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PhD on lithium batteries in France

The LRCS Laboratory at the University Picardie Jules Verne (Amiens,
France), the ICMCB-CNRS Laboratory at the University of Bordeaux
(France) and the Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL, Grenoble, France), jointly
invite applications for a three-year PhD programme entitled:

Lithium Batteries: neutrons at the rescue

This PhD proposal aims at developing a solid expertise in the systematic
structural investigation of inorganic materials used as electrodes for
lithium-ion batteries and in the determination of phase transformation
mechanisms when these materials are reduced/oxidized during battery
operation (i.e. during Lithium deintercalation and intercalation in the
host structure).

In particular, we want to develop, through a collaborative work between
LRCS Amiens, ICMCB Bordeaux, ILL Scientists and technical staff,
electrochemical cells which will allow to follow in-situ (i.e. during
electrochemical operation, operando) the structural modifications (new
metastable phase formations, solid solutions, changes in crystallinity
etc…) associated with the reversible insertion/extraction of alkali
cations (Li+, eventually extended to Na+) from the positive and/or
negative electrodes of Li-ion (Na-ion…) batteries.

In addition, our team wishes to evaluate and develop a more systematic
use of the PDF approach with neutrons for energy-related materials which
may present partial long-range disorder phenomena. This study will be
performed in collaboration with Pierre Bordet from Néel Institute
(Grenoble, France). The project will include specific tasks summarized
as follows:

* Development of electrochemical cells suitable for in-situ neutron
diffraction during electrochemical operation,
* Study of case compounds for validation of the cells,
* Determination of insertion/deinsertion mechanisms for
electrochemical systems of interest at both academic and
industrial levels,
* Addressing new problems for new materials in relationship with
partner institutions of the RS2E (Réseau sur le Stockage
Electrochimique de l’Energie) French network, recently granted as
a LabEX by the French authorities (STORE-EX).

Importantly, the project aims at sharing our technical developments with
the scientific community so as to implement and “offer” a reliable tool
available at ILL that could be further used by scientists of the energy
storage community.

The PhD project will be located mainly in Grenoble (France) at the ILL,
with short but regular missions in Amiens (France) at the LRCS –
University of Picardie Jules Verne and in Bordeaux (France) at the ICMCB
– University of Bordeaux. The successful candidate will be employed for
a period of up to three years, with a gross salary of around 2350
€/month, together with other benefits depending on the student’s social
status (for more details see:
A team of experts, including Christian Masquelier from LRCS, Laurence
Croguennec from ICMCB and Emmanuelle Suard from ILL will supervise the
work of the PhD student. Applicants should have a degree from a relevant
Master course (Solid state chemistry and physics, Inorganic materials
for Energy Storage and Conversion …). Academic knowledge of condensed
matter physics will be highly appreciated as well as good communication
skills and interest in designing challenging scientific tools will be
essential for the success of the project.

*Supervisors: *Christian Masquelier
LRCS – University of Picardie Jules Verne, Laurence Croguennec
ICMCB-CNRS – University of Bordeaux and Emmanuelle Suard

Contact information: Masquelier, Tel : +33 6 6251 8972 or +33 6 7409
1769, christian.masquelier@u-picardie.fr

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Prof. Dr.. Massimo Nespolo
Institut Jean Barriol, FR 2843
Université de Lorraine
Faculté des Sciences et Technologies
BP 70239, Boulevard des Aiguillettes
F54506 Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy cedex France