Richard Lunt is an assistant professor in Michigan State University’s College of Engineering. He was one of eight recipients of a prestigious National Environmental Chemistry Award from The Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation for his work on a transparent material that harvests solar energy.
Lunt is an expert on advanced optical material sciences and heads up the Molecular and Organic Excitonics Lab (MOE) at Michigan State. The award allows him to bring on another postgraduate researcher for a 2-year span. As for the material itself, the possibilities are both intriguing and exciting. It is an advancement in solar energy conversion, moving toward a more symbiotic relationship between our daily lives and decentralized energy creation. The transparent material could be used in a device or structure that has clear surfaces. Think anything from a window on a building to your cell phone screen, generating energy on its own.
Lunt, or his hand at least, was featured on the cover of the July issue of Advanced Optical Materials for his work on the material. The corresponding scientific paper, titled “Light Harvesting: Near-Infrared Harvesting Transparent Luminescent Solar Concentrators” is available in the issue. And yes, the title is a mouthful.
Lunt’s research is co-authored by Yimu Zhao, Garrett Meek, and Benjamin Levine.