Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability

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  • Isik C Kizilyalli

    Isik C Kizilyalli

    Senior Director of Technology (R&D), Sustainability Accelerator

    BioDr. Isik C. Kizilyalli currently serves as the Senior Director of Technology (R&D) Sustainability Accelerator within the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability. In his new role, Kizilyalli brings a wealth of research and management experience working in technology R&D in both the public and private sectors.

    Most recently, Kizilyalli served as the Associate Director for Technology at the Advanced Research Projects Agency at the Department of Energy (ARPA-E). At the elite moonshot funding organization, he oversaw and coordinated program development and management of early-stage, high-impact energy technology solutions across all mission areas of the agency. Furthermore, he personally directed projects that covered semiconductor devices; power electronics and power systems; electric distribution and transmission grids; grid resiliency against aging, EMP, space weather, natural disaster, and cyber threats; technologies aiding to decommission abandoned subsea and on-land oil, gas, and coal assets; subsurface instrumentation including advanced drilling concepts that enable enhanced geothermal systems; and electrification of aviation and the development of regional airports.

    Now at Stanford, he aims to apply that same active program management methodology to Accelerator projects and programs on campus with hands-on support and engagement. He will contribute to the Sustainability Accelerator facilitating Stanford researchers to develop scalable sustainability solutions with global impact in collaboration with international resources.

    Before joining ARPA-E, Kizilyalli served as founder and CEO/CTO of Avogy Inc. and Zolt Inc., venture backed start-ups focused on a new class of GaN power semiconductor switches and efficient and compact power converters. At the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) Zolt Inc. was a CES Best of Innovation Awards Honoree, Best Startup CES finalist (by Engadget), a Top Tech of CES nominee (by Digital Trends), and a Top Pick CES (by Laptop Magazine).

    Previously, at AT&T Bell Laboratories and its spinouts, he is credited with the development of four generations of CMOS transistors for integrated circuits, the discovery of the hydrogen/deuterium isotope effect in hot electron related device degradation, modeling, and reliability studies. Later, he served as the technical manager for the development of InP-based optoelectronics (detectors and high-speed electronics) technologies and RF LDMOS devices for base station communications. This was followed by a senior management role at Nitronex Corporation and a technical founder position at solar PV startup Alta Devices, where his team still holds the world record for single junction solar cell conversion efficiency.

    Kizilyalli was elected a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) in 2007 for his contributions to "Integrated Circuit Technology". He also received the Bell Laboratories’ Distinguished Member of Technical Staff award and the Best Paper Award at the International Symposium on Power Semiconductors and Integrated Circuits (ISPSD) in 2013. Kizilyalli holds his B.S. in Electrical Engineering, M.S. in Metallurgy, and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering all from the University of Illinois (Urbana). He has published a Springer-Nature book titled "Direct Current Fault Protection" and has two more books under contract with Springer Nature titled “Wide Bandgap Power Electronics: Emerging Converter Technologies and Applications” and “Gallium Nitride and Related Materials: Device Processing and Materials Characterization for Power Electronics Applications.” Dr. Kizilyalli has published more than 100 papers and holds 127 issued U.S. patents.