CHENERGY - Chemistry and Energy Technologies
The group focuses its research activities in the field of applied science (particularly, chemistry) for energy-related applications. The range of research activities spans from the fundamentals of energy and matter, their transformations, the development and characterisation of materials and prototypes in view of engineering-related applications, addressed both through experimental and modelling (multi-scale and system levels) activities. Leading research fields are focused on the development of energy storage (lithum and post-lithium batteries, hydrogen-storage materials) and conversion (next-generation photovoltaic and photoelectrochromic) devices, hydrogen and fuel cells, catalytic combustion, solar fuels, artificial and natural photosynthesis, advanced polymer nano-composites for intensified heat exchange. Particular emphasis is devoted to the development of sustainable materials, processes and components under the guidance of life-cycle-assessment studies.
- Development of innovative polymer electrolytes for new-generation (post-lithium) rechargeable batteries able to combine high performance (ionic conductivity at room temperature: 104 S cm1) with preparations processes being easily upscalable and with low environmental impact.
- Synthesis (through conversion of organic wastes by food and/or paper industry) and optimization of electrode materials for Li- and/or Na-ion cells having lower cost, greater safety and performance at least equal to or higher than current graphite-based electrode materials (> 350 mAh g1, 500 cycles at 100 % DoD, C-rate > 2C).
- Development of advanced materials and sustainable up-scalable assembly techniques to get record efficiency (>20%) lab-scale 3rd generation photovoltaic devices (perovskite- and/or dye-sensitized solar cells), able to efficiently operate for at least 1000 hours under real weathering outdoor conditions.
- Development of nanosized cathode materials having specific energy of 900 Wh/kg (i.e., at least 180 Ah/kg and potential > 4.5 V vs. lithium), in order to achieve high energy density Li-ion batteries (>250 Wh/kg).
- Development and characterization of electroactive materials for high-performance Li-ion batteries (> 270 Wh/kg and < 200 €/kWh).
- Development and characterization of innovative
- Development of magnetic nanocomposites for the concentration and detection of nucleic acids and proteins in both model solutions and complex matrices (e.g. blood)
Development of hybrid nanotubes and nanocatalytists for (photo)catalytic applications (example: removal of N-containing moieties from polluted water).
materials to achieve 500 Wh/Kg stable LiS cell.
- Obtaining structural information on the interaction of Photosystems II in thylakoid membranes of eukaryotes and biochemical-functional information on Photosystem II of unicellular organisms grown in photobioreactors in different conditions.
- Obtaining thermally conductive nanocomposites by the inclusion of chemically functionalized graphene for the improvement of thermal contacts between nanoparticles
- Obtaining graphene-based nanostructured coatings for flame protection of polymer composites and foams
- Obtaining a thermal storage system based on advanced thermochemical storage materials
Group for Applied Materials and Electrochemistry
Surface Chemistry of Materials
Green Energy & Engineering
Leader: SPECCHIA STEFANIA
Solar Fuels and Functional Materials for Smart Energy Systems