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Home > Press > Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Nitash Balsara is a Fellow of the Neutron Scattering Society of America

Nitash Balsara
Nitash Balsara

Abstract:
The Neutron Scattering Society of America has named Professor Nitash P. Balsara as one of 2014 Fellows of the Society for sustained, high impact, neutron scattering research on a broad range of polymeric materials, and for organizational, mentoring and leadership activities in promoting the use of neutron scattering in polymer research.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Nitash Balsara is a Fellow of the Neutron Scattering Society of America

Berkeley, CA | Posted on March 21st, 2014

Nitash has established the fundamental underpinnings of transport through nanostructured polymer films. He conducted the first systematic studies of the effect of nanoscale morphology on: (1) transport of lithium ions for battery electrolytes, (2) transport of protons in hydrated polymer electrolyte membranes for hydrogen fuel cells, (3) selective transport of ethanol for biofuel separation, and (4) simultaneous ion and electron transport for enabling redox reactions in battery electrodes.

He is working on the development of ultra-safe nanostructured block copolymer electrolytes for lithium batteries. The nanostructure, comprising a soft conducting phase and a hard non-conducting phase, was created by self-assembly of block copolymers. Factors that increase the ionic conductivity of all known liquid and solid electrolytes result in a decrease in shear modulus. In contrast, both ionic conductivity and shear modulus of block copolymer electrolytes increase with increasing polymer molecular weight. This unusual property enables optimization of both electrical and mechanical properties of these electrolytes. The increased modulus and non-flammable nature of the block copolymer electrolytes results in improved battery safety. His program has benefited from close collaborations with Venkat Srinivasan and Vince Battaglia of LBNL.

Nitash has a joint appointment as a Faculty Scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and is a Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. Nitash is the co-founder of a battery start-up: Seeo, Inc. He has also worked with a number of large international firms including BP and Dow Chemicals.

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