Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship (IF) - Postdoc Position: Design of new mixed anion electrode materials for metal-ion batteries by combining theoretical and experimental approaches

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    10/06/2019 13:30 - Europe/Athens
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions
    Spain, Madrid
    CEU San Pablo University
    Pharmacy Faculty
    Solid State Chemistry and Materials Research Group

USP-CEU welcomes postdoctoral researchers with an excellent track record in the area of new materials for lithium ion, sodium ion or magnesium batteries, to apply jointly with a research supervisor from USP-CEU to the European Commission Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship Scheme (MSCA-IF). Selected candidates will be provided with devoted training and special assistance for proposal development.

The research of the MSCA-IF fellow will focus on first principle calculations or simulations to assess the different structural stability of prospective electrodes and their intercalated phases, their intercalation voltage and potential barriers in order to understand both electrochemical performances or real cells and intrinsic kinetics limitations of the materials.

The fellow will be part of a Research Group that will develop the experimental work in those prospective electrodes that are promising according to the computational results obtained during the project. Experience is required in the first calculations or simulation of principles, but not necessarily in the field of lithium battery materials.


The Hosting Group is “Solid State Chemistry and Materials Research Group” from USP-CEU, working on intercalation materials for lithium ion batteries since 1995 and more recently on sodium ion batteries. The Group has a very complete laboratory for carrying out the research tasks that cover the whole process, from the synthesis of active materials to prototyping of pouch cells up to 2 Ah.

We collaborate with several Spanish and International research Groups through National Integrated Projects. Through these collaborations we largely extent the available characterization techniques to those that may be needed in some cases for a full understanding of structural characteristics and its relationships with the electrochemical behavior of the target materials.

Relevant achievements include the synthesis, characterization and  investigation of electrochemical properties of a new class of intercalation materials with potential use in lithium ion batteries which are based in fluorides with cryolite structure and formula Li3MF6 with M=Fe and V and. More recently, the hitherto unknown VO2F was for the first time isolated and characterized. Due to its high capacity, it was proposed as a new potential electrode for lithium batteries.

In addition, the group has been working in titanates for the last 20 years and is a reference group in ramsdellite-based electrodes (TiO2, Li2Ti3O7; LiTiVO4, Na2Ti6O13, Li2Ti6O13).

Presently the group is searching for new sodium battery electrodes (positives and negatives) aiming to improve their performance to trigger Na ion batteries commercialization. Finally, new magnesium intercalation compounds are being explored as positive electrode in magnesium batteries.

The Director of the Research Group, Dr. Flaviano García Alvarado, has published 150 papers in peer-reviewed journals and he is inventor of 6 patents. He has supervised 10 Ph. D. students, all of them finding permanent positions in academia, administration or industry. Dr. García Alvarado has coordinated 20 competitive research projects, five of them with ca. 25 researchers from numerous Spanish research centers. Several institutions (Spanish Government, Madrid Local Government and European Commission) have funded this research. Finally, he has deep experience in collaborating with companies (Airbus Defense and Space, Iberdrola) who have also funded specific research projects.


Resarch Project Description:

The Fellow will focus on the investigation of phase stability of different prospective host materials for several intercalated ions. The possible phase transitions upon intercalation or deintercalation, will be investigated as well as diffusion mechanisms and diffusivity limitations due to potential barriers intrinsic to the different host. As an important feature of the prospective host, intercalation voltage will also be computed.

Structural characteristic and composition will be related to intercalation mechanisms and kinetics limitation as well as to intercalation voltage of target hosts. Target compounds will be mixed anion compounds, for which intercalation characteristics will be dependent on anion ratio. Optimization of that ratio for different transition metal mixed anion compounds according to computational results will be a major objective of the research project and fellow´s tasks.

From a methodological point of view first principle calculations or computational work will be complemented with the collaboration in the experimental work of other group members in order to check validity of results. Prospective electrode materials will be synthetizedand characterized from both, structural and electrochemical point of view. Fellow is expected to participate in these experimental tasks to broaden his research experience and expertise.



At the deadline for the submission of proposals (11/09/2019), researchers:

  • Shall be in possession of a doctoral degree, or have at least 4 years of full-time equivalent research experience.
  • Shall have strong written and oral communication skills in English.
  • Must not have resided or carried out their main activities in Spain for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the abovementioned deadline.

An expression of interest shall be sent to Prof. Dr. Flaviano García Alvarado. Your file should contain the following elements:

  • A short CV: Only CVs with considerable scientific achievements will be considered. Broad experience, published articles and participation in competitive research projects is desirable. Team working abilities, flexibility and research motivation and enthusiasm are always welcome.
  • A one-page research proposal.
  • A short statement explaining why USP-CEU would be the best host institution for your research.
  • Contact details for two references.


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