30 Under 30 in Energy

Perk up people, this is the Forbes list 30 under 30 in energy edition. According to Forbes, each year their reporters spend months combing through possible contestants. Questionnaires, online digging, contact recommendations, and a panel of expert judges all help sift through to the top remaining candidates.

This year, Forbes focused on the movers and shakers of the battery field. With a worldwide $200 billion a year investment in wind and solar power generation projects, the revolution in renewables, and the transition to low-carbon energy sources is undeniable. And for that reason, we highlight three—just the tip of the iceburg—from the top thirty list.

Meghana Bollimpalli

Meghana Bollimpalli/Credit: Forbes

I don’t know what you were doing when you were 17, but Meghana Bollimpalli, a student at Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas was inspired by a seminar on energy storage. Bollimpalli began working towards figuring out a way to make supercapacitors from cheaper materials. She discovered a mixture of tea powder, molasses, and tannin, with a pinch of phosphorous and nitrogen, could achieve the same performance as a platinum-based electrode, for just $1 each, taking home the 2018 Intel Foundation Young Scientist award. Not bad for a high school student.

Po Jui Chiu

Po Jui Chiu/Credit: Forbes

Po Jui Chiu, 28, is the cofounder of BioInspira. It all started with a deadly natural gas explosion in his homeland of Taiwan that made Chiu determined to build an accurate, cheap, power-efficient, bio-based sensor platform for detecting chemicals in the air—one that could replace the slow, hand-held sensors commonly used today. Chiu raised $3.7 million in funding for his project.

Chris Davlantes

Chris Davlantes/Credit: Forbes

X-Men superhero Cyclops has nothing on Chris Davlantes. The 25-year-old can “beam” power, via algorithmically controlled, adaptive antenna arrays to multiple moving receivers. The Reach Labs founder could give rise to swarm robotics, high-power body implants, and renewable energy farms in remote areas not reachable by wire. Davlantes has raised $11.4 million from the likes of YCombinator and Data Collective.

If that doesn’t recharge your batteries, here’s a look at 27 more overachievers under 30. Read the full article here.

Young people have been inspiring ECS for years, in honor of their accomplishments within the electrochemical and solid state field, the Society has recognized them with awards, fellowships, and grants in support of their achievements.

Aashutosh Mistry (left) and Haegyum Kim (right).

Among them, Aashutosh Mistry and Haegyum Kim were two of five total recipients who were awarded ECS Summer Fellowships to further explore their research within a lab and to advance within their fields.

“The ECS Summer Fellowship program offered me the time and money to explore questions and pursue research I couldn’t explore during my PhD. Without the fellowship, I couldn’t have done this,” says Aashutosh Mistry, who took the time to pursue questions he couldn’t during his PhD study due to time constraints and other outside factors.

Jon Ustarroz

Jon Ustarroz

Jon Ustarroz was honored with the Electrodeposition Division Early Career Investigator Award for his paper on “Electrochemical Growth Mediated by Nanocluster Aggregation: Implications and Perspectives” at AiMES 2018 in Cancun, Mexico. Ustarroz discovered a growth mechanism which had not been taken into account previously.

“For somebody who is young like me, and little people know about within the academic community, this has allowed me to get higher visibility and to prove to people who do not know me of what I’m capable of,” says Ustarroz, which he says has opened the door to more opportunities.

Raymond Smith

Raymond Smith

Raymond Smith was presented with the Norman Hackerman Young Author Award for his paper on “Multiphase Porous Electrode Theory” published in the Journal of The Electrochemical Society, also at AiMES.

“Being in the community and engaging in this way has been special,” says Smith, who adds, “coming to the meeting has provided great motivation.”

ECS meetings offer a great space for students, researchers, engineers, and industry leaders around the world to come together, share ideas, and recognize accomplishments within the field. Don’t miss your opportunity to be a partake in the international event from October 13-17, 2019 at the 236th ECS Meeting in Atlanta, GA.


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