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    Development of condensed materials for hydrogen storage and efficient catalysts for ammonia synthesis & decomposition are the primary research interests of the group.

    a) Hydrogen storage C Hydrogen has the potential to be a major energy vector in a renewable and sustainable future energy mix. The efficient production and storage of hydrogen are the key technical barriers that have stimulated tremendous research efforts worldwide over the past two decades. The group has over 18 years research endeavor on the chemical interaction between H2 and solid-state materials, and pioneered the research of hydrogen storage in amide-hydride and alkali amidoboranes systems. Further activities led to the design and development of binary, ternary and multinary imides, amidoboranes, ammoniates, hydrazinates and metalated amines etc.

    b) Catalytic NH3 synthesis and decomposition C Human society has been and will continue to be heavily reliant on industrial N2 fixation. NH3 is also a potential hydrogen carrier in the forthcoming hydrogen economy. NH3 synthesis, however, has to be operated under harsh condition in industry consuming more than 1% of power produced globally. Developing efficient catalysts enabling NH3 synthesis under mild condition is a long-sought grand scientific challenge and practical need. A composite catalyst system made of LiH and transition metals was developed by the group. Ammonia synthesis at a temperature as low as 150 C can be achieved. At 300 C the activities of these composite catalysts are 3-4 orders of magnitude higher than the neat transition metals. More importantly, the presence of LiH creates a two-active center that circumvents the intrinsic scaling relations on neat transition metals. See our recent work on Nature Chemistry (2017) and Angew Chem (2015).

    The group has two professors, two associate professors, an assistant professor, two research assistances and thirteen graduate students.


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