Our group does basic research in transport phenomena, fluid dynamics, electrochemistry, and applied mathematics motivated by engineering problems in energy and the environment. Current projects include:

1. Electrochemical Systems

      • Li-ion Batteries
        Non-equilibrium thermodynamics of lithium ion intercalation in composite porous electrodes, phase separation dynamics in LiFePO4 nanoparticles, mosaic instability and macroscopic phase transformations in porous electrodes, elastic coherency strain effects on Faradaic reactions, SEI formation, capacity fade, and accelerated aging. We are also actively experimenting with batteries. We are currently collaborating with Richard Braatz (MIT) and Will Chueh (Stanford) to spearhead a multi-disciplinary Li-ion battery predictive modelling & materials discovery project, funded by the Toyota Research Institute. Read more….
      • Electrochemical capacitors
        Nonlinear dynamics of capacitive charging and Faradaic reactions in porous electrodes, impedance, cyclic voltammetry, double-layer structure and reactions in room temperature ionic liquids and molten salts, application to energy storage in electric double layer supercapacitors and hybrid “pseudocapacitors” (which also include Faradaic reactions).

2. Electrokinetics

      • Shock electrodialysis
        Work involves over-limiting current to membranes and electrodes, “deionization shocks” in microstructures, concentration polarization and electro-osmotic convection in micro/nanochannels and in micro/nanoporous media, and homogenization (volume averaging) for ion transport in microstructures, with applications in water purification and desalination by “shock electrodialysis”. This work involves both theory and experiments in our new laboratory.
      • Capacitive desalination
        Nonlinear dynamics of capacitive desalination and selective ion adsorption by porous electrodes, transport phenomena, effects of Faradaic reactions. (Collaboration with P. M. Biesheuvel, Wageningen)
      • Induced-charge electro-osmosis
        Fundamental theory of “ICEO” at large voltages, microfluidic applications, AC electro-osmotic micropumps and mixers, induced-charge electrophoresis and electrodiffusiophoresis of polarizable particles, ICEO flows around biological membranes. See also Nonlinear Electrokinetics @ MIT.

3. Applied Mathematics

      • Data-Driven Modeling
        We use machine learning to “learn” physics from images in a variety of contexts such as X-ray images of (de)intercalating LFP electrode particles.