Dr William Yim had the opportunity to collaborate with Toshiaki Iitaka from Riken Advanced Science Institute and Prof John Tse from Canada’s University of Saskatchewan last year.
The team of researchers discovered the physical basis to explain the newly discovered vibration behavior of molecular hydrogen, including ‘silane’ - hydrogen bound to silicon, under high pressure.
The two-month project resulted in a paper, ‘Pressure-induced intermolecular interactions in crystalline silane-hydrogen’, that was published in Physical Review Letters 105.
The cross-disciplinary team was like a dream team, made possible by the mutual introductions given by Prof John Tse and Dr Wu Ping, IHPC’s Director of Material Science and Engineering Department.
“Prof. John Tse’s expertise is on experimental and computational research on materials science and he is famous in high pressure research field” said William. “Dr. Toshiaski Iitaka is a permanent staff member at Riken working on solid state research and program development for linear scaling computational method.”
As William himself has a track record on ab initio vibrational frequency calculations applying to surface science, it was a good match of expertise.
His motto is “Be Prepared”, so the challenge of taking on the project was a welcome one.
“I like to learn new skills, and I made sure I learnt all the necessary computational techniques before this project. Good preparation and speed are the key factors in benefitting from such a good opportunity.”
It was a classic collaboration case study, in which everyone played an important role in making the breakthrough.
“When Prof. Tse mentioned an interesting problem of H2 vibron softening, we were well prepared to puzzle out the scientific question” William said.
William contributed the ‘Donor-acceptor interaction in compression regime’, which is a brand new idea.
The team performed molecular dynamic simulations to study the interactions between hydrogen and silane molecules, which gave a better fundamental understanding for the materials under extreme conditions.
The results provided a good basis to potentially develop a hydrogen economy.
William said “the knowledge of physical interaction in compressed regimes, as indicated by vibrational spectroscopy and chemical bonding, will be very helpful for further engineering the mixing process and hence the H2 transport capability.”
The project is another feather in the cap for IHPC.
Dr Toshiaki Itaka, from Riken’s Computational Astrophysics Laboratory commented: “It was an exciting experience that I could work with William and IHPC for the study of SiH4 under pressure. As a physicist, I learned a lot from the chemist's viewpoint of William.”
“I also noted that IHPC has strength not only in academic research but also in its application to important problems in real world. This is what Riken is aiming at, and would like to learn from IHPC.”
William too had an enriching experience working closely with the other researchers, commenting “the most important skill I’ve learnt is to understand how to translate research work into an impactful and engaging story. It is an art to turn lots of boring numbers into an interesting story so that people can understand the significance of the discovery.”
Equipping form with function
23.06.2017 | Institute of Science and Technology Austria
Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity
23.06.2017 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
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Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...
Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...
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