Research Field: Materials Science
Material scientists, like Dr Jasieniak, fuse together chemistry, physics and engineering, to figure out exactly how materials should be made. They do this by manipulating their structure and chemistry at a size scale that is 10,000 times smaller than a human hair! Only by working at this “nano” scale can new materials be discovered and their properties perfected. Jacek’s research is specifically focused on the development of next-generation solar cells. Solar cells such as the ones we see on roofs convert light to electricity without pollution. Despite their popularity they remain expensive and are produced using toxic processes. Surprisingly, they also appear like they did 50 years ago – rigid, bulky and heavy. Next-generation solar cells will be very different – they will be cheap, safe to produce, lightweight and flexible.
Jacek has been involved in promoting science through public talks at the Rotary Clubs of Victoria, the University of the Third Age and many schools. He has also appeared on Channel 10’s Scope program, and was featured as a highlight article in MX Magazine.