Sparkz Resource

Job Opening: Senior Material Scale-Up Engineer

Sparkz Inc., is looking to hire a Senior Material Scale-Up Engineer at their Knoxville, TN location.

Job Description

  • Synthesize cathode active materials at the kilogram level for use in lithium-ion batteries, with particular attention to characterization of each batch to ensure quality and reproducibility
  • Train engineers on operation of a continuously stirred tank reactor (CSTR) to produce cathode active materials at the kilogram level
  • Assist in conceptualization of novel cathode active materials, including novel material structures, stoichiometries, and synthesis techniques
  • Establish appropriate safety infrastructure and protocols for cathode active material synthesis

Knowledge, Skills, and Experience

  • Experience in cathode active material synthesis via coprecipitation process, preferably in continuously stirred tank reactors (CSTRs)
  • Knowledge of material characterization methods, including X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, with particular emphasis on data interpretation
  • 5+ years of private-sector experience in the above areas

Minimum Education

  • Ph.D. (preferred) or Master’s in Materials Science, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, or related field

Apply Here >

Founder & CEO

Dr. Sanjiv Malhotra

Dr. Sanjiv Malhotra is the founder and CEO of Sparkz—the battery start-up reinventing the energy supply chain.


Malhotra has been a leader in the energy sector for nearly three decades as a founder, investor and executive. Most recently, he served as the inaugural director for the Energy Investor Center at the U.S Department of Energy (DOE), serving under both Democratic and Republican administrations.


At DOE, Malhotra led the Obama Administration’s initiative to boost public-private partnerships to accelerate the commercialization of technologies developed in national research centers like Oak Ridge National Labs.


Malhotra was recruited to the Department of Energy after a successful exit of Oorja Protonics—the world leader in methanol fuel cells—which he founded and led as CEO for 10 years. Oorja raised $50 Million in equity financing from leading VCs such as Sequoia, DAG Ventures, Artis Capital and others during his tenure. He boosted Oorja’s revenue and profitability growth, while expanding operations globally in Japan, China, South Africa, Mexico, and India.


Oorja was acquired in 2014 by the Private Equity firm MinXing Growth Fund.


As an investor and consultant, Malhotra has worked at leading venture capital firms, including Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers as an advisor on clean energy and advanced materials.


Earlier in his career, Malhotra led the engineering and product development team at H Power, a pioneer in hydrogen fuel cells. As part of the management team, he managed the successful IPO, which raised more than $100 million in August 2000.


He began his career as a post-doctoral fellow at the renowned Lawrence Berkeley National Labs on electrochemical storage systems. Dr. Malhotra has authored seven patents and more than 40 publications in various fields of energy storage technology and materials. He holds a PhD in chemical engineering and an M.B.A from University of Iowa.