Multifunctional Materials for Electrochemical Generators
IRP5, Electrochemical engineering for sustainable energy is an exciting challenge for developing new electrochemical energy storage and conversion devices that can operate beyond fossil fuels. To reach this goal, we developed during the previous grant period a strong expertise in the design of materials with multiple functions i.e. electrocatalytic activity, electrochemical performance, mechanical and chemical stability, ionic conductivity and selectivity as well as in the study of electrochemical systems by using in situ and operando characterizations. For 2020-2025, we aim to pursue our activities along four axes:
Atomic-level design of nanomaterials for complex electrocatalytic reactions explores fundamental and technological issues associated with highly active and stable nanocatalysts used for oxygen and fuel electrocatalysis. Reaching this objective will require unravelling relationships between structure, electrocatalytic activity and stability using advanced electron and X-ray based techniques and ab initio calculations.
Multi-architectured electrodes for energy conversion and storage seeks to design gradient-electrodes, where the nature of the electrocatalyst, the ionic/electronic composition and porous structure of the electrode are tailored for successive reactant/intermediates/products of the reactions and to maximize its electrical and mechanical properties.
Multi-Architectured and multi-functional electrolytes for energy conversion and storage aims to combine high ionic conductivity, high mechanical properties, high electrochemical and chemical stability, and durability to develop performant electrolytes. In the previous grant period, it was demonstrated that the combination of these functionalities can be obtained only in materials endowed with distinct phase separation and specific architectures. The next step is to focus on developing more performant electrolytes (based on polymers or ceramics) and membranes and implementing new in situ characterizations.
Architectured membrane/electrodes assembly for high performance electrochemical generators aims to optimize cells (electrode/membrane/electrode) based on the best-performing materials with the lowest content of critical elements using innovative processes like ultra-spray coatings and their operations using operando techniques.