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Wei Li

Postdoctoral Fellow-Materials Scientist - Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


  • Ph. D. in Materials Science, Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2012
  • B. S. in Chemistry, Ocean University of China, 2007

Wei Li is currently a postdoctoral fellow-materials scientist at West Virginia University. He received his Ph. D. degree in materials science from Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (Institute of Chemistry Chinese Academy of Sciences) in 2012.

Dr. Li joined Professor Rachel Caruso’s group in both Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and The University of Melbourne in Australia as a postdoctoral fellow in 2012. He managed a project of Nano-composite Materials for Removing Heavy Metal Ions in Drinking Water, which is an internationally collaborative project between CSIRO and Chinese Academy of Sciences. In 2015, Dr. Li moved to International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory in Portugal to take up his Marie-Curie COFUND fellowship funded by the European Union Seventh Framework Program. Since 2017, Dr. Li moved to USA and worked at Utah State University until 2018. Since March, 2018, Dr. Li has worked in West Virginia University as a materials scientist in Professor Xingbo Liu’s group.

Dr. Wei Li has multidisciplinary research experience in electrochemical energy storage and conversion, solar energy harvesting, water treatment, gas-sensing and heterogeneous catalysis, and chemical looping.

Dr. Li has published more than 60 peer-reviewed journal articles (13 papers with citations > 100) and 3 patents with total citations of more than 3300 (as of June, 2020). He received Top Peer Reviewer 2018 and 2019 Awards as the globally top 1% of reviewers in materials science, chemistry and cross-field from Publons. He also received the outstanding reviewer awards for Dalton Transactions (2018) and RSC Advances (2017) from Royal Society of Chemistry and served as the principle investigator for the ORNL Neutron Sciences Beam Time Award (2019) and Marie-Curie COFUND (NanoTRAINforGrowth) Research Fellowship (2015-2017).

Awards and Achievements

  • 2019 Publons Global Peer Review Award Top 1% in Materials Science
  • 2019 Publons Global Peer Review Award Top 1% in Chemistry
  • 2019 Publons Global Peer Review Award Top 1% in Cross-Field
  • 2018 Publons Global Peer Review Award Top 1% in Materials Science
  • 2018 Publons Global Peer Review Award Top 1% in Chemistry
  • 2018 Publons Top Peer Review Award for Journal of Materials Chemistry A
  • 2018 Outstanding Reviewer for Dalton Transactions
  • 2017 Outstanding Reviewer for RSC Advances

Service and Outreach

  • Editorial Board Member of Journal of Energy and Power Engineering
  • Guest editor of International Journal of Electrochemistry
  • Member of RSC Advances Reviewer Panel
  • Invited reviewer for U.S. DOE SBIR programs
  • Journal reviewer for more than 40 journals such as Angewandte Chemie, Advanced Materials, Advanced Energy Materials, Joule, Chemical Communications, Materials Horizons, and ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces in American Chemical Society, Royal Society of Chemistry, Wiley, Cell press, The Electrochemical Society, Institute of Physics (IOP) and Elsevier publishers.

Selected Publications

  1. Xiujuan Chen (equal contribution), Wei Li (equal contribution), Yaobin Xu, Zhipeng Zeng, Hanchen Tian, Murugesan Velayutham, Wangying Shi, Wenyuan Li, Chongmin Wang, David Reed, Valery V. Khramtsov, Xiaolin Li* and Xingbo Liu*, Charging activation and desulfurization of MnS unlock the active sites and electrochemical reactivity for Zn-ion battery, Nano Energy, 2020, 75, 104869
  2. Fuzhan Song (equal contribution), Wei Li (equal contribution), Jiaqi Yang, Guanqun Han, Peilin Liao* and Yujie Sun*, Interfacing nickel nitride and nickel boosts both electrocatalytic hydrogen evolution and oxidation reactions, Nature Communications, 2018, 9, 4531.
  3. Wei Li (equal contribution), Nan Jiang (equal contribution), Bo Hu, Xuan Liu, Fuzhan Song, Guanqun Han, Taylor J. Jordan, Tanner B. Hanson, T. Leo Liu and Yujie Sun*, Electrolyzer design for flexible decoupled water splitting and organic upgrading with electron reservoirs, Chem, 2018, 4, 637-649.
  4. Wei Li, Xuefei Gao, Dehua Xiong, Fang Wei, Wei-Guo Song, Junyuan Xu and Lifeng Liu*, Hydrothermal synthesis of monolithic Co3Se4 nanowire electrodes for oxygen evolution and overall water splitting with high efficiency and extraordinary stability, Advanced Energy Materials, 2017, 7, 1602579.
  5. Wei Li, Ya-Xia Yin, Sen Xin, Yu-Guo Guo* and Wei-Guo Song*, Low-cost and large-scale synthesis of alkaline earth metal germanate nanowires as a new class of lithium ion battery anode materials, Energy & Environmental Science, 2012, 5, 8007-8013.

Teaching Interests

  • Electrochemistry
  • Thermodynamics
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Nanoscience and Nanotechnology
  • Materials Science and Engineering

Special Interests

Table Tennis

Research Interests

Dr. Wei Li currently assists in managing three DOE projects including advanced manganese oxide-based cathodes for rechargeable aqueous zinc-ion batteries, engineering surface coating enables stabilized zinc anodes in mildly acidic or near neutral aqueous electrolytes for rechargeable zinc-based batteries, and new high-entropy perovskite oxides with increased reducibility and stability for thermochemical hydrogen generation at West Virginia University.

Dr. Wei Li has multidisciplinary research experience in the materials science, chemical, catalysis, energy and environment areas including:

  • Nanomaterials and Nanofabrication
  • Electrochemical Energy Conversion and Storage Devices: Li-ion, Na-ion, Zn-ion, Zn-air and Li-O2 batteries, proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells and water electrolyzers, anion exchange membrane (AEM) fuel cells and water electrolyzers, solid oxide fuel cells and electrolysis cells, hydrogen evolution reaction, hydrogen oxidation reaction, oxygen evolution reaction, oxygen reduction reaction, nitrogen reduction, CO2 reduction, electrochemical ammonia production and supercapacitors.
  • Solar energy harvesting: solar thermochemical hydrogen production (STCH), PV-driven water splitting, and photocatalysis
  • Water treatment: adsorption of heavy metal and radioactive ions and degradation of organic contaminants from water
  • Heterogeneous catalysis: chemical looping, organic condensation reactions, gas phase reactions, and catalytic degradation of contaminants
  • Sensor design and engineering: room-temperature gas sensors, high-temperature CO gas sensors, electrochemical and corrosion sensors