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A U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science funded Energy Frontier Research Center


  • John B. Parise
    Parise HS
    Distinguished Professor Stony Brook University  Profile

    Understanding how the atomic arrangements in liquids, including solutions, fluids and melts, and disordered materials important in the energy sector, respond to changes in pressure (p), temperature (T) gas loading and high chemical gradients is fundamental to 1) understanding the behavior of these materials under their operating conditions, and 2) deriving general principles applicable to such classes of materials that 3) can be applied to vary conditions that "steer" toward the desired product. Addressing our energy-related problems will therefore involve learning how to vary reaction pathways, including those at extreme conditions, in order to obtain precise information on changes in structural arrangements in situ and in real time. To enable this research we combine development of sample cells for in situ x-ray and neutron (XN) scattering of key classes of materials under their operating conditions.


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  •  Karena W. Chapman
      KArena HS
    Lauher-Fowler Chair of Materials Chemistry  Stony Brook University Profile  

    Karena Chapman explores the coupling of structure and reactivity in energy-relevant materials using advanced synchrotron-based characterization tools. Towards this, she exploits Pair Distribution Function (PDF) analysis in combination with complementary diffraction, small angle scattering, x-ray absorption and vibrational spectroscopic methods. She is currently engaged in projects on battery electrodes and electrolytes, host-guest interactions and mechanical properties of nanoporous framework materials and new materials synthesis. Here work has been recognized as one of ACS' Talented 12 in 2016 and was awarded the 2015 MRS Outstanding Young Investigator Award for her contributions to understanding the coupled structure and reactivity of energy-relevant systems and for developing the incisive experimental and analytical tools needed to interrogate these complex materials systems.    

  •  Simon Billinge
      Simon Billinge
    Materials Science and Engineering  Columbia University   Profile

     Prof. Billinge has more than 20 years experience developing and applying techniques to study local structure in materials using x-ray, neutron and electron diffraction. He earned his Ph.D in Materials Science and Engineering from University of Pennsylvania in 1992. After 13 years as a faculty member at Michigan State University, in 2008 he took up his current position as Professor of Materials Science and Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics at Columbia University and Physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory.

    Prof. Billinge has published more than 300 papers in scholarly journals. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society and the Neutron Scattering Society of America, a former Fulbright and Sloan fellow and has earned a number of awards including the 2018 Warren Award of the American Crystallographic Association and being honored in 2011 for contributions to the nation as an immigrant by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the 2010 J. D. Hanawalt Award of the International Center for Diffraction Data, University Distinguished Faculty award at Michigan State, the Thomas H. Osgood Undergraduate Teaching Award. He is Section Editor of Acta Crystallographica Section A: Advances and Foundations. He regularly chairs and participates in reviews of major facilities and federally funded programs.

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  •  Pete Chupas
      Portrait of Peter Chupas
    Associated Universities, Inc.   Profile 

    Pete Chupas is trained as a Materials Chemist and currently holds an appointment as a Research Professor in the Department of Chemistry at the Stony Brook University and is a consultant at Associated Universities Inc. (AUI). Prior to arriving at Stony Brook University in 2018, he worked at Argonne National Laboratory for 15 years in both research and management capacities. His research interests include the development of new materials that power clean energy technology, using and developing advanced tools to understand how they function and to improve their performance, and in the application of applied science to improve the efficacy of technology. Pete obtained his Ph.D. from Stony Brook University in 2003, and has over 140 scientific publications, he edited a book, and has 6 patents.

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  •  Eric Dooryhee
      Eric Dooryhee
    Photon Division Management Brookhaven National Laboratory  Profile  Eric Dooryhee's background is Materials Science and Condensed Matter Physics, with a noticeable international exposure and a long career at Large Scale Facilities: he has been a user and/or an employee at particle accelerators (GANIL cyclotron and Van de Graaf), synchrotrons (SRS, LURE, ESRF, SLS, SOLEIL, NSLS) and neutron reactors (ILL). He has been a Senior Scientist at Brookhaven since 2009, with R&D, research, user program support and administrative/management responsibilities. Prior to this, he was Directeur de Recherche at the Néel Institute in Grenoble, France.  The core of his expertise is diffraction (high resolution,  in situ, microstructure, direct and reciprocal space mapping, time dependent), including methodological developments and instrumentation and research on a range of materials: complex oxide materials, microporous materials and metal-organic-framework compounds, alloys and hydrides, pharmaceutical polymorphs, energy storage materials, thin films. His research involves developing and applying advanced characterization tools for emerging problems in materials science,  incl. electrochemical energy storage, materials discovery & manufacturing science.
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  •  Katsuyo Thornton
      Katsuyo Thornton
    L.H. and F.E. Van Vlack Professor  University of Michigan  Profile 

    Katsuyo Thornton's research focuses on computational and theoretical investigations of the evolution of microstructures and nanostructures during processing and operation. These investigations facilitate the understanding of the underlying physics of materials to aid us in designing advanced materials with desirable properties. The topics include coarsening in elastically stressed solids, evolution of topologically complex systems in three dimensions, simulations of electrochemical systems, and self-assembly of quantum dots and other nanoscale phenomena during heteroepitaxy of semiconductors using large-scale simulations. 

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  •  Peter Khalifah
      Peter Khalifah
    Stony Brook University   Profile 
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  •  Ping Liu
      Ping Liu
     Department of Nanoengineering UC San Diego   Profile   

    Ping Liu is an Associate Professor at University of California, San Diego, Department of Nanoengineering. He was previously a Program Director at ARPA-E and a Manager with HRL Laboratories. Ping is a chemist who studies chemistry and materials for energy storage devices as well as develops new scalable synthesis approaches to nanostructured materials. In GENESIS, his group studies the formation and transformation of nanoporous and nanostructured materials. In addition to chemistry, Ping enjoys golfing as well as playing Go; both games are maddeningly difficult. Group website:

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  • Jamie Neilson
    Jamie HS

    Our research   is generally interested in   the establishment of prescriptive synthesis approachesin solid state chemistry and structure/ dynamics/property relationships in functional materials. To this end, we ask questions such as: Why do materials have their functional properties? How can one arrange atoms to give a material advantageous properties? To expand the phase space accessible for functional materials, we are often attentive to preparing materials through the use of kinetic control, as can be found from a combination of low-temperature ( T  < 300°C) or solution-phase chemical reactions in conjunction with high-temperature ( T  < 400°C) solid-state reactions.  

    Our expertise   lies in the development of new chemical methods for preparing solids, understanding their structure from atomistic to macroscopic length scales, and relating the preparatory route and structure to functional properties. In addition to the resources on campus ( X-ray diffraction, electron microscopy, magnetometry,   etc. ), we make extensive collaborative use of X-ray and neutron scattering user facilities across the country, as a part of the GENESIS center.

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  • Kristin Persson
    Kristin Persson HS
     Associate Professor in Materials Science and Engineering University of California at Berkeley  Profile   

    Persson obtained her Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden in 2001. She is an Associate Professor in Materials Science and Engineering at UC Berkeley with a joint appointment as Senior Faculty Staff Scientist at LBNL.  Persson is the Director and co-founder of the Materials Project ( ); one of the most visible of the Materials Genome Initiative (MGI) funded programs attracting over a hundred thousand users worldwide. Persson is particularly passionate about data-driven materials design and the advancement of materials informatics.


    Persson serves as an Associate Editor for Chemistry of Materials, on the NSF Advisory Committee for Cyberinfrastructure, on the MRS Program Development Subcommittee and is the appointed MGI ambassador for The Metal, Minerals, and Materials Society (TMS). She is one of five thrust leads in the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR) and heads the NSF-funded Local Spectroscopy Data Infrastructure.  She has received the 2018 DOE  Secretary of Energy’s Achievement Award, the  2017 TMS Faculty Early Career Award, the LBNL Director’s award for Exceptional Scientific Achievement (2013) and she is a 2018 Kavli Fellow.   She holds several patents in the clean energy space and has co-authored more than 150 peer-reviewed publications. 

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  • Gerbrand Ceder
    Gerd Ceder
    Senior Researcher University of California, Berkeley  Profile   

    The Computational and Experimental Design of Emerging materials Research group (CEDER) is a part of the  Department of Materials Science and Engineering at  UC Berkeley and the  Materials Science Division at  Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Their goal is to better design high quality functional materials by mapping the relationship between materials structures and their physical and chemical properties through a combined theoretical and experimental approach. Their group integrates all the aspects of materials research from developing the fundamental understanding to the design, synthesis and testing of new bulk and nano materials. They combine computational approaches in quantum mechanics, solid state physics and statistical mechanics, with selected experiments into a complimentary research strategy to investigate materials in the energy field. They are one of the premier groups in high-throughput computing and the Materials Genome and contribute extensively to the  Materials Project.

    Applied areas of interest are in energy storage based on Li, Na, and multi-valent ion intercalation, solid-state batteries, and other functional materials. On the fundamental side, the group develops expertise in electronic structure, ab-initio thermodynamics, diffusion, synthesis science, structure prediction, and machine learning Over the last decade, we have successfully performed many research projects supported by various companies and governments. The CEDER group offers research opportunities for students interested in theoretical, computational, or experimental work or a combination of these.

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  • Brian Phillips
    Professor and Chair  Stony Brook University  Profile 

    Thank you for your interest in my research!   I have broad interests in areas of geochemistry and mineralogy, with an emphasis on the atomic-level structure of minerals, their surfaces, and defects.  Materials of interest to me include poorly crystalline and amorphous materials such those encountered in near-surface soils and contaminated settings. Such materials can take up contaminants and sequester them by a variety of different mechanisms, such as coprecipitation, adsorption onto the surface, or coupled dissolution-precipitation.  The mechanism(s) by which contaminants are taken up determines the resiliency and whether they can be remobilized upon change of conditions (change of solution composition, pH, temperature, etc.).  I also enjoy investigating the atomic-scale structure of minerals, particularly the details of solid-solutions, mixing, order/disorder phenomena, and modes of trace element incorporation.  These properties are responsible for the rich chemical complexity of minerals, determines their stability, and the suitability of trace element systematics to provide information on external conditions at the time of mineral formation.

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  • Jack Simonson
    Jack S
    Assistant Professor of Physics  Farmingdale State College  Profile   

    Jack works towards the design, synthesis, and characterization of new functional materials, including superconducting, magnetic, thermoelectric, structural, and environmental remediation materials.  He is particularly interested in exploring novel magnetic properties and structures, such as those generated by interplay among low dimensionality, frustration, disorder, and Hund's and Mott physics in strongly correlated systems and magnetic insulators.  He is committed to the mentorship of undergraduate students to succeed in research and technology careers and seeks to extend these opportunities to students from economically disadvantaged and historically underrepresented populations.  Jack's group performs   ex situ  synthesis of high quality single crystals and nanocrystals of new materials in our lab on campus, seeking to uncover the roots of their properties and to develop next generation materials for energy applications.

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  • Gabriel Veith
    Gabriel HS
    Senior Staff Scientist and Team Lead   Oak Ridge National Laboratory  Profile   

    Gabriel Veith is a Senior Staff Scientist and Team Lead at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory focused on the synthesis and characterization of materials for energy related applications.  Focus areas include energy storage, catalysis, and corrosion. His research makes extensive use of well defined model systems to probe interfacial phenomena and neutron scattering to study interfaces, structures and dynamics.  These skills and expertise are being applied to developing an understanding of transport and synthesis in the GENESIS EFRC.

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  • Eszter Boros
    Eszter Boros
    Assistant Professor Stony Brook University  Profile Eszter Boros obtained her B.Sc. (2006) and her M.Sc. (2007) at the University of Zurich and her Ph.D. (2011) in Chemistry from the University of British Columbia. She was a postdoctoral fellow (2011-2015) and later instructor (2015-2017) in Radiology at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. In August 2017, Eszter joined the Chemistry Department at SBU as an assistant professor; she also holds appointments with the departments of Pharmacology and Radiology at Stony Brook Medicine.
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  • Wenhao Sun
    Wenhao Sun
    Assistant Professor University of Michigan Profile We are interested in resolving outstanding fundamental scientific problems that impede the computational materials design process. Our group uses high-throughput density functional theory, applied thermodynamics, and materials informatics to deepen our fundamental understanding of synthesis-structure-property relationships, while exploring new chemical spaces for functional technological materials. These research interests are driven by the practical goal of the U.S. Materials Genome Initiative to accelerate materials discovery, but whose resolution requires basic fundamental research in synthesis science, inorganic chemistry, and materials thermodynamics. 
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