Isaac Metcalf

2020 Hertz Fellow

Isaac Metcalf aspires to push the nation and world toward a carbon-neutral future.

A senior at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Isaac is graduating with dual degrees in physics and materials science. In the fall, he will join the Materials Physics for Energy Management group at Rice University and pursue a PhD in materials science. His research will focus on increasing the efficiency and stability of two-dimensional perovskite photovoltaics.

As an undergraduate, Isaac was involved in a wide range of research projects spanning four labs and three departments. His notable contributions include the design of an electrochemical flow reactor for the carbon-neutral synthesis of calcium hydroxide, for which he is a co-inventor on a pending patent. He also spent two semesters as a teaching assistant for MIT’s introductory materials science course, where he tried (with mixed success) to get students to share in his excitement about materials engineering.

Born in Austin, Texas, Isaac has been in love with applied physics and obsessed with the threat of climate change since middle school. In his spare time, he composes music and plays the bassoon in the MIT wind ensemble.

Graduate Studies

Rice University
Materials Science


2019, Third Place, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Dow Materials Engineering Contest