Esther Takeuchi to Receive NAS Award in Chemical Sciences

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Esther Takeuchi

UPTON, NY–Esther S. Takeuchi, who holds a joint appointment at Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory and Stony Brook University, will receive the Award in Chemical Sciences from the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in recognition of her breakthrough contributions to our understanding of electrochemical energy storage.

Established by the U.S. Congress in 1863, NAS is a private, non-profit organization of scientists with the mission to provide independent, objective advice to the nation on matters related to science and technology.

The award cites Takeuchi’s contributions “to the materials and mechanistic understanding relevant to electrochemical energy storage, using chemical insight to address issues of critical importance.” She will be honored in a ceremony during the NAS 159th annual meeting and will receive a medal and prize of $15,000 sponsored by the Merck Company Foundation.

"I am sincerely honored to receive the National Academy of Science Award for Chemical Sciences,” Takeuchi said. “The fundamental chemistry of electrochemical energy storage is complex and the subsequent development of viable energy storage devices is made even more challenging by the unique demands of each application.”

Takeuchi’s research has been instrumental in energy storage improvements that meet societal needs and can be applied to electric vehicles, medical devices, and batteries that back up the power grid.

Among her numerous and notable inventions is a compact lithium/silver vanadium oxide battery that increased the lifespan of implantable cardiac defibrillators, a solution that reduced the number of surgeries patients needed to undergo to replace the devices that detect and correct irregular, potentially fatal, heart rhythms.

Takeuchi is the director of the Interdisciplinary Science Department at Brookhaven and the Knapp Chaired Professor of Energy and the Environment in the Stony Brook University Department of Materials Science and Chemical Engineering. She is the Director of a DOE funded Energy Frontier Research Center, the Center for Mesoscale Transport Properties

“Currently, I have the privilege of coordinating the efforts of very talented collaborators including dedicated staff scientists, prominent professors, enthusiastic postdoctoral researchers, and students, positioned at Brookhaven National Lab, the Institute for Electrochemically Stored Energy of Stony Brook University and national labs and universities throughout the nation through our Center for Mesoscale Transport Properties EFRC,” Takeuchi said. “Our collaborative efforts are designed to yield the needed understanding of electrochemical energy storage necessary for the successful deployment of future energy storage devices for usage in the U.S. and the world including the goal of energy equity among all peoples."

She received her B.A. in chemistry and history from the University of Pennsylvania and her PhD in organic chemistry from Ohio State University. She completed her postdoctoral work at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and the University at Buffalo, where she later was a Professor before joining Stony Brook University and Brookhaven Lab. Prior to her academic career, Takeuchi spent more than 20 years at Greatbatch, Inc., a company founded in 1970 by the co-inventor of the first implanted pacemaker.

Takeuchi was recently elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She has also been inducted into the National Academy of Engineering and selected as a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. She was selected as the 2013 recipient of the E.V. Murphree Award in Industrial and Engineering Chemistry from the American Chemical Society. She was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2011. In 2009, President Obama presented Takeuchi with the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the highest honor possible for technological achievement in the United States.

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit

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2022-19368  |  INT/EXT  |  Newsroom