January 19, 2021
Staff Accomplishment

Two PNNL Scientists Elected to American Chemical Society Positions in Energy and Fuels Division

Appointments bring visibility to PNNL's research in clean energy and storage

PNNL scientists Dave Heldebrant and Yuyan Shao were elected to positions in the American Chemical Society

PNNL scientists Dave Heldebrant and Yuyan Shao were elected to positions in the American Chemical Society.

(Composite image by Cortland Johnson | Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)

The American Chemical Society's (ACS) Energy & Fuels (ENFL) Division elected Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) scientist Yuyan Shao as Chair-Elect for 2021 and scientist Dave Heldebrant as both Director-at-Large and National Meeting and Programming Thematic Chair.

Shao is an electrochemist and materials scientist who has ranked in the top one percent of most cited researchers in the world for the last four years. Shao has more than 160 publications and 40 patents and patent applications to his name. He’s currently leading a team of scientists conducting research in battery, energy storage, and electrocatalysis.

“Shao won the position single-handedly, what I really admire is the visibility he is bringing to energy storage to the division,” said Heldebrant. Shao’s leadership in ENFL comes at a time when the division is working to promote research in renewable and clean energy.

“I am excited for this new role, Dave encouraged me to apply, it’s a really good opportunity and it’s a welcome challenge,” said Shao, who has helped organize nearly 10 ENFL symposia since 2015 and is also currently serving as the ENFL Program Co-Chair for 2021.

Heldebrant, a chemist and a chief scientist in separation materials, has authored 65 publications, holds 16 patents, and has published two book chapters. Heldebrant’s research focuses on applying the principles of green chemistry to improve atom and energy efficiency and reduce toxicity of chemical processes. He holds a joint appointment with Washington State University's School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering.

Heldebrant also served as Chair of the ENFL in 2019. As Director-at-Large, he will contribute to and lead special projects as needed by the division.

Before his term as Chair in 2019, the ACS was seeing a steady decline of submission papers per conference. He worked tirelessly to reverse that trend and it paid off—the division saw paper submissions increase over 10% per meeting.

As National Meeting and Programming Thematic Chair, Heldebrant sets the entire theme for all divisional programming at the ACS fall 2021 national meeting, which will be hosted in Atlanta in August. This year’s meeting theme is the Resilience of Chemistry.

With over 32 technical divisions and more than 160,000 members spanning 140 countries, the ACS is the world’s largest scientific organization. The ENFL works to promote and advance energy-related research, development, and education to address the world’s energy and chemical challenges.

Published: January 19, 2021