During his PhD, Sam developed mathematical methods for simulating the quantum mechanical behavior of electrons in molecules and materials.
As a Schmidt Science Fellow in the Siegel Group at the University of Texas, he plans to apply more approximate quantum mechanical simulation techniques to new materials for energy storage. Sam aims to elucidate the mechanisms that lead to capacity loss, catastrophic failures, and slow charging in today’s lithium-ion batteries by simulating the flow of lithium ions through electrolyte materials. By leveraging this understanding and collaborating with experimental groups, he hopes to develop new electrolyte materials that can be used to make lithium-ion batteries able to charge faster and store more energy than today’s batteries.
Sam’s research has the potential to lead to advancements that could accelerate the mass adoption of electric vehicles and increase our capacity to store excess renewable electricity, and therefore reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.