Academic Credentials
  • Ph.D., Materials Science and Engineering, Johns Hopkins University, 2015
  • S.B., Materials Science and Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), 2007
Licenses & Certifications
  • ASQ Certified Reliability Engineer (CRE)
  • Certified Quality Engineer (CQE)
Professional Honors
  • Junior Research Fellow, Wolfson College, Univ. of Oxford, 2016-17
  • NSF Nordic Research Opportunities Program Fellow, 2012
  • NSF Graduate Research Fellow, 2010
  • Jay D. Samstag Engineering Fellow, 2009
Professional Affiliations
  • Materials Research Society (MRS)
  • American Society for Quality (ASQ)
  • Spanish

Dr. Hardigree specializes in investigating the physical and chemical properties of films and coatings made from functional materials of varying thicknesses, including those on the nanometer and micrometer scale. He has expertise applying a wide range of optical, electronic, and chemical diagnostic techniques to evaluate performance and failure of organic LEDs, solar cells, transistors, vapor sensors, and micro-optics.

Dr. Hardigree has led the development and scale-up of optical thin films for concentrated solar thermal, lighting, and display applications, and his background includes fabrication of thin film electronics using vacuum (PVD, e-Beam) and solution roll-to-roll (slot-die, gravure) methods. He has experience with numerous non-destructive techniques including grazing incidence x-ray scattering (GIWAXS/GISAXS), neutron reflectometry, surface probe microscopy (AFM, SKPM), optical spectroscopy and scattering (UV-Vis, FTIR, ellipsometry), and electronic carrier measurements (impedance, photo-CELIV, ToF).

Dr. Hardigree has developed processes for fabricating and characterizing functional materials including molecular and polymer semiconductors, ultra-thin oxides for display backplanes, solar concentrators, and large area coated optical films. He has expertise probing surface properties such as material morphology and texture, microstructure, and chemical composition. He is also skilled in techniques that enable discrimination between bulk and surface defects. He has evaluated manufacturing processes and chemical degradation pathways in materials used for additive manufacturing (3D printing), optical adhesives, and solar cells. Among Dr. Hardigree's key areas of expertise is imaging and simulation of complex multilayers using visible light, x-rays, and neutrons to determine failures due to layer de-adhesion, film intermixing, and material breakdown. He has developed surface modification techniques to improve material compatibility in optical multilayers and in organic, organohalide perovskite, and hybrid electronic devices. Dr. Hardigree also has significant experience commissioning complex multi-material physical vapor deposition (PVD) systems and associated metrology instruments, ranging from laboratory-scale units to a synchrotron endstation.

Prior to joining Exponent, Dr. Hardigree was co-founder and director of technology at a photonics startup, developing micro-optical thin films for high efficiency solar thermal, LED lighting, and display applications. There he oversaw manufacturing scale-up and quality operations. Before that, Dr. Hardigree developed and commissioned an experimental endstation at a national synchrotron that established new in-situ techniques for accelerating the scalable manufacture of advanced photovoltaics.