Research Overview

Recent Highlights

  • Nature Mater paper on surface Li-ion diffusion[Link]
  • Nature Mater review and cover image on electrolytes[Link]
  • EES paper on ion transport in perovskite halides[Link]
  • Publications: Google Scholar Citations
  • BBC Radio Life Scientific interview [link]
  • Christmas Lectures on Ri Channel [link]
  • StorageX Symposium Talk, 21 Aug [link]
  • New CATMAT project website [link]


Saiful grew up in Crouch End, north London, and obtained his BSc and PhD degrees from University College London, completing his PhD under Professor Richard Catlow FRS. He then held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Eastman Kodak Labs in Rochester, New York, USA, working on oxide superconductors. Saiful returned to the UK to become Lecturer, then Reader, at the University of Surrey before joining the University of Bath in 2006 as Professor of Materials Chemistry.

His research interests include computer modelling of new materials for lithium (and sodium) batteries and perovskite solar cells. He recently served on the Diversity Committee of the Royal Society and is a Patron of Humanists UK. Saiful presented the 80th anniversary Royal Institution Christmas Lectures (2016) on the theme of energy. His outside interests include family breaks (as a dad to two), indie music, politics and football.

Contact Summary

  • Department of Chemistry
  • University of Bath, Bath BA2 7AY
  • Tel: 01225-384938
  • Email:
  • Twitter @SaifulChemistry
  • Wikipedia Link

Recent Awards and Honours

  • American Chemical Society (ACS) Henry H. Storch Award in Energy Chemistry (2020)
  • Elected Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (FIMMM) (2019)
  • RSC Peter Day Award in Materials Chemistry (2017)
  • Royal Institution Christmas Lecturer (2016)
  • Patron of Humanists UK (2016)
  • Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award (2013-2018)
  • Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) Sustainable Energy Award (2013)
  • RSC Materials Chemistry Division Lecturer Award (2011)
  • RSC Francis Bacon Medal for Fuel Cell Science (2008)
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC)(2008)

Research Overview: Materials for Clean Energy

In broad terms, our research programme combines advanced computer modelling methods with structural techniques in the study of new solid state materials for "clean energy" applications, as outlined below.

Olivine-structured LiFePO4

Lithium and Sodium Batteries: Electrodes and Solid Electrolytes

Rechargeable lithium batteries have helped in the worldwide revolution in portable electronics. However, next-generation batteries for electric vehicles and grid storage will rely on the discovery and development of novel Li- and Na-ion conducting materials.


Studies are being carried out on the following:
  • Compounds based on LiFePO4, Li(Ni,Mn,Co)O2 and Li-rich layered oxides for Li-ion battery cathodes, and alternative oxide systems TiO2(B) and layered LiVO2 for anodes;
  • Na-ion battery materials Nax(Ni,Mn)O2 and Na phosphates;
  • Solid electrolytes such as Li garnet, Li-rich anti-perovskite, LISICON and NASICON materials.


Solar Cells: Hybrid and Halide Perovskites

Solar cell materials based on organo-lead halide perovskites have shown rapid increases in solar-to-electricity conversion efficiencies. We are studying the defect, transport and stability issues of methylammonium lead halides (e.g. CH3NH3PbI3), mixed A-cation perovskites (FA,MA,Cs)PbI3 and mixed-anion compounds MAPb(I,Br)3.

Silicate-based apatite with SiO4 tetrahedra

Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: Oxide-Ion and Proton Conductors

The search for novel compounds with high oxide ion or proton conductivity has attracted considerable attention owing to their important applications as effective solid electrolytes in intermediate-temperature SOFCs. Here we are studying perovskite-type proton conductors (e.g. doped BaZrO3) and new oxide-ion conductors based on Si/Ge apatites and tetrahedral gallium oxides.