About Michael Yusov

Michael Andre Yusov was born in Seattle, Washington to his parents, Julia and Andrei, who emigrated from St. Petersburg, Russia in the early 1990s. Following the fall of the Soviet Union, Michael’s parents experienced the increased crime rates and levels of corruption that gripped what became the Russian Federation. With $40 to their name, Michael’s parents gambled on finding better opportunities in the United States, leaving behind the support of their families.

As a Russian child in Seattle, Michael turned to music and science, shaping a passion that would later define his academic pursuits. As a pianist, Michael competed across Washington state and traveled as far as Italy to perform. As a scientist, Michael developed an interest in chemistry, engineering, and mathematics at the University of Washington and continues to be inspired by his family’s long-lasting engagement in academic research.

Along the way to his two bachelor’s degrees in chemical engineering and mathematics, Michael delved into mathematics-driven molecular dynamics research at the Genetically Engineered Materials Science & Engineering Center, supported by a Research Scholarship from the Mary Gates Endowment for Students. His commitment to sustainability and thirst for knowledge extended beyond borders, as evidenced through his collaboration with the Wave Energy Research Centre at the University of Western Australia. The mission to make ocean waves a viable alternative source of energy showcased Michael's dedication to solving complex global challenges. Motivated to learn firsthand about the current roadblocks for green chemical manufacturing, he worked as a process engineering intern at Phillips 66. During his final year, Michael extended his dedication for sustainability beyond academia by teaming up with Boeing to work on characterizing the performance of recycled carbon fiber for aerospace applications.

Now pursuing a PhD in chemical engineering at the California Institute of Technology, Michael is continuing his commitment to sustainability-related research. As a member of Karthish Manthiram’s group, Michael is advancing lithium-mediated electrochemical ammonia synthesis using automated experimentation and machine learning. Michael envisions a career as an entrepreneur, making contributions to the field of electrocatalysis and helping shape a more sustainable future by addressing pressing global challenges.


  • PhD in Chemical Engineering, California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
  • BS in Chemical Engineering, University of Washington
  • BS in Mathematics, University of Washington

Professional Fields

Milestones and Recognition

  • CCE Chair’s Council Fellowship, California Institute of Technology (2023)
  • Research Scholarship from the Mary Gates Endowment for Students, University of Washington
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow

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