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Di Xiao

Di Xiao is Department Chair of Materials Science & Engineering, the Robert J. Campbell Chair in the College of Engineering, and Professor of Physics at the UW. Xiao develops novel ways to probe and control magnetism in van der Waals materials. He investigates novel phenomena, including transport and optical signatures of topological phases and heterostructure engineering of novel quantum states. Xiao is a renowned theorist in the field of quantum materials, having been named a Thomson-Reuters Highly Cited Researcher every year since 2017, with his work cited over 46,000 times and holding an h-index of 71....

Rachel Woods-Robinson

Rachel Woods-Robinson (she/her) is a CEI Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellow, with a collaborative appointment at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). Dr. Woods-Robinson’s research focuses on assessing environmental and human impacts of scaling solar photovoltaic (PV) materials and other emerging technologies to address the climate crisis. Her research interests span from the nanoscale, such as sustainable materials discovery of new crystals for renewable energy, to the terawatt scale, such as strategies to scale photovoltaics to 2050 net-zero goals. She is mentored by Alberta “Birdie” Carpenter at NREL, is hosted at the UW by David Ginger, and collaborates with industrial partners. Dr. Woods-Robinson received her Ph.D. in...

Yusen Ye

I'm currently in my third year pursuing a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Washington, mentored by Prof. Ting Cao and Prof. Di Xiao. My research is centered on moiré systems that emerge when two layers of two-dimensional materials are stacked, resulting in a huge periodicity due to small lattice mismatches or twisted angles – sometimes up to 100 times the original lattice constant. The discovery of two-dimensional magnets has opened doors to an exciting subfield: moiré magnets. In this realm, magnetic behaviors can vary locally, and the combination of low dimensionality with a vast contact surface offers opportunities for...

Aaron Thomas

Aaron Thomas is a PhD student in Materials Science at the University of Washington, hailing from western New York. His research interests are in the development of clean energy storage mechanisms in the Jun Liu group, to support the growth of renewable energy. He is currently focusing on characterization of interphases formed in cycling of lithium metal-sulfur batteries, in the hopes of understanding the behavior at these interfaces through in-situ and ex-situ analysis. He began his work in energy storage as a second-year undergraduate at the Georgia Institute of Technology, where he later earned bachelor’s degrees in Materials Science and Chinese language studies. Before...

Anthony Romero

My name is Anthony Romero, a second year Materials Science and Engineering PhD student advised by Prof Jun Liu and Prof Jihui Yang. My research is focused around integrating Li metal into the negative electrode in Li-ion batteries. If done correctly, we can increase the theoretical gravimetric capacity ~10x versus industrially standardized carbon-based negative electrodes. However, there are many scientific/engineering challenges with using Li metal; the most prominent being uneven plating and stripping during repeated cycling – which ultimately leads to premature and/or unexpected cell failure. Various approaches currently exist to address this problem, ranging from unique battery architectures (e.g., solid state batteries) to...

Meng-Yen Lin

Construction materials account for more than 10% of CO2 global emissions, highlighting the surging need for low-carbon building materials. Introducing carbon-sequestrating fillers in building materials with low-emission processes increases the possibility of decreasing the environmental impact of building materials. Deconvoluting the effects of chemical compositions of fillers and microstructure on the mechanical performance, insulation properties, and carbon sequestration ability of composites is crucial to the application. My research focuses on developing manufacturing methods using carbon-storing biobased materials to improve the mechanical properties and energy efficiency of green construction materials....

Kuotian Liao

I am a third year PhD student in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Washington. I work with professor Eleftheria Roumeli in developing novel bio-based polymeric materials that are both lower in life-cycle emission than traditional polymers and are biodegradable from fully-renewable biomass feedstocks. My research aims to understand the interactions and bonding between different constituents of biopolymer and biocomposite systems and to unlock the underlying correlations between raw materials, processing conditions and the properties of the final product....

Jie Xiao

Dr. Jie Xiao is a Battelle Fellow and the leader of the Battery Materials & System Group at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). She is an affiliate professor of materials science & engineering at the University of Washington and is a PNNL-UW Distinguished Faculty Fellow. Dr. Xiao’s research spans from fundamental research, battery materials scaleup and manufacturing, to cell fabrication and engineering for vehicle electrification, sensors, and grid energy storage. She has published more than 100 peer-reviewed journal papers and been named top 1% Clarivate Analytics Highly Cited Researcher since 2017. She holds eighteen patents in the area of energy storage and seven...

Xuetao Ma

Bulk materials at the 2D limit can host untrivial electronic properties. My research works on exfoliating bulk topological materials, building those materials into nanodevices, and studying their transport properties under extreme conditions such as low temperature, high pressure, and strain. I have developed techniques that can apply pressure or strain to 2D nanodevices that are compatible with low-temperature measurements. Those techniques provide new tuning knobs to transport measurements so we can tune the strength of existing untrivial states and discover new states. Advisor: Matthew Yankowitz - Physics...

Anthony Gironda

Once-through nuclear fuel cycles leave thousands of metric tons of spent nuclear waste to be disposed of -approximately 80,000 tons in the US alone. The enduring proposal for disposal are geological repositories, deep facilities that store waste in crystalline rock or clay where they can safely decay without escaping into the biosphere. To ensure this, engineered barrier systems encapsulate the waste container, forming an additional boundary between waste and the biosphere. The time scale for disposal is ~1M years, with the first 100,000 years being the most critical. My work uses x-ray spectroscopy to characterize different concretes proposed for use in barrier systems to...

Shuai Zhang

Research Assistant Professor, Materials Science & Engineering Email | Web Site CEI-related research interests: Shuai Zhang's research interests mainly focus on utilizing in-situ high-resolution and high-speed atomic force microscopy (AFM) and 3D Fast Force Mapping (3DFFM) to understand the structure, dynamics, and function of bio-macromolecular self-assembly at solid-liquid interfaces, inorganic minerals, clays and oxides, and further integrating these observations with simulation and deep learning (DL) to describe the corresponding models and adaptively control the synthetic outcomes. In addition, he is interested in how hydration water layer affects the structure, dynamics, and function of bio-macromolecule and how environmental stimuli modulate them. Third, Dr. Zhang is working on...

Juan-Carlos Idrobo

Idrobo is a material physicist, with expertise in experimental electron energy-loss spectroscopy (EELS), scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) and theoretical calculations based on density functional theory (DFT). He is interested in pushing the boundaries and applications of EELS in STEM to study materials at the atomic and nanometer scale. His research synergistically combines analytical electron microscopy with first-principles methods to reveal the structure-property relationships in a plethora of material physics problems, in particular the influence of point and extended defects on macroscopic properties. Email...