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Dr. Beard serves as the associate director of the Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics (CASP), an Energy Frontier Research Center funded by the Office of Science within the U.S. Department of Energy. CASP is exploring the unique photophysics of quantum-confined semiconductor nanocrystals (or quantum dots) for the next generation of low-cost, high-efficiency solar energy conversion technologies. Dr. Beard is also funded through the Solar Photochemistry program within the Office of Science. He is developing non-contact spectroscopic probes of charge-carrier dynamics and employing them to solve interesting interfacial carrier dynamics questions related to photochemistry.

Research Interests

Quantum-confined semiconductor nanocrystals for solar energy conversion

Ultrafast spectroscopy of carrier dynamics in solar photoconversion schemes

Non-contact probes of carrier dynamics and charge transport

Novel quantum materials for energy technologies


Ph.D. Physical Chemistry, Yale University

M.S. Physical Chemistry, Brigham Young University

B.S. Physical Chemistry, Brigham Young University

Featured Publications

D.M. Kroupa, M. Varos, N. Brawand, E.M. Miller, B. McNichols, J. Gu, A.J. Nozik, A. Sellinger, G. Galli, M.C. Beard, “Tuning colloidal quantum dot band edge positions through solution-phase surface chemistry modification,” Nature Communications, 8, 15257, 2017, DOI:10.1038/ncomms15257

Y. Yan, R. W. Crisp, J. Gu, B.D. Chernomodik, G.F. Pach, A.R. Marshall, J. A. Turner, M.C. Beard, “Multiple exciton generation for photoelectrochemical hydrogen evolution reactions with quantum yields exceeding 100%,” Nature Energy, 17052, 2017, DOI:10.1038/nenergy.2017.52

Y. Yang, M. Yang, D.T. Moore, Y.  Yan, E.M. Miller, K. Zhu, M.C. Beard, “Top and bottom surfaces limit carrier lifetime in lead iodide perovskite films,” Nature Energy, 2, 16207, 2017, DOI:10.1038/nenergy.2016.207

M.C. Beard, J.L. Blackburn, J.C. Johnson, G. Rumbles, “Status and prognosis of future generation photoconversion to photovoltaics and solar fuels,” ACS Energy Lett., 1, 344‒347, 2016, DOI:10.1021/acsenergylett.6b00204

Y. Yang, D. Ostrowski, R. France, K. Zhu, J. van de Lagemaat, J.M. Luther, M.C. Beard, “Observation of a hot-phonon bottleneck in lead iodide perovskites,” Nature Photonics, 10, 53‒59, 2016, DOI: 10.1038/nphoton.2015.213

Y. Yang, J. Gu, J.L. Young, E.M. Miller, J. Turner, N. Neale, M.C. Beard, “Semiconductor interfacial carrier dynamics via photo-induced electric fields,” Science, 350, 1061‒1065, 2015, DOI: 10.1126/science.aad3459

O.E. Semonin, J.M. Luther, S. Choi, H.Y. Chen, J. Gao, A.J. Nozik, M.C. Beard, “Peak external photocurrent quantum efficiency exceeding 100% via MEG in a quantum dot solar cell,” Science, 334, 1530, 2011, DOI: 10.1126/science.1209845

View all NREL publications for Matt Beard.