Prof. Neil Robertson
School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh
Sunlight provides a clean and renewable source of energy and new materials are being explored to harvest and convert solar energy towards both photovoltaic and photocatalytic applications.
The perovskite solar cell is one of the more popular research areas in photovoltaics at present. Prof. Robertson and his research team have studied several series of hole-conducting materials to address limitations in the cost, stability and reproducibility of the current state-of-the-art materials. These research findings will be presented in this talk, including the synthesis, characterisation and application of triarylamine based hole-transport materials, describing the advantages and disadvantages of small-molecule, starburst and polymeric materials.
Photocatalysis has also been receiving attention as a potential method of removing small amounts of highly toxic organic and inorganic compounds from contaminated drinking water in recent years. While titanium dioxide (TiO2) is the most commonly used photocatalytic material to date, fast charge recombination reduces the photocatalytic efficiency significantly and only UV light is absorbed. In order to overcome the limitations of TiO2, Prof. Robertson’s team developed heterojunction photocatalysis to provide visible light harvesting and an interface which allows charge separation to occur. The application of this method for the photocatalytic degradation of organic molecules, model wastewater and bacteria, will also be discussed.
ABOUT THE SPEAKER
Prof. Neil Robertson graduated with a BSc and PhD from the University of Edinburgh. He carried out postdoctoral research in the Freie Universität Berlin in the group of Prof K. Seppelt, supported by a Royal Society European Exchange Fellowship. Following that, he took up a SERC-funded postdoctoral position at University of Wales Bangor in the group of Prof A. Underhill, and obtained an independent position as a Royal Society of Edinburgh/BP Research Fellow in the University of Edinburgh. Prof. Robertson is currently the Chair of Molecular Materials (School of Chemistry) there. He is also a Chartered Chemist, Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
Admission is free
Dress code: Office attire
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