Prof. Angela M Belcher

James Mason Crafts Professor of Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering
Department Head / Biological Engineering (BE)

Primary DLC

Department of Biological Engineering

MIT Room: 76-561A

Areas of Interest and Expertise

Inorganic Chemistry
Materials Chemistry
Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Electrical Engineering
Biomaterials, Biomolecular Materials and Organic-Inorganic Interrfaces Processing
Defects in Electronic Materials
Biotechnology
Nanotechnology
Biomolecular Engineering
Cancer
Lithium Batteries
Energy Storage
Solar Energy
Biologically Enhanced Batteries

Research Summary

Professor Belcher seeks to understand and harness nature’s own processes in order to design technologically important materials and devices for energy, the environment, and medicine. Ancient organisms have evolved to make exquisite nanostructures like shells and glassy diatoms. Using directed evolution, we are engeineering organisms to grow and assemble novel hybrid organic-inorganic electronic and magnetic materials. In doing so, we have capitalized on many of the wonderful properties of biology–using only non-toxic materials, employing self-repair mechanisms, self-assembling precisely and over longer ranges, and adapting and evolving to become better over time. These materials have been used in applications as varied as solar cells, batteries, medical diagnostics and basic single molecule interactions related to disease.

Recent Work