National Physical Laboratory

Luis Castanheira

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Current interests

Luis Castanheira is an R&D engineer specialising in biomaterials and electrochemistry, with particular interest in the emergence of hydrogen as a new energy vector. His research interests focus on degradation protocols and measurement techniques (in situ and ex situ) for fuel cells, electrolysers and batteries.


Luis studied biomedical engineering at the University of Minho (Braga, Portugal) and in 2011 received a Master's degree in Biomaterials, Biomechanics and Rehabilitation. The final year of the degree was spent at École Centrale Paris (Paris, France), where he conducted his master thesis on the tribocorrosion of anodized and biomodified titanium for dental implants. In parallel, he participated in projects with the Atomic Energy Commission (CEA Paris-Saclay) for tribocorrosion tests in new alloys used in nuclear reactors piping, which allowed him to continue his studies on new energy technologies at the Grenoble Institute of Technology (Grenoble, France), doing a PhD at the electrochemistry laboratory LEPMI in close cooperation with an industrial partner (Axane Fuel Cells, Air Liquide). In 2014, he was awarded his PhD degree after studying the degradation mechanisms of carbon supports for low temperature polymer electrolyte fuel cells under the supervision of Frédéric Maillard and Laetitia Dubau. In September 2015, Luis joined NPL as a Higher Research Scientist in the Electrochemistry Group, working in new measurement methods and degradation mechanisms of fuel cells and electrolysers.

Recent publications

  • L. Castanheira, Wanderson O. Silva, Fabio H.B. Lima, Alexandre Crisci, Laetitia Dubau, and Frederic Maillard, Carbon Corrosion in Proton-Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells: Effect of the Carbon Structure, the Degradation Protocol, and the Gas Atmosphere, ACS Catalysis, 5 (2015), 2184-2194. DOI: 10.1021/cs501973j
  • L. Dubau, L. Castanheira, M. Chatenet, F. Maillard, J. Dillet, O. Lottin, G. De Moor, C. Bas, L. Flandin, E. Rossinot, N. Caqué, Membrane failure and carbon corrosion: the weak links of PEMFC long term performance, Int. J. Hydrogen Energy (invited article), 39 (2014) 21902-21914. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijhydene.2014.07.099
  • L. Castanheira, L. Dubau, M. Mermoux, G. Berthomé, N. Caqué, E. Rossinot, M. Chatenet, F. Maillard, Carbon corrosion in proton-exchange membrane fuel cells: From model experiments to real-life operation in membrane electrode assemblies, ACS Catalysis, 4 (2014), 2258-2267. DOI: 10.1021/cs500449q
  • L. Dubau, L. Castanheira, F. Maillard, M. Chatenet, O. Lottin, G. Maranzana, J. Dillet, A. Lamibrac, J.-C. Perrin, E. Moukheiber, A. Elkaddouri, G. De Moor, C. Bas, L. Flandin, N. Caqué, A review of PEM fuel cell durability: materials degradation, local heterogeneities of aging and possible mitigation strategies, Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews Energy and Environment (invited article), (2014). DOI: 10.1002/wene.113
  • L. Castanheira, L. Dubau, F. Maillard, Accelerated stress tests of Pt/HSAC electrocatalysts: An identical-location transmission electron microscopy study on the influence of intermediate characterizations, Electrocatalysis, 5 (2014) 125-135. DOI: 10.1007/s12678-013-0173-y
  • L. Dubau, L. Castanheira, G. Berthomé, F. Maillard, An identical-location transmission electron microscopy study on the degradation of Pt/C nanoparticles under oxidizing, reducing and neutral atmosphere, Electrochimica Acta (invited article), 110 (2013) 273-281. DOI: 10.1016/j.electacta.2013.03.184
  • J. Durst, A. Lamibrac, F. Charlot, J. Dillet, L. F. Castanheira, G. Maranzana, L. Dubau, F. Maillard, M. Chatenet, O. Lottin, Degradation heterogeneities induced by repetitive start/stop events in Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell: Inlet vs. Outlet and Channel vs. Land, Appl. Catal. B., 138-139 (2013) 416-426. DOI: 10.1016/j.apcatb.2013.03.021

Contact details

Tel: 020 8943 8564

Last Updated: 5 May 2017
Created: 26 Apr 2017


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