Shining light on electrochemical reactions

Lead Research Organisation: University of Liverpool
Department Name: Chemistry


Understanding the properties and mechanistic detail of electrochemical or catalytic reactions at the interface at molecular level is critical for developing energy systems e.g. batteries; supercapacitors; fuel cells, water splitting catalysts. Shell-Isolated Nanoparticles for Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SHINERS) is a powerful technique for surface analysis. In principle, any type of electrode substrate can be used since the amplification of the Raman signal comes from the gold core embedded within an ultrathin (ca. 2 nm) silica shell. This allows the detection of intermediates and products on any electrode surface during an electrochemical reaction and highlights a very powerful method at accessing reaction pathways and relating them directly to surface structure.
The PhD project would focus on using SHINERS on electrode substrates to investigate important fundamental reactions such as water splitting, carbon dioxide reduction, and electrochemical reactions involving oxygen.


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