B.S. Chemical Engineering, ​The Ohio State University, 2004Ph.D. Chemical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2009​​Post-Doc Argonne National Laboratory, 2009-2011

"My research primarily aims to understand, synthesize, and fabricate materials for batteries and other energy storage applications."

Gary Koenig, Associate Professor

Currently, energy storage is a major challenge for a variety of applications. Batteries with higher energy density, better safety, and lower cost will be needed to continue the deployment of vehicles in the transportation sector that rely on electrical energy to drive their motors. In addition, energy storage is needed to provide energy for intermittent renewable energy sources such as wind and solar when weather conditions limit energy generation. Improving battery performance will require new innovations in battery materials, chemistries, and architectures.

Our research investigates the design of new materials and materials chemistries. This research involves the synthesis, characterization, and evaluation of materials properties using a variety of techniques. The primary area of application that we focus on is rechargeable battery electrode materials.

We are interested in the tailored synthesis of new materials at multiple length scales. At the molecular scale, the physical properties of materials are largely dependent on the stoichiometry and stable structures that can be formed. In addition, nano-scale topographies and geometries can dramatically influence material performance. We investigate hierarchical approaches to simultaneously design materials at the molecular, nanometer, and micrometer length scales. In applications such as lithium-ion battery electrodes, the active materials must be assembled as particles within a composite matrix. We are investigating general strategies to control the interactions between particles to form ordered assemblies. We then determine the relationships between the structure of these ordered assemblies and the physical and electronic properties of the composites they form.


  • Jefferson Scholars Foundation Hartfield Excellence in Teaching Award 2018
  • University of Virginia Alumni Board of Trustees Teaching Award 2017
  • National Science Foundation CAREER Award 2017
  • Robert A. Moore Jr. Award for interactions with industry and preparing students for industrial careers 2017
  • National Science Foundation Innovation Corps Program 2016
  • Air Force Summer Faculty Fellow 2015
  • Virginia Space Grant Consortium New Investigator Award 2014
  • University of Virginia Nucleus Award 2014

Research Interests

  • Batteries and Energy Storage
  • Particle Engineering and Characterization
  • Materials Microstructure Control and Characterization
  • Colloid and Surface Science
  • Reaction Engineering

Selected Publications

  • Review Article: Flow Battery Systems with Solid Electroactive Materials ABS Z Qi, GM Koenig, Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B, 2017, 35, 040801/1-040801/27
  • Electrochemical Evaluation of Suspensions of Lithium-Ion Battery Active Materials as an Indicator of Rate Capability ABS Z Qi, GM Koenig, Journal of the Electrochemical Society, 2017, 164, A151-A155
  • Compositional Control of Precipitate Precursors for Lithium-Ion Battery Active Materials: Role of Solution Equilibrium and Precipitate Rate ABS H Dong, GM Koenig, Journal of Materials Chemistry A, 2017, 5, 13785-13798

Courses Taught

  • ChE 2215 Material and Energy Balances
  • ChE 6618 Chemical Reaction Engineering
  • ChE 5600 Energy Outlook and Technology Options