Energy Materials


Last published


In the advent of the ever progressing human development at the expense of our earthly resources and worrying global climate change, energy and materials efficiency, electric energy production, consumption, and especially storage have become leading questions of our society. Novel concepts and materials with specifically adapted properties contribute to mitigate or solve those challenges.

The working group Energy Materials uses established and modern crystallography-inspired experimental and theoretical methods of structural science, including crystal chemistry and electrochemistry. They are used to recon structure-property relations of crystalline matter and to create new technological approaches and solutions in the field of energy conversion and storage.

Special emphasis is placed on ion conductors, materials with complex structural finenesses on an atomic scale, modulated structures, and aperiodic crystals, X-ray determined electron densities, knowledge mining, and machine learning. Used experimental and theoretical methods refer to:

  • material synthesis,
  • crystal structure determination (FIB preparation of single crystals, crystal orientation determination, X-ray spectroscopy, X-ray single crystal diffraction, electron density determination, N-dimensional crystallography, maximum entropy method),
  • electrochemical characterization (glovebox preparation, impedance spectroscopy, tubandt method, cyclo-voltammetry, battery cycling),
  • application of theoretical methods of crystallography, crystal chemistry, and crystal physics (topological methods, e.g. Voronoi-Dirichlet partitioning in ToposPro, bond-valence methods and structural modeling by means of density functional theory) and
  • data/knowledge mining and machine learning (e.g. Battery Materials Project).

The work focuses on materials from the fields of energy conversion and storage, such as ion conductors, intercalation electrodes, current collectors, pyroelectrics, but also on intermetallic phases and thin films. Other topics include methodological work on X-ray diffraction, application of textile fabrics, investigation of dyes for organic solar cells, and construction of demonstrators. The principal investigator is Tilmann Leisegang. Examples of the work can be found here.