Department Seminar: X-ray visions: Exploring materials function at the energy frontier
Date and Time
Our need for clean energy drive widespread materials research, from energy storage in lithium-ion batteries to efficient catalytic conversions of chemical fuels to the capture of CO2 from the air. Breakthroughs can be driven by discoveries of new materials or advances in the tools that we use to understand how these materials function and fail. We exploit advanced characterization tools to probe the atomic structure of energy materials in situ, as they function or react. This allows us to identify how their functional behaviors are governed by their structure and chemistry. These fundamental insights serve as a road map towards next-generation clean energy solutions. This presentation will describe recent insights into the structure-function relationship in energy-relevant materials derived from operando high energy synchrotron X-ray scattering and pair distribution function analysis. Examples will include understanding the function and performance limitations of current and next generation battery materials, rational synthesis of new functional nanomaterials, and understanding the local structure dynamics of metal-organic frameworks with applications in catalysis and gas capture.