Chris Van De Walle

vandewalle [at] mrl [dot] ucsb [dot] edu

Institute Role
Member of Lighting Solutions Group

Role in Affiliated Centers
Member of the Solid State Lighting & Energy Center, the Center for Energy Efficient Materials and the Interdisciplinary Center for Wide Bandgap Semiconductors

Chris Van De Walle’s research interests lie in novel electronic materials, including wide-bandgap semiconductors (III-V nitrides, II-VI compounds, and oxides). The group III nitrides he studies have the potential to be an enabling material in a new generation of high-efficiency solar materials. Nitride semiconductors are also revolutionizing solid-state lighting and high-frequency electronics. Van De Walle studies the interplay between structural and electronic properties of surfaces, and addressing problems related to doping and defects, and investigating loss mechanisms in light emitters. Another area of interest is the physics and chemistry of hydrogen interactions with solids, liquids, and molecular systems; and the storage and production of hydrogen (photoelectrochemical cells).

Before joining the Materials Department in 2004, Chris Van de Walle was a Principal Scientist in the Electronic Materials Laboratory at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC). He received a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 1986. He was a postdoctoral scientist at the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, New York (1986-1988); a Senior Member of Research Staff at Philips Laboratories in Briarcliff Manor, New York (1988-1991); and an Adjunct Professor of Materials Science at Columbia University (1991). He has published over 200 research papers, holds 20 patents, and has given over 100 invited and plenary talks at international conferences. Van de Walle is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, the Materials Research Society, the AVS, and is a Senior Member of the IEEE. He is the recipient of a Humboldt Award for Senior US Scientist and the David Adler Award from the APS. Van de Walle has chaired three conferences and has served as Program Chair for the 27th International Conference on the Physics of Semiconductors (Flagstaff, AZ, 2004) and co-chair of the International Symposium on Hydrogen Production and Storage (Santa Barbara, CA, 2006).

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