Graduate Students

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Isabella Caruso

Graduate Student, DMSE
icaruso@mit.edu
LinkedIn

Isabella graduated in 2017 from Dartmouth College with an A.B. and B.E. in Materials Engineering. From 2017-2018, she was the Chemistry Teaching Science Fellow at Dartmouth, supporting students in introductory chemistry classes. She then worked as a materials engineer at Form Energy, a startup developing long duration energy storage, where she focused on anode performance. In the Brushett Group, Isabella will be working on electrochemical carbon dioxide separation.
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Lauren Clarke

Graduate Student, ChemE
lclarke@mit.edu

Lauren received her B.S. and M.S., both in Chemical Engineering, from the University of North Dakota in 2016 and 2018, respectively. Her master’s research was performed under prof. Gautham Krishnamoorthy, where she focused on improving the performance of the CFD code MFiX by incorporating high-performance preconditioners and solvers. She was also a four-year member of the Division-I Women’s Volleyball team, and was selected to the CoSIDA Academic All-America third-team. In her thesis work, Lauren uses computational modeling and experimentation to understand and develop electrochemical carbon dioxide separation systems.
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Alexis (AJ) Fenton

Graduate Student, ChemE
afenton@mit.edu
CV | LinkedIn

Before working in the Brushett group, AJ received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Rice University (2016). During his undergraduate career, he participated in two REUs at Rutgers University and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). At Rutgers, he conducted Monte Carlo simulations of water adsorption onto graphene and carbon nanotubes under the mentorship of Prof. Alexander Neimark. While at UAB, AJ studied vanadium (V) anodes for solid oxide fuel cells under the mentorship of Prof. Renato Camata; this inspired AJ to study renewable energy technologies in graduate school. AJ is currently exploring advanced diagnostic techniques to investigate the behavior of active species in both aqueous and nonaqueous flow batteries.
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Weiran (Sasha) Gao

Graduate Student, ChemE
wgao2@mit.edu
LinkedIn

Sasha received her B.S. in Chemical engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in 2017, and her M.S. in Chemical engineering from WPI in 2018. For both her undergraduate and Master’s theses, she researched in the lab of Professor Ron Grimm at WPI focusing on the surface chemistry of perovskite materials. She enjoys playing piano, skiing, snowboarding and cooking. Her current research focuses on the development of convection enhanced electrochemical energy storage.
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Aditya Limaye

Graduate Student, ChemE
amlimaye@mit.edu
LinkedIn
Aditya received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from UC Berkeley in 2016. As an undergraduate, he worked with Prof. Paul Alivisatos on modeling the mechanical properties of polymer-nanocrystal composites, and later on studying the catalytic properties of bimetallic Platinum-Gallium nanocrystals. Prior to starting his graduate studies, Aditya worked for two years as a Scientific Associate at D. E. Shaw Research. Here, he developed high-accuracy force fields for molecular dynamics simulations of protein-ligand complexes. Aditya is co-advised by Prof. Adam Willard, and is working on formulating improved models of chemical dynamics at electrode interfaces. His work is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
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Chris Mallia

Graduate Student, DMSE
cmallia@mit.edu
Chris received his B.A. and M.A. in Physics from Hunter College, CUNY in 2019. His research as both an undergraduate and master’s student was done on energy storage materials using solid-state NMR techniques under Professor Steven Greenbaum. He focused on characterizing the dynamics of materials for electrolyte applications using field cycling NMR and high-pressure diffusion measurements. In 2017, he participated in a fellowship at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) to model the process of spark plasma sintering for solid ceramic electrolyte applications. In his free time he enjoys nature through hiking, and spending time with animals. He is supported through a National Defense Science and Engineering (NDSEG) fellowship since 2020. 
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Nick Matteucci

Graduate Student, ChemE
nmatt@mit.edu
LinkedIn
Nick obtained his B.S in Chemical Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis in 2020. As an undergraduate, he initially researched functionalized carbon nanomaterials for water filtration membranes before transitioning to conduct experiments and develop models for dual-ion batteries under Professor Peng Bai. He also served as captain for the Cross Country and Track Teams, receiving 11 All-America titles and the 2020 NCAA DIII Academic All-America of the Year award. Co-advised by Professor Brushett and Professor Swan, Nick investigates how complex fluids can be applied to flow battery systems. He is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
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Bertrand Neyhouse

Graduate Student, ChemE
neyhouse@mit.edu
LinkedIn
Bertrand received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Ohio University in Athens, Ohio in 2018. His undergraduate research was centered on electrochemistry, studying molecular electrocatalysts with Dr. Travis White as well as industrial electrolysis and electrochemical sensors with Dr. Gerardine Botte. In the Brushett group, Bertrand is pursuing research in electrochemical characterization of redox-active molecules and separation strategies for nonaqueous redox flow batteries. In addition to research, he is a ChemE Communication Lab Fellow and 3rd year representative to the ChemE Graduate Student Advisory Board. He is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
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Alex Quinn

Graduate Student, ChemE
quinnale@mit.edu
LinkedIn

Alex graduated in 2018 with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Texas A&M University. He studied load-bearing/energy-storing composites in the Lutkenhaus Lab at A&M, characterized commercial Li-ion materials as a DOE SULI Intern at the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL), and probed the thermal performance of battery packs at NASA JSC. He also studied biosensors under Dr. McShane at A&M, developed software at OSIsoft, and formulated propellant at NASA. Alex enjoys skateboarding, music, and the outdoors. His research interests lie in energy storage, and he is currently focused on rechargeable organic fuel cells. He is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation’s Minority Ph.D. (MPHD) Program.
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Katelyn Ripley

Graduate Student, ChemE
ripleyk@mit.edu
CV | LinkedIn

 

Katelyn received her B.S. in Chemical Engineering and M.S. in Engineering Management from Northeastern University in 2020. While at Northeastern, she participated in the co-op program where she had the opportunity to work at a semi-conductor company, TEL NEXX, as well as at two companies developing long duration energy storage technologies: Lockheed Martin Advanced Energy Storage and Form Energy. At both early-stage companies, Katelyn studied the electrochemical stability of flow battery electrolytes. At Northeastern, Katelyn worked under Dr. Joshua Gallaway studying bismuth-modified manganese dioxide cathodes for long-duration energy storage. In the Brushett group, Katelyn will be engineering electrochemical cells for carbon dioxide remediation.

Kara Rodby

Graduate Student, ChemE
krodby@mit.edu
CV | LinkedIn

 

Kara received her B.S. in Environmental Engineering from Northwestern University in 2017. Kara’s undergraduate thesis at Northwestern focused on microbial uptake of mercury in aquatic systems. Her hobbies include fitness, student activism, and reality TV. Kara's research is both experimental and computational, focusing on systems-level engineering and techno-economic analysis of aqueous redox flow battery chemistries for long duration grid storage.
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John Vergados

Graduate Student, ChemE
vergados@mit.edu
LinkedIn

 

John received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University in 2021. During his undergraduate career, John performed research on electronically-conductive radical polymers with Dr. Bryan Boudouris and also studied ionically-conductive amorphous polymers with Dr. Ernesto Marinero. His thesis work involves developing and scaling high-performance non-aqueous flow batteries. Outside of the laboratory, John enjoys rock climbing, playing piano, and running.

Charles Tai-Chieh Wan

Graduate Student, ChemE
ctwan@mit.edu
LinkedIn

 

Charles received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University (2017).  His research in Prof. Lynden Archer’s group at Cornell focused on stabilizing the interphases of the lithium-oxygen battery for enhanced cycling and capacity. Co-advised by Prof. Brushett and Prof. Yet-Ming Chiang, Charles is investigating new paradigms for engineering the surface chemistry and microstructure of redox flow battery porous carbon electrodes. He is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
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Trent Weiss

Graduate Student, ChemE
tweiss7@mit.edu
LinkedIn

 

Trent received his B.S. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering with a minor in Economics from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2019. As an undergraduate, he worked in Dr. Michael Filler’s lab studying selective surface chemistry techniques to develop area selective patterning methodologies on nanowires. Trent also spent two summers interning for ExxonMobil at their Baytown Technology Engineering Complex. Before attending graduate school, he spent one year developing mathematical models for ExxonMobil’s Supply Chain Optimization group. In the Brushett group, Trent’s research focuses on understanding the nature of SEI formation under flow for convection battery design.