Presenter Biographies 2021

Imre Gyuk
Director, DOE Office of Electricity Energy Storage Program

After taking a B.S. from Fordham University, Dr. Imre Gyuk did graduate work at Brown University on Superconductivity. Having received a Ph.D. in Theoretical Particle Physics from Purdue University he became a Research Associate at Syracuse. As an Assistant Professor he taught Physics, Civil Engineering, and Environmental Architecture at the University of Wisconsin. Dr. Gyuk became an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics at Kuwait University where he became interested in issues of sustainability. Dr. Gyuk joined the Department of Energy to manage the Thermal and Physical Storage program. For the past two decades he has directed the Electrical Energy Storage research program in the Office of Electricity, developing a wide portfolio of storage technologies for a broad spectrum of applications. He supervised the $185M ARRA stimulus funding for Grid Scale Energy Storage Demonstrations and is now partnering with the States on numerous storage projects for grid resilience. His work has led to 12 R&D 100 awards, two EPA Green Chemistry Challenge Awards, and Lifetime Achievement Awards from ESA and NAATBatt. He is internationally recognized as a leader in the energy storage field.

Howard Passell
Sandia National Laboratories

Howard Passell works in the Energy Storage Systems Department at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) in Albuquerque, New Mexico. His work focuses on energy storage, grid modernization, energy security, and decarbonization. Over 23 years at Sandia he has worked on energy and water resource monitoring, modeling, management, capacity building, and policy-related projects at various scales in the US, Central Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa. This included helping to lead Sandia’s efforts in DOE’s Solar America Cities initiative and developing energy conservation software and methodology for large institutions. He has worked on emerging national security issues associated with energy, water, food, ecosystems, and population, with an emphasis on the relationships between resource scarcity and human security. He earned master’s and doctorate degrees in conservation biology and hydrogeoecology at the University of New Mexico. His undergraduate studies were in classical literature and the liberal arts at St. John’s College in Santa Fe, NM and the Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio.

Charles Hanley
Senior Manager Grid Mod & Resilient Infrastructures, Sandia National Laboratories

Mr. Hanley is Senior Manager of the Grid Modernization and Resilient Infrastructures Group at Sandia National Laboratories. His group conducts research on enhancing the resilience of our critical energy infrastructures, including grid-scale optimization, controls, and microgrids; energy storage technologies; renewable energy integration; power electronics; cyber security; and advanced analytics for complex systems. He joined Sandia in 1988 and has been working in Sandia’s renewable energy and electric grid programs since 1994. From 2005 through 2014, Charlie managed Sandia’s Photovoltaics and Distributed Systems Integration Program. Prior to that, he managed Sandia’s international renewable energy programs, through which he oversaw the implementation of more than 400 photovoltaic and wind energy systems in Latin America. He received his B.S. in Engineering Science from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, and his M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, in Troy, New York.

Babu Chalamala
Manager, Sandia National Laboratories ES Program

Dr. Babu Chalamala is Manager of the Energy Storage Technology and Systems Department and Program Manager for Grid Energy Storage at Sandia National Laboratories. Prior to joining Sandia in 2015, he spent twenty years in industry R&D, most recently as a Corporate Fellow at MEMC Electronic Materials where he led R&D and product development in grid scale energy storage. Before that, he was involved in two startup companies for eight years. He spent the early part of his research career at Motorola and Texas Instruments where he made contributions to electronic materials and display technologies. An electrical engineer by training, Dr, Chalamala has a B.Tech. in Electronics and Communications Engineering from Sri Venkateswara University and a Ph.D. in Physics from the University of North Texas. He is a Fellow of the IEEE, Academy of Sciences – St. Louis, a member of the Materials Research Society, and a life member of the Electrochemical Society. He served on the editorial boards of Proceedings of the IEEE, IEEE Access, IEEE Journal of Display Technology, and Energy Storage journal. Babu currently serves on the as Chair of IEEE PES Energy Storage and Stationary Battery Committee and as a member of the PES Industry Technical Leadership Committee. Babu served as a General Chair of the 2006 MRS Fall meeting and continues play an active leadership role in the Materials Research Society, where he serves on several society operating committees. Dr. Chalamala has authored 120 papers, edited journal special issues, and was awarded 10 US patents.

Vince Sprenkle
Manager, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory ES Program

Dr. Vincent Sprenkle joined PNNL in January 2001 and is currently Technical Group Manager for the Electrochemical Materials and Systems Group at PNNL. This group is focused on the development of electrochemical materials and systems for advanced energy storage and conversion applications. He is also currently project manager for the Department of Energy – Office of Electricity Energy Storage Program at PNNL. This project is focused on the development of electrochemical energy storage technologies to enable renewable integration and to improve grid support. He previously led other projects in the development of solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) technology and planar Na batteries. Prior to his arrival at PNNL, he was a senior ceramic engineer at Litton Life Support and was responsible for the development of prototype advanced electrochemical oxygen generating system. Dr. Sprenkle currently holds 14 US patents on fuel cells, batteries, and high temperature electrochemical devices with 22 pending patent applications. He was name PNNL Inventor of the Year in 2014 and has been recognized as key contributor on 4 licensing activities while at PNNL. He received a 2009 FLC award for Technology Transfer of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Technology to Delphi Corporation.

Michael Starke
Manager, Oak Ridge National Laboratory ES Program

Michael Starke is a Power Systems Research Engineer at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He has been at ORNL for over 7 years performing research in different areas of power systems analysis. He received his B.S, M.S. and Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering at The University of Tennessee in 2004, 2006, and 2009 respectively. Michael is a member of IEEE and of the Power and Energy Society with over 30 publications in power systems and power electronics. His research areas have been primarily focused on energy storage, demand response, and microgrids, but he has been actively engaged in wind and solar generation research as well. In the microgrid area of research, he has led a team that developed an open-source microgrid controller called CSEISMIC and is currently engaged in the planning of demonstration projects related to this controller. This microgrid controller utilizes new strategies in communications and controls unlike other microgrid controllers. Michael also led a team that has successfully constructed a secondary use energy storage system composed of Chrysler FIAT Li-ion batteries with ORNL designed inverter controls and communications interface. This energy storage system is being deployed on a project titled the Advanced Manufacturing and Integrated Energy (AMIE) in which CSEISMIC is able to operate and optimize a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system, energy storage, and PV to minimize grid impact and cost. He has also worked on several demand response projects with industrial load partners and received a patent on a tool developed to estimate the demand response potential of industrial plants.

Innovative Deployment Projects

Dan Borneo (Session Lead)
Sandia National Laboratories

Daniel Borneo is an Engineering Program/Project Lead at Sandia National Laboratory (SNL) where he leads a demonstration projects team that is part of Sandia’s Grid-Tied Electrical Energy Storage Program. The main emphasis of Dan’s work is to collaborate with utilities, industry partners, academia, State Energy offices and others to develop Energy Storage (ES) projects and bring innovative electrical energy storage technologies to commercialization. He also specializes in the commissioning of ES systems, and does work both Nationally and Internationally. Dan earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Mexico, focusing on power and controls. He holds a professional engineering license in the state of New Mexico.

Anthony (Tony) Sparks
Albuquerque Public Schools

Tony Sparks works for the Facilities Design + Construction Department of Albuquerque Public Schools, where he is Staff Project Manager for HVAC Systems, Energy Efficiency & Sustainability. He is also coordinator of the APS Water and Energy Conservation Committee (WECC) — a consortium of stakeholders both within and external to APS — whose vision is to make APS a national leader in efficiency and sustainability. Tony is an enthusiastic advocate for the betterment of our built environment, working tirelessly to make meaningful improvements in building design and operation. He and his team have received numerous awards for their accomplishments and innovative, collaborative methods.

William Thomson
Alaska Village Electric Cooperative (AVEC)

William Thomson is a graduate of the university of British Columbia (1975). He is a dual US Canadian Citizen and is registered as a professional Electrical Engineer in both Alaska and in British Columbia. He has 2 patents in real-time engine control. William has been engineering electrical power systems and equipment since 1975, with an emphasis on digital real time control system design. This has been mostly applied to renewable energy and facilitating its integration with traditional technology. He has worked for Cominco Ltd. (Now Teck Resources Ltd), Thomson and Howe Energy Systems (THES), Alaska Power Systems (APS), Catalina Software (CS), Thomson Turbine Governors (TTG) and for the last 20 years Alaska Village Electric Cooperative (AVEC).

Lauren Khair

Waylon Clark & Henry Guan
Sandia National Laboratories

Robert Kirchmeier
Washington State University Energy Program

Bob has just recently joined the Washington State University Energy Program. Since 2013, he was providing technical assistance for the Washington State Department of Commerce Clean Energy Fund Grid Modernization Program. Before that he was the Senior Manager for Substations, Metering and Telecommunications at Snohomish PUD and spent 25 years at Tacoma Power working on a wide variety of generation, substation, protection, communication, transmission and distribution automation projects. Bob has over 40 years working with Northwest electric utilities and is a licensed professional electrical engineer in Washington State.

Equity, Resilience, & Policy

Rebecca O’Neil (Session Lead)
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Ms. Rebecca O’Neil is an advisor for Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. In her career at the Laboratory, she has served as the lab relationship manager for the US DOE EERE Renewable Energy portfolio, served a rotation into the U.S. Department of Energy’s Water Power Technologies Office to develop a hydropower-grid research program, and led the regulatory area for energy storage. Her research interests relate to energy justice, energy storage, community-scale innovation, sustainable hydropower and marine energy development. She joined PNNL in 2015 from the Oregon Department of Energy, where she represented the agency on water power development, oversaw the state renewable portfolio standard, and ran a multi-million-dollar portfolio of federal grants ranging from renewable energy feasibility studies, agricultural efficiency measures, energy assurance, and woodstove replacement programs. Before her state service, she managed the multifamily energy efficiency program for the Energy Trust of Oregon, administering incentives to drive upgrades in multifamily dwellings. For years, Rebecca represented a coalition of river conservation and recreation organizations in federal hydropower dam licensing, becoming a recognized and published expert in the regulatory process and the relationship between hydropower operations and environmental effects. She serves on multiple organizational boards and advisory groups related to renewable energy. Unrelated to energy, Rebecca has served as an AmeriCorps-VISTA teaching childhood literacy in rural Kentucky. As a Wagoner Scholar, she conducted Honors work in Cape Town, South Africa, producing a thesis on the role of literacy in manumission. She is a civilian advisory graduate of the National Security Seminar at the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. She earned a B.A. from Rice University in Houston.

Bethel Tarekegne
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Bethel Tarekegne is an energy equity researcher in the distributed systems group at PNNL. Her work focuses on understanding the social equity implications of distributed energy resources. She is currently exploring the equity/justice implications of energy storage for the DOE – OE’s Energy Storage Program to imagine the ways energy storage can benefit people in underserved communities. Bethel’s work set the framework for applying energy justice principles to storage technologies and she is now investigating how storage can provide local non-energy benefits by developing fundamental data and metrics to measure these benefits. Bethel received her doctorate in Energy & Environmental Policy from Michigan Technological University. She also holds a master’s degree in Energy Policy from University of Maryland, College Park, and bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Benedict College.

Di Wu
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Di Wu is a Chief Research Engineer and a Team Leader within the Optimization and Control Group at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). He received the B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, in 2003 and 2006, respectively, and the Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Iowa State University, Ames, in 2012. At PNNL, Dr. Wu leads research work in areas of energy storage analytics, building-to-grid integration, and microgrid design. His other research interests include plug-in electric vehicles, distributed control, production cost modeling, advanced grid analytics, and hybrid energy systems. Dr. Wu is a Senior Member of IEEE and a member of the IEEE Power and Energy Society and the Control System Society. He serves as an Editor for the IEEE Open Access Journal of Power and Energy.

Jeremy Twitchell
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Jeremy Twitchell is an energy research analyst at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, where he leads the equitable regulatory environment area of the PNNL Energy Storage Program and assists in distribution system planning research. In those roles, he is responsible for reaching out to states to provide technical assistance in analyzing energy storage and other developing energy resources and incorporating them into utility planning and procurement activities. Prior to joining PNNL, Jeremy spent five years at the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission, where he was the staff lead for the development of policies associated with the treatment of energy storage in utility resource planning and rulemaking. His work has supported integrated resource planning, which included development of a distribution planning rule. He participated in multiple utility advisory groups on energy efficiency and resource planning, provided expert testimony in the areas of rate design and resource acquisition, and oversaw renewable resource portfolio standard compliance. He also testified before the Washington State Legislature and prepared a report to the Legislature on best practices in distribution system planning. He has presented on the topics of energy storage, renewable resource portfolio standards, and renewable resource integration at regional, national, and international conferences.

Bobby Jeffers
Sandia National Laboratories

Dr. Robert “Bobby” Jeffers is a Systems Scientist and Principal Member of the Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories, where he applies system dynamics and power engineering principles to diverse problems concerning the intersection between social, natural, and engineered systems. Dr. Jeffers has a history of working with a wide variety of stakeholders such as states, municipalities, electric utilities, the military and other community representatives to develop long-term, holistic solutions to resilience, sustainability, and affordability challenges. Currently, he leads a portfolio of projects that utilize Sandia’s broad expertise in energy system modeling and simulation, such as the Designing Resilient Communities project that focuses on aligning community resilience strategies with electric utility investment planning processes. Prior to his time at Sandia, Dr. Jeffers worked at Idaho National Laboratory as an Energy and Environmental Systems Modeler and Power and Controls Researcher. Dr. Jeffers earned his master’s degree in Electrical Engineering and Power Systems from Virginia Tech, and his doctorate in Environmental Science from Washington State University.

Will McNamara
Sandia National Laboratories

Will McNamara serves as Grid Energy Storage Policy Analyst for Sandia National Laboratories with a focus on energy storage policy development at the federal and state levels. Will has spent his entire 23-year career in the energy and utilities industry with a concentration on regulatory and legislative policy. He has served as a lobbyist in California and has represented major utilities across the U.S. in numerous jurisdictions in proceedings pertaining to integrated resource planning, procurement, cost recovery, rate design, and the development of policymaking best practices. Will’s areas of subject matter expertise, in addition to energy storage policy, include distributed energy resources, AMI/smart grid, renewables, and competitive retail markets.

Uzma Siddiqi
Seattle City Light

I’m Uzma Siddiqi and have the exciting role of modernizing the grid at Seattle City Light. We serve about a million people in and around Seattle. The city has significant decarbonization goals and we at SCL are doing our part by electrification of transportation and buildings. I’ve been with SCL 18 years in a variety of roles and this is by far the most meaningful and impactful. I have a MSEE and BSEE from North Carolina State University and am registered PE in Washington State.

Matt Von Ruden
Washington State Ferries

Matthew von Ruden is a maritime professional with 35 years’ experience in the government and private sectors. A 1986 graduate of the US Coast Guard Academy, Mr. von Ruden served 23 years in the US Coast Guard, including 6 assignments at sea, and retired at the rank of Captain in 2009. In the commercial sector, Mr. von Ruden worked in the chemical and shipbuilding industries in California, Washington and British Columbia. He held the position of Associate Dean and Director of Seattle Maritime Academy at Seattle Central College before moving to Washington State Department of Transportation Ferries Division in 2015. Mr. von Ruden’s education includes a BS, Marine Engineering from the US Coast Guard Academy, an MS in Marine Engineering and Naval Architecture and MS, Mechanical Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and an MA, National Security and Strategic Studies from the US Naval War College.

Sodium Batteries

Erik Spoerke (Session Lead)
Sandia National Laboratories

Erik D. Spoerke, Ph.D. is the Energy Storage Materials Thrust Lead in Sandia National Laboratories’ Grid Energy Storage Program, a Principal R&D Materials Scientist in the Electronic, Optical, and Nano Materials Department at Sandia, and a Research Associate Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of New Mexico. Erik’s widely published and patented research efforts span a diverse materials portfolio, with an emphasis on combining elements of chemistry, materials science and biology to explore and develop functional materials ranging from novel electrochemical materials to synthetic biological analogs and functional supramolecular thin films. He has a passion for energy-related related research, including a wide range of battery-based and other energy storage technologies, particularly for grid-scale and long-duration applications. He currently serves on the DOE Energy Storage Grand Challenge National Laboratory Leadership Team, working to support the advance of reliable and sustainable domestic energy storage, and he is active in several other NM-based and national efforts to drive sustainable, clean energy initiatives.

Leo Small
Sandia National Laboratories

Yang-Tse Cheng
University of Kentucky

Dr. Cheng is the Frank J. Derbyshire Professor of Materials Science and Professor of Physics and Astronomy (joint appointment) at the University of Kentucky where he has worked since 2008. Previously, he was a Technical Fellow and Laboratory Group Manager for Engineered Surfaces and Functional Materials at the General Motors Research and Development Center. He graduated from the California Institute of Technology with a BS degree in physics/mathematics, and MS and PhD degrees in applied physics. He has published more than 250 papers and holds 48 US patents. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, Materials Research Society, and National Academy of Inventors.

Guosheng Li
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Dr. Guosheng Li is a Sr. Scientist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). He has broad knowledge in Electrochemistry, Materials Science, Catalysis, and Spectroscopic Characterization. Currently, he is leading Na-metal halide battery R&D program supported by the Office of Electricity, Department of Energy. His research focuses on materials development, battery design and validation for grid energy storage applications. Particularly, he is interested in developing and understanding advanced electrolytes, synthesis of cathode materials, the reaction mechanisms for cathodes, and various interfacial problems encountered in rechargeable batteries. He has published more than 75 research papers in various professional journals with a total citation over 5000 (h-index 34 from Google Scholar). He is also serving as an editorial board member of Materials and a guest editor of a special issue “Battery Technology and Materials Development for Grid Energy Storage”.

Biwei Xiao
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Dr. Biwei Xiao is currently a Staff Scientist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), he received his bachelor’s degree in Materials Science and Engineering from Sichuan University, China, in 2011, and obtained his Ph.D. degree from the University of Western Ontario in 2017. His research focuses on materials for rechargeable batteries, carbon materials, thin-film deposition techniques and synchrotron radiation techniques. He is currently responsible for the sodium ion battery cathode material development at PNNL. He has authored over 50 peer-reviewed journals and 2 book chapters.

Ilias Belharouak
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Dr. Ilias Belharouak is a Distinguished Scientist and the Head of Electrification and Energy Storage at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Ilias serves as an adjunct Professor at the University of Tennessee Knoxville. Ilias is the Editor of the Journal of Power Sources. Ilias was Research Director and Professor at the Qatar Foundation. Ilias was a Material Scientist at Argonne National Laboratory. His research interests deal with advanced lithium ion batteries, solid state batteries and other emerging energy storage technologies. Dr. Belharouak holds Ph.D. and Ms. Degrees in Materials Science and Solid-State Chemistry from the Bordeaux 1 University, Bordeaux, France.

Flow Batteries

Wei Wang (Session Lead)
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Dr. Wei Wang is an internationally recognized expert in the field of large-scale energy storage for his innovative work on convectional energy storage technologies. He is currently the director of the Energy Storage Materials Initiative, a multi-million-dollar and multi-year project at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) to fundamentally transform the energy material R&D through a physics-informed data-driven approach. He also serves as the chief scientist and technical lead on stationary energy storage R&D at PNNL, which covers a diverse portfolio of redox flow, lithium-ion, and sodium-ion batteries. Dr. Wang joined PNNL in 2009 after receiving Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. Dr. Wang is one of the top 1% Highly Cited Researchers in energy storage. He is also the recipient of multiple highly regarded awards, including US EPA Green Chemistry Challenge Award, US DOE ARPA-E OPEN program award, FLC Excellence in Technology Transfer Award, R&D 100 Award, and Ronald L. Brodzinski Early Career Exceptional Achievement Award. His research has been widely covered by highly regarded science media, such as Science, Nature, and R&D magazine. He has received 16 patents with multiple patent applications. The technologies developed by his team have been licensed to the companies in the US and aboard. Dr. Wang is the co-founder of the International Coalition for Energy Storage and Innovation (ICESI), and currently serves as ICESI’s general secretory. He is also an active conference/symposium organizer in the area of energy storage for several professional organizations including MRS, ECS, and NAATBatt.

Jagjit Nanda
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Jagjit Nanda is a Distinguished Staff Scientist and Group Leader of the Energy Storage and Conversion Group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Chemical Sciences Division with 18 plus years of experience in energy storage and battery materials. He also has a joint faculty appointment in the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Prior to joining Oak Ridge in 2009, Jagjit worked as a Technical Lead at the Research and Advanced Engineering Center, Ford Motor Company, MI, leading R&D projects in lithium-ion battery materials and nanomaterials for energy application. Nanda has co-authored more than 175 journal and technical publications in the topic of batteries, solid-state electrolytes and electrochemical interfaces and is a Fellow of Electrochemical Society.

Cy Fujimoto
Sandia National Laboratories

Cy Fujimoto is a Principle Member of the Technical Staff in the Nanoscale Sciences Department at Sandia National Laboratories. Cy’s work focuses on developing membrane separators for electrochemical applications. In the Office of Electricity’s program, he is developing membranes for several flow battery chemistries and partners with various national labs and industrial collaborators. This work has led to several patents and recently several of these patents were licensed by a US materials company.

Michael Aziz
Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Michael Aziz has been a member of the faculty at what is now the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences since he joined in 1986 and is now Gene and Tracy Sykes Professor of Materials and Energy Technologies. His recent research interests include novel materials and processes for energy technology and CO2 capture and sequestration. He directs multi-investigator research programs on stationary electrical energy storage and porous electrodes. He is co-inventor of the organic aqueous flow battery and, in 2021, co-founded Quino Energy, Inc., an aqueous organic flow battery startup, where he is Chief Scientist and a member of the Board. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, the Materials Research Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science and is the co-recipient of the 2019 Energy Frontiers Prize from Eni.

Sri Narayan
University of Southern California

Prof. Sri Narayan has been on the Faculty in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Southern California (USC), since the year 2010. In the last six years, under the sponsorship of ARPA-E, Prof. Narayan and his team at USC have made notable innovations in the area of robust iron-based batteries, inexpensive aqueous organic redox flow batteries and long-life lithium sulfur batteries. Prior to this faculty appointment he was the Group Head of the Electrochemical Technologies Group at the NASA-Jet Propulsion Laboratory. During his 20-year tenure at the NASA-Jet Propulsion Laboratory, he pioneered the development of the Liquid-Fed Direct Methanol Fuel Cell that led to its commercialization. Prof. Narayan is the recipient of the NASA-JPL Exceptional Achievement Award (1996) and NASA-JPL Explorer Award (2009), was elected as the Fellow of the Electrochemical Society (2012), and was recently recognized with the Phi Kappa Phi USC Faculty Award (2015) for his contributions to field

Rangachary Mukundan
Los Alamos National Laboratory

Dr. Rangachary Mukundan (Mukund) is a technical staff member in the Materials Synthesis and Integrated Devices (MPA-11) group. His current research interests include fuel cells, electrolyzers, energy storage devices and electrochemical gas sensors. He is a deputy director in the DOE’s Million Mile Fuel Cell Truck consortium (M2FCT) and LANL lead on the H2NEW consortium that focuses on the development of polymer electrolyte membrane electrolyzers. Both these projects are funded by the Office of Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies. He is also PI on a project funded by the DOE-Office of Electricity through a sub-contract with SNL. His interest is in developing materials solutions to increase the energy density and long-term stability of non-aqueous flow batteries for long duration energy storage applications. He is the co-inventor on 7 US patents and has authored over 190 peer-reviewed journal and transaction papers that have been cited over 9000 times with an h-index of 41.

Zinc & Lead Batteries

Tim Fister
Argonne National Laboratory

Xiaolin Li
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Amy Marschilok
Stony Brook University

Amy Marschilok is an Stony Brook University, where she is Co-Director of the Institute for Electrochemically Stored Energy and an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry with an adjunct appointment in the Department of Materials Science and Chemical Engineering. She holds a joint appointment as Scientist in the Interdisciplinary Science Department at Brookhaven National Laboratory, where she also serves as Manager of the Energy Storage Division and the Energy Systems Division. Amy was an inaugural cohort member of the DOE Oppenheimer Science and Energy Leadership Program. She previously employed as a Senior Scientist in Medical Battery R&D at Greatbatch Inc., where she was recognized as a Visionary of the Year. She has mentored over 50 student researchers and co-authored over 200 publications.

Joshua Gallaway
Northeastern University

Sanjoy Banerjee
Urban Electric Power, Inc./The City College of New York

Sanjoy Banerjee is a Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering City College of New York and Director of the City University of New York (CUNY) Energy Institute. Banerjee is also the Founder and Chairman of Urban Electric Power, spun out of the CUNY Energy Institute to develop ‘beyond lithium’ batteries. Banerjee was recruited from UC Santa Barbara, where he had been Department Chair and previously taught at Berkeley, McMaster University, and worked at Atomic Energy of Canada, as Director of the Applied Science Division. He has also served as Mitsubishi Professor at the University of Tokyo, the Burgers Professor at TU Delft, and at ETH Zurich. He has also served on several advisory boards: NASA Fluid Physics, the oil-industry Flow Assurance Consortium, and the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards, congressionally mandated to advise on nuclear facilities.

Safety & Reliability

Matt Paiss (Session Lead)
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Matthew Paiss serves as a Technical Advisor in the Battery Materials & Systems group. Prior to joining PNNL, he was the President of Energy Response Solutions, Inc (a Training & Consultation firm). He brings 28 yrs of emergency response experience retiring as a Fire Captain with the San Jose CA Fire Department. His background in renewable energy started in 1982 at ARCO Solar in Camarillo, CA before studying Solar Technology and Fire Science in Santa Cruz, CA and worked in the semiconductor industry as a service engineer prior to transitioning to the fire service. He has 10 years’ experience on renewable energy Codes & Standards committees and currently represents PNNL on NFPA 855, UL 9540, and 1974, and is a national named expert on IEC TC120. He served as a subject matter expert for the National Fire Protection Association on energy storage and has contributed to the model fire code sections on PV & ESS. Mr. Paiss has delivered electrical safety training to over 8000 firefighters nationwide. He has spoken in Europe on fire safety and PV design and holds certificates as Registered CA State Fire Instructor, and Certified State Fire Officer.

Ryan Franks
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Ryan is a senior mechanical engineer in the Battery Materials and Systems Group at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Before joining PNNL, he was business director at Energy Safety Response Group, global energy storage business manager at CSA Group, and senior program manager at the National Electrical Manufacturers Association. Ryan holds a BS in engineering mechanics from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and an MBA from John Carroll University. He is also a senior member of IEEE and holds two patents. Ryan’s focus is on safety, reliability, and industry acceptance of batteries and energy storage systems, including the development of codes, standards, and testing methods.

Andrew Kurzawski
Sandia National Laboratories

Andrew Kurzawski is a Senior Member of Technical Staff in the Fire Science and Technology group at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He received a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from The University of Texas at Austin in 2017. His research interests include thermal runaway in lithium-ion batteries, computational fire and heat transfer modeling, inverse problems, and software development.

Yuliya Preger
Sandia National Laboratories

Charlie Vartanian
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Charlie Vartanian is a Technical Advisor at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory where he focuses on integration of energy storage with power systems. Charlie has 25 years of industry experience deploying advanced grid technologies, performing system studies, and contributing to standards development. Prior employers include Mitsubishi Electric, the California Energy Commission, and Southern California Edison. During his 15 years at SCE, his activities ranged from T&D planning through grid R&D.

Hsin Wang
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Dr. Hsin Wang is a member of the Core Characterization Capability group at the Materials Science and Technology Division at ORNL. His expertise are in the areas of thermophysics, characterization of materials, measurements of transport properties, advanced thermal imaging and battery thermal management. He has been working on battery safety testing since 1999, and developed pinch and pinch-torsion tests for prismatic Li-ion cells. Currently, he is working with Sandia to established a thermal runaway risk database for energy storage.

Power Electronics

Stan Atcitty (Session Lead)
Sandia National Laboratories

Dr. Stan Atcitty received his BS and MS degree in electrical engineering from the New Mexico State University in 1993 and 1995, respectively. He received his PhD from Virginia Tech University in 2006. He is presently a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories in the Energy Storage Technology & Systems department. He has worked at Sandia for over 25 years. His interest in research is power electronics necessary for integrating energy storage and distributed generation with the electric utility grid. He leads the power electronics subprogram as part of the DOE Office of Electricity Energy Storage Program.

Subhashish Bhattacharya
NC State University

Subhashish Bhattacharya received his B.E. from IIT Roorkee, India, M.E. from IISc, India, and Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, all in electrical engineering. He worked in the FACTS and Power Quality group at Westinghouse, which later became part of Siemens Power, from 1998 to 2005. He joined the Department of ECE at NCSU in August 2005, where he is Duke Energy Distinguished Professor and a founding faculty member of NSF ERC FREEDM Systems Center, Advanced Transportation Energy Center [ATEC] and the US DOE initiative on WBG based Manufacturing Innovation Institute – PowerAmerica – at NCSU. His research interests are Solid-State Transformers, Integration of renewable energy resources, and MV power converters enabled by HV SiC devices. His research is funded by several industries, NSF, DoE, ARPA-E, US Navy, ONR, NASA. He has over 600 publications and 10 patents with several pending patent applications.

Mehdi Ferdowsi
InnoCit LLC

Mehdi Ferdowsi received the PhD degree in 2004 from Illinois Institute of Technology. He is the President and CEO of InnoCit LLC. His research interests are renewable energy systems, energy storage systems, and applications of wide bandgap devices in power electronics.

Deepakraj Divan
Georgia Tech

Dr. Deepak Divan is Professor, John E Pippin Chair, GRA Eminent Scholar and Director of the Center for Distributed Energy at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, GA. His field of research is in the areas of power electronics, power systems, smart grids and distributed control of power systems. Dr. Divan has started several companies, including Varentec in Santa Clara, CA, where he served as Founder, President and CTO from 2011-14, and as Chief Scientist for several years after. Dr. Divan is an elected Member of the US National Academy of Engineering, member of the National Academies Board on Energy and Environmental Systems and Committee on the Future Grid. He a Fellow of the IEEE, past President of the IEEE Power Electronics Society, is a recipient of the IEEE William E Newell Field Medal and is International Steering Committee Chair of the IEEE Empower a Billion Lives global competition to crowdsource scalable energy access solutions.

Valerio De Angelis
Sandia National Laboratories

Dr. De Angelis joined Sandia in 2020 to work on battery modeling, system integration, advanced manufacturing, and long-term energy storage. He is co-founder of, the first public repository for easy visualization and comparison of lithium-ion battery degradation data across institutions. Before joining Sandia National Laboratories, Dr. De Angelis was the Executive Director of the City University of New York (CUNY) Energy Institute. At the Institute, De Angelis expanded the scope of the battery research from the lab to large-scale energy storage systems. Several initiatives have spun off from the research, notably the Grid-Modernization Center and Urban Electric Power, of which Dr. De Angels was co-founder, interim CEO, and VP of Product. Regarding his previous career, De Angelis was the CEO and CTO of Mindflash Technologies, a leading provider of online training platforms that he founded when he was a Ph.D. student at UC Santa Barbara.

Alex Huang
University of Texas at Austin

Dr. Alex Huang is the Dula D. Cockrell Centennial Chair in Engineering at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UT Austin. Dr. Huang received the bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Zhejiang University, China in 1983 and his M.S. degree from University of Electronic Science and Technology of China in 1986. He received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from University of Cambridge, UK in 1992. Prior to joining UT Austin, Dr. Huang has been a faculty member at Virginia Tech (1994-2004) and NC State University (2004-2017). At NC State, Dr. Huang has established a number of internationally renowned public-private partnerships such as the NSF FREEDM ERC in 2008 ,NCSU’s Advanced Transportation Energy Center (ATEC) in 2008 and the DOE PowerAmerica Institute in 2014.


Ray Byrne (Session Lead)
Sandia National Laboratories

Ray Byrne is manager of the Electric Power Systems Research Department at Sandia National Laboratories where he has been employed since 1989. Prior serving as manager, he was a Distinguished Member of the Technical Staff. He completed a B.S. in electrical engineering at the University of Virginia, an M.S. in electrical engineering at the University of Colorado, and a Ph.D. in electrical engineering at the University of New Mexico. He also completed an M.S. in financial mathematics (financial engineering) at the University of Chicago. He currently serves as team lead of the Equitable Regulatory Environment thrust area of the Sandia energy storage program. Awards include Time Magazine invention of the year in robotics in 2001, as well as the Prize paper award at the 2016 IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting for a paper on maximizing revenue from energy storage in grid applications. He is a member of Tau Beta Pi, Eta Kappa Nu, and Sigma Xi. He was elevated to IEEE Fellow in 2017 for contributions to miniature robotics and grid integration of energy storage.

Di Wu
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Di Wu is a Chief Research Engineer and a Team Leader within the Optimization and Control Group at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). He received the B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, in 2003 and 2006, respectively, and the Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Iowa State University, Ames, in 2012. At PNNL, Dr. Wu leads research work in areas of energy storage analytics, building-to-grid integration, and microgrid design. His other research interests include plug-in electric vehicles, distributed control, production cost modeling, advanced grid analytics, and hybrid energy systems. Dr. Wu is a Senior Member of IEEE and a member of the IEEE Power and Energy Society and the Control System Society. He serves as an Editor for the IEEE Open Access Journal of Power and Energy.

Jan Alam
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Dr Jan E Alam is with Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) – a research facility of the United States Department of Energy (US DOE). He manages a thrust area under Energy Storage Industry Acceptance program at PNNL, sponsored by US DOE Office of Electricity. In addition, he serves as project manager and principal investigator in various PNNL efforts under multiple technical domains including renewable energy grid integration and valuation. Before joining PNNL, he was engaged in solar PV and energy storage research in Australia and collaborated with multiple Australian utilities. Dr Alam also worked as an electric power industry professional in Bangladesh (2005-2010) and held various positions from power plant maintenance engineer to consulting engineer working with the government agencies responsible for power sector development.

Dhruv Bhatnagar
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Tu Nguyen
Sandia National Laboratories

Tu A. Nguyen is a Senior Member of the Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories. He is also a Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and an editor of IEEE Transactions on Sustainable Energy. He received his B.S degree in Power Systems from Hanoi University of Science and Technology, Vietnam in 2007 and his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology in 2014. Before joining Sandia National Laboratories in September 2016, he worked as a Postdoctoral Research Associate at University of Washington. His research interests include energy storage analytics, microgrid modeling and analysis, and the integration of distributed resources into power grids.

Walker Olis
Sandia National Laboratories

Richard Baxter
Mustang Prairie

Richard Baxter is President of Mustang Prairie Energy where he bridges the financial and technical sides of the energy storage industry for capital providers, project developers, and manufacturers. Richard has been active in the energy storage industry for 20 years, working across the industry, including at a storage OEM, investment bank, and as a strategy consultant. Richard is the author of the U.S. DOE sponsored study series on Energy Storage Financing through Sandia National Laboratories. He is also the author of the Energy Storage Pricing Survey series and supports the Technology Cost and Performance Assessment for the DOE’s Energy Storage Grand Challenge. Previously, he provided the cost surveys and capital pricing model for the Lazard Levelized Cost of Storage (LCOS) Survey 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0. He has served on the Board of Directors for the Energy Storage Association, the Charitable Foundation of the Energy Bar Association, and NovoCarbon. He was also the founder and Executive Director of the Advancing Contracting in Energy Storage (ACES) Working Group where he led the development of the ACES Energy Storage Best Practice Guide.

Hisham Othman
Quanta Technology

Hisham leads the transmission and regulatory compliance consulting practice at Quanta Technology LLC providing technical and economic advisory services supporting regulated utilities, energy developers, and RTOs to address their evolving and challenging business needs. Dr. Othman has 30 years of technical and managerial experience in the electricity sector with an emphasis on grid integration of renewables, energy storage, and business strategy. Hisham worked with leading teams that introduced the Thyristor-Controlled Series Capacitor, Implemented the first ISO/RTO operational and business IT system in the US, Implemented the largest distributed 40 MW solar system on utility poles in the World, designed and implemented a high penetration fuel abatement solar-diesel system, and extensively modeled, analyzed, and invested in energy storage applications. Hisham holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Last Updated: 10/29/2021