An image of Dr Hui Yang

Dr Hui Yang is a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Department. Hui works in the group of Professor Aron Walsh, and her research focuses on battery modelling. 

Can you tell us about the current focus of your research? 

I have been passionate about sustainable energy since I was young as my hometown, Shanxi, is a major province of energy in China. Thus, I wanted to combine my skills and my passion for green energy in my career. My research focuses on battery modelling, which combines my love of material science and computational approaches. I led projects on thermal and defect transport models and simulations in the latest generation of lithium battery materials in the Materials Design Group at Imperial. I developed a systematic computational model to predict thermal conductivity of the commercial battery cathode using atomistic modelling approaches. My work also provided systematic and valuable reference data to guide experimental measurements and aided the design of future batteries with improved thermal management. Recently, I published two important publications on the study of phonon and thermal transport in LiCoO2 cathode and on the more complex Li(Ni-Mn-Co)O2 cathode.

What was your proudest achievement this year? 

Aside from two publications this year, the most achievement was lecturing on Material Modelling in the department. It was my first time developing a new module for an MSc course. I found it exciting to experience with a lot of fun designing the curriculum, coursework and assessment. 

What was your biggest challenge this year? 

As for most people, the Covid pandemic made life and work more challenging. On one hand, it took me a while to get used to working from home; on the other, I needed to pay more attention to my parents’ physical and mental health - which was a challenge as they live in another country. I haven’t seen my family for two years and I miss them very much. 

What does Women at Imperial week mean to you? 

The gender gap is still an issue in academia, especially in STEM. Women at Imperial shines a light on this and it is the biggest celebration in the College for women's achievement. I am impressed by the equality and diversity work that is involved each year. It provides a supportive and encouraging platform to let female staff and students’ voices to be heard and their contributions to be seen. There is also a range of interactive and interesting events happening, so I can meet new colleagues and catch up with old friends who work at the College. I am inspired to learn from some senior women scientists, while female students may be able to learn something from me.