News

2024

5/2024: Congrats to Jongmin & Haley on publication of their paper evaluating new thin-film anodes for protonic ceramic electrolysis cells!
5/2024: NP presented a Materials Research Lecture at Caltech, hosted by Kathy Faber. Thanks for the great visit!
5/2024: NP has joined the editorial board of Phys. Rev. Mater. – a great outlet for publishing high-quality materials research!
4/2024: Yong-Yun’s and NP’s co-authored paper on hydrogen in energy and information sciences is published.
3/2024: Huge thanks to all the hosts in Japan who enabled NP to tour labs, discuss research, and present talks at U Tokyo, Murata, Kumamoto U, and Tohoku U! The activities were an extension of the ACerS Fulrath Award, fostering friendships and collaboration across the Pacific.
3/2024: Alexia was selected to participate in the 2024 X-ray absorption spectroscopy course at Brookhaven National Lab, followed by her first beamtime!
3/2024: NP has been awarded a Principal Investigator Development in Sustainability Grant from the American Chemical Society.
2/2024: Congrats to En Ju on being awarded 1st place in the American Ceramics Society poster competition at the Electronic Materials & Applications conference in Denver! 4 group members gave various talks and posters on materials used in batteries, fuel cells, and electrolyzers: Kai, Alexia, En Ju, and NP.
2/2024: Congrats to Sipei and Alexia on passing all their qualifying exams!

2023

12/2023: We’re pleased to welcome Kate to the group for her undergraduate externship from Carleton College!
11/2023: NP presented a colloquium talk at MIT’s Department of Materials Science & Engineering and a talk in the NSF Ceramics PI meeting. Thanks to the hosts & organizers!
11/2023: Steven’s new paper (see publications tab) shows the importance of separating grain and intergranular conductivity in battery solid electrolytes to uncover defect chemistry-conduction mechanisms. We see the potential onset of concerted ion migration in the grains and improved intergranular conductivity with Li-stuffing.
11/2023: Congratulations to Emily, Haley, and Lawrence who have each defended their respective PhD theses in close succession!
10/2023: At the MS&T Conference in Columbus, NP gave an ACerS Fulrath Award talk and met with researchers from Japan, and Haley presented a poster on ferrite oxygen stoichiometry. The undergraduate students in Keramos won multiple prizes in their competitions (1st place mug drop, 1st place speaking contest, and most aesthetic ceramic disc) – congrats!
9/2023: Congratulations to Sipei on being awarded a PPG-MRL scholarship!
9/2023: NP gave invited talks at the Petite XII workshop at Edesheim and TU Darmstadt on non-equilibrium, low-temperature defect chemistry while visiting collaborators. Thanks to the organizers/hosts!
8/2023: Xuanze (Ben), Chieh-Jung (Jimmy), and Rachel are joining the group as new PhD students – welcome!
8/2023: Harry gave a talk on his research on thin-film battery electrolytes in the REU final presentation symposium. Thanks to En Ju for mentoring him!
7/2023: Jongmin & NP’s proposal for collaboration with the University of Manchester on operando XPS has been selected for support by bp-ICAM. Thanks for the support!
7/2023: NP gave a talk on career development and research into sustainable energy materials to the 2023 MRSEC REU cohort.
7/2023: Lawrence, En Ju, and NP ran an afternoon of activities on electrochemistry and energy materials in the Gender Equity in Materials Science camp. High-school students made working batteries and fuel cells!
7/2023: The Illinois MRSEC was funded for 6 more years by the NSF! NP is excited to be co-leading a new interdisciplinary research group on “photo-ionics.”
7/2023: Alexia was selected for the JUAMI 2023 program (Joint Undertaking for an African Materials Institute) and spent two weeks in Nairobi, Kenya participating in tutorials, research talks, and collaboration development across cultures.
7/2023: In our project on co-design and manufacturing of recyclable batteries, En Ju and Kai have contributed to a new paper with the Wang group applying life cycle assessment to cathode recycling. See it in the publications tab!
6/2023: NP presented an invited talk on high-throughput, defect-focused materials discovery at the European MRS meeting. Thanks to the organizers!
5/2023: The group welcomes Yoav and Harry for summer research experiences; Yoav received a Bolton scholarship from the MatSE department, and Harry is supported through the MRSEC REU.
5/2023: NP co-organized the Harry Tuller Symposium at MIT and presented a talk on coupled behavior in redox-active perovskites.
5/2023: NP has been selected to receive the American Ceramic Society’s Richard M. Fulrath Award.
5/2023: NP has been recommended for promotion by the provost from assistant professor to associate professor with indefinite tenure.
5/2023: Steven successfully defended his PhD thesis: “Identification and Design of New Inorganic Li+/Na+ Conductors for Solid-State Batteries.” Congrats Dr. Lin!
2/2023: NP was selected for a 2023 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research – thanks to the teamwork of our students, collaborators, research staff, etc!
2/2023: NP presented an invited talk on evolving structure-property relationships during thin film crystallization at the 5th Functional Oxide Thin Films conference in Mexico. Thanks to the organizers!
1/2023: Adrian’s & Lawrence’s paper, in collaboration with the Ertekin group, on chemical expansion of Pr-oxide perovskites is published and marked as a “HOT Paper” by J. Mater. Chem. A – see papers here.
1/2023: NP taught 3 middle-school science classes on materials for clean energy at Franklin STEAM academy, via the MRSEC.
1/2023: Haley & NP gave contributed & invited talks at the American Ceramic Society’s Electronic Materials & Applications conference. The talks were on how ionic conductivity & transference numbers change with crystallization, and high-throughput, defect-focused screening of ionic & mixed conductors, respectively.

2022

11/2022: NP gave an invited talk at the American Vacuum Society’s 68th International Symposium & Exhibition on optical characterization of high-temperature defect kinetics.
11/2022: Steven’s paper on high-throughput discovery of defect-rich Li-conductors, in collaboration with Krogstad & Ertekin groups, is published – see papers here.
10/2022: Emily’s paper on 2D Optical Transmission Relaxation is published – see papers here.
10/2022: Congrats to En Ju who has passed both qualifying exams!
10/2022: NP presented a keynote talk at the Power of Interfaces workshop in Spain and learned about cutting-edge thin film research in Europe and Japan. Thanks so much to the organizers for the invitation!
8/2022: We are grateful and excited to begin work on two new DOE EFRC projects, Hydrogen in Energy & Information Sciences (HEISs) and Mechano-Chemical Understanding of Solid Ion Conductors (MUSIC).
8/2022: Welcome to Alexia, Sipei, and Yong-Yun who are new PhD students joining the group!
8/2022: Steven and NP presented a poster and talk on our emerging research at the Ceramics Gordon Research Conference at Mt. Holyoke.
8/2022: Jackie gave a talk on her research, “Ellipsometry for Simultaneous Strain and Stoichiometry Changes in Functional Oxide Thin films,” at the REU final presentation symposium.
7/2022: NP presented the “15th Westlake Engineering Lecture Series” seminar at Westlake University (online).
7/2022: Haley & Emily presented their work on mixed conductor crystallization and 2D optical relaxation at the Solid State Ionics conference in Boston. NP delivered a keynote talk on achieving near-zero chemical strain in perovskites and was re-elected as a Councilor from America on the board of the International Society for Solid-State Ionics.
7/2022: En Ju, Lawrence, and NP ran an Electrochemistry session for the Gender Equity in Materials Science (GEMS) summer camp, and the students were able to make working batteries and fuel cells!
6/2022: NP gave a talk to the REU cohort on career development and research for a carbon-neutral future.
6/2022: The group is delighted to welcome Jackie Zheng for the summer through the MRSEC REU program!
6/2022: NP made it to the “List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent” for Spring 2022.
5/2022: Lawrence & Jongmin gave presentations on their chemical expansion and triple conducting electrode work at the Electrochemical Society spring conference.
5/2022: The 4th Mechano-Electro-Chemical Coupling Symposium at the Electrochemical Society conference in Vancouver took place with many excellent talks; NP was the lead organizer.
5/2022: Congrats to Micah and Joshua upon graduation and to Micah for completing the MS thesis!
4/2022: NP gave a talk in the WAVES 50/50 Mentoring Series at UMASS Lowell, sponsored by the NSF ADVANCE program (link for more info)
4/2022: Emiliana (academic advisee) successfully defended her PhD thesis – congrats!
3/2022: NP presented the Materials Science & Engineering seminar at UW-Madison, in person! Thanks for the invitation & hospitality!
3/2022: NP presented the 8th I2CNER Webinar – nice to talk with colleagues in Japan again!
3/2022: NP gave the Kaler Science Lecture at Parkland College on “Ceramics that Breathe”. Thanks for the invitation!
2/2022: Kai passed his last qualifying exam – congrats!
2/2022: NP gave a Materials Science & Engineering Colloquium at the University of Michigan. Thanks for the invitation!
2/2022: Congrats to Lawrence upon passing the prelim exam!
1/2022: Congrats to Haley upon passing the prelim exam!
1/2022: NP presented an invited talk on tailoring defect-induced strain at the American Ceramic Society EMA Conference. Thanks to the organizers!

2021

12/2021: NP taught 3 science classes at Franklin STEAM Academy virtually, through the MRSEC, on materials for clean energy.
11/2021: Congrats to Ting & Lawrence on publication of a new paper on how crystal symmetry relates to hydration-induced expansion & implications for durable electrochemical devices!
11/2021: NP presented a virtual MSE Graduate Seminar at Rutgers – thanks to the organizers for the invitation!
11/2021: New paper with the Ertekin group is published on the cluster expansion method applied to short-range ordering in a multiple-sublattice oxide
10/2021: Congratulations to Lawrence & Adrian on publication of a new paper on anomalously low coefficients of chemical expansion in Pr perovskites and design principles for zero-strain materials!
10/2021: Congratulations to Steven upon passing the prelim exam!
10/2021: Congratulations to Haley & co-authors on publication of a new paper correlating multi-scale, evolving structural, chemical, and electrical properties during crystallization of a mixed conducting perovskite!
9/2021: Welcome to En Ju who is joining the group as a PhD student!
8/2021: Congrats to Steven and co-authors on publication of our paper on new perovskite Na-ion conductors.
8/2021: Welcome to Katrina who is joining the group as an undergraduate researcher!
8/2021: Welcome to Dr. Jongmin Lee who is joining the group as a post-doctoral researcher!
7/2021: We’re excited to begin work on a newly funded international NSF-DFG project on relating defect chemistry, electronic structure, and evolving surfaces in electrocatalysts for oxygen evolution in acidic conditions! Collaborators are Hong Yang (PI, UIUC) and Andreas Klein (TU Darmstadt, Germany). More info here.
5/2021: NP co-organized the Solid State Ionics symposium of European MRS conference – thanks also to co-organizers Albert Tarancon, Nini Pryds, and Ainara Aguadero.
5/2021: Our new paper including contributions from Micah, Kai, and Yiwen on dislocation-mediated conductivity in oxides was published: link
5/2021: Haley and Lawrence are giving their first virtual presentations on their research at the Electrochemical Society Spring Meeting.
5/2021: Congrats to current and former group members Yiwen (MS/BS 3+2), Sankhya (BS), and Jo (BS) on their graduations and admissions to exciting graduate programs around the country!
4/2021: NP was bestowed a “Professor Pig” from the undergraduate students of MatSE in a nice virtual ceremony. The award is given for teaching excellence and/or particular care shown for students.
1/2021: Emily delivered a virtual presentation on her XAS studies of crystallization at the American Ceramic Society Electronic Materials & Applications conference (online).
1/2021: Welcome to Kai who is joining the group as a PhD student!

2020

12/2020: Congrats to Emily for passing her prelim exam!
12/2020: NP delivered a (virtual) colloquium talk at Stony Brook University’s Materials Science & Chemical Engineering Department. Thanks for the invitation!
11/2020: NP gave a (virtual) invited talk on “Hydrogen’s Role in 21st Century Technologies” at the inaugural Midwest Hydrogen Partnership workshop.
11/2020: Congrats to Steven & Colin as their new paper on designing cation transport in battery solid electrolytes, in collaboration with the Krogstad and Ertekin groups, is now published! See publications here.
9/2020: We’re excited to begin work on a new project, “Holistic Design for Manufacturing and Recycling of High Energy Density Li-ion Battery Cells,” with a team from Illinois (Braun, Milkovic, Wang) and Georgia Tech (Hatzell). Thanks to the NSF for this Future Manufacturing Grant! Details here.
8/2020: Welcome to Micah who is joining the group as a PhD student!
6/2020: Haley has been selected for a 3M Graduate Fellowship – congratulations!
6/2020: NP is on the List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent for MSE 422, Spring 2020. Thanks to the students for a great (albeit unconventional) semester!
3/2020: Haley, Steven, and Lawrence have collectively passed all of their qualifying exams – congratulations!!
2/2020: The group adds new undergraduate researchers Sankhya and Joshua, as well as visiting undergraduate researcher from Kyushu University, Kotaro – welcome everyone!
1/2020: NP presented an invited talk on in situ optical studies of defect equilibria and kinetics at the Electronic Materials and Applications conference of the American Ceramic Society. Thanks to the organizers for the invitation!
1/2020: NP received a NSF CAREER Award to combine research into crystal chemical design principles for tailored chemical expansion with education and outreach! Press release here.

2019

12/2019: NP presented an invited talk highlighting materials advances for high temperature fuel/electrolysis cells at the I2NCER 10th Anniversary Symposium in Tokyo.
10/2019: NP received the J. Bruce Wagner Jr. Award from the Electrochemical Society. Thanks to the H-TEMP division for the nomination!
10/2019: The group contributed to 5 presentations at the ECS Fall Conference in Atlanta, in the area of mixed conducting oxides. Emily presented her first national conference poster and talk!
9/2019: NP presented a Materials Science & Engineering seminar at West Virginia University and visited the fuel cells group of the National Energy Technology Laboratory. Thanks to Prof. David Mebane for the invitation!
9/2019: Welcome to Colin, Yiwen, and Jo who are joining the group this fall!
8/2019: Congrats to Emily on passing her qualifying exams!
8/2019: New paper on how non-stoichiometry can be tailored through heterointerfaces, in collaboration with George Harrington, is now online! Publications list here.
7/2019: Several new papers are available online, including Haley’s review of in situ optical absorption for defect studies, Steven’s collaboration with the Shoemaker group on flash sintering, and our collaboration with the Rupp group at MIT on in situ Raman spectroscopy of a non-stoichiometric perovskite. See the “publications” tab here for more information.
7/2019: NP gave invited talks at the International Conference on Electroceramics and the International Conference on Defects in Semiconductors, and co-organized the 4th Functional Oxide Thin Films for Advanced Energy and Information Technology Conference. Thanks to everyone involved!
6/2019: Nicola Perry was elected as a councilor representing the U.S. region to the Board of the International Society for Solid State Ionics, during the SSI-22 conference in Pyeongchang, Korea.
6/2019: Nicola Perry visited several groups in Tohoku University and presented an invited talk in IMRAM. Thanks to the Amezawa group and others for hosting! This trip was followed by research discussions at Kyushu University and was supported financially by an IIE-GIRE scholarship.
5/2019: We have been exploring how grain boundaries modify the levels of ionic & electronic conductivity in perovskites. Our new paper, now online, shows an important effect of thermal and electrical history for tailoring the underlying grain boundary space charge behavior. Publications list here.
4/2019: Karen Yang was selected to receive a Russell Bolton Research Development Award, which will enable her to conduct research in the group this summer. Congrats!
4/2019: New paper describing configurations and properties of a mixed conducting solid solution through a cluster expansion framework, in collaboration with the Ertekin and Aluru groups, is now available online.
4/2019: Emily Skiba was accepted to the 21st National School on Neutron and X-ray Scattering to be held in June. Congrats!
3/2019: Emily Skiba was awarded a IIE-GIRE scholarship to support a research exchange visit to Kyushu University, Japan for several months this spring. Congrats! See the press release here.
3/2019: Nicola Perry gave a Chemical Sciences & Engineering Division colloquium talk at Argonne. Thanks to Dr. Brian Ingram for the invitation and to everyone there for the great meetings!
2/2019: Yuki Abe joined the group as a visiting undergraduate student from Kyushu University. Welcome!
2/2019: Nicola Perry visited Colorado School of Mines and presented the Mechanical Engineering Department seminar. Thanks to Prof. Sandrine Ricote for the invitation and to everyone who hosted!
1/2019: New paper on “Emergence of Rapid Oxygen Surface Exchange Kinetics During In Situ Crystallization of Mixed Conducting Thin Film Oxides” is now available online!  See publications list here.
1/2019: New paper on ex situ and in situ modification of point defect concentrations to tailor optical absorption in a non-dilute oxide solid solution is available online! See publications list here.
1/2019: New paper on interplay of strain and defect association in thin film ionic conductivity is available online! See publications list here.

2018

12/2018: New paper on controlling defect chemistry and associated electrical and photoelectrochemical properties of nanostructured anodes for water splitting is available online! This work is in collaboration with the Vayssieres group at Xi’an Jiaotong University and the Tuller group at MIT. See publications list here.
12/2018: New paper on redox-induced chemical expansion in a mixed protonic-electronic conductor, Ba(Zr,Dy)O3-x, in collaboration with Sandrine Ricote at Colorado School of Mines & coworkers is available online! See publications list here.
12/2018: New paper on electronic structure of mixed conducting SrTiO3-Sr2Fe2O5 solid solution in collaboration with Ertekin group is available online! See publications list here.
12/2018: Haley Buckner participates in her first beam time at Argonne, with Emily Skiba. Thanks again to Qing Ma for hosting.
11/2018: Excellent research trip to I2CNER at Kyushu University. Thanks to George Harrington and Ting Chen for assistance with the experiments!
11/2018: Nicola Perry presents an invited talk on perovskite oxide electrodes at the Solid State Electrochemistry Workshop for Energy Storage and Conversion in Hamburg, Germany. Thanks to the organizers, Ryan O’Hayre and Thomas Carraro, for the invitation!
10/2018: The UIUC AVS chapter organizes a seminar titled “Materials Through the Ages: A Journey from our Archeological Heritage to the Cutting Edge of Technological Metals and Ceramics.” Nicola Perry presents a talk on “developing ceramics that ‘breathe’ for a carbon-neutral energy future.” Thanks to AVS for the invitation!
10/2018: Nicola Perry presents an invited talk on applying in situ optical approaches to study microstructure-surface exchange relationships in mixed conducting films at the MS&T conference in Columbus, OH. Thanks to the organizers of the International Symposium on Defects, Transport, and Related Phenomena for the invitation!
10/2018: Nicola Perry presents invited talk on chemical expansion in mixed conductors at ECS meeting in Cancun. Thanks to the organizers for the invitation and to ECS for the travel grant!
9/2018: The group adds first-year PhD students Haley Buckner, Yu-Ying (Steven) Lin, and Lawrence Anderson and undergraduate researchers Karen Yang and Kimberly Garza. Welcome everyone!
8/2018: Ting Chen successfully defends her PhD thesis in I2CNER! Congratulations Ting!
8/2018: Ting Chen receives an oral presentation award at the ASSI & ASOFC conference. Well done Ting!
7/2018: Nicola Perry receives DOE Early Career Award. Thanks to the DOE for the support! Read more here.
7/2018: Nicola Perry presents invited talk at THERMEC’2018 conference in Paris. Thanks to the organizers for the invitation.
6/2018: Dino Klotz receives a best poster prize at the EMRS spring meeting. Congratulations Dino!
5/2018: The “Mechano-Electro-Chemical Coupling in Energy Related Materials and Devices 3” Symposium is held at the Electrochemical Society Meeting in Seattle, co-organized by Nicola Perry. Thanks to all the excellent speakers and participants!
5/2018: Emily Skiba conducts first beam time at Argonne National Lab. Thanks to Qing Ma for hosting.
2/2018: Emily Skiba joins the group as a PhD student. Welcome Emily!
1/2018: Nicola Perry moves from Kyushu University to UIUC.