The research activity of our Condensed Matter Theory Group in Uppsala University is mainly focused on a wide range of computational materials science projects. Our group's specialization in materials modelling extends not only to nanomaterials, superconductors, two-dimensional materials, and biomaterials, but also to modern applications such as catalysis, biophysics, bioinformatics, next-generation batteries, and DNA sequencing research. The electronic structure simulations used in our projects are focused on density functional theory. In this proposal, we have mainly focussed on three major project areas 1) 2D materials for next-generation battery materials and energy storage, divided into total 3 sub-areas (water-splitting, hydrogen storage and flexible thermoelectric devices) which belong to our core research activities. (2) liquid–solid interface for power transformers (3) Biophysics and biomedical applications of nanomaterials.
2D materials for Next-Generation Battery Materials and energy storage:
The transformative advancement of next-generation battery technologies has opened the way for fundamental energy storage science. The convergence of expertise, methods, and ideas provides enormous potential for energy storage in next decade through an effective technological strategy that must be solved through computational approaches such as testing different electrode materials and electrolytes.
We plan to conduct cutting-edge theoretical high-throughput research to predict enhanced water splitting behaviour of recently synthesized two-dimensional (2D) transition metal dichalcogenides materials based on band edge alignment principle. Following high throughput analysis, hydrogen and oxygen evolution reaction (OER) will be considered.
Hydrogen being the most common substance/green fuel in world, emits safe, contaminant-free emissions and is energy-efficient. There is a highly feasible possibility in current energy research to substitute fossil fuels with hydrogen-based energy systems; nevertheless, storing hydrogen under suitable conditions is difficult problem for which we plan to investigate hydrogen adsorption stability, geometry, electronic-structure, and process on different 2D materials using DFT calculations.
1c. Flexible Thermoelectric Devices
Thermoelectric materials have the ability to directly transform heat into energy while subjected to temperature gradient. We will try to explore the architecture of next-generation thermoelectric materials using statistical methods such as DFT at different stages, electrical transport simulations, and phonon calculations.
2. Oil and cellulose liquid–solid interface for power transformers
The experimental studies till date, on the breakdown characteristics of oil–paper composite insulation in transformers have not been able to obtain sufficient evidence to explain the breakdown electric field phenomenon in the working range at room temperature. Also, oil-insulating mechanism is still not well understood. This motivates our study which gives a theoretical basis for microscopic mechanisms by special schemes to be studied on molecular/atomic scale.
3. Biophysics and biomedical application of nanomaterials
The opportunity to study compounds at the molecular level using computational approaches has accelerated quest for products with exceptional properties for use in medicine. Use of these innovative materials has given rise to a modern science area known as nanobiotechnology, which is essential in disease detection, drug design and distribution, and implant design.