News: Fysik related to Chalmers University of TechnologyMon, 20 Sep 2021 02:03:48 +0200 graphene opens doors to sustainable batteries<p><b>​In the search for sustainable energy storage, researchers at Chalmers University of Technology present a new concept to fabricate high-performance electrode materials for sodium batteries. It is based on a novel type of graphene to store one of the world's most common and cheap metal ions – sodium. The results show that the capacity can match today’s lithium-ion batteries.</b></p><div>​Even though lithium ions work well for energy storage, lithium is an expensive metal with concerns regarding its long-term supply and environmental issues. <br /></div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>Sodium, on the other hand, is an abundant low-cost metal, and a main ingredient in seawater (and in kitchen salt). This makes sodium-ion batteries an interesting and sustainable alternative for reducing our need for critical raw materials. However, one major challenge is to increase the capacity.</div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>At the current level of performance, sodium-ion batteries cannot compete with lithium-ion cells. One limiting factor is the graphite, which is composed of stacked layers of graphene, and used as the anode in today’s lithium-ion batteries. <br /></div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>The ions intercalate in the graphite, which means that they can move in and out of the graphene layers and be stored for energy usage. Sodium ions are larger than lithium ions and interact differently. Therefore, they cannot be efficiently stored in the graphite structure. But the Chalmers researchers have come up with a novel way to solve this. <br /></div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/IMS/Material%20och%20tillverkning/Jinhua_Sun.jpg" alt="Jinhua Sun" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" style="margin:0px 25px;width:125px;height:145px" />“We have added a molecule spacer on one side of the graphene layer. When the layers are stacked together, the molecule creates larger space between graphene sheets and provides an interaction point, which leads to a significantly higher capacity,” says researcher Jinhua Sun at the Department of Industrial and Materials Science at Chalmers and first author of the scientific paper, published in Science Advances. </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Ten times the energy capacity of standard graphite</h2></div> <div> </div> <div>Typically, the capacity of sodium intercalation in standard graphite is about 35 milliampere hours per gram (mA h g-1). This is less than one tenth of the capacity for lithium-ion intercalation in graphite. With the novel graphene the specific capacity for sodium ions is 332 milliampere hours per gram – approaching the value for lithium in graphite. The results also showed full reversibility and high cycling stability.</div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/IMS/Material%20och%20tillverkning/Aleksandar_Matic.jpg" alt="Aleksandar Matic" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" style="margin:0px 30px;width:125px;height:146px" />“It was really exciting when we observed the sodium-ion intercalation with such high capacity. The research is still at an early stage, but the results are very promising. This shows that it’s possible to design graphene layers in an ordered structure that suits sodium-ions, making it comparable to graphite,” says Professor Aleksandar Matic at the Department of Physics at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">“Divine” Janus graphene opens doors to sustainable batteries</h2></div> <div> </div> <div>The study was initiated by Vincenzo Palermo in his previous role as Vice-Director of the Graphene Flagship, a European Commission-funded project coordinated by Chalmers University of Technology. <br /></div> <div> </div> <div> The novel graphene has asymmetric chemical functionalisation on opposite faces and is therefore often called Janus graphene, after the two-faced ancient Roman God Janus – the God of new beginnings, associated with doors and gates, and the first steps of a journey. In this case the Janus graphene correlates well with the roman mythology, potentially opening doors to high-capacity sodium-ion batteries. <br /></div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/IMS/Material%20och%20tillverkning/VincenzoPalermo.jpg" alt="Vincenzo Palermo" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" style="margin:5px 20px;width:140px;height:165px" /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Our Janus material is still far from industrial applications, but the new results show that we can engineer the ultrathin graphene sheets – and the tiny space in between them – for high-capacity energy storage. We are very happy to present a concept with cost-efficient, abundant and sustainable metals,” says Vincenzo Palermo, Affiliated Professor at the Department of Industrial and Materials Science at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span><em>Text: Marcus Folino and Mia Halleröd Palmgren<br /></em></span></div> <div><span><em></em><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><span><em>Image of Jinhua Sun: Marcus Folino<span style="display:inline-block"></span></em></span><em><span style="display:inline-block"></span><br /></em><div><em>Image of Aleksandar Matic: Anna-Lena Lundqvist<br /></em></div> <div><span><em>Image of Vincenzo Palermo: Graphene Flagship<span style="display:inline-block"></span></em></span><br /><em><span style="display:inline-block"></span></em></div> <br /></div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">More on the material: Janus graphene with a unique structure</h2> <div>The material used in the study has a unique artificial nanostructure. The upper face of each graphene sheet has a molecule that acts as both spacer and active interaction site for the sodium ions. Each molecule in between two stacked graphene sheets is connected by a covalent bond to the lower graphene sheet and interacts through electrostatic interactions with the upper graphene sheet. The graphene layers also have uniform pore size, controllable functionalisation density, and few edges. </div> <div> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">More on the research: </h2> <div>The scientific article <a href="" title="Link to the scientific article">“Real-time imaging of Na+ reversible intercalation in “Janus” graphene stacks for battery applications”</a> was published in Science Advances and is written by Jinhua Sun, Matthew Sadd, Philip Edenborg, Henrik Grönbeck, Peter H. Thiesen, Zhenyuan Xia, Vanesa Quintano, Ren Qiu, Aleksandar Matic and Vincenzo Palermo. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>The researchers are active at the Department of Industrial and Materials Science, the Department of Physics and Competence Centre for Catalysis at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, Accurion GmbH, Germany and Institute of Organic Synthesis and Photoreactivity (ISOF) at the National Research Council of Italy.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The research project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under GrapheneCore3 881603–Graphene Flagship, FLAG-ERA project PROSPECT, the Chalmers Foundation and the Swedish Research Council. The calculations were performed at C3SE (Gothenburg, Sweden) through an SNIC grant. This work was performed, in part, at Myfab Chalmers and Chalmers materials analysis laboratory. <br /></div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">For more information, please contact: </h3> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/jinhua.aspx">Jinhua Sun</a>, Researcher, Department of Industrial and Materials Science, Chalmers University of Technology, +46 76 960 99 56, <a href=""><br /></a></div> <div><a href=""><br /></a></div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/Aleksandar-Matic.aspx">Aleksandar Matic</a>, Professor, Department of Physics, Chalmers University of Technology, +46 31 772 51 76, <a href=""></a></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/Vincenzo-Palermo.aspx">Vincenzo Palermo</a>, Affiliated Professor, Department of Industrial and Materials Science, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden; Director, Institute for Organic Synthesis and Photoreactivity, CNR, Bologna, Italy, +39 051 639 97 73 or +39 051 639 98 53, <a href=""></a></div> <div> </div>Wed, 25 Aug 2021 07:00:00 +0200 knowledge of grains – one route to green energy<p><b>​Christoph Langhammer is exploring boundaries. But they are not external boundaries; they are internal ones – inside the nanoparticles he is building to create high-speed ultra-sensitive hydrogen gas sensors. The materials behave differently at the boundaries. He wants to exploit these traits to improve the particles.</b></p>​“Over the past year interest in hydrogen has soared, not least in the EU, and more and more people are starting to realize that current hydrogen sensors are not good enough – and that sensors of this kind will be needed everywhere,” says Christoph Langhammer, <span style="background-color:initial">Pr</span><span style="background-color:initial">ofessor of Chemical Physics at Chalmers University of Technology and Wallenberg Academy Fellow 2016.<br /><br /><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Re​ad the full interview with Christoph Langhammer on</a><br /></span>Thu, 22 Jul 2021 00:00:00 +0200 a mind set on nano<p><b>​She’s a professor of applied quantum physics, a mother of three and speaks five languages. As the leader of the interdisciplinary Nano Excellence Initiative, Janine Splettstoesser now wants to create one of Europe's top nano-centers with the goal of addressing the biggest challenges facing the society. But when it comes to the proudest career moments, she’d rather speak about her students. &quot;When a PhD student gives a really good defense on their dissertation and can continue to work on what they really like and subsequently grow as a researcher. That makes me really proud.”​</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">We meet in the department’s family room. It's Easter break and Janine’s 6-year-old son Paolo has come along. He immediately starts pulling out building kits and tricky games from the shelves while Janine takes a seat at a destinated workplace across the room. An empty desk and an ordinary laptop. A mind-blowing thought to an outsider that this is all that is needed for a professor of applied quantum physics when trying to juggle lectures, seminars, conferences and supervision of PhD students. Not to mention her own research.<br /><br /></span><div>Right now, it's all about the relationships between thermodynamics and quantum mechanics, what is normally referred to as quantum thermodynamics. Because, as Janine puts it, &quot;if you want to make new nanotechnology, it’s really good to know the underlying dynamics. And if you want a quantum computer that works well, you need to know what the energy consumption looks like and how best keep it cold during operation.&quot;  </div> <div><br /><strong>Janine’s many engagements at the department</strong> of Microtechnology and Nanoscience become clear within minutes. We’ve already touched on her teaching, PhD supervision and research. But as of 2021 she’s also the new Director of the Nano Excellence Initiative, a government-funded and interdisciplinary initiative, that includes three other departments besides her own - chemistry, physics, biology - with the joint ambition to promote research and development of nanotechnology at the university.<br /><br /></div> <div>&quot;My goal is to create a meeting place for nano-researchers at all levels, junior as well as senior. A kind of incubator for building collaborations, sharing ideas and networking,&quot; Janine explains. </div> <div><br />But that’s not all. Janine is also one of the initiators behind the family room we’re currently in. Why so? To enable researchers to combine a successful research career with family life. An important topic to Janine. <br /><br /></div> <div>&quot;If you have small kids and you need to go to a conference or perhaps to a meeting with collaborators, and you haven’t managed to solve childcare, you might face logistical problems. Which tends to lead to researchers having to limit their work, especially female researchers. A room like this can solve that sort of problem,&quot; Janine explains.<br /><br /></div> <div>And when asked if they’ve used the family room frequently, Paolo anticipates his mum: &quot;Hundreds of times!&quot;, he proclaims contentedly and continues to build on his maze.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">The (un)obvious researcher </h3> <div>Janine somehow feels natural in her research role and in her field. She talks enthusiastically and joyfully about her research and her students. And as the oldest in a sibling group of five and with two researching parents, a mother in physics and a father in mathematics, it may seem strange that it was never self-evident to Janine to choose a research career. However, there were never any ruling expectations in terms of career paths. It was more a matter of a family culture that said you can become what you want to be. Nevertheless, the subject of physics did come up every once in a while at the dinner table, albeit in a discouraging way. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>“During high school, I had many different ideas about what I should study - architecture, design or medicine perhaps. And right after high school, I got involved in social work for a few years before I continued my studies. But I have always been into math and physics and solving problems. At the same time, I’ve also been interested in languages. As a matter of fact, my mum actually used to warn me: behave or else I’ll make you study physics &quot;, says Janine and laughs.<br /><br /></div> <div><strong>Perhaps a classic example of reverse</strong> psychology. Either way, it seems to have worked.<br /></div> <div>And in addition to her academic merits in physics, Janine also speaks five languages. No wonder if you take a look at her academic journey. A tour that has gone all over the European continent. <br /><br /></div> <div>She grew up near Düsseldorf and moved as a 20-year-old to Karlsruhe in southern Germany to study physics. During her master's studies, she did an exchange year in Grenoble, France, after which she returns to Germany to complete her master's studies. After that, straight to Italy to do her PhD at the Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa, on &quot;Adiabatic pumping in interacting quantum dots&quot;. It’s during her PhD studies in Pisa that Janine's fascination for quantum physics really takes off. This is also where she meets her future husband, who at the time did his PhD in astrophysics. After that: post-doc at the University of Geneva while her boyfriend heads off to Hamburg. Then back to Germany to take on the position as professor of physics at the University of Aachen. In Aachen, Janine also receives a large research grant. A turn of events that in retrospect is looked upon as a significant milestone. <br /><br /></div> <div>“This is when I got to lead my own research group for the first time. I was able to recruit PhD students and post-docs and shape my own lectures. Freedom to do it my way, as it were. That’s when the idea that I could become an independent researcher was really brought to life.”<br /><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/20210101-20210631/Janine%202.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" alt="" style="margin:5px 10px;width:300px;height:226px" /><br /><span style="color:rgb(33, 33, 33);font-family:inherit;font-size:16px;font-weight:600;background-color:initial">Gothenburg calling</span><br /></div> <div>It’s easy to see life as a research couple travelling all over Europe through rose-tinted glasses.</div> <div>If she misses life as a round-the-clock researcher on the continent? Well, not really. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;You get fed up in the end. My husband and I had a long-distance relationship for ten years, it’s not something I recommend. Of course, it’s really fun and interesting to move around and constantly getting to know new cultures and learn new languages, but eventually it gets really hard to keep having to split up from friends and work just when you start to feel at home. Now, I’ve been in Sweden for a while, but I still feel like the dumbest parent at kindergarten. It still takes me forever to fill in even the simplest forms &quot;, she says and laughs.<br /><br /></div> <div><strong>So just over seven years ago</strong>, she finally settled down in Gothenburg and at Chalmers, at the time pregnant with the family's first child. Her significant other, who had a research position at Göttingen in Germany, was able to join up as a position opened up at the Department of Physics at Chalmers, just a stone's throw away.</div> <div>It wasn’t just coincidence that the choice fell on Chalmers. The five-year research project at RWTH Aachen had been completed and Janine and her husband had decided to stay in Europe. After some brief exploration of alternatives, she realized that Chalmers seemed to be a good place to conduct the kind of research she was particularly interested in. At the same time, she was approached by one of the professors of applied quantum physics at Chalmers at a conference, who suggested that Janine should come work with them. Said and done, Janine applied for a position as an Assistant Professor in Nanoscience at Chalmers. But she also applied for a research grant through Wallenberg Academy Fellows - Sweden's largest private career program for young researchers. It all ends up with Janine getting the position as well as the grant. And subsequently research funding for a five-year period, which since then has been extended through the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation.<br /><br /></div> <div>“The Wallenberg's research grant has been really good for me in several ways. Besides funding my research, it has helped me build a good network as well as introducing me to the Swedish research environment.”<br /><br /></div> <div>But it turns out that life as a researcher at a Swedish university comes with even more perks. </div> <div><br />“Something I really liked from the beginning was that the culture here is much more equal and relaxed if you compare with, for example, some of the German universities. There, the hierarchies are very strong and the elbows sharper &quot;, says Janine.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">The importance of good role models</h3> <div>And speaking of equality, it's almost hard not to mention the fact that Janine, as a female professor of quantum physics, stands out in the group. As a master's student, she was the only woman at the institute and at seminars. And when Janine first made her entrance into the Department of Applied Quantum Physics at Chalmers, she was once again the only woman. Today, six years later, she’s pleased to find that a third of the workforce is made up of women.<br /><br /></div> <div>There’s no doubt that academia needs good role models. Janine mentions times when female PhD students have approached her after speaks or lectures to express how much it means to see a woman – quite often with a baby under her arm - be an expert on the subject.</div> <div><br /><strong>Janine too has her own role models</strong>. She especially remembers her post-doc supervisor at the Institute of Theoretical Physics in Geneva, Professor M. Büttiker. A familiar name to many physicists. Through his humble and unpretentious style and his way of taking everyone's work seriously, regardless of position or academic rank, he has become a strong influence.<br /><br /></div> <div>&quot;To him, it didn’t matter if he was talking to a master's student or a Nobel Prize winner. He would invite his friends, people with names that we knew from our physics books. And he would introduce us as experts even though we were just post-docs. He simply took us all equally seriously. I was really inspired by him.”</div> <div><br />In that sense, it’s not very surprising that when Janine is asked to highlight her proudest moments in her career, she refers from listing academic advancements, professorships or publications. <br /><br /></div> <div>“I can’t deny that I was really proud when I finished my dissertation. But the proudest moments are probably when someone in my research group does a really good job. When a PhD student gives a really good defense on their dissertation and can continue to work on what they really like and grow as a researcher. That makes me really proud.”<br /><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/20210101-20210631/Janine%20och%20Paolo.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px 10px;width:300px;height:225px" /><br /><span style="color:rgb(33, 33, 33);font-family:inherit;font-size:16px;font-weight:600;background-color:initial">From self-do</span><span style="color:rgb(33, 33, 33);font-family:inherit;font-size:16px;font-weight:600;background-color:initial">ubt to pure grit</span><br /></div> <div>We decide to relocate to Janine’s office, a few stairs up. Paolo shows the way by skipping through the corridors. Janine’s years in Pisa seems to have made an impression. Under the office shelves filled with binders, books and paper is a well-used, coffee stained Italian espresso pot. Across the room hangs a large blackboard covered with never-ending calculations in white chalk. Just as one would expect from a professor of quantum physics.<br /><br /></div> <div>But has it always been easy? Have there never been any doubts?</div> <div><br />“When I did my PhD, I really had my doubts. Will I be able to do this? Am I smart enough? I was actually very close to giving up.”<br /><br /></div> <div>But Janine's plans to throw in the towel would soon be stopped. An old friend from school came to visit and changed her outlook on things completely.</div> <div><br />“She didn’t understand why I had doubts when I always had such good grades in school.  She told me that if I had doubts about being smart enough, just keep pretending to be clever for another two years and then, once that’s done, decide what I want to do,” Janine explains and laughs.<br /><br /></div> <strong> </strong><div><strong>Whether the argument worked</strong> is unclear, but Janine rode through the storm and came out on the other side. With honors. Since then, Janine has become quite used to dealing with tricky problems. </div> <div>So, what’s her driving force? <br /><br /></div> <div>“Definitely my curiosity. I face problems that I don’t understand almost every day. But then, you talk about the problem with colleagues and do some more reading and calculating until you get it. I’ve always liked to figure things out.”</div> <div><br />It’s obvious that Janine really likes her job. That she's in the right place. To her it’s all about making choices that feel right at the moment and trusting that you somehow end up in the right place. Like many physicists at the beginning of their career, Janine too thought she would focus solely on theoretical particle physics. But over time, the plan was revised.</div> <div><br />“I really like that I can do both fundamental research with heavy theoretical method development and at the same time think about exciting technical applications. It’s really cool to be able to sit and work theoretically and have the option to just go to the lab next door and talk to people to see if my calculations are correct.”<br /><br /></div> <div><strong>From the office window you </strong>can just barely see parts of the kindergarten yard. Janine lifts Paolo to make sure he gets the same view. Is it his baby brothers they can see from a distance, jumping around on the playground? They both agree; it’s Fabian and Mattia they spot. Perhaps it's the window view that makes Janine resume the topic of proud career moments. </div> <div><br />&quot;I just have to say that I’m incredibly proud that me and my husband actually managed to make this work in the end. That we can do what we are passionate about at work and, at the same time, have a fantastic family.”<br /><br />Text by: Lovisa Håkansson</div> Thu, 24 Jun 2021 00:00:00 +0200 researcher awarded with Royal Society of Chemistry-prize<p><b>A collaboration of scientists from around the world have been named the winners of the Royal Society of Chemistry’s new Horizon Prize. Björn Wickman, Associate professor at the Department of Physics, was part of the research group that made the discovery that is now being awarded; a breakthrough in hydrogen peroxide production. </b></p><div><div>Hydrogen peroxide is a chemical with a short shelf life that is used, among other things, as a bleaching agent in industry, but also for disinfection and purification of water. The production is often large-scale and energy intensive. In addition, transports of the substance from large factories are often required.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Eight years ago, a research group at the Technical University of Denmark made a discovery in how to produce hydrogen peroxide locally and on a smaller scale. The Royal Society of Chemistry is now naming the research group as the winners of the new <em>Environment, Sustainability and Energy Division Horizon Prize: John Jeyes Award</em>, which aims to draw attention to research that contributes to a better world.</div> <div><br /></div> <div style="font-size:16px"><strong><span>Björn Wickman part of the research group</span></strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Chalmers researcher Björn Wickman, who at the time had a postdoctoral position at the Technical University of Denmark, was a part of the research group. That the discovery that is now being praised was even made was, however, a bit of a coincidence, he says:</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“I was working on a project on reduction of carbon dioxide, but the experiments did not work as intended. At the same time, in another group, research on hydrogen peroxide was underway with calculations for how to produce hydrogen peroxide on a small scale and locally. We started talking and the idea arose that our concept might work for them. And it turned out to work great!”</div> <div><br /></div> <div style="font-size:16px"><strong>C</strong><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>o</strong></span><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>uld achieve close to one hundred percent yield of hydrogen peroxide</strong></span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Oxygen can be reduced by means of electrochemistry on a catalyst surface of, for example, platinum or palladium, so that hydrogen peroxide is obtained. The problem is that hydrogen peroxide then rapidly continues to reduce and form water. For the final step to take place, it is required that there are at least two atoms of the active catalyst material next to each other.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The researchers made a surface where there are no atoms of the catalyst material sitting next to each other. This was done with the help of an ordered alloy where the atoms are arranged without the active atoms bordering each other. The process could then achieve close to one hundred percent yield of hydrogen peroxide.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The research results showed how one could produce hydrogen peroxide in smaller volumes, and formed the basis of an article published in Nature Materials 2013.</div> <div><br /></div> <div style="font-size:16px"><strong>Small-scale manufacturing is a reality today</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Since then, the article has been cited over 400 times, laid the foundation for further research on the subject and led to small-scale hydrogen peroxide production becoming a reality. The project resulted in the company <a href="" target="_blank">HPNow​</a>, whose device known as an electrolyser, makes it possible to produce hydrogen peroxide on-site and on demand using solely water, electricity, and air as inputs. They now have installations in over 15 countries around the world, treating water at both hospitals and agricultural sites. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>This is what the Royal Society of Chemistry is now awarding with the Horizon Prize in the category Environment, Sustainability and Energy.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“It is now clear that our research has had impact. I feel honoured and I’m delighted that the Royal Society of Chemistry pays attention to our work and finds our research of importance”, says Björn Wickman.</div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><p class="MsoNormal"><span lang="EN-GB"><strong>About the Horizon Prize</strong></span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span lang="EN-GB"><br /></span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span lang="EN-GB">United Kingdom-based Royal Society of Chemistry has the goal of advancing the chemical sciences. Their Horizon Prizes – new this year – highlight the most exciting, contemporary chemical science at the cutting edge of research and innovation. These prizes are for teams or collaborations who are opening up new directions and possibilities in their field, through ground-breaking scientific developments.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em style="background-color:initial"><br /></em></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><em style="background-color:initial">The Environment, Sustainability and Energy Division Horizon Prize 2021: John Jeyes Award</em><span style="background-color:initial"> is given to the research group consisting of the following researchers from Chalmers University of Technology, Imperial College London, University of Copenhagen, Technical University of Denmark, University of Calgary and BASE Life Science: </span><span style="background-color:initial">Debasish Chakraborty, Ib Chorkendorff (<a href="/en/research/our-scientists/Pages/Jubilee-Professors.aspx" target="_blank">Jubilee Professor at Chalmers, 2012</a>), Davide Deiana, Maria Escudero-Escribano, Rasmus Frydendal, Ziv Gottesfeld, Thomas W. Hansen, Mohammadreza Karamad, Paolo Malacrida, Jan Rossmeisl, Samira Siarhostami, Ifan E.L. Stephens, Arnau Verdaguer-Casedevall and Björn Wickman.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></p> <div><span style="font-weight:700">For more information, please contact:</span></div> <div><a href="/sv/Personal/Sidor/Björn-Wickman.aspx" target="_blank">Björn Wickman</a>, Associate professor, Department of Physics<br />+46 (0)31-772 51 79<br /><a href=""></a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="font-weight:700">Read more:</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>For more information about the prize, see the <a href="" target="_blank"><div style="display:inline !important">Royal Society of Chemistry's award page</div></a></div> <a href="" target="_blank"> ​</a><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="background-color:initial"></span></p> <div>The article <a href="" target="_blank">Enabling direct H2O2 production through rational electrocatalyst design </a>was published in Nature Materials. ​</div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div>Tue, 08 Jun 2021 08:00:00 +0200 won the Best Thesis Award<p><b>​Doctoral theses that impress – Vanessa Zema and Samuel Brem know how to write them. They are the winners of the Department of Physics' annual Best Thesis Award. Here they share their best tricks for writing a winning thesis.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">The Best Thesis Award was founded in 2013 and is awarded annually to one or several doctoral students. With this award, the department wants to motivate students and at the same time show appreciation for their hard work. Two former doctoral students are awarded the prize for the Academic year 2019–2020: <strong>Vanessa Zema</strong> and <strong>Samuel Brem</strong>.</span><div><br /></div> <div><strong>The committee's motivation is as follows:</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;The award committee has decided to share this year's award for the best PhD thesis between Dr. Samuel Brem and Dr. Vanessa Zema. Their PhD theses display the high quality that we seek in doctoral research at Chalmers. <span style="background-color:initial">D</span><span style="background-color:initial">r. Brem is awarded for the impressive scientific impact of his work; the committee appreciated also his well-structured thesis and felt it was easy to understand the results of his doctoral research and how these results connect to the challenges of his field. </span><span style="background-color:initial">D</span><span style="background-color:initial">r. Zema delivered a beautifully written thesis detailing a unique combination of both experimental and theoretical work in astroparticle physics; the committee enjoyed reading her thesis, in which she managed to explain a complex subject in a very pedagogical way.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>We spoke with the two proud winners, to learn more about their research and their thoughts on how to write a winning thesis.</div> <div><br /></div> <div style="font-size:16px"><strong>Vanessa Zema:</strong></div> <div style="font-size:20px">&quot;<span style="background-color:initial">Write it in a way that is useful for your future research</span><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;</span></div> <div style="font-size:20px"><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div style="font-size:20px"><span style="background-color:initial"><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/750x340/750x340_VanessaZema.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><br /><br /></span></div> <div></div> <div><br /></div> <div>In her thesis titled <a href="">Unveiling the Nature of Dark Matter with Direct Detection Experiments</a>, Vanessa Zema searches for galactic dark matter particles by using detectors located deep underground, and develops particle and solid state physics models to interpret the collected data.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The subject of dark matter was something she started working on during her master's studies in the University of Rome, La Sapienza. Her dissertation was developed and supported by an agreement between the Department of Physics at Chalmers and the Italian Gran Sasso Science Institute (GSSI), a doctoral school in astroparticle physics, located close to the National Laboratory of Gran Sasso, where many important dark matter experiments are located. </div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>How does it feel to win this award?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;I</span><span style="background-color:initial">’</span><span style="background-color:initial">m honoured and proud. After all these years of studies this was an unexpected culmination of that path, a further satisfaction. I’m happy that my project was considered at the level of an award and that this new type of research in Chalmers is considered valuable and promising. I also wish to thank Professor </span><strong style="background-color:initial">Riccardo Catena</strong><span style="background-color:initial">, my main supervisor at Chalmers.”</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Tell us more about the subject of your thesis. </strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">The topic of my project was the search for hypothetical particles in space of unknown nature that are expected to constitute most of the non-luminous matter in the universe – dark matter. The approach I adopted is known as dark matter direct detection, an experimental technique using detectors located underground that search for these particles directly reaching the target material of our detectors. We aim to detect dark matter looking at its interactions happening inside of our detectors, a different technique with respect to observing the products and effects of its interactions in space, a method used by telescopes and satellites.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>The committee found your thesis to be beautifully written – what can you tell us about your writing process?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">In general, I like to understand things in depth and learn from what has already been studied, but also to elaborate on it and explain things in simple words. I try to write in a way, so that by reading you already have all the material and information you need to understand the subject. The effort of explaining something to others has the counter effect that you are also explaining it to yourself. It is an iterative process which clarifies and simplifies concepts. I had a group of people I collaborated with sending me comments and suggestions. I’m grateful for the long review which definitely contributed to the appreciated final result.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>What was the hardest part?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">That must’ve been organizing all the different topics and chapters and coming to an understanding of the best way to explain my work and to motivate and clarify why I choose the projects I did.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>To someone about to write a thesis of their own – what is your best advice?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“In</span><span style="background-color:initial"> general, it’s easier to do things you find fun. Writing something down that you’ve already done may not be as interesting as doing research. Therefore, one suggestion I give is to always take notes of the research you’re doing. If you write it down in that very moment, instead of waiting years, then the process of writing the thesis is just collecting all the notes and details and writing down the stories. Write it in a way that is useful for yourself, and for your future research. Also, do not wait until the project is perfect before you send it to your advisor for feedback.” </span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>You were recently on Forbes Italia’s list of future leaders. What's the story behind this?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">This was another great surprise. The editors of Forbes met me because they were interested in the Asimov prize organised by Francesco Vissani, a professor at GSSI, who involved me and other GSSI students as members of the scientific committee. Together we had the idea of starting a channel on the Asimov prize and on what a PhD career really is, to address in particular young people interested in science. On this occasion, they considered and collected information on my career and they shortlisted me for the Forbes list. I am still astonished.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>You’re now a postdoctoral researcher at Max Planck Institute for Physics in Munich. What are you currently working on?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">As a result of my PhD, we reached a better understanding on how Cosinus detectors work. Now I’m working here given the result of my PhD thesis and we are optimizing the detector, using the knowledge we collected and the results we obtained. My project here is a continuation of my PhD research, I’m still searching for dark matter using direct detection technique and it is a great pleasure to still collaborate with the same people as I did during my PhD.”</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><div style="font-size:16px"><strong>Samuel Brem:</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial;font-size:20px">&quot;</span><span style="background-color:initial;font-size:20px">I</span><span style="background-color:initial;font-size:20px">nvest in thinking about a good structure for the thesis</span><span style="background-color:initial;font-size:20px">&quot;</span></div> <span style="background-color:initial"></span></div> <div><br /></div> <div style="font-size:16px"><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/750x340/750x340Samuel_Brem.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><br /><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">I</span><span style="background-color:initial">n his thesis titled <a href="">Microscopic Theory of Exciton Dynamics in Two-Dimensional Materials​</a>, Samuel Brem uses theoretical models and computer simulations to explore the properties and dynamics of excitations in two-dimensional quantum materials. He encountered the subject during his bachelor's and master's studies at the Department of Physics at Chalmers.</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>How does it feel to win this award?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">It</span><span style="background-color:initial"> feels great, of course. It’s always difficult as a theoretical physicist to share your advances with people from other fields, but an award is something everyone understands.  It’s a good feeling to be appreciated.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>How come you choose this subject for your thesis? </strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">I was working with Professor <strong>Ermin Malic</strong> before my PhD, on my bachelor’s and master’s. Excitons and two-dimensional materials are the research focus of Professor Malic and during my time as a student I got very fascinated by this branch of theoretical physics. That’s why I chose to work with him also during my PhD. Condensed matter physics is a field where you can observe very interesting physics, including phenomena from all branches of physics like electromagnetism, thermodynimcs and of course quantummechanics. On top of that the relatively new field of nanomaterials offers a lot of interesting physical effects yet to be discovered.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Tell us more – what are excitons?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">”</span><span style="background-color:initial">Excitons are particles that are created when a material is excited with light. There are different classes of materials; metals, insulating materials that don’t conduct electricity, and then there’s something in between called semiconductors. When you excite these semiconductors with light, you can lift electrons into a conducting state and the material becomes conducting. The exciton is an electron paired with the hole it leaves behind when it is excited; a bound pair of a positively and a negatively charged particle. In normal materials these pairs are only stable at very low temperatures, but when you excite quantum materials -extremely thin films of material-, excitons are created that are stable even at room temperature.</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div>The idea is that excitons could be used to build new types of electronics, called excitonics. So instead of using electrons for information processing and storage, one could instead use excitons. With that comes a lot of opportunities to improve the performance and efficiency of electronic devices.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>What do you think made your thesis appreciated by the committee?</strong></div> <div>“They said they chose my thesis because of the large scientific impact it had, I think I had something like thirty publications which I think only very few PhD students have.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>The committee also said your thesis was well-structured and easy to understand. What are your tricks?</strong></div> <div>“When writing a text, I always try to imagine explaining something to a study colleague who understands physics but maybe hasn’t worked in my field. I did a lot of teaching during my bachelor and master’s times, and during my time at the university of Berlin I was a tutor in theoretical physics, so I guess I had some practice in explaining.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>To someone about to write a thesis of their own – what is your best advice?</strong></div> <div>“Take your time and invest in thinking about a good structure for the thesis. It’s much easier to write when the structure makes sense didactically. It’s always good to make lots of figures, not only graphs but also small sketches showing the concept you’re trying to explain.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>What was the most difficult part?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">Trying to make things short, but at the same time trying to say everything you want to say. To condense four years of work to the most important thing in a concise way is the most difficult.”</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>What are you doing now?</strong></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“</span><span style="background-color:initial">I’m a post doc at the University of Marburg. Ermin Malic, the professor I made my PhD with, moved here and I moved to. I continue to do my research in a similar field, and I’m now doing my best on becoming a professor!”</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">Text: Lisa Gahnertz</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div style="font-size:20px">About the Best Thesis Award</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The Best Thesis Award was founded in 2013, as one among several initiatives at the Department of Physics, to maintain and improve the research quality, as well as to show appreciation for the PhD students' hard work.</div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">The management of the departm</span><span style="background-color:initial">ent also hopes that this award can help doctoral students receive an extra boost in their careers after the defense. These particular theses can serve as good examples for doctoral students in the early stages of their own thesis writing. </span><span style="background-color:initial">Besides the honor, the award consists of a diploma and a monetary prize of SEK 10.000.</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>​Prize committee for this year’s award</strong>: Yasmine Sassa, Timur Shegai, Philippe Tassin (chairman), Mattias Thuvander, Paolo Vinai, Björn Wickman and Julia Wiktor.</div>Tue, 18 May 2021 00:00:00 +0200 generation battery makes it to IVA 100 List<p><b>​A research project on calcium batteries places Physics’ Professor Patrik Johansson on IVA’s 100 List 2021. Sustainable preparedness for future crises is in the spotlight of this year’s list.“Our research primarily connects to the energy issue and how you can store energy efficiently without compromising on resource sustainability,” says Patrik Johansson.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">Research that contributes to sustainable preparedness for future crises is in focus when The Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA) now presents its third annual 100 List. The purpose of the list is to present current research with business potential from Sweden's higher education institutions. </span><div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">This year, the Department of Physics at Chalmers takes place on the list with the research project </span><a href="">Carbat </a><span style="background-color:initial">(Calcium Rechargeable Battery Technology), which explores the concept of rechargeable calcium batteries.</span><div>Carbat started as a Future Emerging Technologies project within the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme, with Chalmers as one of four partners via Professor Patrik Johansson's research group at the division of Materials Physics. Parts of the research, primarily on new electrolytes, now continue with funding from the Swedish Research Council and the Swedish Energy Agency.</div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div style="font-size:16px"><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>C</strong></span><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>alcium batteries – a potential solution for various major energy storage</strong></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">A global societal challenge of today is how to store renewable energy, preferably in the form of high-quality energy such as electricity. Furthermore, the Earth's resources are finite.</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The rechargeable calcium battery has the potential to be a partial solution for large-scale storage of renewable energy from, for example, solar and wind power. The reason is mainly two-fold; it can have an almost doubled energy density compared to the currently dominant lithium-ion battery, and calcium is the fifth most common element in the Earth's crust, which provides a long-term sustainable technology and also a cost advantage.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“We have found promising combinations at the materials and concept level. We can now construct functioning cells in the lab, but it is of course a completely different thing to develop a commercially viable product. If you can construct calcium batteries based on the materials we have today or similar, they will most likely have a significantly lower environmental impact,” says Patrik Johansson.</div> <div><br /></div> <div style="font-size:16px"><strong>I</strong><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>mp</strong></span><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>ortant to convey knowledge</strong></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">Pa</span><span style="background-color:initial">trik</span><span style="background-color:initial"></span><span style="background-color:initial"></span><span style="background-color:initial"> Johansson sees the placement on IVA’s 100 list as an important step in conveying knowledge about the research conducted at the universities. It is also a way of showing research's relevance for solving real problems.</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Knowledge building is in itself an extremely important task for a university researcher, but if we do not present the potential solutions we might have to the great problems facing humanity, we have somehow betrayed our trust. Seeing how ideas and reality match while facing a challenge – that’s the real fun.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Text: Lisa Gahnertz</div> <div>Photo: Anna-Lena Lundqvist​</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><span style="font-weight:700">For more information, please contact</span>:</div> <div><a href="">Patrik Johansson​</a><br /></div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Read more:</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><a href="">Carbat's website</a>, where you can also watch a film about the research.</div> <div><a href="/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Portrait-Patrik-Johansson.aspx">Battery researcher who will happily challenge fake news​</a> <span style="background-color:initial">–</span><span style="background-color:initial"> </span><span style="background-color:initial">read a </span><span style="background-color:initial">portrait of Patrik Johansson.</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><a href="/en/news/Pages/Many-Chalmers-research-projects-in-IVA%27s-100-list-2021.aspx">Chalmers research projects well represented in IVA's 100 list 2021​</a><br /></span></div> <div></div> <div><span></span><a href=""><span style="background-color:initial">The Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences'</span> </a>website</div></div></div>Mon, 10 May 2021 10:00:00 +0200​This spring's tandem seminars<p><b>Thank all of you who participated in this springs, 2021, Tandem Webinars. You can watch all the webinars here. At the end of the summer, we will present the autumn webinars</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial;font-weight:700">Wat</span><span style="background-color:initial;font-weight:700">ch the seminars on Chalmers Play</span><span style="background-color:initial;font-weight:700">:</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="font-weight:700;background-color:initial">25 February: TANDEM SEMINAR  –  MATERIALS FOR HEALTH</span><br /><span style="background-color:initial">Materials for Health, 25 February, 2021.  Organizer: Chalmers Area of Advance Mater</span><span style="background-color:initial">ials Science.<br /></span>In this webinar we  have two presentations dedicated to materials for health.  One on the design of bioinks for 3D-printing of cell-laden constructs and one on the development of novel medical device surfaces to prevent infections.<br /><div><ul><li>Moderator: Maria Abrahamsson, Director of Materials Science Area of Advance </li> <li>Bi<span style="background-color:initial">oink Design for Printing of Unified, Multi-material Constructs, Sarah Heilshorn, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and, by courtesy, of Bioengineering and of Chemical Engineering, Stanford University.</span></li> <li>Ma<span style="background-color:initial">terials preventing biomaterial associated infection. Martin Andersson, Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Applied Surface Chemistry.Chalmers University of Technology.</span></li></ul></div></div> <div><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Chalmers Play: Tandem Webinar – Materials for Health</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><span></span><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>26 March: </strong></span><span style="font-weight:700">TANDEM SEMINAR  –  MATERIALS FOR SOLAR ENERGY</span></div> <div>Materials for Solar Energy, 26 March, 2021. <span style="background-color:initial">Organizer: Chalmers Area of Advance Mater</span><span style="background-color:initial">ials Science.<br /></span>In this webinar we have two presentations dedicated to materials for solar energy conversion, specifically how we can manipulate the solar spectrum to make better use of it, will be covered. <span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><div><ul><li>Moderator: Professor Paul Erhart Condensed Matter and Materials Theory, Department of Physics, Chalmers.</li> <li>S<span style="background-color:initial">cienceDeveloping solid-state photon upconverters based on sensitized triplet–triplet annihilation, Angelo Munguzzi, Associate Professor - Università Degli Studi Milano Bicocca - Materials Science Department.​</span></li> <li>T<span style="background-color:initial">oward solid state singlet fission: Insights from studies of Diphenylisobenzofuran−Semiconductors and Pentacene-decorated gels, Maria Abrahamsson, Professor of Physical Chemistry at the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Chalmers University of Technology​.</span></li></ul></div></div> <div><a href="">Chalmers Play: Tandem Webinar – Materials for Solar Energy</a></div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><div><strong style="background-color:initial">27 April:</strong><span style="background-color:initial"> </span><span style="background-color:initial;font-weight:700">TANDEM SEMINAR</span><span style="background-color:initial"> </span><strong style="background-color:initial">– MATERIALS FOR BATTERIES</strong><br /></div></div> <div>It’s time for our third Tandem Webinar held by Chalmers Area of Advance Materials Science. </div> <div><span></span><span style="background-color:initial">In t</span><span style="background-color:initial">his</span><span style="background-color:initial"> </span><span style="background-color:initial">tandem</span><span style="background-color:initial"> </span><span style="background-color:initial">seminar we have </span>wo presentations dedicated to materials for batteries. Two hot topics will be covered, one on the use of digital twins for battery manufacturing and one on development and advanced modelling of battery electrolytes – from DFT to artificial intelligence. <br /><div><ul><li>Moderator: Professor Leif Asp, Co-Director Area of Advance Materials Science</li> <li>D<span style="background-color:initial">igital Twin of Battery Manufacturing, Alejandro A.Franco, Professeur des Universités, Université de Picardie Jules Verne, Junior Member of Institut Universitaire de France.​ </span></li> <li><span style="background-color:initial"></span><span style="background-color:initial"></span>Advanced Modelling of Battery Electrolytes – From DFT to Artificial Intelligence, Patrik Johansson, Professor, Material Physic, Department of physics, Chalmers University of Technology.</li></ul></div> <strong>Chalmers Play </strong><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Tandem Webinar <span style="background-color:initial">– Materials for batteries</span></a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><b>4 May:  TANDEM WEBINAR – DESIGN FOR NEW SUSTAINABLE THERMOPLASTICS AND THEIR NANOCOMPOSITES</b><br /></div> <div>It’s time for our fourth Tandem Webinar held by Chalmers Area of Advance Materials Science. </div> <div>In this tandem seminar, we have two presentations dedicated to sustainable materials engineering. Two hot topics will be covered, one on the transfer of Chemistry from flask to extruder and one on the design of reactive extrusion methods for lignocellulosic nanocomposites towards large scale applications. This collaboration has been selected in 2020 by Genie Initiative at Chalmers.<br /><div><ul><li>Moderator: Professor Leif Asp, Co-director Area of Advance Materials Science</li> <li>T<span style="background-color:initial">ransfer of Chemistry from flask to extruder. Rosica Mincheva, Research assistant at Laboratory of Polymeric and Composite Materials - University of Mons. </span></li> <li>D<span style="background-color:initial">esign of reactive extrusion methods for lignocellulosic nanocomposites towards large scale applications.  Giada Lo Re, Associate Professor, Engineering Materials, Department of Industrial and Materials Science, Chalmers University of Thecnology.</span></li></ul></div> <strong>Chalmers Play:</strong> <a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Tandem Webinar – Materials for ​new sustainabkle thermoplastic and their nanocomposite</a><br /></div></div> <div><br /></div> ​​Tue, 13 Apr 2021 19:00:00 +0200 matters when it comes to atomic properties <p><b>​A study from Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, has yielded new answers to fundamental questions about the relationship between the size of an atom and its other properties, such as electronegativity and energy. The results pave the way for advances in future material development. For the first time, it is now possible under certain conditions to devise exact equations for such relationships. </b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">“Knowledge of the size of atoms and their properties is vital for explaining chemical reactivity, structure and the properties of molecules and materials of all kinds. This is fundamental research that is necessary for us to make important advances,” explains Martin Rahm, the main author of the study and research leader from the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Chalmers University of Technology. <br /><br /></span><div>The researchers behind the study, consisting of colleagues from the University of Parma, Italy, as well as the Department of Physics at Chalmers University of Technology, have previously worked with quantum mechanical calculations to show how the properties of atoms change under high pressure. These results were presented in scientific articles in the <a href="" title="Link to article in JACS">Journal of the American Chemical Society</a> and <a href="" title="Link to article in ChemPhysChem">ChemPhysChem​</a>.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The new study, published in the journal Chemical Science, constitutes the next step in their important work, exploring the relationship between the radius of an atom and its electronegativity – a vital piece of knowledge that has been missing from fundamental chemistry and has been sought after since the 1950s.</div> <div><span></span><div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Establishing useful new equations​</h2> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/KB/Generell/Nyheter/Atomers%20egenskaper/MartinRahm_350x320.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" alt="" style="height:203px;width:225px;margin:5px" /><span style="background-color:initial">By studying how compression affects individual atoms, the researchers have been able to derive a set of equations that explain how changes in one property – an atom’s size – can be translated and understood as changes in other properties – the total energy and the electronegativity of an atom. The derivation has been made for special pressures, at which the atoms can take one of two well-defined energies, two radii and two electronegativities.</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>“This equation can, for example, help to explain how an increase in an atom's oxidation state also increases its electronegativity and vice versa, in the case of a decrease in oxidation state,” says Martin Rahm.</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">A key question for the science of unexplored materials </h2> <p class="chalmersElement-P">​​One aim of the study has been to help identify new opportunities and possibilities for the production of materials under high pressure. At the centre of the earth, the pressure can reach hundreds of gigapascals – and such conditions are achievable in laboratory settings today. Examples of areas where pressure is used today include the synthesis of superconductors, materials which can conduct electric current without resistance. But the researchers see many further possibilities ahead.<br /></p> <p class="chalmersElement-P">“Pressure is a largely unexplored dimension within materials science, and the interest in new phenomena and material properties that can be realised using compression is growing,” says Martin Rahm.</p> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">​Creating the database they themselves wished for ​</h2> <div>The large amounts of data that the researchers have computed through their work have now been <a href="" title="Link to database at rahmlab ">summarised into a database, and made available as a user-friendly web application</a>. This development was sponsored by Chalmers Area of Advance Materials and made possible through a collaboration with the research group of Paul Erhart at the Department of Physics at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /><div>In the web application, users can now easily explore what the periodic table looks like at different pressures. In the latest scientific publication, the researchers provide an example for how this tool can be used to provide new insight into chemistry. The properties of iron and silicon – two common elements found in the earth's crust, mantle and core – are compared, revealing large differences at different pressures.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;The database is something I have been missing for many years. Our hope is that it will prove to be a helpful tool, and be used by many different chemists and materials researchers who study and work with high pressures. We have already used it to guide theoretical searches for new transition metal fluorides,” says Martin Rahm.</div></div> <div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"><span>Read the scientific article <a href="" title="Link to scientific article this research "><span>&quot;Relating atomic energy, radius and electronegativity through compression</span>&quot;</a>​</span></h3></div> <div>The article was written by Martin Rahm, Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Paul Erhart, Department of Physics at Chalmers University of Technology, and Roberto Cammi, University of Parma. <br /></div></div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><strong>For more information, contact: </strong></div> <div><a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/rahmma.aspx" title="link to profile page Martin Rahm">Martin Rahm</a></div> <div>Assistant Professor, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering</div> <div><a href=""></a></div> <div>+46317723050</div></div> <div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">More about atoms and high pressures​</h3></div> <div>At high pressures, atoms and molecules are squeezed closer together, which affects their electronic structure. Among other things, compression can leads to the formation of new chemical bonds. Semiconductors and insulators can also be turned into metals. In some cases, materials formed under high pressures may retain their structure and properties when the pressure returns to normal. A typical example is diamond, which is formed from ordinary graphite under high pressure.<br /></div> ​Thu, 18 Mar 2021 07:00:00 +0100 from e-sports takes online education to a new level<p><b>E-sports professionals, Youtubers or physics professors? Perhaps the differences are less than you might think. That is, when it comes to the technical equipment necessary for interacting with the viewers, or, in this case – the students.​</b></p><div><div>When the coronavirus pandemic forced a rapid transition to remote education last spring, teachers and lecturers were faced with great challenges, but also with new opportunities. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>At Chalmers, two physics professors took inspiration and technical know-how from the world of e-sports to make their online teaching as effective as possible for the students. Professional e-sports players who stream their gaming sessions live are well practised in making sure their viewers can follow along with the action, discerning all the subtle details of the game and being able to interact with the streamer.</div></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/350x305/Onlineundervisning_Andreas_Isacsson_350x305.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:140px;height:122px" /> </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">“We realised pretty quickly that we could learn and benefit from the expertise and technical solutions that have been developed over a long period of time by professional e-sports streamers, and apply them in an education environment, to create a distance learning studio,” says Andreas Isacsson, Professor at the Department of Physics at Chalmers.</span><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><div>To understand the concept, the professors studied in detail the technical setups of several experienced e-sports professionals and successful Youtubers for live streaming and interaction with their co-players and followers.  </div> <div>Now, Andreas Isacsson and his colleague Philippe Tassin have built two teaching studios with several webcams, a high-quality video camera, a specially optimised computer, wireless microphones and more. The cameras allow the students to view, for example, detailed calculations written on a blackboard, much like in a traditional lecture. The studios are in high demand for teaching physics students at Chalmers. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>According to the five course evaluations carried out so far, the concept has been enthusiastically received by the students. </div> <div><br /></div></span></div> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/350x305/Rebecka_beskuren_350x305.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;height:122px;width:140px" /><div><div>“The professors have really handled it well based on the circumstances. They are really trying to do everything they can to make the teaching as successful as possible for us,” says Rebecka Mårtensson, a first-year student at Chalmers.</div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><div>The success of the studios has recently been evidenced by the fact the professors were awarded the educational prize “Guldkritan” (The Golden Chalk) from the physics students, for their remote education efforts. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>The distance learning studios have also received a lot of attention from teaching colleagues at Chalmers since the start of the semester last autumn. More and more students have had their lectures broadcast from there as the academic year has progressed. </div> <div>The new concept makes it easier for lecturers too, whose workloads have increased greatly due to the pandemic.</div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><div>“By being able to give the lectures in a more usual environment, the transition to distance education is much less labour-intensive. And since the students appreciate this form of teaching, it is a clear win-win situation,” says Professor Ulf Gran, Vice Head of the Department of Physics. </div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Text:</strong> Mia Halleröd Palmgren and Joshua Worth<span style="background-color:initial">​</span></div></div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Do you want to check out more photos from the studios? You will find our press images here! </a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/750x340/Onlineundervisning_bakom_kameran_2_750x340.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /> </div> <div><br /></div> ​Mon, 01 Mar 2021 10:00:00 +0100 for ICT seed projects 2022<p><b> Call for proposals within ICT strategic areas and involving interdisciplinary approaches.​</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3" style="color:rgb(153, 51, 0)"><span style="color:rgb(153, 51, 0)">The application date has expired!</span></h3> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Important dates:</h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><ul><li><b>Submission date: </b><span style="text-decoration:line-through">April 29, 2021</span></li> <li><b>Notification:</b> mid-June, 2021</li> <li><b>Expected start of the project:</b> January 2022</li></ul></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Background</h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><b>The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Area of Advance</b> (AoA) provides financial support for SEED projects, i.e., projects involving innovative ideas that can be a starting point for further collaborative research and joint funding applications. </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>We will prioritize research projects that <strong>involve researchers from different research communities</strong> (for example across ICT departments or between ICT and other Areas of Advances) and who have not worked together before (i.e., have no joint projects/publications). </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Research projects involving a <strong>gender-balanced team and younger researchers</strong>, e.g., assistant professors, will be prioritized. Additionally, proposals related to <strong>sustainability</strong> and the UN Sustainable Development Goals are encouraged.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><b><em>Note: </em></b><em>Only researchers employed at Chalmers can apply and can be funded. PhD students cannot be supported by this call.  Applicants and co-applicants of research proposals funded in the 2020 and 2021 ICT SEED calls cannot apply. </em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em><br /></em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><b>The total budget of the call is 1 MSEK.</b> We expect to fund 3-5 projects</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Details of the call</h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><ul><li>The project should include at least two researchers from different divisions at Chalmers (preferably two different departments) and who should have complementary expertise, and no joint projects/publications.</li> <li>Proposals involving teams with good gender balance and involving assistant professors will be prioritized.</li> <li>The project should contribute to sustainable development. </li> <li>The budget must be between 100 kSEK and 300 kSEK, including indirect costs (OH). The budget is mainly to cover personnel costs for Chalmers employees (but not PhD students). The budget cannot cover costs for equipment or travel costs to conferences/research visits. </li> <li>The project must start in early 2022 and should last 3-6 months. </li></ul></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What must the application contain?</h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The application should be at most 3 pages long, font Times–roman, size 11. In addition, max 1 page can be used for references. Finally, an additional one-page CV of each one of the applicants must be included (max 4 CVs). Proposals that do not comply with this format will be desk rejected (no review process).</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The proposal should include:</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>a)<span style="white-space:pre"> </span>project title </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>b)<span style="white-space:pre"> </span>name, e-mail, and affiliation (department, division) of the applicants</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>c)<span style="white-space:pre"> </span>the research challenges addressed and the objective of the project; interdisciplinary aspects should be highlighted; also the applicant should discuss how the project contributes to sustainable development, preferably in relation to the <a href="" title="link to UN webpage">UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)</a>. Try to be specific and list the targets within each Goal that are addressed by your project.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>d)<span style="white-space:pre"> </span>the project description </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>e)<span style="white-space:pre"> </span>the expected outcome (including dissemination plan) and the plan for further research and funding acquisition</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>f)<span style="white-space:pre"> </span>the project participants and the planned efforts</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>g)<span style="white-space:pre"> </span>the project budget and activity timeline
</div> <div><div><br /></div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Evaluation Criteria</h3> <div><ul><li>Team composition</li> <li>Interdisciplinarity</li> <li>Novelty</li> <li>Relevance to AoA ICT and Chalmers research strategy as well as to SDG</li> <li>Dissemination plan</li> <li>Potential for further research and joint funding applications</li> <li>Budget and project feasibility​</li></ul></div></div> <div><span style="color:rgb(33, 33, 33);font-family:inherit;font-size:16px;font-weight:600;background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="color:rgb(33, 33, 33);font-family:inherit;font-size:16px;font-weight:600;background-color:initial">Submission</span></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The application should be submitted as one PDF document to</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <p class="chalmersElement-P"><span><span lang="EN-GB"><a href=""></a></span></span></p> <p class="chalmersElement-P"><span><br /></span></p> <div> </div> <p class="chalmersElement-P"> </p> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">The proposals will be evaluated by the AoA ICT management group and selected Chalmers researchers.

</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><b><br /></b></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><b>Questions</b> can be addressed to <a href="">Erik Ström</a> or <a href="">Giuseppe Durisi​</a> </span></div> <div> </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">General information about the ICT Area of Advance can be found at <a href="/en/areas-of-advance/ict/Pages/default.aspx"> ​</a></span><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div> </div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Areas%20of%20Advance/Information%20and%20Communication%20Technology/About%20us/IKT_logo_600px.jpg" alt="" /><span style="background-color:initial">​​<br /></span></div>Mon, 01 Mar 2021 00:00:00 +0100 complex physics problems at lightning speed<p><b>A calculation so complex that it takes twenty years to complete on a powerful desktop computer can now be done in one hour on a regular laptop. Physicist Andreas Ekström at Chalmers University of Technology, together with international research colleagues, has designed a new method to calculate the properties of atomic nuclei incredibly quickly. ​​​</b></p><div>The new approach is based on a concept called emulation, where an approximate calculation replaces a complete and more complex calculation. Although the researchers are taking a shortcut, the solution ends up almost exactly the same. It is reminiscent of algorithms from machine learning, but ultimately the researchers have designed a completely new method. It opens up even more possibilities in fundamental research in areas such as nuclear physics.</div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/350x305/AndreasEkstrom_200924_webb_350x305.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;height:169px;width:200px" /> </div> <div><div><div>“Now that we can emulate atomic nuclei using this method, we have a completely new tool to construct and analyse theoretical descriptions of the forces between protons and neutrons inside the atomic nucleus,” says research leader Andreas Ekström, Associate Professor at the Department of Physics at Chalmers.</div></div> <div> </div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">​Fundamental to understanding our existence</h2> <div>The subject may sound niche, but it is in fact fundamental to understanding our existence and the stability and origin of visible matter. Most of the atomic mass resides in the centre of the atom, in a dense region called the atomic nucleus. The constituent particles of the nucleus, the protons and neutrons, are held together by something called the strong force. Although this force is so central to our existence, no one knows exactly how it works. To increase our knowledge and unravel the fundamental properties of visible matter, researchers need to be able to model the properties of atomic nuclei with great accuracy.</div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><div>The basic research that Andreas Ekström and his colleagues are working on sheds new light on topics ranging from neutron stars and their properties, to the innermost structure and decay of nuclei. Basic research in nuclear physics also provides essential input to astrophysics, atomic physics, and particle physics.</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Opening doors to completely new possibilities</h2> <div>“I am incredibly excited to be able to make calculations with such accuracy and efficiency. Compared with our previous methods, it feels like we are now computing at lightning speed. In our ongoing work here at Chalmers, we hope to improve the emulation method further, and perform advanced statistical analyses of our quantum mechanical models. With this emulation method it appears that we can achieve results that were previously considered impossible. This certainly opens doors to completely new possibilities,&quot; says Andreas Ekström.</div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Text:</strong> Mia Halleröd Palmgren<br /></div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><strong>The project is funded by the European Research Council within the framework of an ERC Starting Grant.​</strong> </div> <div> </div> <div><a href="/en/departments/physics/news/Pages/He-will-explore-the-secrets-of-atomic-nuclei.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Read more about the work to explore the secrets of the atomic nuclei: .</a></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"> More on the mathematical shortcut  </h2> <div><div>The new emulation method is based on something called eigenvector continuation (EVC). It allows for emulation of many quantum mechanical properties of atomic nuclei with incredible speed and accuracy. Instead of directly solving the time-consuming and complex many-body problem over and over again, researchers have created a mathematical shortcut, using a transformation into a special subspace. This makes it possible to utilise a few exact solutions in order to then obtain approximate solutions much faster. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>If the emulator works well, it generates solutions that are almost exactly – circa 99 per cent – similar to the solutions to the original problem. This is in many ways the same principles used in machine learning, but it is not a neural network or a Gaussian process – a completely new method underpins it. The EVC method for emulation is not limited to atomic nuclei, and the researchers are currently looking further into different types of applications.<span style="background-color:initial">​</span></div></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/750x340/Ljusets%20hastighet_experimentella%20värden_webb_750x340.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><span style="background-color:initial">Plot of the energy and radius of the oxygen isotope 16-O for 100,000 different parametrisations of the strong nuclear interaction. Using the new method, the results were generated within a few minutes on a standard laptop. The dashed lines indicate the values of experimental data.</span><span style="background-color:initial"></span></div> <div>Illustration: Andreas Ekström and Yen Strandqvist/Chalmers University of Technology</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"><p class="MsoNormal"></p></h2> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">The new findings have been published in two articles</h2> <div>“<a href="">Eigenvector continuation as an efficient and accurate emulator for uncertainty quantification</a>” <span style="background-color:initial">published in Physics Letters B, written by Sebastian König, Andreas Ekström, Kai Hebeler, Dean Lee and Achim Schwenk. The researchers are active at North Carolina State University, USA, Chalmers University of Technology, Darmstadt University of Technology, Germany and Michigan State University, USA.</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>“<a href="">Global Sensitivity Analysis of Bulk Properties of an Atomic Nucleus</a>” <span style="background-color:initial">published in Physical Review Letters, written by Andreas Ekström, Chalmers, and Gaute Hagen, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, USA.</span><span style="background-color:initial">​</span></div> <div> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">For more information, please contact:: </h2> <div><a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/Andreas-Ekstrom.aspx">Andreas Ekström</a>, Associate Professor, Department of Physics, Chalmers University of Technology, +46 31 772 36 85 <a href=""></a></div></div>Mon, 01 Feb 2021 06:00:00 +0100 results challenge nuclear theory<p><b>​​In a recent paper in prestigious Nature Physics, Weiguang Jiang, Andreas Ekström and Christian Forssén at the Department of Physics at Chalmers challenge nuclear theory and the magic character of nucleon number N = 32. ​</b></p><div> The study is based on an experiment with radioactive beams at the ISOLDE facility at CERN, where researchers have succeeded in measuring the size of exotic potassium isotopes. In the international collaboration, the Chalmers researchers have contributed with the theoretical interpretation of the results.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/Weiguang.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />“The study becomes really interesting when confronted with theoretical calculations. We find that previous claims that N = 32 would be a so-called magic number may not be so well-founded. We have also found that these new results challenge our understanding of the strong force between nucleons in very neutron-rich systems.” says Weiguang Jiang, postdoc at the Department of Physics at Chalmers. <br /></div>  <br />Read more in the paper in Nature Physics: <br /><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />“Charge radii of exotic potassium isotopes challenge nuclear theory and the magic character of N = 32&quot;.​</a><br /><br />Fri, 29 Jan 2021 07:00:00 +0100 lithium metal batteries can be safe and effective<p><b>There are high hopes for the next generation of high energy-density lithium metal batteries, but before they can be used in our vehicles, there are crucial problems to solve. An international research team led by Chalmers has now developed concrete guidelines for how the batteries should be charged and operated, maximising efficiency while minimising the risk of short circuits.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">Lithi</span><span style="background-color:initial">um metal batteries are one of several promising concepts that could eventually replace the lithium-ion batteries which are currently widely used – particularly in various types of electric vehicles.</span><div><span style="background-color:initial"><div>The big advantage of this new battery type is that the energy density can be significantly higher. This is because one electrode of a battery cell – the anode – consists of a thin foil of lithium metal, instead of graphite, as is the case in lithium-ion batteries. Without graphite, the proportion of active material in the battery cell is much higher, increasing energy density and reducing weight. Using lithium metal as the anode also makes it possible to use high-capacity materials at the other electrode – the cathode. This can result in cells with three to five times the current level of energy-density.</div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"><span>Avoiding the ’needles’ which cause punctures and internal short circuits</span></h2></div> </span><span style="background-color:initial"><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/Dendrites_ENG_250x250.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:200px;height:200px" />​The big problem, however, is safety. In two recently published scientific articles in the prestigious journals Advanced Energy Materials and Advanced Science, researchers from Chalmers University of Technology, together with colleagues in Russia, China and Korea, now present a method for using the lithium metal in an optimal and safe way. It results from designing the battery in such a way that, during the charging process, the metal does not develop the sharp, needle-like structures known as dendrites, which can cause short circuits, and, in the worst cases, lead to the battery catching fire. Safety during charging and discharging is the key factor. </div> <div><div><br /></div></div> </span><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/Shizhao_Xiong_.jpg_webb.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;height:138px;width:120px" /><div><span style="background-color:initial">“Sho</span><span style="background-color:initial">rt circ</span><span style="background-color:initial">uiting in lithium metal batteries usually occurs due to the metal depositing unevenly during the charging cycle and the formation of dendrites on the anode. These protruding needles cause the anode and the cathode to come into direct contact with one another, so preventing their formation is therefore crucial. Our guidance can now contribute to this,” says researcher Shizhao Xiong at the Department of Physics at Chalmers.</span><br /></div> <span style="background-color:initial"> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Optimised charging provides safer batteries</h2> <div>There are a number of different factors that control how the lithium is distributed on the anode. In the electrochemical process that occurs during charging, the structure of the lithium metal is mainly affected by the current density, temperature and concentration of ions in the electrolyte.</div> <div>The researchers used simulations and experiments to determine how the charge can be optimised based on these parameters. The purpose is to create a dense, ideal structure on the lithium metal anode.</div></span><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/Aleksandar%20Matic%20200930_webb.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;height:140px;width:120px" /><span style="background-color:initial"><div><br /></div> <div>“Getting the ions in the electrolyte to arrange themselves exactly right when they become lithium atoms during charging is a difficult challenge. Our new knowledge about how to control the process under different conditions can contribute to safer and more efficient lithium metal batteries,” says Professor Aleksandar Matic from Chalmers’ Department of Physics.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Text:</strong> Mia Halleröd Palmgren</div> <div><strong>Portrait photos: </strong>Anna-Lena Lundqvist (Aleksandar Matic), Chalmers (Shizhao Xiong)</div></span><span style="background-color:initial"> <div><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">More about: The research project</h2> <div>The international research collaboration between Sweden, China, Russia and Korea is led by Professor Aleksandar Matic and researcher Shizhao Xiong at the Department of Physics at Chalmers. The research in Sweden is funded by FORMAS, STINT, the EU and Chalmers Areas of Advance.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div>Read the scientific article <a href="">‘Insight into the Critical Role of Exchange Current Density on Electrodeposition Behavior of Lithium Metal’</a> in Advanced Science. The article is written by Yangyang Liu, Xieyu Xu, Matthew Sadd, Olesya O. Kapitanova, Victor A. Krivchenko, Jun Ban, Jialin Wang, Xingxing Jiao, Zhongxiao Song, Jiangxuan Song, Shizhao Xiong and Aleksandar Matic. </div> <div>The researchers are active at Lomonosov Moscow State University and the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology in Russia, Xi’an Jiaotong University in China and at Chalmers University of Technology.</div></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Read the scientific article <a href="">‘Role of Li ‐ Ion Depletion on Electrode Surface: Underlying Mechanism for Electrodeposition Behavior of Lithium Metal Anode’ ​</a>in Advanced Energy Materials. The article is written by Xieyu Xu, Yangyang Liu, Jang ‐ Yeon Hwang, Olesya O. Kapitanova, Zhongxiao Song, Yang ‐ Kook Sun, Aleksandar Matic and Shizhao Xiong. </div> <div>The researchers are active at Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia, Xi’an Jiaotong University in China, Chonnam National University and Hanyang University in Korea, as well as at Chalmers University of Technology.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">More about: Next generation batteries</h2> <div>There are a number of battery concepts which researchers hope will eventually be able to replace today's lithium-ion batteries. Solid state batteries, lithium-sulphur batteries and lithium air batteries are three oft-mentioned examples. In all these concepts, lithium metal needs to be used on the anode side to match the capacity of the cathode and maximise the energy density of the cell.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The goal is to produce safe, high energy-density batteries that take us further, at lower cost – both economically and environmentally. So far, researchers estimate that a breakthrough to the next generation of batteries is at least ten years away.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>At Chalmers, research is conducted in a number of projects in the field of batteries and the researchers participate in both national and international collaborations and are part of the large European initiative 2030+ in the <a href="">BIGMAP ​</a>project.</div> <div style="text-align:right"><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/750x340/Battery_Illustration_Muhammad750x340.jpg" alt="" />​<span style="background-color:initial">​Illustration: Muhammad Abdelhamid​</span><span style="background-color:initial;font-family:inherit;font-size:20px"> </span></div></div></span><span style="background-color:initial"> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">More battery news from Chalmers.</h2> <div><a href="/en/departments/physics/news/Pages/A-spreadable-way-to-stabilise-solid-state-batteries.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />A spreadable way to stabilise solid state batteries</a></div> <div><a href="/en/areas-of-advance/Transport/news/Pages/Testbed-for-electromobility-gets-575-million-SEK.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Testbed for electromobility gets 575 million SEK</a></div> <div><a href="/en/departments/physics/news/Pages/A-new-concept-could-make-more-environmentally-friendly-batteries-possible-.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />A new concept for more sustainable batteries </a></div> <div><a href="/en/departments/physics/news/Pages/Graphene_sponge_paves_the_way_for_future_batteries.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Graphene sponge paves the way for future batteries​</a></div> <div><a href="/en/news/Pages/Three-out-of-eight-to-Chalmers-in-Vinnova-investment.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />New center for Swedish batteries</a></div> <div><br /></div> </span><a href=""></a><div style="display:inline !important"><a href="">Read more about Swedish battery research on the website for Batteries Sweden (BASE)</a><br /></div> <span style="background-color:initial"><a href="">  ​</a> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"><span>For m</span><span>ore information contact:</span></h2></div> <div><a href="/en/Staff/Pages/Shizhao-Xiong.aspx">Shizhao Xiong</a>, Researcher, Department of Physics, Chalmers University of Technology, +46 31 7726284, <a href=""></a></div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/Aleksandar-Matic.aspx">Aleksandar Matic​</a>, Professor, Department of Physics, Chalmers University of Technology, +46 31 772 51 76, <a href="">​</a></div> <div></div></span></div>Tue, 19 Jan 2021 07:00:00 +0100 memory of Bengt Kasemo<p><b>​Professor Emeritus Bengt Kasemo passed away on 26 November at the age of 78. He is most closely missed by his wife Lena and their children Andreas, Jonas, Anna and Totta, with families, including 10 grandchildren. Bengt Kasemo was one of Chalmers' most brilliant profiles and shaped for decades the Department of Physics and Chalmers.</b></p>​<img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/B%20Kasemo%202007.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:300px;height:400px" /><span style="background-color:initial">Bengt was born in Dalsland in 1942 and grew up on the shores of Ånimmen and Vänern. He got his interest in nature, fishing and hunting from his father. He attended senior high school in Åmål and after graduation, he began studies to become a medical doctor. However, after a year he switched to Physics. After graduating in 1966, Bengt began his PhD-studies on a project related to thin film physics, with Ingvar Marklund as his supervisor. After a while he met one-year-older Stig Andersson and together they initiated research projects in surface physics, focusing on atomic and electronic structure, which at that time was a completely new field of research. Bengt gradually established his own line of research connected to light emission during surface reactions. This provided information on the dynamics of surface reactions and in 1974 he defended his thesis “A study of surface layer structures and chemisorptive luminescence in surface reactions”. Bengt became an associate professor in 1975 and with his sharpness, combined with a rare dynamic and enthusiastic personality, he quickly established himself as an authority in surface physics with many national and international collaborations. Bengt became Professor of Chemical Physics at Chalmers and Gothenburg University in 1983.<br /><br /></span><div>With surface physics as a base, Bengt developed activities in several directions. Ultra-high vacuum studies of the dynamics of surface reactions and reaction kinetics on model surfaces were among his main interests. Inspired by discussions with Per-Ingvar Brånemark, he began research on biomaterials and especially biomaterial surfaces based on titanium in the 80-ties. This led to his research in biophysics and studies of biological membranes, which in the 90-ties grew to a large part of his activities, mainly thanks to his innovative contribution to the development of the quartz crystal microbalance (QCM-D) technique. During the period 1990-2010, Bengt was a pioneer in the study of catalytic reactions at atmospheric pressure on model catalysts and electro/photocatalysis, where he used nanofabrication and nanoplasmonics to study surface phenomena. With these new areas of research, Bengt's division grew to around 40 coworkers with almost as many nationalities. He was a clear and caring research leader, with many ideas and an incredible conviction. He also had a unique ability to encourage and develop his coworkers, especially doctoral students, which resulted in over 50 dissertations under his leadership. The large division, and the many external assignments, needed time. For many years, Bengt commuted weekly from his home in Tjärkil outside Mellerud and worked long days when he was in Göteborg. In fact, it was only for three days in October during the moose hunt that Bengt was unreachable. The best occasions to discuss physics and science with Bengt were between midnight and 2-3 in the morning in his office, when no phone calls or scheduled meetings disturbed the discussions.<br /><br /></div> <div>A part of Bengt's success and great importance for our department and Chalmers was his vision and ability to create interdisciplinary activities that included method development, connection to theoretical models and contacts between basic and applied research questions. Bengt was, for example, one of the founders of the Competence Center for Catalysis, which combined industry-oriented and research-driven research in the field of catalysis. Similarly, he conceived and led the Swedish Biomaterials Consortium, an interdisciplinary research and development program with industrial and academic partners. In the field of method development, he was very proud of his work on the QCM-D and indirect nanoplasmonic sensing techniques. Bengt was, moreover, a co-founder of several start-up companies that originated from basic research and method developments at Chemical Physics. Q-Sense and Insplorion are two successful examples.<br /><br /></div> <div>Bengt became professor emeritus in 2009, however, he continued to be active as a researcher and a member of IVA and KVA. He chaired, for example, the project at IVA and KVA that produced Energiboken. This is a popular science book that has been printed in 60,000 copies and is used in the education of high school teachers. Bengt published as late as September this year, a research paper with models for the spread of aerosol particles, as carriers of Covid-19 virus, through the atmosphere.</div> <div>Bengt was an honorary doctor at DTU and some of his awards include IVA's large gold medal, George Winter's award from the European Society for Biomaterials, Georg Engström's ASEA award for Energy Research and the Chalmers medal.<br /><br /></div> <div>We are many who are very grateful to have had the pleasure of working with Bengt and he will continue to influence the department and Chalmers. Six of his former students and postdocs are now a part of the faculty at Physics; Dinko Chakarov, Fredrik Höök, Julie Gold, Lars Hellberg, Christoph Langhammer and Björn Wickman. We are, of course, many more who have been inspired by Bengt's achievement as a researcher, research leader, mentor, teacher and coworker. He was a strong and kind person with a rich life. His friends will always remember his love for his family. Family, science and service to the society were the holy trinity in his life.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>On behalf of colleagues and friends at the Department of Physics</div> <div>Igor Zoric and Henrik Grönbeck</div> <div><br /></div> <div>A memorial for Bengt Kasemo will be arranged at Chalmers when circumstances allow us to meet in larger groups again.<br /><br />Photo: J-O Yxell​</div> <div><br /></div> Mon, 21 Dec 2020 00:00:00 +0100 winning idea for an electric and sustainable society<p><b>​The new start-up Compular (formerly Svala Technologies), based on research from the Department of Physics at Chalmers, has been awarded the scholarship “Tänk: Om” by Göteborg Energi.</b></p>​The start-up develops a computational tool for analyzing molecular dynamics trajectories. The tool can be used in the development of new and better materials, such as electrolytes for the next generation of batteries, and thereby accelerate the transition towards a more sustainable society. <div><br /><div>The company is built upon the doctoral thesis work of Rasmus Andersson and Fabian Årén in Professor Patrik Johansson’s group at the Division of Material Physics. <span style="background-color:initial">Compular </span><span style="background-color:initial">is a Chalmers Ventures supported collaboration between the three researchers and three students at Chalmers School of Entrepreneurship: Emil Krutmeijer, Sirikun Loetsakwiman and Johannes Henriksson. </span></div> <span></span><div></div> <div><br />The “Tänk: Om” award acknowledges sustainable ideas and projects. In total, six projects share SEK 702 000.​<br /><br /><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom:10px"><span style="font-weight:700">Text:</span> Mia Halleröd Palmgren, <a href="">​​</a><br /></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom:10px"><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Read more about the six winning projects</a> (In Swedish)</p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom:10px"><a href="/en/departments/tme/school-of-entrepreneurship/technology-venture-creation/Pages/Current-Projects.aspx" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Read more on the project </a></p> <br /><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/F/Blandade%20dimensioner%20inne%20i%20artikel/750svalacollage.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><br />Compular's founders: Rasmus Andersson, Fabian Årén, Patrik Johansson, <span style="background-color:initial"> Emil Krutmeijer, Sirikun Loetsakwiman and </span><span style="background-color:initial">Johannes Henriksson​.</span><br /></div></div>Wed, 11 Nov 2020 00:00:00 +0100