Vince Holmberg completed his PhD in
chemical engineering in December 2011, and is now an assistant professor in
the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Washington.
Vince is also a member of the Molecular Engineering & Sciences Institute
and Clean Energy Institute at the University of Washington. Prior to moving to
Seattle, Vince was a Marie Curie ETH Zürich Postdoctoral Fellow under the
sponsorship of David Norris in the Optical Materials Engineering Laboratory at
the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zürich).
During his PhD, Vince studied
semiconductor nanowires with Brian Korgel at The University of Texas at Austin.
His research focused on the development of the large-scale production of Si and
Ge nanowires grown in supercritical organic solvents. Throughout his graduate
career, Vince investigated the chemical surface passivation and
functionalization of nanowires, and conducted in situ
electron microscopy experiments on individual semiconductor nanowires in order
to study their phase transitions and melting dynamics, as well as impurity
diffusion in nanowire systems. He also studied the mechanical characteristics
of Ge nanowires, which have bending strengths approaching that of ideal,
defect-free, perfect crystals, and strength-to-weight ratios greater than
Kevlar. Vince also helped develop the first Si and Ge nanowire fabrics –
macroscopic, free-standing, flexible ceramics made entirely of
single-crystalline semiconductor nanowires.
Vince’s interests include the
synthesis and application of nanostructured materials, surface chemistry,
self-assembly, supercritical fluids, in situ
electron microscopy, and novel energy conversion and energy storage strategies.
He received the 2012 Hertz Thesis Prize for his doctoral work, as well as a
prize from the International Society for the Advancement of Supercritical
Fluids in 2014.