ChBE Seminar: Functional Inorganic Materials for Magnetism and Oxygen Storage
Speaker: Efrain E. Rodriguez, Chemistry and Biochemistry Professor, University of Maryland
Title: Functional Inorganic Materials for Magnetism and Oxygen Storage
Dr. Rodriguez's group focuses on the synthesis and structural studies of compounds broadly known as functional inorganic materials. In this seminar, he will focus on two categories of materials we design and synthesize: quantum materials and oxygen storage materials. The first category broadly encompasses superconductors and magnetic materials. In this seminar he will cover layered metal chalcogenides intercalated by a variety of species that control the functionality of the quantum material. Our design strategy is to stack different metal chalcogenide layers using molecular complexes to guide their stacking and orientation. For the second category of materials, Dr. Rodriguez will cover oxygen storage materials (OSMs), which can readily upload and release oxygen molecules into the environment and therefore can replace air as a reactant. Many OSMs are essentially sub-stoichiometric metal oxides that can accommodate a large amount of oxygen site vacancies in their crystalline lattices. Potential applications include gas separations, fuel combustion, fuel conversion, and three-way catalysis. The group explores complex metal oxides such as perovskites that can overcome challenges in stability under cycling. To understand how OSMs evolve under realistic working conditions, they have performed a series of in-situ diffraction experiments at both synchrotron x-ray and neutron facilities. Some of the in-situ work with OSMs will be presented in this seminar.
Efrain E. Rodriguez received his B.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his PhD from the University of California, Santa Barbara. At UCSB Efrain worked with Anthony K. Cheetham, FRS. After his PhD, Efrain went to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) for his National Research Council post-doctoral fellowship. Today, Efrain is an Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Maryland, College Park. Efrain received the Margaret C. Etter Early Career Award in 2019 from American Crystallographic Association and the CAREER award from the NSF. In 2020, he joined the Board of Directors at the American Institute of Physics and was awarded the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship for Experienced Researchers. He is also a member of the US National Committee on Crystallography. At the University of Maryland, Efrain has established a program in solid-state chemistry with a multidisciplinary approach for the preparation and study of functional inorganic materials. Efrain and his group study crystallography to establish structure-property relationships in materials, and his group heavily uses neutron diffraction techniques