Selected from a pool of more than 200 applicants, the 2022 Cohort fellows will work with Berkeley Lab scientists and facilities to translate innovative research into market-ready products that can improve the sustainability and scalability of modern energy systems. Their projects, listed below, include new energy storage technology, probabilistic computing, critical mineral refinement, environmental bioremediation and more.

“I’m truly excited to welcome this new cohort to the lab. They hold such promise for broad societal impact,” said Cyclotron Road Interim Division Director Thomas Kirchstetter, who also serves as director of the Energy Analysis and Environmental Impacts Division at Berkeley Lab and adjunct professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering at UC Berkeley. “I want to peek into a crystal ball to see how well they will do. If they follow in the footsteps of Cyclotron Road alumni, a sustainable energy future will be closer at hand.”

Since 2015, Cyclotron Road has supported 75 fellows who have filed 46 patent applications, raised more than $400 million in follow-on funding and created over 400 domestic jobs in the commercial space of clean energy, materials, and advanced manufacturing technologies.

This year’s Cyclotron Road fellows (their degree major) and their projects are:

  • Daniella Uchimura Pascoli (Bioresource Science and Engineering): Simple and scalable process for nanocellulose production from residues and waste
  • Matthew Anderson (Electrical Engineering): Ultra-low power and low-cost chips to supercharge the high-performance antennas of the future
  • Bilen Akuzum (Materials Science and Engineering) and Lukas Hackl (Civil and Environmental Engineering): Electrifying critical mineral refinement
  • GJ La O’ (Materials Science and Engineering) and Haodong Liu (NanoEngineering): Ultralong cycle life and ultrafast charging batteries to electrify high duty-cycle, mobile platforms
  • Daniel Sun (Chemistry and Chemical Engineering): Developing nanofilters for selective metal capture
  • Behtash Behin-Aein (Electrical and Computer Engineering) and Jan Kaiser (Electrical and Computer Engineering): Building a next-generation probabilistic computer
  • Katherine French (Plant Sciences): Developing next-generation bioremediation technologies to degrade toxic chemicals in the environment
  • Sarah Placella (Environmental Science, Policy and Management): Automated airborne pathogen monitoring for agriculture

Berkeley Lab is the first of the nation’s national laboratories to implement a creative fellow-embedded entrepreneurial program. Cyclotron Road works in close partnership with Activate, an independent nonprofit that provides a world-class entrepreneurial curriculum and high-touch mentorship to help innovators learn what it takes to build a viable, scalable business. Cyclotron Road is also supported by the DOE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office as one of four Lab-Embedded Entrepreneurship Programs.

Other partners include the California Energy Commission, additional DOE program offices, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and a number of philanthropies and industry partners.

More information about Cohort 2022, and additional information about the fellowship program, can be found on the Cyclotron Road website.