universities in South Carolina and the US Virgin Islands.



Presbyterian College is located on a striking 240-acre campus in Clinton, between Columbia and Greenville, S.C. Offering challenging academics and a culture of honor, ethics, and service that prepares students to be leaders in communities, PC offers its students the benefit of engaging with an exceptional faculty who take individual interest in their students’ well-being, both personally and in the classroom. The Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy is dedicated to the ideals of leadership, honor to the profession, and service to the community. For more information about Presbyterian College, visit