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Wednesday, 01 July 2015

Prof Marivi Fernandez-Serra offers a ICN2 Seminar about “Water at Semiconductor and metallic interfaces”

The speaker leads a research Group about Computational and Theoretical Condensed Matter Physics and Chemistry at the Stony Brook University (USA). During the presentation she unfolded her understanding of photocatalytic water splitting and the electrochemical interface from first principles.

Prof Marivi Fernandez-Serra, from the Stony Brook University (USA), visited ICN2 on June 29 to offer a talk about her recent research on “Water at Semiconductor and metallic interfaces”. She leads a Group devoted to the study of: Nuclear Quantum Effects in Water and Ice; Dipolar correlations in liquid water; Ferroelectric Thin Films PbTiO3 - Water Interactions; and, Metal-Organic Frameworks: van der Waals Interactions and Lattice Distortions. Her Seminar was presented by Prof Pablo Ordejón, ICN2 Director.

 

During the presentation, Prof Marivi Fernandez-Serra unfolded her understanding of photocatalytic water splitting and the electrochemical interface from first principles. She addressed this issue by analysing ab initio molecular dynamics simulations of water at oxide and non oxide surfaces. She explained that a quantum mechanical description of the interface is critical, not only to obtain the correct electronic structure, but also to obtain the correct atomic structure of water at these interfaces. She finally discussed how different semiconductor and metallic surfaces interact with water in very different manner depending on their surface charge, showing that when in contact with interfaces, new and surprising properties of water can be revealed.