Date: September 24, 2009

Ed Castner DOE SISGR PREd Castner, Claudio Margulis and Mark Maroncelli, pictured at right, discussing research plans at the Ionic Liquids symposium held at the 6th International Discussion Meeting on Relaxation in Complex Systems (6th IDMRCS).

The U.S. Dept. of Energy has recently funded a research consortium to investigate how chemical reaction dynamics occur when the reacting species are dissolved in ionic liquids. Ionic liquids are salts that are liquid at or near room temperature, and have a number of remarkable properties that make them ideal liquids in which to carry out energy-related chemistry

A specific research focus of this highly collaborative project will be to understand electron- and charge-transfer reactions occurring in the ionic liquids. Understanding how charges move between and within molecules while solvated in ionic liquids is expected to provide the foundation for further breakthroughs in the application of novel molten salts for energy applications that include solar photoelectrochemical cells, as well as ultracapacitors, next-generation lithium batteries, and hydrogen fuel cells

The DOE grant is titled, "SISGR: Physical Chemistry of Reaction Dynamics in Ionic Liquids" and is being funded through the Solar Photochemistry program in the DOE Office of Basic Energy Sciences (Dr. Mark Spitler, Program Manager). Prof. Ed Castner at Rutgers is the principal investigator for the grant, with four co-principal investigators including Prof. David Blank at the University of Minnesota, Prof. Claudio Margulis at the University of Iowa, Prof. Mark Maroncelli at Penn State University and Dr. Jim Wishart at Brookhaven National Laboratory. The total amount of the three-year award is $2.4 M, including $1.95 M to Rutgers to fund the four university research groups, and $450 K to Brookhaven National Laboratory to fund Dr. Wishart's group.