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Speaker: Dr. Veronica Augustyn

September 18 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

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Understanding and Design of Interlayer Water in Transition Metal Oxides for Electrochemical Ion Insertion


Veronica Augustyn

Assistant Professor and University Faculty Scholar

Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering

North Carolina State University


Abstract: Understanding host-guest interactions of layered inorganic solids ushered in the modern era of portable electronics powered by lithium-ion batteries. Future improvements in the power capability of these devices, and their potential use in emerging technologies such as water treatment, critical element recovery, and ion-based electronics, depend on the development and understanding of new ion insertion hosts with fast (minute-to-second) insertion kinetics. One avenue is via tuning the interlayer environment of a layered material, since many are flexible hosts whose interlayers can accommodate not just electrolyte ions but also solvents, organic molecules, polymers, and organometallics. In this presentation, I will discuss our group’s research in the mechanistic understanding and design of interlayer water in transition metal oxides for electrochemical ion insertion. In particular, I will discuss the role of ordered and confined water networks in transition metal oxide hydrates, the design of metastable hydrated oxides via displacement of interlayer ions by water, and the role of disordered and confined water networks in electrochemical capacitor materials. The fundamental understanding  of these materials, which blur the distinction between solid and liquid, paves the way for electrochemical ion insertion applications with high power capability.


Biography: Veronica Augustyn is an Assistant Professor of Materials Science & Engineering and a University Faculty Scholar at North Carolina State University. From 2013 – 2015, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin. She received her Ph.D. (2013) from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her B.S. (2007) at the University of Arizona, both in Materials Science & Engineering. Her research group focuses on the design, synthesis, and characterization of materials for electrochemical energy technologies including batteries, electrochemical capacitors, electrolyzers, and fuel cells. In particular, she is interested in the relationships between material structure, composition, and morphology, and the resulting electrochemical mechanisms. She also leads an award-winning international project at NC State, SciBridge, which develops renewable energy research and education collaborations between universities in Africa and the U.S. Among other honors, she is the recipient of a 2019 Sloan Fellowship in Chemistry, a 2019 DOE Early Career Award, a 2017 NSF CAREER Award, a 2017 Scialog Fellowship in Advanced Energy Storage from the Research Corporation for Science Advancement, and a 2016 Ralph E. Powe Jr. Faculty Enhancement Award.






September 18
11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Event Categories:


EB1 – Room 1011
911 Partners Way
Raleigh, NC 27695-7907 United States


MSE Department


Veronica Augustyn