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Christopher Soles (Fed)

Supervisory Materials Research Engineer

Short Biography

Dr. Christopher L. Soles is a Materials Research Engineer in the Materials Measurement Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).   He leads the Functional Polymers Group which focuses on addressing difficult measurement challenges related to the use of polymeric materials in composites, membranes and sorbents, and impact mitigation.  Throughout his career, Dr. Soles has made significant contributions in technology sectors that include semiconductor electronics, printed and flexible electronics, membranes for ion transport and water filtration, batteries, structural composites, and improved materials for impact mitigation.  His expertise in these areas focuses on elucidating the interplay between the structure, dynamics and processing of a polymeric material and how this in-turn affects the critical materials function that enables these technology sectors.  He received Bachelor of Science degrees in both Mechanical Engineering (ME) and Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) in 1993, and then his Ph D in MSE in 1998, all from the University of Michigan.  Go Blue!  He came to the Polymers Division of NIST in 1999 as an NRC Postdoctoral Fellow and has led the Functional Polymers Group at NIST since 2007.  He has published over 175 peer-reviewed publications, received several prestigious and National awards, including a first-place finish in the 1st Annual Run for Health 5K race at the American Physical Society March Meeting (1988, aka, fastest physicist in America). He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society (2011), the American Chemical Society (2016) and was recently elected Councilor (2023-2025) of the American Chemical Society.

Research Opportunities


Professional Affiliations

  • American Physical Society (DPOLY, DSOFT)
  • Materials Research Society
  • American Chemical Society (PMSE, POLY)


Professional Networking






  • University of Michigan, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Distinguished Alumni Lecture Award (2023)
  • ACS Team Innovation Award (V. Prabhu, C. Soles, E. Lin, W.-l. Wu) (2019)
  • Past Chair Award, Polymeric Materials: Science & Engineering Division, American Chemical Society (2018)
  • Keynote Lecture, 1st Pan-American Polymer Conference, Sao Paulo, Brazil (2017)
  • Fellow, American Chemical Society (2016)
  • Fellow, American Physical Society (2011)
  • Arthur S. Flemming Award (2010)
  • United States Department of Commerce Bronze Medal Award (2008)
  • National Academy of Science Delegate, Japan-US Frontiers of Science, Kanagawa, Japan (2007)
  • Plenary Lecture, Nanoprint & Nanoimprint Technology Conference, Paris, France (2007)
  • Invited Speaker, Polymers West Gordon Research Conference, Ventura, CA (2007)
  • United States Department of Commerce Silver Medal Award (2006)
  • United States Department of Commerce Bronze Medal Award (2006)
  • Presidential Early Career Award for Science & Engineering (2006)
  • National Academy of Engineering Delegate, Indo-US Frontiers of Engineering, Agra, India (2006)
  • Keynote Lecture, Semiconductor International Nanoimprint Lithography Webcast (2005)
  • National Academy of Engineering Delegate, Frontiers of Engineering, Irvine, CA (2004)
  • NIST Sigma Xi Best Poster (2002)
  • NIST NRC Postdoctoral Fellowship (1999)


Scaling the Projectile Perforation Resistance of Soft Materials

Katherine Evans, Shawn Chen, Amanda Souna, Stephan J. Stranick, Christopher Soles, Edwin P. Chan
From space dust to ballistic impact, controlling or mitigating a high velocity projectile impact event is a desirable outcome. The design and development of new

Correlating the Diffusion of Water in Model Polyamides with Controlled Crosslink Densities to the Performance in Reverse Osmosis Membranes for Desalination

Velencia Witherspoon, Kanae Ito, Chad R. Snyder, Madhusudan (Madhu) Tyagi, Tyler Martin, Peter Beaucage, Ryan Nieuwendaal, Richard Vallery, David Gidley, Jeffrey Wilbur, Dean Welsh, Christopher Stafford, Christopher Soles
To elucidate robust design cues for improving the active polyamide (PA) filtration layers in reverse osmosis (RO) membrane for desalination, we systematically

Relative effects of polymer composition and sample preparation on glass dynamics

Christopher Soles, Amanda L. Forster, Katherine Evans, Madhusudan (Madhu) Tyagi, Robert M. Elder, Timothy Sirk, Joseph Dennis, Kanae Ito, Osama Yamamuro, Hiroshi Akiba
Modern design of common adhesives, composites and polymeric parts makes use of polymer glasses that are stiff enough to maintain their shape under a high stress

Patents (2018-Present)

Prelithiated Lithium Ion Battery And Making A Prelithiated Lithium Ion Battery

NIST Inventors
Christopher Soles , Vladimir Oleshko and Jabez J McClelland
A prelithiated lithium ion battery includes: ion beam implanted lithium; a cathode; and an anode disposed on the cathode and an electrolyte in electrical communication with the cathode and the anode, the cathode or the anode including the ion beam implanted lithium such that: when the cathode

Dry Prelithiation Of Electrode Materials For Lithium Batteries And Supercapacitors By Controlled Dose Low Energy Implantation Of Lithium Ions

NIST Inventors
Christopher Soles , Vladimir Oleshko and Jabez J McClelland
In this disclosure, we describe a method of creating new and improved battery electrodes by doping conventional battery electrode materials with dry lithium (Li+) ions, using ion implantation techniques under vacuum. This dry "prelithiation" step will both (a) increase the amount of active Li+ in
Created March 29, 2019, Updated February 10, 2023