Training Champions

Each of the 10 Faraday Institution major research projects has a designated Training Champion who is the point of contact for researchers and PRISM staff looking to access training. They can advise on and sign-post training opportunities, give guidance on the use of the annual training budget and champion professional career development.

University of Birmingham

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Phoebe Allan

Seb Altus

University of Sheffield

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Seb Altus

Ferran Brosa Planella

WMG, University of Warwick

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Ferran Brosa Planella

Lancaster University

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John Griffin

University of Cambridge

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Alex Kersting

Melanie Loveridge Training Champion

University of Warwick

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Melanie Loveridge

University of Birmingham

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Dan Reed

Professor Peter Slater

University of Birmingham

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Peter Slater

Darren Walsh

University of Nottingham

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Darren Walsh

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Phoebe Allan

University of Birmingham - CATMAT


Dr Phoebe Allan is a Birmingham Fellow in the School of Chemistry.

Her research focuses on materials chemistry for energy storage. The goal of her research is to understand the links between the structure of a material, and its electrochemical properties, using techniques including synchrotron X-ray and neutron powder diffraction, pair distribution function analysis, and spectroscopic techniques (Raman, NMR, X-ray adsorption spectroscopy). A particular interest is developing experiments that probe the structure of a material as it changes, in real-time, and under operational conditions. This approach gives insight into which structural features are desirable for obtaining new materials with improved performance.

Current areas of interest include new electrode and electrolyte materials for lithium- and sodium- and aluminium-ion batteries.

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Seb Altus

University of Sheffield - SOLBAT


Seb Altus

Dr Seb Altus is currently a postdoctoral researcher at The University of Sheffield. He was awarded a BEng in Materials Science and Engineering from Swansea University before completing his PhD at the University of Sheffield. During his PhD he sat on the Faraday Student committee and was part of the Faraday Institution SOLBAT project. His PhD topic focused on the synthesis, characterisation and processing of solid electrolytes for all-solid state Li-metal batteries. During this time, he also completed an internship with Finden, helping develop XRD-CT characterisation of battery materials. In his current role Seb’s research with FutureCat revolves around the synthesis, and advanced characterisation of oxalate and other complex anions for lithium cathodes.

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Ferran Brosa Planella

WMG, University of Warwick - Multi-Scale Modelling


Ferran Brosa Planella

Dr Ferran Brosa Planella is an Assistant Professor at the University of Warwick working on mathematical modelling of lithium-ion batteries. He obtained a double Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Industrial Engineering from Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya and holds a DPhil in Mathematics from the University of Oxford.

Ferran’s research focuses on derivation, reduction and parameterisation of physics-based models for lithium-ion batteries, and he is a co-investigator of the Multi-Scale Modelling project. He is also a strong supporter of open science and is a core developer of PyBaMM and member of the organising committee of the ReproducibiliTea journal club at Warwick. Besides his research, Ferran regularly engages in outreach activities to disseminate science to a wider audience.

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John Griffin

Lancaster University - NEXGENNA


John Griffin is a senior lecturer in Materials Chemistry at Lancaster University. His research focuses on the use and development of solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance for the characterisation of materials for energy and the environment. He has authored and co-authored over 80 research articles in peer-reviewed journals, two book chapters, and regular speaks at national and international conferences. He is chair of the Institute of Physics British Radiofrequency Spectroscopy Group, which represents researchers working in applications of magnetic resonance across the UK. He is also a member of the Facility Executive for the UK High-Field Solid-State NMR facility located at the University of Warwick. He is a co-investigator on both the Faraday Institution FutureCat and NEXGENNA projects, working on solid-state NMR characterisation of cathode and anode materials and coatings in both Li and Na-ion batteries.

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Alex Kersting

University of Cambridge - Degradation


Dr Alex Kersting is the Faraday Institution’s Degradation Project Programme Manager. In 2012 she attained her PhD with Dr Paul Anderson from the University of Birmingham working on hydrogen storage materials.

Prior to joining the Degradation project she worked at the Royal Society for Chemistry for nine years in both their education team producing teaching and learning resources for schools, and supporting professional chemists to gain statutory qualifications to fulfil their roles.

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Melanie Loveridge

University of Warwick - SafeBatt


Melanie Loveridge Training Champion

Dr Melanie Loveridge is an Associate Professor of Electrochemical Materials at WMG. With over 12 years of experience within Li-ion battery research, she has spent equal amounts of time in academic research and as a characterisation specialist for a spin-out company from Imperial College. Her research areas focus on materials discovery and characterisation techniques, but also understanding mechanisms of degradation and battery forensics. Dr Loveridge is a lead inventor on several world patent families around electrode materials, compositions and structures, with > 30 publications in Q1 journals. Since returning to academia, she has won > £ 3 M in research grants from EPSRC calls, Energy Superstore Early Career Research award, The Faraday Institution and H2020’s Graphene Flagship. She sits on many advisory panels and committees for academia and industry and regularly engages with many outreach activities, including the British Science Festival, Radio 4’s Today Program and Costing the Earth, with several media articles published, e.g. The Telegraph. From 2020 Dr Loveridge has been an associate editor for Frontiers in Chemical Engineering and the Special Topics section in MDPI Coatings.

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Dan Reed

University of Birmingham - ReLiB


Dr Daniel Reed is a Lecturer in Materials Science at the University of Birmingham, and Project Lead for the Faraday Institution ReLiB project. His research focuses on gas emission and decomposition of energy storage materials (batteries and hydrogen storage), metal-hydrogen interactions and recycling and recovery of batteries. Underpinning this is expertise in real time mass spectrometry and Raman spectroscopy. He was Head of the University of Birmingham’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Foundation programmes, working to widen participation in Higher Education and support international pathways into the university.

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Peter Slater

University of Birmingham - Nextrode


Professor Peter Slater

Peter Slater is Professor in Materials Chemistry at the University of Birmingham and Co-Director of the Birmingham Centre for Energy Storage. He has more than 30 years’ research experience in the area of solid state/materials chemistry, ranging from fuel cells to battery materials. His present research is focusing mainly on the development new materials (cathodes/anodes/electrolytes) for Li/Na ion batteries, as well as strategies for recycling such materials. His group is also active in promoting research into Li/Na ion battery technologies in schools, and to general non-scientific audiences.

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Darren Walsh

University of Nottingham - LiSTAR


Darren Walsh

Dr Darren Walsh is Associate Professor of Physical Chemistry in the University of Nottingham School of Chemistry. The group he leads works on a range of electrochemical topics, many of which are related to electrochemical energy storage and conversation. He is the author of over 50 original research articles and invited book chapters in the areas of physical and analytical electrochemistry. He also enjoys bringing his science to the public. He performs chemistry demonstration lectures for general audiences and is a presenter on the Periodic Table of Videos, an award-winning chemistry channel on YouTube. He gained his PhD from Dublin City University and has held a research position at the University of Texas in Austin.

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