Paul Hoertz

Paul Hoertz

Research Chemist at RTI International

Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina Area

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Paul Hoertz's Overview


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Paul Hoertz's Summary

♦ Over four years of experience in successfully managing federally-funded projects from the U.S. Department of Energy and internally-funded projects at RTI International
♦ Principal Investigator (PI) on several energy-related projects, including the Research Triangle Solar Fuels Institute (RTSFI), the University of North Carolina Energy Frontier Research Center (UNC-EFRC), and an electrofuels project sponsored by Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy (ARPA-E)
♦ Coordinated and contributed to a wide variety of cross-disciplinary project teams
♦ Designed and organized experiments, formulated quantitative and analytical solutions, and has evaluated and developed viable solutions in a timely fashion
♦ Authored more than 30 peer-reviewed journal articles, inventor on six patents and three patents pending, and conducted technical presentations at numerous conferences
♦ Outstanding written and verbal skills including proposal proficiency
♦ Expert in the synthesis, characterization, and thermal processing of powder formulations (e.g. metal oxides, transparent conducting oxides, metals) and their porous thin films for application in various energy conversion systems, e.g. photoelectrochemical cells, photovoltaics, and water/CO2 electrolyzers
♦ Developed materials, processes, and formulations for integrating ceramic particles, coatings, and composite structures into various systems including solid-state lighting down-converter devices, polymer nanofiber mats, cement slurries, and nanoparticle thin films

Paul Hoertz's Experience

Research Chemist

RTI International

Nonprofit; 1001-5000 employees; Research industry

January 2009Present (5 years 9 months) Research Triangle Park, North Carolina

Research Chemist. Serves as PI and project manager on several energy-related projects, including the RTSFI, the UNC-EFRC, and ARPA-E Electrofuels. These projects focus on the development, characterization, testing, and optimization of porous, high surface area particle films for application in various energy conversion devices including dye-sensitized photoelectrochemical (DS-PEC) solar fuel devices, dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs), hybrid inorganic-organic photovoltaics, and electrolyzers. Serves as a Technical Contributor on SSL, nanofiltration, cementitious materials, nanofiber processing, and nano-informatics projects.

Educational Institution; 10,001+ employees; Higher Education industry

February 2007January 2009 (2 years) Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Postdoctoral Associate (Advisors: Thomas J. Meyer, Wei You). Developed DS-PECs consisting of surface-bound molecular chromophores and catalysts bound to mesoporous nanocrystalline films. Developed synthetic methods for preparing high surface–area tin-doped indium oxide (ITO) nanoparticle films for electrochromic, electrocatalytic, and solar cell applications. Created unique surface-bound layer-by-layer energy transfer antennae structures for DS-PEC and DSSC applications. Optimized bulk-heterojunction thin films and device architectures for polymer-based organic photovoltaics and designed and fabricated organic spintronic devices based on self-assembled monolayer molecular junctions.

Postdoctoral Associate

Penn State University

Educational Institution; 10,001+ employees; Higher Education industry

November 2003January 2007 (3 years 3 months)

Postdoctoral Associate (Advisor: Thomas E. Mallouk). Developed a synthetic procedure to produce novel, non-aggregated 2 nm iridium dioxide (IrO2) water oxidation nanoparticle catalysts with surface-bound visible light absorbing ruthenium(II) (Ru II) polypyridyl complexes for integration into DS-PEC water-splitting devices. Developed synthetic methods and processes for preparing TiO2 nanoparticle thin films which reliably gave record high-efficiency (>10%) DSSCs. Developed inverse opal photonic crystals to manipulate light propagation in DSSCs and designed, constructed, and tested novel tandem DSSC-silicon solar cells. Gained extensive experience with materials characterization, including transmission electron microscopy (TEM), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and X-ray powder diffraction (XRD).

Paul Hoertz's Skills & Expertise

  1. nanoparticle and nanomaterial synthesis
  2. sol-gel materials and coatings
  3. metal oxide nanoparticles
  4. various spectroscopic and materials characterization techniques
  5. thin-film fabrication
  6. colloid and surface chemistry
  7. high surface–area oxide-based materials for charge transport and catalysis
  8. surface modification
  9. electrochemical systems
  10. photochemistry
  11. photocatalysis
  12. porous materials
  13. electron transfer
  14. excited state processes and photophysics
  15. chemical mechanisms and kinetics
  16. proposal development
  17. technical writing
  18. Thin Films
  19. Spectroscopy
  20. Solar Cells
  21. Nanotechnology
  22. Nanomaterials
  23. Photochemistry
  24. Technical Writing
  25. Surface Chemistry
  26. Nanoparticles
  27. Powder X-ray Diffraction
  28. Characterization
  29. Photophysics
  30. Scanning Electron Microscopy
  31. Proposal Writing
  32. Surface Modification
  33. Photolithography
  34. Materials Science
  35. Porous Materials
  36. Photocatalysis
  37. Electrochemistry

View All (37) Skills View Fewer Skills

Paul Hoertz's Education

The Johns Hopkins University

PhD, Inorganic/Materials Chemistry


Research Associate (Advisor: Gerald J. Meyer). Discovered a unique charge separated state in dye-sensitized titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanocrystalline thin films from excited-state electron injection followed by subsequent electron trapping on ground state sensitizers. Optimized excited-state properties of molecular dyes to control rates and quantum yields of electron injection and other electron transfer processes in DSSCs. Gained skills in DSSCs, surface chemistry, electron transfer kinetics, energy transfer, photoelectrochemistry, spectroelectrochemistry, sol-gel metal oxide nanoparticle synthesis, and nanosecond transient absorbance and photoluminescence spectroscopies. Synthesized and characterized various compounds, including ligands for Ru(II) coordination compounds, Ru(II) heteroleptic compounds, and organic surfactants.

Fordham University

BS, Chemistry


Performed undergraduate research on Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy with John J. McMahon

Activities and Societies: Chemistry club, Residential Hall Association

Paul Hoertz's Additional Information


materials chemistry; nanomaterials, nano-enabled devices, photoactive materials and devices, smart materials, sensors, analytical method development, photochemical systems, chemical and biochemical mechanisms, energy conversion systems, dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs), dye-sensitized photoelectrochemical cells (DS-PEC), hybrid inorganic-organic photovoltaics (OPV)

Groups and Associations:

American Chemical Society, Sigma Xi, Electrochemical Society, Materials Research Society

Honors and Awards:

RTI Professional Development Award, 2013.
RTI’s 2013 Author’s Awards: Highly Published Author, and Highly Cited Author.
RTI’s 2012 Author’s Awards: Outstanding Paper, Highly Published Author, and Highly Cited Author.
RTI’s 2011 Author’s Awards: Early Career Author and Highly Cited Author.
RTI Annual Award for Demonstrated Leadership, 2010.
RTI 2010 Author’s Awards: Early Career Author, Highly Published Author, and Highly Cited Author.
Poster Award, Second Prize, Materials Research Society, 2009.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Postdoctoral Award for Research Excellence, 2008–2009.
Inter-American Photochemical Society Student Travel Award, 2003.
National Science Foundation–Research Experiences for Undergraduates, Summer Scholar at Stony Brook University, 1997.

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