Understanding electrochemical energy conversion
We are interested in the fundamental electro-catalysis and materials chemistry of energy-converting devices.
We are particulary interested in carbon materials – highly porous, partially graphitic, and hetero-doped – as rising electrodes in electrochemical energy storage. This is a curious twist of history: for many millennia carbon was mostly a low-value energy source, only good for burning up. These days, we find carbon electrodes in power sources as diverse as fuel cells, supercapacitors and batteries.
Our group seeks new routes for rational – rather than serendipitous – design of carbon materials as fuel cell electrodes. We build new carbon architectures and tailor their active sites. We look at their activity for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) — the current bottleneck for most fuel cell technologies — and for the oxidation of revolutionary alternative fuels, such as hydrazine and ammonia.