MSE Seminar - Professor Arumugam Manthiram - Univ. of Texas

MSE Seminar
Event Date:
Monday, October 27, 2014 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Boggs B6

Electrochemical Energy Conversion and Storage: Challenges and Prospects

Arumugam Manthiram

Materials Science and Engineering Program and Texas Materials Institute

The University of Texas at Austin

Rapid increase in global energy use and growing environmental concerns have prompted intensive worldwide activity in recent years on the development of clean, sustainable, alternative energy technologies. Among the various alternative energy technologies, the electrochemical energy conversion and storage technologies – fuel cells, batteries, and supercapacitors – are appealing for a variety of energy needs including portable electronic devices, transportation, and stationary storage of electricity produced by renewable energies like solar and wind. However, their widespread commercialization for large-scale applications is hampered by high cost, durability, safety, and operability issues, which are in turn linked to severe materials challenges.

 After providing a brief introduction to electrochemical energy conversion and storage technologies, this presentation will focus on the development of new materials for fuel cells and rechargeable batteries. Specifically, it will first focus on the development of low-cost blend membranes based on acid-base interactions and methanol-tolerant Pd-based alloy catalysts for direct methanol fuel cells as well as low-thermal expansion cathodes and decoking alloy catalysts for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells operating with hydrocarbon fuels like natural gas. Then, it will focus on high-capacity electrode materials for next-generation rechargeable batteries. Particularly, novel electrode and cell configurations with lithium-sulfur batteries and inexpensive electrocatalysts and novel cell configurations with hybrid lithium-air batteries to overcome the persistent problems will be presented.


Arumugam Manthiram is currently the Cockrell Family Regents Chair in Engineering and Director of the Texas Materials Institute and the Materials Science and Engineering Graduate Program at the University of Texas at Austin (UT-Austin). He received B.S. (1974) and M.S. (1976) degrees in chemistry from Madurai University, India, and a Ph.D. degree in chemistry in 1980 from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. After working as a Lecturer in India and as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Oxford and at UT-Austin, he became a faculty at UT-Austin in 1991. Dr. Manthiram directs a large research group with about 30 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows on materials for rechargeable batteries, fuel cells, and supercapacitors. He has authored 580 publications, including 500 journal articles and 8 patents. He is the Regional (USA) Editor of Solid State Ionics and is serving as an editorial board member for 5 other journals. Dr. Manthiram received the Engineering Foundation Faculty Excellence Award in 1994, Mechanical Engineering Department Faculty Leadership Award in 1996, Mechanical Engineering Department Outstanding Teaching Award in 2011, University of Texas Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award in 2012, and the Battery Division Research Award of the Electrochemical Society in 2014. He is a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society and the Electrochemical Society.

Reception at 3:30 preceeding seminar outside Boggs B6 - Host: Karl Jacob