Niraj Lal


Hello! I'm Nij - I work in Renewable Energy, Nanophotonics, and Science Outreach.

Research Background: PhD in physics, Gates Scholar, University of Cambridge, 2012 | BSc Hons, Angus Nicholson Scholar, Australian National University 2007

Current gigs: Presenter, ABC Sciencey | Senior Analyst, Renewable Energy Strategy, Victorian Government | Physics Consultant, ARC Centre of Excellence for Exciton Science | Director, First Principles | Founder, TheKnews.org | Visiting Fellow, ANU Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems

Previous gigs: Long-line tuna fishing boat deckhand out of Coffs Harbour| Bicycle courier in Perth | Science Outreach Officer, Scitech, WA | ANU Renewable Energy Lecturer

Broadcasts: ABC Sciencey | Todd Sampson's Life on the Line | Dr Karl's Outrageous Acts of Science | TEDxSydney | ABC Radio National | YouTube Channel | More things below..




Research

My publications span the fields of physics, nanoscience, and energy, with a focus on making solar panels more efficient by using nanophotonics - tiny structures that interact crazily with light.

Recent publications: “Transparent long-pass filter... based on Morpho butterfly nanostructures" ACS Photonics 2017; and “Perovsite Tandem Solar Cells" Advanced Energy Materials, 2017;

more research info here.

Teaching

I'm a previous lecturer of the Renewable Energy course at the ANU. My favourite exam (with solutions) is here .

Learning the physics and engineering of renewable energy technologies and thinking critically about their role in the future.

Outreach

I'm super passionate about Science Outreach.
On radio, telly, in print, and through high-energy hands-on science shows. Recent gigs with the Discovery Channel and ABC Digital. More info here.



Other things


Children's books

I've written two children's stories - one about chaos theory and another about an emu that learns how to fly by going into gravitational orbit.
Recently broadcast on the ABC RN Science Show!

"...a gifted writer of children's stories"

- Sir Richard Friend, Cavendish Professor of Physics, University of Cambridge

Political things

I'm Founder and CEO of TheKnews.org - a global wisdom-sharing website, author of noisevssignal.org, a current member of the Australian Greens and previous Founding National Council Member of the Australian Wikileaks Party. More political things at my blog here. twitter @NirajNLal

Playing music

I'm founding director of the Raio de Sol Canberra Community Samba Drumming Band, former saxophonist with The Valence Band and cajon-player with the roograss band The Lazy Harrys in an expression of the future of Australian music. 2015 EP here,




External links


Critical Mass

Last friday of every month.