Professor Furio Corà

Head of Materials and Inorganic Section

  Furio Corà is Professor of Computational Chemistry. His group currently consists of 1 postdoc (two to be appointed early in 2016), 4 PhD students and 1 MSci student. Computational research within his group covers several aspects of materials chemistry: from transition metal bearing compounds for interest as ferroic/multiferroic materials, ionic conductors and heterogeneous catalysts, to metal-free carbon nitride compounds and graphenes for energy applications. A common feature of computational research in the group is the interaction and integration with experiment; this is the central activity in a prestigious Programme Grant funded by EPSRC (EP/N004884, 2015-20), where Dr Cora leads the property prediction platform.  He was worked at UCL since 2004 (2004-6: EPSRC Advanced Research Fellow; 2006-10: Lecturer and RCUK Fellow; 2000: Reader, 2016: Professor). Before this, he was at the Royal Institution of Great Britain where he has been a PhD student first and then postdoctoral research assistant with Prof Catlow, and EPSRC Advanced Research Fellow since 2001.
Summary of research group
  Our work examines computationally the properties of crystalline solids; the main areas of research cover the functional behaviour of transition metal bearing compounds, the synthesis and catalytic activity of doped nanoporous solids, and increasingly the use of metal-free materials in energy (e.g. electrochemistry) applications. This research targets the integration of computational techniques with experiment, both as analytical and predictive tool. While the grand goal is to be able to design computationally new materials in advance of experiment (predictive), we are also interested in applying computational methods to related areas, when unusual behaviour is observed experimentally that would benefit from the atomic-level insight enabled by modelling (analytical modelling). From a methodological perspective, we address the performance of hybrid-exchange density functionals to study structural and electronic properties of solids. 
Research highlights
  • Development and test of hybrid exchange functionals of DFT for the study of electronic and structural properties of extended solids
  • Structural and defect chemistry of doped zeolites and AlPOs
  • Computational study of the entire catalytic cycle for selective aerobic oxidation of hydrocarbons in Mn and Fe-doped AlPOs
  • Computational study of ferroic and multiferroic crystals
  • Energy application of metal free graphitic carbon nitrides
Research Facilities
Research interests
  • Computational solid state chemistry
  • Transition metal oxides
  • Functional Materials
  • Zeolites and AlPOs
  • Surface Chemistry and Catalysis 
  • Carbon Nitride Graphenes
  • Predictive modelling
  • Inorganic Chemistry Teaching Coordinator and member of the Departmental Teaching Committee
  • Laboratory Course Organiser for CHEM1004 and CHEM1601
  • Lecturer in CHEM1004 section D and leader of one workshop group in CHEM1004
  • Lecturer and tutor for 2nd year core Inorganic Chemistry course CHEM2102/3. 
  • Lecturer in modules 13 and 18 of CHEM3001-3 
  • Lecturer in CHEMG050 (MSci in Energy Materials). 
  • Member of the SARPIC panel.