Advancing Materials for a Clean Energy Future
Because of the world’s reliance on fossil fuels, we are producing 40 billion tons of greenhouse gases every year, contributing to climate change and causing other potentially negative environmental impacts. But we can only reduce fossil fuel-related greenhouse emissions if clean energy becomes our main energy source. This shift requires us to develop efficient and reliable clean energy technologies—especially electrochemical energy systems, such as fuel cells and rechargeable batteries that are technologically and commercially feasible.
As Canada Research Chair in Advanced Materials for Clean Energy, Dr. Zhongwei Chen is designing and developing new nanostructured energy materials that will support the development of clean energy technologies, including fuel cells, rechargeable metal-air batteries, and lithium-ion batteries. The approaches Chen and his research team use, and the materials they develop, will lead to clean energy technologies that offer better performance, higher reliability and lower costs. They may also make it more likely that electric vehicles (powered by lithium batteries or fuel cells) and wind and solar power integration (large-scale grid energy storage) can be broadly commercialized and adopted.
Canada is a world leader in sustainable development and the use of renewable energy. But as a country, our challenge is to reduce our reliance on conventional fossil fuels. By supporting the development of clean energy technologies, especially in the area of fuel cells and rechargeable battery systems, Chen’s research will play a critical role in addressing these challenges. Ultimately, this will not only change the way we think about and consume energy, but will benefit our health and environment.