Seminar Schedule

A Materials-Science Approach to Designer Catalysts

Dr. Jin Suntivich

Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Cornell University

Friday, Jan. 17, 2020 @ 11:45 am - 12:45 pm

Mudd 826


Solar and wind are becoming economical, aided by their rapidly declining cost and increasing efficiencies. As renewable energy gains momentum, the use of electricity to synthesize fuels and high-value chemicals represents a critical next step for energy and materials sustainability. In this talk, I will outline the current approach for designing catalysts for these electrochemical reactions. Then, I will discuss the limitation of the current approach by presenting our test of its assumptions using high-fidelity well-defined-surface experiments. Our result supports a widely held view that intermediate stabilization can serve as a parameter for the catalyst design; however, we show that this variable alone is insufficient to describe the activity of highly active catalysts. I will discuss the implications of this result, including new insights on the mechanism of electrochemical transformations. Examples of how we can explore new phases of materials not accessible via thermochemical means as high-performance catalysts will also be discussed.  


Jin Suntivich is an assistant professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Cornell University. Jin received his B.A. in Integrated Science and B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering from Northwestern University. Afterward, Jin went to obtain his Sc.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from MIT, where his research focused on finding a structure-property relation that controls the electrochemical activity of transition metal oxides and nanoparticles for fuel cells, electrolyzers, and metal-air batteries. Jin conducted his postdoctoral fellowship at the Harvard University Center for the Environment. There, he worked on understanding the light-matter interaction in titanium oxides and the role of non-equilibrium structure on the surface chemistry and the carrier lifetimes. His interest is in developing rational strategies for designing new materials for energy and environmental applications.

1/18/19: Prof. Byungha Shin, KAIST

1/25/19: Nick Brady/Jack Davis, Ph.D. Student at Columbia

2/15/19: Prof. Daniel Esposito, Solar Fuels Engineering Lab at Columbia

3/1/19: Jake Russell/Anna Dorfi, Ph.D. Student at Columbia

3/15/19: Alex Couzis, CCNY/Urban Electric Power

4/26/19: Jon Vardner/Steven Denny, Ph.D. Student at Columbia

5/10/19: Qian Cheng/Brian Tackett, Ph.D. Student at Columbia

9/20/19: Prof. Daniel Steingart, Co-Director of CEEC

9/27/19: Aykut Aksit, Ph.D. Student at Columbia

                  Rebecca Ciez, Princeton postdoctoral fellow

10/11/19: Dr. Nongnuch Artrith, Research Scientist at Columbia

10/25/19: Prof. Lauren Marbella, The Marbella Lab at Columbia

11/1/19: Emily Hsu, Ph.D. Student at Columbia

                  Dr. Amir Zangiabadi, Director of Electron Microscopy Labs, CNI

11/22/19: Prof. Bruce Usher, Director of Tamer Center at Columbia

12/6/19: Dr. Kathy Ayers, VP of R&D at Proton Onsite / Nel Hydrogen