World-class facility to help achieve a renewable and sustainable future
A sustainable and cleaner future for society depends on the next generation of advanced materials. In a new facility scientists at the University of Adelaide will develop materials which will help to achieve those goals for South Australia and the nation.
The Advanced Materials Research Facility is launched at the University of Adelaide’s North Terrace campus today, Wednesday 1 September.
“In the new Advanced Materials Research Facility, chemical engineers and scientists will be making materials for a range of applications such as renewable energy conversion and storage, and to reduce the impact of microplastics on the environment,” said Professor David Lewis who is Head of the School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials at the University of Adelaide.
“The facility is the first of its kind in the country, where we will be able to observe the growth, formation and structure of new materials in real-time.” Professor David Lewis
“Our researchers are finding new materials that will increase the efficiency of making ‘green’ hydrogen from water.”
The majority of hydrogen used today is made from fossil fuels. Green hydrogen is not an economically viable alternative due to low yields from electrolysers that use electrolysis to split water into hydrogen and oxygen.
“The next generation of electrolysers that use materials developed by our scientists could provide the key to a cleaner energy future using cheap hydrogen produced from water,” said Professor Lewis.
Other advanced materials being developed at the new facility include:
- The next generation of material used in aqueous batteries (batteries that use water instead of organic solvents as electrolyte) that is non-flammable and safe;
- Materials that will enable microplastics to be converted into environmentally harmless products;
- Catalyst materials for next generation solar-to-fuels production technology;
- Smart nanoreactors which assist with the manufacture of products on a nanotechnological scale.
Much of the scientists’ work will be carried out at the molecular scale and can be upscaled toward mass production.
“The facility is the first of its kind in the country, where we will be able to observe the growth, formation and structure of new materials in real-time,” said Professor Lewis.
“Our specialised technology allows us to go from the design of the material from the virtual molecular level on a computer to the growth of the material and ultimately the actual device, in one location.”
“The new Advanced Materials Research Facility complements the existing outstanding research capability in this field here at the University of Adelaide,” said Professor Peter Høj AC, Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Adelaide.
“The facility will contribute to the training of university science and engineering students who will advance technological innovations across South Australia and around the world.”
Professor David Lewis, Head of School, School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials. Mobile: +61 (0)481 919 297. Email: email@example.com
Crispin Savage, Senior Communications and Media Officer, The University of Adelaide. Mobile: +61 (0)481 912 465, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org