Widely known for his pioneering research and co-founding of the field of semiconducting and metallic polymers, Dr. Heeger is also the recipient of numerous awards, including the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2000), the Oliver E. Buckley Prize for Condensed Matter Physics, the Balzan Prize for the Science of New Materials, the President’s Medal for Distinguished Achievement from the University of Pennsylvania, the Chancellor’s Medal from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and honorary doctorates from universities in the United States, Europe and Asia.
He is a member of the National Academy of Science (USA), the National Academy of Engineering (USA), the Korean Academy of Science and the Chinese Academy of Science. Prof. Heeger has more than 900 publications in scientific journals and more than 50 patents. He founded UNIAX Corporation in 1990. UNIAX was acquired by DuPont in 2000. He is Co-founder and Chairman of CBrite Inc. in Santa Barbara. He is Co-founder and Vice-Chairman of Cynvenio (micro fluidics for cell sorting and related areas) and Cytomx Therapeutics (novel technology for targeted drug delivery).
Dr. Vonlanthen is currently working with Dr. Alan Heeger at the University of California, Santa Barbara to create inexpensive supercapacitors. He is an author of numerous high impact and peer-reviewed publications in the field of energy research. Dr. Vonlanthen is an expert in polymer electrodes, as well as organic, ionic and porous systems for energy applications, and is an inventor on several international patents. He was working with multiple industry (Osram, Siemens, VTT, IBM) and university partners before he joined UCSB.
His areas of research related to BioSolar include conducting polymers for energy storage applications and the identification of potential new materials and energy storage technologies. Dr. Vonlanthen holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry (magna cum laude) from the University of Basel, Switzerland, where he worked with the Vice President of the University on novel organic semiconductor materials for solution-processable OLEDs. During this period, he served as a spokesman of the University for a large international academic-industry research consortium. Dr. Vonlanthen was recently awarded with multiple research grants from the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF), from the Fred and Linda R. Wudl Chair for his outstanding work on inexpensive supercapacitors.
BioSolar, producer of innovative bio-based solar energy products, is currently developing a breakthrough supercapacitor technology for reducing the cost of storing the energy of the sun. Existing battery technologies, such as lithium-ion batteries, are good for longer-term energy storage, but cannot be charged or discharged rapidly. This characteristic limits the use of batteries for power backup applications. Inspired by nature, BioSolar is developing a low cost polymer based supercapacitor that can be charged and discharged hundreds of times faster than batteries, and will complement batteries for the storage of solar energy. By integrating BioSolar supercapacitors as the high power frontend to battery banks, with fewer battery banks than would ordinarily be required, daytime solar energy can be quickly and cost-effectively stored for nighttime use at a substantially lower cost. This potentially game-changing technology will allow users of solar energy systems to reduce their dependence or go completely off the electric utility power grid.
To learn more about BioSolar, please visit their website at http://www.biosolar.com.