Dr Wei Li


Telephone: 0121 204 3035

Email: w.li8(at)aston.ac.uk 

Office: MB111


Photo_Dr Wei Li


I joined Aston in 2015 as a lecturer within Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry. I studied chemical engineering at the Nanjing University of Technology, obtaining a BEng with Highest Distinction in 2003 and PhD in 2008. In the last year of my PhD, my first employment started at The University of Hong Kong (Department of Chemistry), the topic covered nanomaterials for electrocapacitors and fuel-cell electrocatalysts. The next position was at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Department of Physics) from 2010 to 2013 and focusing on chalcogenides as photovoltaic materials and photosynthesis proteins for photocatalysis. Early 2013, I moved to the University of Liverpool (Department of Physics) and assisted to set up a new research group focusing on hybrid nanomaterials for low carbon energy sources. Before I moved to Aston, I had a four-month experience working in the National Graphene Institute, University of Manchester. 

My work has appeared in about 30 publications in high quality journals (e.g. ACS NanoNanoscale, Small, J. Mater. Chem., ACS Appl. Mater. InterfacesEnviron. Sci. & Technol.) with nearly 900 citations and H-Index of 15.

  • 2016              Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching for Higher Education in the UK.
  • 2003-2008     Nanjing University of Technology (NJUT), PhD in Chemical Engineering.
  • 1999-2003     NJUT, BEng (1st Honours) in Chemical Engineering.
  • 2015.08  present:  Lecturer in  Chemical Engineering,  Aston University.
  • 2015.04 – 2015.07: Postdoctoral Research Associate (PDRA) in  National Graphene Institute,  University of Manchester.
  • 2013.04 – 2015.03: PDRA in Department of Physics,  University of Liverpool. 
  • 2010.04 – 2013.03: PDRA in  Department of Physics,  Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Germany.
  • 2008.05 – 2010.03: RA in  Department of Chemistry The University of Hong Kong. 
  • Separation Process (CE2103, CE3105)
  • Design and Build (CE1002)
  • Process Design (CE3003)
  • MEng Final Year Research Projects (CE4011)
  • Photocatalytic reaction engineering and reactor systems
  • Hybrid nanomaterials for renewable energy (e. g. catalytic biomass upgrading, photocatalytic, photovoltaic and energy storage applications)
  • Applications of hybrid nanomaterials in biology, healthcare and electronics related fields. 

Research Fellow
Dr Sekar Karthikeyan, Newton International Research Fellow
Dr Yang Bai, Visiting Research Fellow

PhD student
Kassam Ahmed

MEng students
Harun Ahmed
Haroon Khan

Visiting student
Quentin Ruiz (from Polytech Montpellier, France)

Alumni with most recent known affiliation
Rima Trofimovaite, PhD
Navpreet Mander, MEng
Jeremy Wong, MEng
George Sykes, MEng

  • The Royal Society Research Grant, £15,000, project title “Hybrid nanomaterials for combined biomass upgrading and hydrogen production by photoelectrocatalysis”, PI, 2016 - 2017. 
  • The Royal Society Newton International Fellowship, £99,000, project title “Development of graphene supported metal oxide catalyst for environmental remediation”, PI, 2016 - 2018. 
  • International Collaboration Grant, £12,000, supported by State Key Laboratory of Materials-Oriented Chemical Engineering (Nanjing University of Technology, China), project title “Applications of TiO2 based nanomaterials”, PI, 2017 - 2019.
  • The Energy Research Accelerator (The Midlands, UK) capital funds, £10,000, project title “Combined biomass upgrading and hydrogen production using photosynthesis proteins”, PI, 2017.
  • EPSRC AMR4AMR Seedcorn Project, £15,000, project title “Development of transglutaminase-crosslinked collagen biomaterial dressings: a Swiss Knife approach to tackle diabetic foot ulcers”, Co-I, 2017.
  • The Royal Society International Exchanges award, £12,000, project title “Multiscale Analysis of Photoelectrochemical Water Oxidation with Photosystem II”, PI, 2017 - 2019.
  • Foreign Experts Visiting and Collaboration Grant, £35,000, supported by State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, China and Nanjing University of Science and Technology, China, Co-I, 2018-2019.
  • BBSRC GCRF Research Grant, £607,148, project title “Cascade processes for integrated bio-refining of agricultural waste in India and Vietnam”, Co-I, 2017-2019.
  • Royal Society of Chemistry
  • UK Solar Fuel Network
  • EPSRC Associate Peer Review College
  • X. B. Wu, W Zhuang, L. H. Lu, L. C. Li, J. H. Zhu, L. W. Mu, W. Li, Y. D. Zhu and X. H. Lu. “Excellent performance of Pt-C/TiO2 for methanol oxidation: Contribution of mesopores and partially coated carbon”, Applied Surface Science, 2017, 426, 890.
  • J. R. Lee, W. Li, A. J. Cowan, and F. Jäckel, “A Hydrophilic, Hole-Delocalizing Ligand Shell to Promote Charge Transfer from Colloidal CdSe Quantum Dots in Water”,  Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2017, 121, 15160.
  • Z. L. Zheng, Z. Chang, G. K. Xu, F. McBride, A. Ho, Z. Zhuola, M. Michailidis, W. Li, R. Raval, R. Akhtar, and D. Shchukin, “Encapsulated Phase Change Materials in Solar-Thermal Conversion Systems: Understanding Geometry-Dependent Heating Efficiency and System Reliability”, ACS Nano, 2017, 11, 721.
  • W. Li, J. R. Lee and F. Jäckel. “Simultaneous Optimization of Colloidal Stability and Interfacial Charge Transfer Efficiency in Photocatalytic Pt/CdS Nanocrystals”, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 2016, 8, 29434. (Co-corresponding Author)
  • W Zhuang, L. H. Lu, W Li, R An, X Feng, X. B. Wu, Y. D. Zhu and X. H. Lu. “In-situ synthesized mesoporous TiO 2-B/anatase microparticles: Improved anodes for lithium ion batteries”, Chinese Journal of Chemical Engineering, 2015, 23, 583.
  • W. Li, G. O’Dowd, T. J. Whittles, D. Hesp, Y. Gründer, V. R. Dhanak and F. Jäckel. “Colloidal dual-band gap cell for photocatalytic hydrogen generation”, Nanoscale, 2015, 7, 16606. (Co-corresponding Author)
  • W. Li, T. Dittrich, F. Jäckel and J. Feldmann. “Optical and electronic properties of pyrite nanocrystal thin films: the role of ligands”, Small, 2014, 10, 1194.
  • W. Li, Y. Bai, W. Zhuang, K.-Y. Chan, C. Liu, Z. H. Yang, X. Feng, and X. H. Lu. “Highly Crystalline Mesoporous TiO2(B) Nanofibers”, Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2014, 118, 3049. (Times cited: 8)
  • W. Li, Y. Bai, K.-Y. Chan, C. Liu, Z. H. Yang, X. Feng, L. H. Lu, and X. H. Lu. “Core-shell TiO2/C Nanofibers as Supports for Electrocatalytic and Synergistic Photoelectrocatalytic Oxidation of Methanol”, Journal of Materials Chemistry, 2012, 22, 4025. (Times cited: 29)
  • W. Li, M. Döblinger, A. Vaneski, A. L. Rogach, F. Jäckel, J. Feldmann. “Pyrite Nanocrystals: Shape-Controlled Synthesis and Tunable Optical Properties via Reversible Self-Assembly”, Journal of Materials Chemistry, 2011, 21, 17946. (Times cited: 40)
  • W. Li, Y. Bai, K.-Y. Chan, C. Liu, Z. H. Yang, X. Feng, and X. H. Lu. “Single-crystalline and reactive facets exposed anatase TiO2 nanofibers with enhanced photocatalytic properties”, Journal of Materials Chemistry, 2011, 21, 6718. (Times cited: 18)
  • W. J. Liu, J. G. Wang, W. Li, X. J. Guo, L. H. Lu, X. H. Lu, X. Feng, C. Liu and Z. H. Yang. “A shortcut for evaluating activities of TiO2 facets: water dissociative chemisorption on TiO2-B (100) and (001) ”, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 2010, 12, 8721. (Times cited: 22)
  • D. Li, K. Xiong, W. Li, Z. H. Yang, C. Liu, X. Feng, and X. H. Lu. “Comparative Study in Liquid-Phase Heterogeneous Photocatalysis: Model for Photoreactor Scale-Up”, Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research. 2010, 49, 8397. (Times cited: 7)
  • S. S. Chen, Y. H. Zhu, W. Li, W. J. Liu, L. C. Li, Z. H. Yang, C. Liu, W. J. Yao, X. H. Lu and X. Feng. “Synthesis, Features, and Applications of Mesoporous Titania with TiO2(B)”, Chinese Journal of Catalysis, 2010, 31, 605. (Times cited: 22)
  • W. Li, Y. Bai, C. Liu, Z. H. Yang, X. Feng, X. H. Lu, N. K. van der Laak and K.-Y. Chan. “Highly Thermal Stable and Highly Crystalline Anatase TiO2 for Photocatalysis”, Environmental Science & Technology, 2009, 43, 5423. (Times cited: 71)
  • Y. Bai, W. Li, C. Liu, Z. H. Yang, X. Feng, X. H. Lu and K.-Y. Chan. “Stability of Pt Nanoparticles and Enhanced Photocatalytic Performance in Mesoporous Pt-(Anatase /TiO2(B)) nanoarchitecture”, Journal of Materials Chemistry, 2009, 19, 7055. (Times cited: 55)
  • Y. H. Zhu, W. Li, Y. X. Zhou, X. H. Lu, X. Feng, Z. H. Yang. “Low-Temperature CO Oxidation of Gold Catalysts Loaded on Mesoporous TiO2 Whisker Derived from Potassium Dititanate”, Catalysis Letters, 2009, 127, 406. (Times cited: 31)
  • Y. Bai, Y. Zhang, W. Li, X. F. Zhou, C. S. Wang, X. Feng, L. Z. Zhang, X. H. Lu. “Nanopatterned Surface with Adjustable Area Coverage and Feature Size Fabricated by Photocatalysis”, Applied Surface Science, 2009, 255, 9296. (Times cited: 5)
  • W. Li, C. Liu, Y. X. Zhou, Y. Bai, X. Feng, Z. H. Yang, L. H. Lu, X. H. Lu and K.-Y. Chan. “Enhanced Photocatalytic Activity in Anatase-TiO2(B) Core-Shell Nanofiber”, Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2008, 112, 20539. (Times cited: 132)
  • W. Li, Z. H. Yang, X. Feng, X. H. Lu. “Photocatalytic degradation of trace organics in water: sequencing and prediction of initial degradation rate”, Chinese Journal of Chemcal Engineering, 2007, 58, 1426.