Imperial College London


Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Materials

IC Research Fellow







Molecular Sciences Research HubWhite City Campus





Dr. Ludmilla Steier is Imperial College Research Fellow in the Department of Materials. She is leading a research programme on atomic engineering of photo- and electrocatalysts for the synthesis of energy-rich compounds.

Curious to understand catalytic activity on the atomic scale, she uses atomic layer deposition (ALD) to precisely engineer catalytic surfaces that can help to identify, tune and improve the catalytically active site in photo-/electrocatalysis of water, CO2 and other organic compounds.

A fully-funded PhD position is currently available: see here for further details. Application deadline 30/04/2020.

Ludmilla completed her Ph.D. with Prof. Michael Grätzel at EPFL (Lausanne, Switzerland) in 2016. There she developed ALD metal oxide thin films applied in photoelectrochemical water splitting and CO2 reduction as well as in perovskite photovoltaics and studied these with electrochemical methods, i.e. impedance spectroscopy, and a variety of microscopy techniques (i.e. SEM, TEM, EDX, ellipsometry)

Having joined the group of Prof. James Durrant at Imperial College London as a research associate she was curious to understand photochemical and photophysical processes in semiconductors (i.e. oxide, Cu(Ga,In)Se2 and polymer photoabsorbers) with time-resolved absorption spectroscopy. Shortly after commencing her postdoctoral work at Imperial, she was awarded the ERC Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellowship focused on understanding reaction mechanisms of photoelectrochemical CO2 reduction with Cu-based materials. Ludmilla has initiated several fruitful collaborations with leading material research groups and has been supervising a small group of undergraduate, postgraduate MRes and PhD students. 



Mesa CA, Steier L, Moss B, et al., 2020, Impact of synthesis route on the water oxidation kinetics of hematite photoanodes, The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, Vol:11, ISSN:1948-7185, Pages:7285-7290

Luo H, Liu Y, Dimitrov SD, et al., 2020, Pt single-atoms supported on nitrogen-doped carbon dots for highly efficient photocatalytic hydrogen generation, Journal of Materials Chemistry A, Vol:8, ISSN:2050-7488, Pages:14690-14696

Bakulin A, Pastor E, Park J-S, et al., 2019, In situ observation of picosecond polaron self-localisation in α-Fe2O3 photoelectrochemical cells, Nature Communications, Vol:10, ISSN:2041-1723

Yang W, Godin R, Kasap H, et al., 2019, Electron accumulation induces efficiency bottleneck for hydrogen production in carbon nitride photocatalysts, Journal of the American Chemical Society, Vol:141, ISSN:1520-5126, Pages:11219-11229

Alqahtani M, Sathasivam S, Cui F, et al., 2019, Heteroepitaxy of GaP on silicon for efficient and cost-effective photoelectrochemical water splitting, Journal of Materials Chemistry A, Vol:7, ISSN:2050-7488, Pages:8550-8558

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