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Eric Kazyak lab tour fall 2023
March 6, 2024

Three new electrochemistry research labs open exciting opportunities for ME students

Written By: Caitlin Scott



Three new electrochemistry-focused research labs are now open in Mechanical Engineering (ME), led by ME faculty members Eric Kazyak, Luca Mastropasqua and James Pikul. These labs are working together on pressing societal challenges related to electrochemical energy storage and conversion and are equipped to conduct research on batteries, fuel cells, soft robotics and self-healing metals. Together with the exciting suite of research opportunities, the three faculty are also introducing a series of 3 new elective courses for undergraduate and graduate students on energy and sustainability, principles of electrochemistry for ME applications, and electrochemical devices for energy conversion and storage.

Eric Kazyak
Luca Mastropasqua
Kazyak, Mastropasqua, & PIkul
James Pikul

Kazyak Lab on Materials for Energy and Sustainability

Members of the Kazyak Lab are working to enable the next generation of energy storage technologies for applications including electric vehicles and grid storage. They utilize a wide range of techniques to characterize and understand the various types and causes of degradation occurring inside of electrochemical systems like batteries. Read more about Assistant Professor Eric Kazyak’s research.

Eric Kazyak battery lab
Undergraduate student Ethan Mohr reattaches the reactor chamber after loading a sample to be coated with atomic layer deposition. 
Eric Kazyak battery lab
Undergraduate student Logan Fitzpatrick loads a sample into an ion mill to polish a cross-section for imaging. 

Hydrogen and Electrochemical Research for Decarbonization (HERD) Lab

The HERD lab is directed by Dr. Luca Mastropasqua. His lab’s mission is to research and develop electrochemical energy and hydrogen-based systems to promote decarbonization and sustainable development. Mastropasqua also holds the Ragland Family Faculty Fellowship which he uses for research and educational activities that address the issue of global warming and climate change. Mastropasqua is leveraging his expertise in electrochemical systems to develop more sustainable solutions for industry sectors that are difficult to decarbonize. Read more about Assistant Professor Luca Mastropasqua’s research.

Luca Mastropasqua HERD Lab
Dr. Mastropasqua in the brand new HERD lab.
Luca Mastropasqua HERD Lab
Equipment is unboxed and ready for full set up.

Pikul research group

A unifying goal of Leon and Elizabeth Janssen Associate Professor James Pikul’s lab is to enable energy dense and adaptable robots that eat, breathe, and heal. Pikul aims to make transformative advances in energy storage and robotics by understanding and exploiting electrochemistry and soft matter physics. Read more about Associate Professor James Pikul’s research.

PIkul lab PhD students
First year PhD students Chris Cai and Will Townsend in the Pikul Lab.
Pikul lab postdoc
Postdoctoral scholar Jungtaek Kim with James Pikul.

Featured image: Eric Kazyak provides Mechanical Engineering advisory board members a tour of his new lab space in Fall 2023.