Overview of Ardo Group Research Foci
The Ardo Group is a Team of Innovators that invent new ways to leverage daily variations in terrestrial photon fluxes between the Sun, the Earth, and the Universe to help close the Water Cycle, the Carbon Cycle, the Hydrogen Cycle, and the Nitrogen Cycle. More specifically, the central aim of the Ardo Group research program is to understand and control dynamics of non-equilibrium processes relevant to electrochemical & thermal desalination & atmospheric water harvesting (Moore Foundation & DOE NAWI Hub), oceanic carbon capture (DOE ARPA-E), solar H2 & liquid fuels devices (DOE EERE & DOE LiSA Hub), protonic photovoltaics (DOE BES), electrolyzer & fuel cell membranes (DoD ARO), and photonic heat pumps (UCI Beall Family Foundation).

Guided by results from numerical simulations and processes that occur in Nature, members of the Ardo Group design and fabricate kinetically asymmetric systems using chemical synthesis and molecular-level engineering of molecule–material structures. Specific tailoring of the mechanisms imparted by these asymmetries allows us to control photo-induced charge separation in solar energy conversion schemes, current rectification using electrochemical ratchets and ionic diodes made from ice or ion-exchange membranes, selective and rapid catalysis of PCET reactions and water dissociation, and local temperature using photonic and heat transfer processes. Results from each study increase fundamental knowledge of transport and transfer phenomena (ion, electron, photon, energy, heat) that dictate the function and effectiveness of technologies for sustainable clean water, carbon capture, and renewable energy.

The Ardo Group is well-suited for students and postdoctoral scholars with various backgrounds and expertise, spanning the disciplines of chemistry, applied physics, chemical engineering, materials science, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, and biophysics. Click on the following links to watch a short video from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation that explains the Ardo Group's solar desalination concept and Shane's Distinctive Voices Lecture (53 minutes) from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine titled "Development of a plastic water bottle for sunlight-driven desalination."

We are grateful to our sponsors for their generous support of our research program

Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Logo      Liquid Sunlight Alliance (LiSA) Logo      National Alliance for Water Innovation (NAWI) Logo

DOE Office of Science Logo      DOE EERE Logo

DOE ARPA-E Logo      DOD Army Research Office CCDC ARL Logo

Research Corporation Logo      Cottrell Scholars Collaborative Logo      Sloan Foundation Logo

UCI Beall Applied Innovation Logo      UCI Research Seed Funding Program Logo     
Group News

1/29/2021: Ana Bender joins Team Ardo. Welcome, Ana!

1/19/2021: The Ardo Group receives funding from UCI Beall Applied Innovation, as Shane is named a Faculty Innovation Fellow in recognition of having an impact on society and being committed to enhancing UCI's culture of innovation. Go Team!
UCI Beall Applied Innovation Logo

1/7-8/2021: Team Ardo runs a virtual Trust in the Scientific Method, Ask a Scientist event with middle-school students from McFadden Intermediate School. Thank you, Cassidy, Jen, Simon, Leanna, Rohit, Zejie, Gabe, Ethan, and Geoff!

12/23/2020: The Ardo Group's collaborative viewpoint publication with the Boettcher Group at the University of Oregon titled "Potentially Confusing: Potentials in Electrochemistry" is accepted for publication in ACS Energy Letters. Congratulations, Shannon (UO) and the rest of the team!

11/9/2020: Zejie successfully passes his oral exam and is now a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Chemistry. Congratulations, Justin!

11/5/2020: Gabe successfully passes his oral exam and is now a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Chemistry. Congratulations, Gabe!

11/2/2020: Cassidy successfully passes her oral exam and is now a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Chemistry. Congratulations, Cassidy!

10/22/2020: Jen and Geoff successfully pass their preliminary oral exam in the Department of Chemistry. Congratulations, Jen and Geoff!

10/20/2020: The Ardo Group and the Atwater Group and Xiang Group receive collaborative funding from the U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) through the Topics Informing New Program Areas (TINA)'s Direct Removal of Carbon Dioxide from Oceanwater (DOC) Topic for "Development of an Off-Shore, Stand-Alone System for Efficient CO2 Removal from Oceanwater." Go Team!


10/2/2020: Ethan successfully passes his preliminary oral exam in the Department of Materials Science & Engineering. Congratulations, Ethan!

9/9/2020: At the annual Graduate Student Awards Ceremony, Rohit receives the prestigious Gebel Award, an award given to a chemistry graduate student working in environmental chemistry and who has had a period of work prior to graduate school. Shane was the emcee of the virtual Awards Ceremony and it was well-received. Congratulations, Rohit (and Shane)!

8/31/2020: Rylan is now also Dr. Kautz. Congratulations on your successful thesis defense and thank you for being systematic, genuine, and perseverant, Rylan!
Rylan Kautz during Ph.D. thesis defense

8/13/2020: The Ardo Group, Boettcher Group, Markland Group, Minus Group, Sa Group, Surendranath Group, and Wang Group receive collaborative funding from Research Corporation for Science Advancement's Cottrell Scholars Collaborative for "Diversity, equity, and inclusion in the age of COVID-19: A new STEM pipeline model that grows undergraduate research at minority-serving institutions via collaboration, personnel exchange and online training." Go Team!
Cottrell Scholars Collaborative Logo

7/29/2020: The Ardo Group, Caltech, LBNL, SLAC, NREL, UC San Diego, and the University of Oregon as part of the Liquid Sunlight Alliance (LiSA), with Harry Atwater (Caltech) as the Director, are awarded one of two Fuels from Sunlight Hubs from the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science through the Office of Basic Energy Sciences. Go Team! And congratulations to Jerry Meyer (UNC) (Shane's Ph.D. Advisor) as the Director of the Center for Hybrid Approaches in Solar Energy to Liquid Fuels (CHASE), the other awarded Fuels from Sunlight Hub.
LiSA Logo

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