Progna Banerjee, Ph.D. is a scientist with strong interdisciplinary research background in experimental condensed matter physics, materials chemistry and electronics. She earned her Ph.D. and M.S. degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA. Before that, she completed her M.Tech. and M.Sc. degrees from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur. She is a currently a postdoctoral researcher at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, California, USA. She is working jointly with the Advanced Light Source (ALS) focusing on the Ambient-Pressure X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (APXPS) beamlines, (PI: Dr. Ethan Crumlin) and the Energy Storage Group (PI: Dr. Robert Kostecki) in the Energy Storage & Distributed Resources Division.
Her goal is to be able to contribute to the fundamental understanding of ionic transport and intercalation in solid-state batteries, through active development of time-resolved XPS capabilities at the ALS. As a Ph.D. student researcher Progna used a template-based synthetic method termed as cation exchange, to obtain copper chalcogenide nanocrystals from quantum dots. She worked towards showing that nanocrystals of this material exhibit an unusual structural arrangement under ambient conditions, which results in a property called superionicity. This synthetic procedure is being extended to prepare other materials in topological insulating (TI) phase. When not actively working at the labs or coding to improve data acquisition tools, Progna revels in mentoring students, in aiding to generate and channelize their enthusiasm towards understanding the cohesive story behind their project.