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Dr. R. Vasant Kumar

Dr. R. Vasant Kumar

Reader in Materials Chemistry


Office Phone: +44 1223 334327

Biography:

Materials Chemistry
In my group we have research expertise in electrochemical redox reactions at the interface of electrodes and electrolytes and morphology of electrodic materials within an ecological calculus at the cutting edge of new applications. Our research output has attracted worldwide recognition for creating framework that places emphasis on optimising rates of redox reactions, minimizing polarization losses and parasitic reactions and on design features for recovering materials and components with minimal loss of value.
Energy devices
A new metal–oxide photocatalyst composite material capable of absorbing both uv and visible light with redox-reaction rates that are up to 2-orders of magnitude faster for disinfecting water and for destroying pollutants in air. A spin-out company (CamSES Ltd) has been set up to exploit the properties. We are advancing innovative approaches to develop the next generation of ultra-high energy and power-density batteries based on novel Li chemistries, new electrolytes and specially engineered electrodes. Nano-structured scaffolds infiltrated with sulphur in order to fabricate new Li-S batteries with energy densities that are 100% higher than the best Li-ion batteries with improved cycle life, approaching 1000 cycles thus potentially overcoming an outstanding problem that has hampered progress for several decades. Research on solid oxide fuel cells using inkjet printing is based on optimising the atomic architecture of the solid electrolytes to improve conductivity and stability for low-temperature applications.
Sensors
Investigation into operating solid-state ionic sensors in electrochemically active mode has led to many practical applications such as on-board diagnostics in gas sensing, self-cleaning and mixed potential sensors for industrial usage and applied to molecular species such as SOx, NOx, H2S, HCl, H2O, CO, CO2. We have integrated oxide materials within silicon-on-insulator, CMOS platform. Two Start-up companies are manufacturing sensors based on our research: www.solutions4hydrogen.com and www.emclimited.co.uk
Recycling and Sustainability
A new environmentally clean process for recovering electro-active paste material from automotive-batteries for making new batteries (paste-to-paste recovery) has been developed. We have also made recent progress in light weighting such batteries by using light scaffold foams which are coated with a thin layer of metallic lead in amorphous state with low parasitic corrosion. We are advancing novel methodologies for carbon reduction and carbon sequestration in minerals, metals and materials processing.
Carbon with hierarchical pores from carbonized metal organic frameworks for lithium-sulfur batteries, Kai Xi, Shuai Cao, X Peng, Cate Ducati, RV Kumar and AKC Cheetam; Chem. Comm., 49 (22), 2192 – 2194, 2013.
Relevance of reaction of lead compounds with carboxylic acid in lead recovery from secondary sources, R Vasant Kumar, Jiakuan Yang and Seref Sonmez, J. Powder Metallurgy & Mining, Open Access, 2:1, doi: 10.4172/2168-9806/1000107, 2013; patent RV Kumar, S Sonmez and VP Kotzeva - PCT/GB2007/004222; EU 07824458.9; RU 2009117620; US 12/513707; CN 200780041628.4; IN 2216/KOLNP/2009
Vertically oriented TiO xN y nanopillar arrays with embedded Ag nanoparticles for visible-light photocatalysis; Jiang W, Ullah N, Divitini G, Ducati C, Kumar RV, Ding Y, Barber ZH; Langmuir 28(12), 5427-5431, 2012.
Understanding the relationship between dopant and ionic transport in yttria-doped ceria-zirconia, Xie XH, Sun JL, Brigden C, Farnan I, Hong YR, Kumar RV; J Mater. Chem. 21(26), 9570-9575, 2011.

Termination details:

Materials Chemistry
In my group we have research expertise in electrochemical redox reactions at the interface of electrodes and electrolytes and morphology of electrodic materials within an ecological calculus at the cutting edge of new applications. Our research output has attracted worldwide recognition for creating framework that places emphasis on optimising rates of redox reactions, minimizing polarization losses and parasitic reactions and on design features for recovering materials and components with minimal loss of value.
Energy devices
A new metal–oxide photocatalyst composite material capable of absorbing both uv and visible light with redox-reaction rates that are up to 2-orders of magnitude faster for disinfecting water and for destroying pollutants in air. A spin-out company (CamSES Ltd) has been set up to exploit the properties. We are advancing innovative approaches to develop the next generation of ultra-high energy and power-density batteries based on novel Li chemistries, new electrolytes and specially engineered electrodes. Nano-structured scaffolds infiltrated with sulphur in order to fabricate new Li-S batteries with energy densities that are 100% higher than the best Li-ion batteries with improved cycle life, approaching 1000 cycles thus potentially overcoming an outstanding problem that has hampered progress for several decades. Research on solid oxide fuel cells using inkjet printing is based on optimising the atomic architecture of the solid electrolytes to improve conductivity and stability for low-temperature applications.
Sensors
Investigation into operating solid-state ionic sensors in electrochemically active mode has led to many practical applications such as on-board diagnostics in gas sensing, self-cleaning and mixed potential sensors for industrial usage and applied to molecular species such as SOx, NOx, H2S, HCl, H2O, CO, CO2. We have integrated oxide materials within silicon-on-insulator, CMOS platform. Two Start-up companies are manufacturing sensors based on our research: www.solutions4hydrogen.com and www.emclimited.co.uk
Recycling and Sustainability
A new environmentally clean process for recovering electro-active paste material from automotive-batteries for making new batteries (paste-to-paste recovery) has been developed. We have also made recent progress in light weighting such batteries by using light scaffold foams which are coated with a thin layer of metallic lead in amorphous state with low parasitic corrosion. We are advancing novel methodologies for carbon reduction and carbon sequestration in minerals, metals and materials processing.
Carbon with hierarchical pores from carbonized metal organic frameworks for lithium-sulfur batteries, Kai Xi, Shuai Cao, X Peng, Cate Ducati, RV Kumar and AKC Cheetam; Chem. Comm., 49 (22), 2192 – 2194, 2013.
Relevance of reaction of lead compounds with carboxylic acid in lead recovery from secondary sources, R Vasant Kumar, Jiakuan Yang and Seref Sonmez, J. Powder Metallurgy & Mining, Open Access, 2:1, doi: 10.4172/2168-9806/1000107, 2013; patent RV Kumar, S Sonmez and VP Kotzeva - PCT/GB2007/004222; EU 07824458.9; RU 2009117620; US 12/513707; CN 200780041628.4; IN 2216/KOLNP/2009
Vertically oriented TiO xN y nanopillar arrays with embedded Ag nanoparticles for visible-light photocatalysis; Jiang W, Ullah N, Divitini G, Ducati C, Kumar RV, Ding Y, Barber ZH; Langmuir 28(12), 5427-5431, 2012.
Understanding the relationship between dopant and ionic transport in yttria-doped ceria-zirconia, Xie XH, Sun JL, Brigden C, Farnan I, Hong YR, Kumar RV; J Mater. Chem. 21(26), 9570-9575, 2011.

Research themes

Hydrocarbon Recovery:

Electrochemical redox reactions at the interface of electrodes and electrolytes and morphology of electrodic materials

Carbon Capture, Storage & Use:

Electrochemical redox reactions at the interface of electrodes and electrolytes and morphology of electrodic materials

Energy Storage:

Electrochemical redox reactions at the interface of electrodes and electrolytes and morphology of electrodic materials

Manufacturing:

In my group we have research expertise in electrochemical redox reactions at the interface of electrodes and electrolytes and morphology of electrodic materials within an ecological calculus at the cutting edge of new applications.

Materials and Chemistry:

Research Interests

Materials Chemistry

Energy Devices

We are advancing innovative approaches to develop the next generation of ultra-high-energy and power-density batteries based on novel Li chemistries, new electrolytes and specially engineered electrodes. Research on solid-oxide fuel cells is based on optimizing the atomic architecture of the solid electrolytes to improve conductivity and stability for low-temperature applications. A novel method of doping electrolytes and electrodes has also been developed.

Sensors

Investigation into operating solid-state ionic sensors in electrochemically active mode has led to many practical applications such as on-board diagnostics in gas sensing, self-cleaning chemical sensors and mixed potential sensors for industrial usage. We have also pioneered the use of electrochemical chains by interfacing several solid-state ionic systems in series or parallel for responding to molecular species such as SOx, NOx, H2S, HCl, H2O, CO, CO2 and many others. We are also working on: achieving smart sensors that can self-actuate and self-tune; miniaturization; bio-sensing; safety; energy reduction; and solving many environmental problems.

Recycling and sustainability

New strategies for recycling lead-acid batteries have been developed and patented such that precursors for battery plates are directly produced in an environmentally sound process that is sustainable with respect to both materials and energy. Using MATLAB, modelling work has been used to advance environmentally friendly processes using low-energy and low C-print for metal production, refining and recycling.

Keywords

  • Sustainability
  • Sensors
  • Materials
  • Storage