European Academy of Sciences
Member Profile

Yury Gogotsi


Yury Gogotsi
Year of Election
Materials Science Division
United States
Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
Gogotsi’s research has centered on the discovery, development and chemical modification of nanostructured carbon- and carbide-based materials. He is responsible for the development of a very important new family of materials, carbide-derived carbons. These novel materials are important because their pore structure can be tuned at the nanometer and sub-nanometer scales, allowing their properties, and thus function, to be tuned for specific applications, such as energy storage. This exquisite tunability (both pore size distributions and porosity that can be tuned with sub-Angstrom accuracy) has also enabled fundamental studies of the effects of pore size and surface chemistry on the properties of these nanomaterials. For example, studies of these selectively synthesized carbide-derived carbons have revealed a surprising increase of capacitance at pore sizes smaller than the solvated ion size (Science 2006). This finding has been responsible for a resurgence in the field of capacitive energy storage, with about 2000 citations to date. Yury’s pioneering work on the relations between the structure and capacitive performance of carbon nanomaterials have resulted in the development of a new generation of supercapacitors that facilitate the storage and utilization of electrical energy. His collaboration with French electrochemist Prof. Patrice Simon produced several seminal publications (Science 2006; 2010; 2011; 2014, 2016; JACS 2008; Nature Nano 2010, etc.), with the Simon/Gogotsi review in Nature Materials published in 2008 being the most cited article ever in the electrochemical capacitors field (~9000 citations in Web of Science). Carbide-derived carbon is used in supercapacitor electrodes by the largest European supercapacitor manufacturer Skeleton Technologies under commercial name “curved graphene”. His book titled “Carbon Nanomaterials” (2006) was a CRC press bestseller and the 2nd edition was published in 2013. More recently, the team at Drexel University led by Gogotsi discovered a very important class of novel nanomaterials -- two-dimensional metal carbides and nitrides called MXenes (Ti2C, Ti3C2, Nb4C3, Ti4N3, etc. – Adv. Mater., 2011, Nature Rev. Mater., 2017). These materials were created using selective extraction of metals from ternary metal carbides (general principles of this approach were described in Accounts of Chemical Research, 2015). Moreover, the availability of solid solutions on M and X sites, control of surface terminations, and the discovery of ordered double-M MXenes (e.g., Mo2TiC2) offer the potential for synthesis of dozens of new distinct structures and millions of alloys. The very first experiments on MXenes showed their great promise as energy storage materials (Science 2013; Nature 2014), as the 2D carbides demonstrated intercalation pseudocapacitance (redox processes that occur with no diffusional limitations) and extremely high capacitance values (up to 1500 F/cm3). This discovery of an entirely new family of 2D materials possessing metallic conductivity and chemically tunable transition-metal-oxide surfaces offers tremendous opportunities for electrochemical energy storage (Nature Energy, 2017, 2019) and many other fields. Yury and his collaborators continue to develop new MXenes and modify their structure and surface termination (Nature Comm., 2018, 2019) in order to control their electrochemical behavior, with the goal being to revolutionize the entire electrical energy storage field and usher in an era where batteries will not require more than a few minutes of charging time. The versatile chemistry of the MXene family renders their properties tunable for a large variety of applications, including optoelectronics, plasmonics, electromagnetic interference shielding (Science, 2017), antennas (Science Adv., 2018), electrocatalysis, medicine (photothermal therapy and drug delivery), sensors, water purification/ desalination and other fields (Adv. Mater. 2018). At the earlier stage of his career as PhD student and post-doc, Gogotsi worked on fundamental studies of high-temperature oxidation and corrosion of ceramics and carbons. He published the first book on Corrosion of High-performance Ceramics, first in Russian in 1989 and then a substantially revised version was published by Springer in 1992. In the beginning of his academic career at the University of Illinois at Chicago, he shaped a new research field called High Pressure Surface Science and Engineering. He developed a new method for studying pressure-induced phase transformations in ceramics and semiconductors by combining nanoindentation with Raman microspectroscopy (Nature, 1999). This research led to development of new methods of ductile regime machining of silicon and facilitated development of new semiconductor devices. The work was summarized in the book titled High Pressure Surface Science and Engineering published by the Institute of Physics, UK (IOP) in 2003. Gogotsi has published extensively on new carbon and other nanomaterials for electrical energy storage, gas storage, and structural and biomedical applications. He has contributed to fundamental aspects of electrochemical behavior at the nanoscale and double-layer structure in confinement. His body of work led to his selection as a Highly Cited Researcher in Materials Science and Chemistry by Thomson Reuters in 2014-2018. In 2018 he was named a Citation Laureate by Clarivate Analytics – “researcher whose work is deemed to be of Nobel stature, as attested by markedly high citation tallies recorded in the Web of Science citation index.” He is also well known as Associate Editor of ACS Nano (IF 13.7) and the editor of bestselling Nanomaterials Handbook (CRC Press, 2013, 2nd edition – 2017). He acts as conference organizer, gives numerous plenary lectures at conferences every year, including multiple conferences in China, often opening or closing international conferences, along with Nobel Prize winners and other leading researchers. For example, when he presented a plenary lecture at ICMAT 2017 in Singapore, 3 of 8 Plenary Speakers were Nobel Prize winners. He has also invented, patented, and licensed to industry numerous new materials and new approaches for energy storage (e.g., flow capacitor and flow capacitive desalination) and innovative designs of micro-scale, wearable, multifunctional, and flowable energy storage devices and systems. 5 start-up companies were launched based on his patents and several large corporations licensed his technologies.
2018, Citations Laureate (Web of Science/Clarivate Analytics) 2018, The Friendship Award from Chinese government 2018, Rudolf Zahradnik Lecture, University of Olomouc, Czech Republic 2018, Tis Lahiri Memorial Lecture, Vanderbilt University 2017, Energy Storage Materials Award (Elsevier) 2017, Mt. Changbai Friendship Award from Jilin Province Government 2016, Distinguished Award for Novel Materials and their Synthesis, IUPAC 2016, Nano Energy Award (Elsevier) 2016, Drexel University Award for Outstanding Career Scholarly Achievement 2016, Included in 100 Most Cited Researchers in Materials Science by Elsevier/Scopus 2015, RUSNANOPRIZE 2015 (International Nanotechnology Prize) 2015, Lee Hsun Award Lecture, Institute of Metal Research, CAS, China 2014, Highly Cited Researcher, Thomson-Reuters/Clarivate (again in 2015-2018) 2014, Fred Kavli Distinguished Lectureship in Nanotechnology, MRS Spring Meeting 2014, ASM Liberty Bell Chapter’s Delaware Valley Materials Person of the Year 2014, Tsinghua Global Vision Lecture 2013, Ross Coffin Purdy Award from the American Ceramic Society 2012, European Carbon Association Award 2011, NANOSMAT Prize at the 6th NANOSMAT Conference 2011, ASM International Philadelphia Chapter Albert Sauveur Lecture Award 2010, Chang Jiang Scholar Award, Ministry of Education of P.R. China 2006, Nano 50TM Award from NASA Tech Briefs Magazine, Innovator of the Year 2006, Best Paper Award, American Society for Composites 2005, Drexel University College of Engineering Outstanding Research Award 2005, Best Paper Award, American Society of Composites 2003, R&D 100 Award from R&D Magazine (awarded again in 2009) 2003, Roland B. Snow Award from the American Ceramic Society (also in 2005, 2007, 2012, 2013) 2002, S. Somiya Award from the International Union of Materials Research Societies 2002, G.C. Kuczynski Prize from the International Institute for the Science of Sintering 2002, Research Achievement Award from Drexel University (awarded again in 2009) 2001, Winner of the US Collegiate Inventors Competition 1999, College of Engineering Faculty Research Award, University of Illinois at Chicago 1998, US National Science Foundation CAREER Award 1993, I.N. Frantsevich Prize (the highest award in the field of Materials Science) from the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences