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Personal profile

Research Interests

Available PhD projects:

Personal Statement

My vision is to establish an internationally competitive research group, focused on delivering next-generation multifunctional materials and technologies for renewable energy conversion, making a significant technological impact in areas where mankind faces global scientific challenges, by combining out of the box thinking with strong multidisciplinary, analytical skills.

I joined the Department of Chemical and Process Engineering, University of Strathclyde, as Lecturer, Chancellor’s Fellow in April 2020, bringing a wealth of multidisciplinary research experience. Prior to this, I worked as a research associate at Newcastle University on advanced materials for catalysis, chemical looping hydrogen production and membranes for carbon dioxide capture and before that at the University of St Andrews on materials for solid oxide fuel cells and electrolysis cells as well as catalysis. I hold a PhD on materials and devices for electrochemical energy conversion from the University of St Andrews, UK.

I have a strong record of introducing innovative, ground-breaking concepts in the field of advanced nanomaterials and energy conversion applications. I have 3 international patents and 25 refereed journal publications, including five in the prestigious Nature-family journals and two in Energy and Environmental Science.

I am also passionate about communicating science, mentoring, and finding new ways of visualizing and presenting data.

Research Interests

  • Materials, methods and concepts in solid-state physical chemistry of oxide materials and nanomaterials
  • Design and preparation of new functional oxide materials and devices for various energy conversion applications, including solid oxide fuel/electrolysis cells, catalysis (oxidation reactions, hydrocarbon catalysis), redox conversion for hydrogen or syngas production
  • Electrochemistry, electrochemical devices and processes
  • Cation and oxygen nonstoichiometric perovskite oxide materials
  • Surface and bulk structure and properties of materials by diffraction, spectroscopy and electron microscopy
  • Structure-property correlations in complex systems for (electro)catalytic applications
  • Hyphenated, in situ or operando techniques for understanding structure-property-application correlations
  • Materials chemistry and engineering solutions for renewable energy and sustainability
  • Data visualization, communicating science  

Expertise & Capabilities

I have extensive expertise in energy materials, chemical physics, solid state ionics, ceramic synthesis, processing, electrochemistry, heterogenous catalysis, membranes, as well as in the design, preparation, testing and modelling of new oxide or composite materials.

  • Materials: oxides, composites, nanoparticles, nanomaterials, perovskites, spinels, molten carbonates
  • Methods: X-ray diffraction, absorption, photoelectron spectroscopy, electron microscopy, electrochemical testing
  • Technologies: fuel cells, electrolysis cells, catalysts, membranes
  • Software: Mathematica, Origin Pro, CrystalMaker, GSAS II, CASA XPS, Blender

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Science, Materials and Microstructures for High Temperature Electrochemical Devices through Control of Perovskite Defect Chemistry, University of St Andrews

Award Date: 1 Jul 2013

Bachelor of Science in Engineering, Oxide materials and nanomaterials, Universitatea Politehnica Din Bucuresti

Award Date: 1 Jul 2008


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  • Roadmap on exsolution for energy applications

    Neagu, D., Irvine, J. T. S., Wang, J., Yildiz, B., Opitz, A. K., Fleig, J., Wang, Y., Liu, J., Shen, L., Ciucci, F., Rosen, B. A., Xiao, Y., Xie, K., Yang, G., Shao, Z., Zhang, Y., Reinke, J. M., Schmauss, T. A., Barnett, S., Maring, R., & 15 othersKyriakou, V., Mushtaq, U., Tsampas, M. N., Kim, Y., O'Hayre, R., Carrillo, A. J., Ruh, T., Lindenthal, L., Schrenk, F., Rameshan, C., Papaioannou, E. I., Kousi, K., Metcalfe, I., Xu, X. & Liu, G., 28 Apr 2023, (E-pub ahead of print) In: Journal of Physics: Energy. 80 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    4 Downloads (Pure)
  • Real-time insight into the multistage mechanism of nanoparticle exsolution from a perovskite host surface

    Calì, E., Thomas, M. P., Vasudevan, R., Wu, J., Gavalda-Diaz, O., Marquardt, K., Saiz, E., Neagu, D., Unocic, R. R., Parker, S. C., Guiton, B. S. & Payne, D. J., 29 Mar 2023, In: Nature Communications. 14, 10 p., 1754.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    1 Downloads (Pure)