Innovators

ARSHEEN ALLAM

ARSHEEN ALLAM

Allam’s goal is to apply her knowledge in Materials Science Engineering and Business to her passion for improving society at a global level through creating access to basic needs, such as water and electricity, and economic empowerment. She has developed and optimized a proprietary method of producing ‘wonder material’ Graphene and is now prototyping product applications using the material in water desalination and clean energy. She has also authored the patent applications for the technologies. She earned a MBA from Duke University Fuqua School of Business and a Master of Global Innovation Management from NC State University, Raleigh, NC / IAE, Aix en Provence.

GO LEAFE PROJECT INFO >

CLAUDIU BUCUR

CLAUDIU BUCUR

Claudiu Bucur is the founder and CEO of Piersica. He has nearly 15 years industry experience in various R&D battery groups at large multinational OEMs such as Toyota (Japan and US) and GWM/SVOLT (China and US). He served as Chief Engineer, then Project Director for the Solid-State Battery Department of GWM/SVOLT. GWM is the largest SUV OEM in China with SVOLT as its battery company spin-off. It is critical that the US catches up with China in the area of scalable strategies for solid state batteries. Bucur hold a Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from Florida State University.

PIERSICA PROJECT INFO >

SANZA KAZADI

SANZA KAZADI

Kazadi is the founder of Kazadi Enterprises which is developing a technology platform and products that leverage environmental thermal energy to accomplish heating and cooling, water purification, and electrical power production. He holds a BS in physics and a Ph.D. in Computation and Neural Systems from the California Institute of Technology. While still an undergrad, he founded the pioneering Jisan Research Institute (JRI) which he led from 1995 to 2015. He’s authored over sixty scientific papers and holds five patents. He discovered and developed entrochemical systems initially based on his theoretical work in swarm engineering.

KAZADI ENTERPRISES PROJECT INFO >

NIALL O’DOWD

NIALL O’DOWD

O’Dowd is the founder of Additive Monitoring Systems, LLC. The inception of O’Dowd’s thesis in optical monitoring techniques for Metal Additive Manufacturing (MAM) came from previous research at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He learned about the iterative R&D process when he programmed live computer vision functionality for an ultrasonic laser-based inspection system. He returned to the Lab after his undergraduate degree to develop microprocessing hardware and software for a mode shape measurement electronic speckle pattern interferometer, which also utilized computer vision. After that, he was hooked on image processing, and integrating cameras and algorithms. He was eager to marry the computer vision techniques he’d developed to making and developing a projection based in-situ monitoring technique. He is currently completing his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at the University California San Diego.

ADDITIVE MONITORING PROJECT INFO >

HONGJUN ZENG

HONGJUN ZENG

Hongjun Zeng has extensive expertise in the field of carbon nanomaterials, composite materials and related topics. As Director of R&D at Advanced Diamond Technologies, Inc. (ADT), he developed commercial processes to manufacture nanocrystalline diamond — another carbon nanomaterial with novel properties — into an enabling material for industrial, biomedical and clean tech applications. His interests include broader advanced manufacturing, micro & nanofabrication methods, semiconductor process, and micro-devices to reach limit-breaking goals. His experience combines the unique properties of materials and novel manufacturing approaches to realize devices with performances that cannot be achieved with conventional techniques. His career in CAS, UIC, and ADT led to more than 50 peer-reviewed publications and 13 patents/disclosures. He holds a Ph.D. in Optical Engineering.

CARBON NANOTUBE PROJECT INFO >

MATTHEW ACKERMAN

MATTHEW ACKERMAN

Matthew Ackerman became interested in quantum dot thin films while studying for his Ph.D. in physical chemistry at the University of Chicago. Beginning in 2016, he developed novel approaches to modifying the chemical composition and improving the technology readiness level of photodetectors based on mercury telluride colloidal quantum dots. During his doctoral studies, he made significant contributions to the development of short-wave and mid-wave infrared photodetectors which resulted not only in publications but also saw a patent filed.

QDIR PROJECT INFO >

KARIN CALVINHO

KARIN CALVINHO

Karin Calvinho’s company, RenewCO2, was founded in 2018 as a spin-off of research she was involved in at Rutgers University as a Ph.D. candidate. She chose to research catalysts for energy applications because they have an impact on the quality of life of all human beings. This field has critical and challenging problems to solve, such as decarbonizing energy production. She uses the toolbox of chemistry, materials science, and manufacturing technologies to look for solutions that close the carbon loop and help mitigate the environmental effects of catalytic processes.

RENEW CO2 PROJECT INFO >

PRANAV GOKHALE

PRANAV GOKHALE

Pranav Gokhale is a doctoral candidate in quantum computer architecture at the University of Chicago. He developed Super.tech as an extension of the research project EPiQC: Enabling Practical-Scale Quantum Computation, which is the flagship quantum computer science project of the National Science Foundation. His goal is to help bridge the gap between existing theoretical algorithms and practical quantum computing architectures.

Super.tech PROJECT INFO >

MARGARET KOCHERGA

MARGARET KOCHERGA

Margaret Kocherga is a doctoral candidate in Nanoscale Science at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her focus is organic-inorganic hybrid materials for the next generation of organic electronics. In 2019, she founded her start-up company, Light and Charge Solutions, to further explore the potential of these materials.

LIGHT AND CHARGE SOLUTIONS PROJECT INFO >

CHRISTOPHER PASSOLANO

CHRISTOPHER PASSOLANO

Christopher Passolano is a doctoral candidate in Materials Science and Engineering at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT). His primary goals are conservation and improved energy storage. He focused on high performance rechargeable batteries because they are the foundational technology that will play a critical role for the success of several emerging industries such as electric vehicles, electric aircraft (particularly electric vertical-takeoff-and-landing aircraft), and commercial drones.

SiMat EnerTech PROJECT INFO >

CAROL SCARLETT

CAROL SCARLETT

Carol Scarlett is the founder of Axion Technologies, LLC, which is working on the next generation of encryption devices, a true random number generator. She holds a doctorate in particle physics from the University of Michigan and is an Assistant Professor of Physics at Florida A&M University. The idea for Axion’s focus came from work being performed in experimental nuclear and particle physics to determine how light should be deflected after repeated quantum interactions.

AXION TECHNOLOGIES PROJECT INFO >

KHALID ALAM

KHALID ALAM

 

Khalid K. Alam is cofounder and CEO of Stemloop, a synthetic biology startup that is unlocking the power of biological sensors. In 2016, Khalid received his Doctorate in Biochemistry and Graduate Certificate in Life Science Innovation and Entrepreneurship from the University of Missouri, where he built computational and biomolecular tools to address a number of problems ranging from high-throughput sequence analysis to targeted drug delivery.

STEMLOOP PROJECT INFO >

 

YU KAMBE, GRADUATED

YU KAMBE, GRADUATED

logo of NanoPattern technologies

 

Yu Kambe is the Co-founder and CEO of NanoPattern Technologies, a company that is enabling advanced quantum dot display manufacturing. Yu received his B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering from Cornell University in 2013. He is currently working on his Ph.D. dissertation at the University of Chicago Institute for Molecular Engineering.

NANOPATTERN TECHNOLOGIES PROJECT INFO >

KATIE KOLLHOFF

KATIE KOLLHOFF

 

While completing a Master of Engineering Management degree at Northwestern University, Katie Kollhoff leads the NUMiX Materials team in business development, external partnerships, and company management. She is a chemical engineer with over a decade of experience in chemical process safety and process performance analysis.

NUMIX MATERIALS PROJECT INFO >

KEVIN O'CONNOR

KEVIN O'CONNOR

logo of Caporus Technologies

 

Kevin O’Connor earned a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Missouri with a research focus on the development and characterization of dielectric materials and components for high voltage, high power systems. He founded Caporus Technologies, LLC in 2018 to focus on the development and commercialization of novel thin-film dielectrics for high energy density capacitors.

CAPORUS TECHNOLOGIES PROJECT INFO >

GARY ONG

GARY ONG

logo of Celadyne Technologies

 

Gary Ong holds a B.S., M.S. and Ph.D in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley. Focusing on ion transport materials in his doctoral studies, he built a variable temperature and environmental platform to study the ion transport properties of porous ceramics and composites.

CELADYNE TECHNOLOGIES PROJECT INFO >

ERIKA BOEING

ERIKA BOEING

 

Erika is founder and CEO of Accelerate Wind, a company that is working to revolutionize rooftop wind energy in the commercial and industrial spaces and drastically lower the cost of small wind turbine technology.

ACCELERATE WIND PROJECT INFO >

TOM GUARR, GRADUATED

TOM GUARR, GRADUATED

 

Tom is a Ph.D. chemist who is passionate about finding practical solutions to real-world technical problems. Tom serves as Director of the Organic Energy Storage Laboratory at the Michigan State University Bioeconomy Institute in Holland, Mich. In 2014, he co‑founded Jolt Energy Storage Technologies, LLC, where he hopes to use molecular design principles to create organic compounds that will revolutionize the field of energy storage.

JOLT ENERGY STORAGE TECHNOLOGIES PROJECT INFO >

CHAD HUSKO

CHAD HUSKO

Chad is a physicist specializing in nanoscale optical materials and devices. Chad’s research aims to harness emerging materials for applications in silicon photonics for energy-efficient computing and data centers.

IRIS LIGHT TECHNOLOGIES PROJECT INFO >

"TED" JUNG WOO SEO, GRADUATED

 

Ted is currently devoted to the commercialization efforts of an advanced electrode fabrication technology, which provides a comprehensive and generalizable solution that affords high stability and electrochemical performance to conventional lithium-ion battery materials.

VOLEXION PROJECT INFO >

JULIE BLUMREITER

JULIE BLUMREITER

 

As a co-founder of ClearFlame Engines, Dr. Julie Blumreiter is working to bring clean, low-carbon, high-performance engine solutions to market in order to change the landscape of the long-haul heavy duty trucking industry.

CLEARFLAME ENGINES PROJECT INFO >

BERNARD JOHNSON

BERNARD JOHNSON

 

Dr. Bernard Johnson earned a B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Stanford University where he worked in the Advanced Energy Systems Lab. His research focused on developing ways to significantly improve the efficiency of internal combustion engines for heavy-duty transportation.

CLEARFLAME ENGINES PROJECT INFO >

JUSTIN WHITELEY

JUSTIN WHITELEY

 

Dr. Justin Whiteley is an electrochemist and materials scientist whose specialty lies in the field of electrochemical devices, namely lithium-ion batteries and super capacitors. He is currently the chief technology officer and co-founder at Emergy, LLC, which focuses on advanced carbon material synthesis through biofabrication.

EMERGY LABS PROJECT INFO >

TYLER HUGGINS

TYLER HUGGINS

 

Dr. Tyler Huggins is an engineer, scientist, and entrepreneur. Huggins is passionate about the application of technologies to facilitate sustainable human development. He firmly believes that clean technologies can be both economically and environmentally advantageous.

EMERGY LABS PROJECT INFO >

IAN HAMILTON

IAN HAMILTON

Atlas Energy logo

Hamilton is currently researching non-equilibrium plasma physics and radiation generated plasma for his M.S. He also is the founder and CEO of Atlas Energy Systems, an energy development company focused on the conversion of nuclear waste into usable energy.

ATLAS ENERGY SYSTEMS PROJECT INFO >