Since 1993, the society has awarded the Chemical Dynamics Award for “outstanding innovative research on the dynamics of molecules, including spectroscopy, kinetics or molecular interactions in the gas, liquid or solid phase.” The society singled Beard out specifically for his “outstanding contributions to controlling ultra-fast carrier dynamics in nanostructures and perovskite semiconductors.”
The society noted that Beard’s work involves developing new materials, nanostructures, and architectures able to convert solar energy to electricity or fuels “with efficiencies that could greatly exceed current day technologies.”
Beard, who joined NREL 15 years ago, is the first person from the laboratory to receive this honor. Beard received a medal, an invitation to lecture at four universities across the United Kingdom and Ireland, and $2,580.
Beard, a fellow of the American Physical Society, has published more than 120 research papers. His research has led to the establishment of a quantum dot solar cell, and he also developed the first solar cell of any type that demonstrates an external quantum efficiency greater than 100%.