Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, 2017-10-19

"Fundamental study of effects of impurities in cost effective materials for hydrogen energy storage"

Thi Thu Le / Early Stage Researcher at the Helmholtz-Zentrum in Geesthacht, Germany

Working title of thesis

Fundamental study of effects of impurities in cost effective materials for hydrogen energy storage.


Characterization of hydrogen sorption properties of the system 2LiBH4 + MgH2 + 0.025% TiCl3 using several hydrogen purity levels (99, 9%; and 99,999%) .
Investigate the effect of amides addition to the system 2LiBH4 + MgH2. Improve thermodynamic, kinetic properties as well as structural stability of mixed systems xLiBH4 + yLiNH2 + zMgH2 via melt infiltration method.
Develop new synthetic pathways for LiBH4, NaBH4, MgB2 starting from waste materials.
To evaluate the production costs and processes of select hydrogen storage materials (e.g. LiBH4, NaBH4) and develop, when possible, a more economically attractive production process. 

Tasks and methodology

Study the effects of impurities in selected less pure, more cost effective borohydride based materials on hydrogen storage, electrochemical and ion conduction properties. Establish lab scale cost effective synthesis and processing routes.
In order to work on this work, planetary mill and spex mill are employed to synthesize desired samples, then samples are qualitatively further characterized by various techniques as XRD, in situ synchrotron, DTA / Mass spec, NMR. Cyclability and reversibility are also tested through sorption behaviour. Best material is chosen based on optimization of fast kinetic, high capacity as well as cost saving material.

Short CV


  • Ph.D student in Material Science, Nanotechnology Department, Helmholtz Zentrum Geesthacht (HZG), present
  • Master in Chemical Engineering, Chonbuk National University, South Korea, 2011. Thesis: Dye sensitized and metal doped TiO2 catalysts for photo-catalytic water splitting under visible light
  • Bachelor in Environmental Engineering, Vietnam National University-Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology, 2008. Thesis: Study on Tapioca wastewater treatment by hybrid technology

Professional experiences:

  • 06/2011-03/2014: Test Engineer, Intel Products Vietnam
  • 01/2011-08/2011: Lecturer, Vietnam National University – University of Science Ho Chi Minh City
  • 2008-2009: work in Vietnam National University – Institute of Environmental and Resources, Vietnam

Publications & Awards:

  • Intel factory Recognition Awards (2012; 2013) for cost saving procjects
  • Paper (submitted) for Intel ATM Tech Event 2013, Costa Rica – Sponsored by Intel Corporation USA
  • 2nd Place Winner of Exhibition category, Vietnam Technical Excellent Conference (Dec 05-06, 2012)
  • Thi - Thu Le, Thanh-Phuong Nguyen, Nguyen Van Phuoc. “Studies on Tapioca wastewater treatment by hybrid technology”, Science and Technology Development Journal of Vietnam National University, Vol 12, No.02 – 2009 
  • Thi - Thu Le, M. Shaheer Akhtar, Dong Min Park, Jang Choon Lee, O-Bong Yang. “Water splitting on Rhodamine-B dye sensitized Co-doped TiO2 catalyst under visible light”, Applied Catalysis B: Environmental, Volumes 111-112, pages 397 – 401, 2012
  • Thi-Thu Le, M. Shaheer Akhtar; O-Bong Yang. “Efficiently Dye Sensitized and Metal doped TiO2 catalysts for photocatalytic water splitting under visible light”. Proceeding of Brunei International Conference on Engineering and Technology 2012
  • Thi-Thu Le, M. Shaheer Akhtar; O-Bong Yang. “Photocatalytic water splitting under visible light by eosin Y dye sensitized Co - doped TiO2 catalyst”. Proceeding of 217th ECS Meeting, Vancouver, Canada 2010