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Professor Carlos Ponce de León Albarrán BSc, MSc, MBA, PhD, FRSC

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 a Professor of Electrochemical Engineering within Engineering and Physical Sciences, and Head of the Energy Technology Group.

His main research activities are in the areas of 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 180 peer review papers in high impact factor journals and has industrial experience in quality control, data acquisition, fuel cells, analytical chemistry and metal recovery.

He currently coordinates the MSc in Sustainable Energy Technologies as well as teaching in several modules including:

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. The MSc touches multiple fields of science such as chemical engineering, chemistry, material sciences and mechanical and electrical engineering and focuses on promoting sustainable methods for energy generation and storage.

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)

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.

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

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.

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

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.

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Book Chapters





Module title   Module code  Role   
Principles of Photovoltaics, Fuel Cells and Batteries FEEG6007 Module leader
Advanced Photovoltaics, Fuel Cells and Batteries FEEG6008 Module leader
Introduction to Energy Technologies, Environment and Sustainability SESG6041 Tutor
Applications of Renewable Energy, Storage and Nuclear Energy SESM6043 Tutor
Automotive Propulsion SESM6037 Tutor
Professor Carlos Ponce de León Albarrán
Engineering, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton. SO17 1BJ United Kingdom

Room Number : 30/1002

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