Our main research focus is on the preparation and characterization of nanomaterials, such as nanostructured thin films and nanoparticles. We aim especially for efficient catalysts for fuel cells and electrolyzers.

The Nanomaterials Group benefits from the expertise of its senior researchers in surface science and thin film growth. The knowledge and experience are constantly handed down to younger researchers and students, and the scope has expanded to include physical chemistry and electrochemistry.

We combine research on model catalysts in ultra-high vacuum or low gas pressures with studies on nanostructured catalysts at near-ambient pressures. The former gives us insight into reaction mechanisms, and the latter indicates suitability of the catalysts for applications. We are also in close cooperation with computational chemists to get further insights.

Our publications by year (listed on the department's website):

2019 2018 2017

Study on a Pt-Ni cathode catalyst published in Applied Catalysis B: Environmental

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Dr. Ivan Khalakhan and co-workers have studied the impact of the operating conditions of a proton-exchange-membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) on a Pt-Ni cathode catalyst. The aim was to gain fundamental insights into the changes in its surface composition. A PtNi alloy catalyst was exposed alternately to oxidizing (O2) and reducing (H2) atmospheres, which…


Tomáš Hrbek awarded the Dean's Prize for his bachelor thesis

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Our master student Tomáš Hrbek has received the Dean's Prize, which is awarded yearly to the authors of four best bachelor's and four best master's theses defended that year across the faculty. Tomáš was awarded for his bachelor's thesis named "Study of the effect of thin film catalyst morphology on efficiency of water electrolyzer with proton…


New publications on nanostructured catalysts

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The effort of our group to reduce the costs of water electrolyzers and hydrogen fuel cells is reflected in two new articles, published respectively in the International Journal of Hydrogen Energy and in the Journal of Power Sources. Both studies deal with thin-film catalysts deposited by magnetron sputtering, and both show how the content of…


2nd Workshop of the Nanomaterials Group

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The Nanomaterials Group (NMG) organized the 2nd group workshop in Spišské Bystré, Slovakia. We spent one week, from June 30th to July 6th, in the pleasant village and its surroundings, which span the Slovak Paradise and the south-eastern part of the Tatra Mountains. This gave us time and space to discuss all scientific topics pursued by our group,…


Dr. Peter Kúš's dissertation published within Springer Theses

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Peter Kúš successfully defended his doctoral thesis last year and continues in our group as a researcher. However, the defense has not remained his only success with the thesis. Charles University nominated it for inclusion in Springer Theses, a book series of outstanding PhD theses in the fields of chemistry, physics, earth sciences, and…


Single-atom Pt/CeO2 catalyst—HOT Paper and cover story

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The Journal of Materials Chemistry A has published a work of the Surface Physics and Nanomaterials groups and three cooperating Italian institutions, Ultimate dispersion of metallic and ionic platinum on ceria by Andrii Tovt, Luigi Bagolini, Filip Dvořák, Nguyen-Dung Tran, Mykhailo Vorokhta, Klára Beranová, Viktor Johánek, Matteo Farnesi Camellone…


Work of our MSB team selected for the 2018 PCCP HOT Articles

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The paper entitled "An experimental and theoretical study of adenine adsorption on Au(111)" and authored by Robert G. Acres, Xun Cheng, Klára Beranová, Sofiia Bercha, Tomáš Skála, Vladimír Matolín, Ye Xu, Kevin C. Prince, and Nataliya Tsud has been highlighted by the editors of Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics as a HOT article in 2018. In…


1st International Workshop of the Nanomaterials Group

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The Nanomaterials Group (NMG) organized a group workshop in July 1st – 7th, 2018, in Slovakia in Spišské Bystré near Poprad. Very pleasant village in proximity of the national parks of Slovak Paradise and High Tatras was an excellent environment for combining science and hiking. We organized 3 days of lectures and 3 days of walking discussions,…


Joint paper on electrocatalysis in Nature Materials

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Electrifying model catalysts for understanding electrocatalytic reactions in liquid electrolytes by Firas Faisal, Corinna Stumm, Manon Bertram, Fabian Waidhas, Yaroslava Lykhach, Serhiy Cherevko, Feifei Xiang, Maximilian Ammon, Mykhailo Vorokhta, Břetislav Šmíd, Tomáš Skála, Nataliya Tsud, Armin Neitzel, Klára Beranová, Kevin C. Prince, Simon…