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The University of Southampton
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Professor Carlos Ponce de León Albarrán BSc, MSc, MBA, PhD

Professor of Electrochemical Engineering, Coordinator of the MSc in Sustainable Energy Technologies

Professor Carlos Ponce de León Albarrán's photo

Carlos Ponce de León Albarrán is Professor of Electrochemical Engineering within Engineering and Physical Sciences at the University of Southampton.

Carlos Ponce de León is a professor working as an electrochemical engineer in energy storage, water treatment, metal ion removal, characterization of novel electrode materials, electrochemical strategies for pollution control and redox flow cells for energy conversion. His research has been published in over 75 peer review papers and he has industrial experience in quality control (Schering/Proquina), data acquisition and fuel cells (Mexican Petroleum Institute), and analytical chemistry (Ciba-Geigy).

He currently coordinates the MSc in Sustainable Energy Technologies as well as several teaching modules including: Introduction to Energy Technologies, Fuel Cells and Photovoltaic Systems and Nuclear Energy Technologies. The MSc in Sustainable Energy Technologies was one of the first postgraduate programmes offered in energy technologies and has attracted students from different disciplines all over the world creating an interactive learning interdisciplinary space and an opportunity for the students to networking.

Research interests

  • borohydride fuel cells
  • aluminium air batteries
  • iron - air batteries 
  • redox flow cells
    • zinc - cerium
  • water treatment:
    • metal recovery
    • oxidation of organic compounds 

Research group

Energy Technology

Research project(s)

NECOBAUT: iron-air redox flow battery

Normally iron corrodes when exposed to air and humidity and has to be protected by painting it, using corrosion inhibitors or by passing a cathodic current through it (cathodic protection). These methods avoid the oxidation of iron into a rusty iron oxide. However, in this project, a novel investigation of the oxidation of iron, combined with the reduction of oxygen is used to generate energy.

Aluminium-air battery: study of three dimensional aluminium anode and air cathode for the development of high energy density battery for micro-UAVs

The project focusses on the electrochemical properties and energy capability of the aluminium – air battery system. This comprises the separate half-cells, including the aluminium anode and its alloys as well as the cathode materials for oxygen reduction and the electrolytes with and without additives. The project propose the construction of a structural three dimensional battery and it is based on a PhD project currently in the final stages.

Development of borohydride fuel cells

The direct borohydride fuel cell is a promising alternative for electrical power generation in large-scale and for portable equipment, such as laptop computers or mobile phones. Its predicted maximum energy density compared with other cells or batteries is higher but several drawbacks need to be overcome to reach that energy.

Redox flow cells batteries: zinc - cerium

The project focusses on the electrochemical properties and energy capability of the zinc–cerium system, initially developed by Plurion Inc., which has a theoretical energy density of 463 kJ mol-1. This is larger than other redox flow systems such as the vanadium and iron-chromium systems and has one of the highest thermodynamic open-circuit cell voltages.

Scale up photoelectrochemical reactor using nanocatalytic material for environmental remediation

The purpose of this work is to manufacture self-organized oxide semiconductor nanotubes on a titanium alloy by electrochemical means. The anodised titanium is used as an anode in the degradation of organic pollutants in a photocatalytic reactor.

ELEVATE - ELEctrochemical Vehicle Advanced TEchnology (EP/M009394/1)

Preparation and characterisation of a rechargeable battery based on a conductive polymer and aluminum in an ionic liquid electrolyte

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Book Chapters




Module titleModule codeDisciplineRole
Nuclear Energy Technology SESG6026 Engineering Sciences Course leader
Fuel Cells and Photovoltaic Systems I SESM6017 Mechanical Engineering Tutor
Fuel Cells and Photovoltaic Systems II SESM6019 Mechanical Engineering Tutor
Introduction to Energy Technologies SESM6021 Mechanical Engineering Tutor
Professor Carlos Ponce de León Albarrán
Engineering, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton. SO17 1BJ United Kingdom

Room Number NNN: 30/1002

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