Apparao Rao

Growing up around his father’s machine shop gave Apparao Rao hands-on experience tinkering with tools, tearing apart machines and putting them back together (mostly). He credits his father for setting him on a path to his illustrious career. Now, the MIT-trained physicist develops technologies that will power our future with major funding support from various Department of Defense agencies, the National Science Foundation and industry partners.

In this 2018 Tedx Greenville talk, Rao talks about the value of mistakes, and how building imperfections into new materials actually makes them more efficient.

Find out more about Rao’s work with triboelectric nanogenerators — generating electricity through touch — and other work.