I. Nanostructures for Energy Conversion & Storage

Nanostructured materials have received tremendous interest due to their unique mechanical/electrical properties and overall behavior contributed by the complex synergy of bulk and interfacial properties for efficient and effective energy conversion and storage. The booming development of nanotechnology affords emerging but effective tools in designing advanced energy material. We research nanostructured energy materials in electrochemical energy conversion and storage devices, including lithium ion batteries, supercapacitors and solar cells. 

II. DFT Calculations for Energy Materials

Most of researchers are using advanced computational approaches based on density functional theory (DFT) and other methods that are able to predict materials properties. First principle calculations conduct accurate analyses and are better and better able to calculate materials properties at atomic/electronic levels based on quantum mechanics, statistical thermodynamics, classical mechanics and electrodynamics. We research rapid and reliable answers for a range of materials issues, especially related to materials design for energy conversion and storage.  

III. Stretchable Energy Storage Systems

There is strong recent interest in ultrathin, stretchable, safe energy storage devices to meet the various design and power needs of modern gadgets. To build such fully stretchable and robust electrochemical devices, multiple components with specific electrochemical and interfacial properties need to be integrated into single units. We research these basic components, the electrode, separator, and electrolyte, and single contiguous nanocomposite units integrated by all. It can serve as building blocks for a variety of thin mechanically flexible electronics. 

IV. Microdroplet Chemistry

Remarkable findings intrigued people in different fields by showing that extremely slow bulk phase reactions can be accelerated dramatically in aqueous microdroplets. Various applications of microdroplet reactions are noted as reaction acceleration in confined environments and possible future scale-up synthesis compare to that of bulk phase reactions. Microdroplet reactions overcome the thermodynamic and kinetic challenges in an aqueous solution. Due to the microdroplet’s distinctive surface environment, electrochemistry or biochemistry in Microdroplets significantly differs from that in the bulk solution.

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Renewable Energy Conversion & Storage Laboratory