Pint Lab, Summer 2017: from left to right – Keith Share, Nitin Muralidharan, Jennifer Donohue, Cary Pint, Dominic Jiang, Kate Moyer, Jeremiah Afolabi, Mengya Li, Adam Cohn, and Tommy Metke.  Not shown are Anna Douglas and Jackson Meng.

Welcome to the Nanomaterials and Energy Devices Laboratory at Vanderbilt University.  We are a team of creative, passionate, and hard-working researchers with a focus on topics ranging across nanomaterials, energy storage, energy harvesting, sustainability, and water purification/desalination.  Read more about recent exciting news from our lab below, more about our research at our research page, and check out our most recent publications and patents on our publications page.  If you want to know more about us, learn how to join us, or just stop by to have an espresso and talk energy systems, feel free to contact Cary Pint at cary.l.pint at Vanderbilt.edu!


ACSNano_virtual issues

January 2, 2018: A paper from our group published in 2017 was selected for a virtual issue at ACS Nano that brings together 10 papers from the last 10 years which have made impact in the field of Energy Storage Research.  ACS Nano is one of the highest impact and quality journals for nanoscience research, and we are excited to see our work highlighted in this virtual issue!


December 15, 2017:  Research from the Pint lab on using 2D materials for electrochemical energy harvesting is featured as one of the 20 most popular research stories in 2017 from Vanderbilt University.   Our research was featured among 3 other stories from VU Engineering this year that made it into the top 20, and this is the fourth year (of the about five years our lab has been active at VU) that our work has made it into the top 10 or top 20 list of most popular news stories at Vanderbilt.  Prior work from our lab making it into this list were (2016) Cheap batteries processed from junkyard scraps, (2014) Materials that store energy and bear mechanical load, and (2013) Supercapacitors integrated into silicon chips using graphene coatings.  Congrats to the Pint team, past and present, for making 2017 yet another year where we bring together impactful research results with impactful dissemination to the general public that allows the impact of our group to rise above others.  Looking forward to a great 2018!!!


November 27, 2017: Prof. Pint delivered an invited talk entitled, “Controlling Interfaces for Stable Metal Anodes and Sulfur Cathodes” at the Interfaces for Energy Storage session at the 2017 Materials Research Society (MRS) Fall Meeting in Boston, MA.  This is the premier society and meeting for researchers at the intersection of materials science and energy.


November 6, 2017: Prof Pint delivered an invited talk to the Nanomanufacturing session, in the Advanced Manufacturing Track, at ASME IMECE 2017 focused on capillary nanomanufacturing of carbon nanotubes for battery applications.  Nano- and Additive-Manufacturing were hot topics this year at IMECE!

2018posterwinnersOctober 27, 2017: Huge Congratulations to Mengya Li!  She presented a poster at the Vanderbilt NanoDay event, and won a 2nd place, $250 award for her poster.  Her work discussed the use of capillary infiltration of sulfur to prepare carbon nanotube foams that exhibit both high areal and gravimetric capacity, and was published recently in ACS Nano.  Way to go Mengya!  Shown in the picture is Mengya in the bottom row in the white shirt, who is pictured alongside Prof. William Buhro, our Nanoday speaker, and other award winners.

travel_logosOctober 26, 2017:  Prof. Pint has been traveling and presenting invited talks about work in the Pint lab for the past few weeks.  In just the last week, Pint has delivered invited talks at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington DC, the University of Maryland College Park, and at the 4th Intl. Symp. on Sustainable Secondary Battery Manufacturing and Recycling in Cancun, Mexico.  Excited for more to come!

harvestingAugust 30, 2017: Our work on 2D material building blocks for energy harvesters was featured in NBC news, alongside two other groundbreaking papers published in Science and Nature Energy recently.  Check out the article here.


OP17-NANO-TopContentAugust 9, 2017: Prof. Pint delivered an invited talk on 2D material-based electrochemical strain energy harvesters in the Low Dimensional Materials and Devices section of the SPIE Nanoscience + Engineering conference in  sunny San Diego, CA. Check out the talks in the session here.


August 4, 2017: Congratulations to Jennifer Donohue, an REU student working in the Pint lab this summer from SUNY Binghampton, for winning the Vanderbilt Institute of Nanoscience and Engineering (VINSE) best poster award for her work on high power sodium and potassium batteries ($1000!).   Pictured are Jennifer and Kate Moyer, her graduate student mentor, both standing beside her award winning poster!  Way to go Jennifer!




July 28, 2017: Prof. Pint was a guest on the CBC talk show “Quirks and Quarks” where he discussed the vision of 2-D materials embedded into fabrics for wearable energy harvesting.  Listen in here! 

July 21, 2017: Pint lab work on a 2-D black phosphorus strain energy harvester using working concepts from battery systems was highlighted in the news today!  This is based on a paper published in ACS Energy Letters today, and led by graduate students Nitin Muralidharan and Mengya Li.  Check out our youtube video here!  Shown at left is Tommy Metke, a 5th year researcher in the Pint lab and rising senior mechanical engineering undergraduate student at Vanderbilt. This is a critical step for our team to bridge biomechanical systems, novel electrochemical device technologies, and the fundamental understanding enabling innovation at this intersection.  Go Pint Lab!

helloJuly 13, 2017: SkyNano, a spin-off company  led by graduate student Anna Douglas and Prof. Pint, was named as one  the top 500 deep tech start-ups in the world by Hello Tomorrow, a global non-profit.  Anna will travel to Paris, France in October for their global summit to pitch SkyNano’s technology and compete for a globally competitive deep tech award.

Cleantech_UPJune 27, 2017: Congratulations to Anna Douglas and SkyNano!  After being runner-up at the Cleantech Regional Competition (MegaWatt Venture Challenge) in early June, Anna proceeded on to the National Cleantech University Prize competition sponsored by the Department of Energy and held in Austin, TX June 26-27th.  Of the teams hailing from 8 regional competitions (contenders shown in picture), SkyNano was selected among the top six final teams that competed for the top award on the 27th.  This is a huge honor – way to go Anna Douglas, who is a Ph.D. student in the Pint lab and the CEO of SkyNano LLC.  Within 6 months of launching the company, it has already been distinguished as one of the top six in the nation.  Imagine where SkyNano will be in 2018!  Go SkyNano!  Go Anna!

Andrew_ECSJune 19, 2017:  Congratulations to Andrew Westover.  He was awarded the 1st place Best Student Poster award at the 2017 ECS Meeting for his poster entitled, “Carbon Nanotube Reinforced Structural Composite Supercapacitors.”  This is a giant honor since the ECS meeting is a home society for electrochemical sciences and devices, and there were very many excellent student posters presented! Way to go Andrew!  Shown is Andrew presenting his award winning poster at ECS.

IMG_9352June 9, 2017: Congratulations to SkyNano LLC and Mrs. Anna Douglas!  After being selected as one of 10 finalists to pitch and compete in the MegaWatt Ventures Cleantech Business Competition in Orlando, FL, SkyNano was named runner-up for the award.  Way to go Anna Douglas for this huge achievement.  Shown in the picture are the finalists, including Mrs. Anna Douglas (2nd from left) in Orlando, FL after the smoke cleared from the competition.  This win qualifies Anna and SkyNano to advance to the overall National University Cleantech Venture competition to be held in Austin, TX on June 26-27th.  Go SkyNano!


May 31, 2017: Prof. Pint attended the 2017 ECS Meeting held in New Orleans, LA, and in three days of the conference gave 3 talks (2 contributed, and one invited), and chaired two sessions.  Pint presented work  focused on (1) Mechanochemistry of batteries, (2) Anode free sodium batteries, and (3) CO2 conversion into small diameter CNTs, and these were all well accepted!  Shown here is a picture after lunch on Wednesday with (L-R) Prof. Rong Xiang (University of Tokyo), Prof. Pint, Dr. Andrew Westover and his wife Jamie (Oak Ridge National Lab, and formerly Pint lab), Prof. Yan Li (Peking University), and Prof. Shigeo Maruyama (University of Tokyo).  Looking forward to the next ECS Meeting!

LAbMay 26, 2017:
The Pint Lab relocation has now begun!  After several months of (patient?) waiting, renovations have begun on our new flagship space in the Engineering and Science Building – the new hub of Innovation at Vanderbilt University.  This building has a new cleanroom downstairs, all of VINSE’s equipment within an elevator ride, and our lab is situated next door to the Wond’ry – a multidisciplinary innovation center.  These amazing facilities, and this early picture, will go down in history as the “seed of greatness.”  We’re excited!         

PrintMay 18, 2017: Congratulations to Anna Douglas, graduate student in Pint Lab and CEO of spinoff company from Pint group, SkyNano LLC.  SkyNano was awarded a prestigious slot in the 2017 ORNL Innovation Crossroads Fellow cohort to convert atmospheric carbon dioxide into high valued single-walled carbon nanotubes.  This provides $350,000 of start-up funds and salary/funding support for Anna from the Department of Energy as she continues her graduate research at ORNL and simultaneously develops this company.  Read about this extraordinary opportunity in Vanderbilt News.

34740376995_aa75e1f759_zMay 16, 2017: Prof. Cary Pint and Anna Douglas traveled to capitol hill in Washington DC to personally visit the congressional offices of TN Senator Alexander, and TN Representatives Cooper, Cohen, Blackburn, Fleischmann, and Kustoff to discuss the importance of federal funding agencies, and specifically NSF, to the education and research mission of our country.  To cap off the evening, we presented a poster alongside 35 NSF-funded researchers at the NSF Advocacy day event.

commencementMay 12, 2017: Prof. Cary Pint graduated his first three students from the Pint Lab: Dr. Andrew Westover, Dr. Rachel Carter (shown in picture), and Dr. Landon Oakes.  Both Rachel and Andrew attended the hooding ceremony.  These three folks emerged from our team as superstars – they all got the first jobs they applied for, and left big shoes to fill for the new cohort of Pint lab students joining this fall.  Congratulations to Dr. Westover, Dr. Carter, and Dr. Oakes – we will miss you, and you will always have an extended family in the Pint lab! (photo credit: May Ou)

image1April 21-25, 2017: Prof Pint delivered an invited talk at the 2017 Guadalupe workshop on Nucleation and Growth Mechanisms of Atomically Thin Nanomaterials – similar to a Gordon workshop, but held at the Guadalupe river ranch in TX.  Pint’s talk focused on efforts aiming to achieve small diameter CNT growth from ambient CO2.  Shown in the picture is a historic team of researchers (including Prof. Pint, right) that made huge leaps in understanding of carbon nanotube growth science.

February 2017 Congratulations to Rachel Carter for her work published in Nano Letters entitled, “A Sugar Derived Room Temperature Sodium Sulfur Battery with Long Term Cycling Stability” and corresponding press release that was independently picked up through IOP’s Nanotechweb.org.  Notably, this paper was also one of the Most Read papers in Nano Letters during the month of February and early March, and describes a process to produce sodium sulfur batteries from (very cheap!) table sugar, bulk sodium, and bulk sulfur that involve a stable anode-electrolyte-cathode configuration that results in excellent cycling performance.  Go Rachel!