Advanced Materials for Energy Storage: Challenges and Opportunities
Keith J. Stevenson, University of Texas at Austin

The development of advanced materials and technologies to efficiently convert and store energy directly into electricity is of urgent importance due to increasing energy demands of an ever growing world population and decreasing energy reserves. However tremendous scientific challenges remain before successful implementation of any number of competing energy technologies such as solar cells, fuel cells, and batteries. The materials, interfaces and device architectures currently being explored are very challenging to interrogate by ensemble-averaging, bulk experimental methods since they do not exhibit long-range order or homogeneity, contain unique nano-morphological features and possess non-uniform chemical compositions and defect chemistry. This presentation will summarize a few materials design strategies for optimizing the performance of nanostructured metal oxide materials for use in electrochemical energy storage applications and highlight the development of high resolution analytical tools for studying charge transfer processes at electrode interfaces. Information obtained from these studies on model systems provides fundamental understanding of electron and ion transfer processes and degradation mechanisms for materials utilized for electrochemical energy storage.

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