Lab overview
  • SOFC activation
    Solid oxide fuel cells
    Rational design of better SOFC cathode materials through a fundamental understanding of the role of surface electronic structure and chemistry on the oxygen reduction reaction, including the effects of stress and hetero-interfaces.
  • Pyrite surface pitting
    Nanoscale pitting on surface films
    Point defect agglomeration leads to formation of pits on surface passive films, exemplified on pyrite, as a root-cause of pitting corrosion.
  • Cladding Degradation
    Cladding corrosion
    Mechanisms and kinetics of corrosion and hydrogen pick up in nuclear fuel cladding made of Zr alloys, assessed as a function of alloying elements and stress.
  • Flow stress upturn
    Degradation of microstructure at long time scale
    Modeling defect structure evolution and slow processes using newly adapted activation relaxation based atomistic techniques with extended time scales.
  • Strained Electrocatalysts
    Strained electrocatalysts
    Accelerate oxygen reduction and diffusion in mixed conducting electrocatalysts through easier formation and migration of oxygen vacancies by application of mechanical stress.

Yildiz Group's research area is the science and technology of materials development for energy conversion applications in harsh environments. The scientific insights derived from our research impact the design of novel surface chemistries for efficient and durable solid oxide fuel/electrolysis cells, and for corrosion resistant films in a wide range of extreme environments as in nuclear energy generation and oil exploration. We have made significant contributions in advancing molecular-level understanding of the kinetics of oxygen reduction and oxidation on ionic solid surfaces. Specifically we study the effects of temperature, stress and reactive fluids on the surface reactivity and degradation by combining theoretical and experimental analyses of electronic structure, defect mobility and composition, and provide design guidelines for high-performance and durable materials.

The key findings in much of our work were obtained through our development of in situ surface science techniques in conjunction with first-principles calculations and novel atomistic simulations. We develop and implement new scanning tunneling microscopy and spectroscopy capabilities in harsh in situ conditions of temperature, reactive gasses and mechanical stresses; a first-of-its kind capability. Our computational specialization includes development of new multiscale models to overcome the timescale limitation of traditional atomistic methods while coupling to the same atomistic length scales attainable in our experiments

Recent News

  1. The Yildiz Group will be working on an Oxygen-creating instrument that will fly on the Mars 2020 NASA mission!
  2. Congratulations to Yan Chen for successfully defending her Ph.D. thesis! Welcome to the group Dr. Chen!
  3. Congratulations to Prof. Yildiz on becoming a tenured faculty member at MIT!!
  4. Yan's research work is profiled in an article on the MIT Nuclear Science and Engineering website.
  5. Prof. Yildiz's article on strain engineering is featured on the MIT News page!

Recent Paper

Publication image

Reducibility of Co at the La0.8Sr0.2CoO3/(La0.5Sr0.5)2CoO4 hetero-interface at elevated temperatures

Nikolai Tsvetkov, Yan Chen and Bilge Yildiz
J. Mater. Chem. A, Advance Article, 2014. DOI: 10.1039/C4TA01889C

© 2013, The Yildiz Group, Massachusetts Institute of Technology