Joe Subotnik, PhD, is an associate professor of chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania whose work focuses on coupled nuclear-electronic processes. In particular, he studies how energy is lost through friction, looking for microscopic models that can explain the efficiencies of batteries and solar cells. He has made significant contributions to the so-called ``surface hopping'' model of nonadiabatic dynamics, whereby electronic relaxation is modeled as a sharp, stochastic process (as opposed to a continuous, mean-field process).
Subotnik received his BA degree from Harvard University in 2000 majoring in physics, and as a Hertz Fellow, a PhD in electronic structure theory from Berkeley with Martin Head-Gordon. Subsequently, he was an NSF postdoctoral fellow at Tel-Aviv University with Abe Nitzan, where he studied chemical dynamics and molecular transport, and a postdoctoral fellow with Mark Ratner at Northwestern University. Since joining the University of Pennsylvania, he has received several awards, including an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, a National Science Foundation Career Advancement Award, the Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering (PECASE), a Packard Fellowship for Science and Engineering, the Research Corporation Cottrell Scholar Award, and a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award.