Back to Scientific Divisions

Division of New Functional Materials for Energy Conversion

At the Division broad research is carried out in the field of synthesis, investigation and application of novel functional materials used in devices for the conversion of various forms of energy (electrical, chemical, thermal, etc.). The current research streams of the team concern Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFCs), Solid Oxide Electrolysis Cells (SOECs), thermoelectric devices, reactors for hydrogen production and electrochemical sensors.

In the field of fuel cells and electrolysers, the research team has experience in the construction of SOFC / SOEC (searching for new, alternative materials with the expected properties for electrodes / electrolyte / interconnector, using various techniques of applying components, e.g. screen printing, tape casting, spray pyrolysis, spin-coating, PVD, etc.), modification of traditional cells in order to change their properties (e.g. applying additional functional layers, infiltrating with catalytic materials to change the expected properties), investigation of SOFC/SOEC cell degradation in-situ and post-mortem, studies of direct internal reforming of hydrocarbons in SOFC, studies of CO2 and H2O co-electrolysis processes with simultaneous methanation in SOEC, studies of operating cell parameters under any conditions (temperature, gas composition, pressure, flow). In addition, current work is carried out to design a prototype hydrogen synthesis reactor.

In the field of thermoelectric materials, the team has extensive knowledge and experience in the synthesis of thermoelectric materials by means of high-temperature reduction in hydrogen of amorphous, crystalline and polycrystalline oxide reactants. This method is an alternative to the commercially used melting processes of expensive metallic reagents. In addition, the team synthesizes new materials for applications in thermoelectric cells and is able to measure and analyze the performance and degradation parameters of these devices.