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Peter Ciesielski

Research Scientist

Biomaterials Sciences

Photo of Peter Ciesielski
(303) 384-7997
At NREL Since: 

Peter Ciesielski received an undergraduate degree in Chemical and Biological Engineering from Colorado State University in 2006. He then accepted an NSF IGERT fellowship with the Interdisciplinary Materials Science Program at Vanderbilt University where he received a Ph.D in 2010. His research at Vanderbilt centered around the integration of nature's highly efficient and naturally abundant photocatalytic protein complexes with non-biological and nanostructured materials to produce biohybrid systems for the conversion of light energy into both storable chemical energy and immediately accessible electricity.

At NREL, Dr. Ciesielski is working to develop strategies for the production of biofuels from a variety of feedstocks. In the Biomass Surface Characterization Laboratory, he applies electron microscopy in tandem with various spectroscopic techniques to analyze the chemical and structural changes that occur in biomass as a result of thermochemical pretreatment as well as genetic modification. In conjunction with his appointment at NREL, Dr. Ciesielski taught Thermodynamics for the Mechanical and Materials Engineering Department at the University of Denver. His additional research interests include electrochemistry and photoelectrochemistry, surface science and molecular self-assembly, and the simulation of heat and mass transfer and chemical reaction kinetics.

Selected Publications 

  1. Ciesielski, P. N.; Faulkner, C. J.; Irwin, M.T.; Gregory, J.M.; Tolk, N.H.; Cliffel, D. E.; Jennings, G. K. (2010). "Enhanced Photocurrent Production by PSI Multilayer Films." Advanced Functional Materials (20:23); pp. 4048-4054.
  2. Ciesielski, P. N.; Hijazi, F. M.; Scott, A. M.; Faulkner, C. J.; Beard, L.; Emmett, K.; ; Rosenthall, S. J.; Cliffel, D. E.; Jennings, G.K. (2010). "Photosystem I-Based Biohybrid Photoelectrochemical Cells." Biorescource Technology (101:9); pp. 3047-3053.
  3. Beard, L; Ciesielski, P. N.; Hijazi, F.M. (2010). "Leaving their Legacy: A research experience and teach module to maximize STEM learning for students." The Science Teacher (77); pp. 53-58.
  4. Ciesielski, P. N.; Scott, A. M.; Faulkner, C. J.; Berron, B. J.; Cliffel, D. E.; Jennings, G. K. (2008). "Functionalized Nanoporous Gold Leaf Electrode Films for the Immobilization of Photosystem I." ACS Nano (2:12); pp. 2465-2472.
  5. Faulkner, C. J.; Lees, S.; Ciesielski, P. N.; Cliffel, D. E.; Jennings, G. K. (2008). "Rapid Assembly of Photosystem I Monolayers on Gold Electrodes." Langmuir (24:16); pp. 8409-8412.