Meet Our Innovators

Amy Prieto, PhD

Professor, Department of Chemistry

Areas of Collaborative Interest

  • Methods
  • Renewable Energy
  • Batteries

I remember explaining to my mother that while I appreciated the physics behind it [Argonne National Lab beamline], I didn’t like working on problems I couldn’t see. Now I know I love visual things. Being able to build something I hold in my hand. I like the molecular level way of thinking that chemists have and solving problems that way. And in particular I like problems that are iterative. You make something, you test it to see if what you made is any good and whats really satisfying is you make your synthesis better and you make your properties better and you can measure that.

I tend to be attracted to problems that I think could eventually benefit humanity. And so that has ended up steering me toward things that are somewhat easy to put into a more practical context, even if it is several steps early in the path to application. While my lab work on solar cell materials is very far from what you would put into a solar cell currently, I can at least see the path. Those are the problems I get most excited about.

My area of expertise is in developing new synthetic methods to make materials that have applications in renewable energy and in general what we want to know is how those materials either conduct electrons or ions. Part of the group works on rechargeable batteries both lithium ion and sodium ion and part of the group works on nanoparticles for photovoltaics. The goal is to think about how you capture energy and then how you store it.

Prieto Battery, my startup company, is focused on making a fully functioning solid state battery.  The company’s job is to integrate what we learn in my academic lab to make a functioning prototype.


Patent list generated using Google Patents

Last updated on October 1, 2019