Gunnar Svensson

Gunnar Svensson

Head of Department

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Works at Department of Materials and Environmental Chemistry
Telephone 08-16 45 05
Visiting address Svante Arrhenius väg 16 C
Room C 414
Postal address Institutionen för material- och miljökemi 106 91 Stockholm

About me

I have since 2010 been head of the department for Materials and environmental chemistry. It is a very interesting and inspiring job especially with so many encouraging, ambitious and friendly colleagues. I find it very exciting to work in an enviroinment were a lot of researchers, young and old are pushing the borders of science, participating in developing new materials and establish processes that can help us to create a sustainable society. It is also highly motivating to transfer my fascination for the world of chemistry to our young students.

I see myself as solid state inorganic chemist involved in synthesising compounds and studying their crystal structures as well as their fundamental properties. Very often the compounds of interest have various energy related applications.


  • PhD in inorganic chemistry at Stockholm University 1989.
  • 1990-91postdoc with Prof. Arndt Simon vid Max-Planck-Institut für Festkörperforschung, Stuttgart.
  • 1989-1993 assistant professor in inorganic chemistry, department of Physical chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry and Structural chemistry (FOOS) Stockholm University.
  • 1994 Docent in inorganic chemistry at FOOS/SU, 1995 Associate professor in structural chemistry at FOOS/SU
  • 2000 professor in structural chemistry at at FOOS/SU. Since 2009 Chair person for Electron Microscopy Center (EMC) at SU.
  • Since 2010 Head of for the department materials and environmental chemistry, Stockholm University
  • Since 2017 Chair person of Center Chairperson for Centre of Electron Microscopy for Materials (

Present Research Group Members


Supervised PhD:s 

  • Dickson Ojwang 2017
  • Samrand Shafeie 2013
  • Sigita Urbonaite 2008
  • Fredrik Lindberg 2006
  • Hillevi Hannerz 2003
  • Göran Poshman (Nilsson) 2000

Post Docs

  • Dariuz Wardecki 2014-2016
  • Jordi Jacas 2011-2014
  • Louise Samain 2012-2013
  • Nadja Tarakina 2004
  • Alexander Tyutyunnik 1993


Meeting with students is always fascinating and fun but also demanding. Over the years, I have lectured in a number of courses ranging from general chemistry, inorganic chemistry, solid state chemistry, coordination chemistry, and chemical bonding to water chemistry. One field which I feel extra affinity for is on the environmental aspects of inorganic chemistry and more specifically environmental aquatic chemistry. Unfortunately, the latter course has not been offered for some years, but I really hope that we will be able to take it up again sometime in the future.


I and MMK are a partner in the LC-BAT-5-2019 H2020 project

COBRA: CObalt Free Batteries for FutuRe Automotive Applications (

COBRA aims to develop a novel Co-free Li-ion battery technology that overcomes many of the current shortcomings faced by Electrical Vehicle (EV) batteries via the enhancement of each component in the battery system in a holistic manner. The project will result in a unique battery system that merges several sought-after features, including superior energy density, low cost, increased cycles and reduced critical materials. To achieve these ambitious targets we will: upgrade the electrochemical performance by focusing on Co-free cathode, advanced Si anode and electrolyte/separator; cell manufacturing and testing for electrical and electrochemical performance; leverage the use of smart sensors and advanced communication to optimise the system control; battery-pack manufacturing that deliver cost-effective and environmentally sustainable battery over its lifetime. The proposed Li-ion battery technology will be demonstrated at TRL6 (battery pack) and validated it on an automotive EV testbed. The involvement of several leading organisation for battery manufacturing ensure easy adaptation to production lines and scale up to contribute to a higher market adoption while helping to strengthen Europe’s position in the field. Overall, the project includes the participation of 3 universities, 7 RTOs, 4 SMEs and 5 enterprises covering the entire value chain and strongly engaging EU battery industry


Prussian Blue analogues for energy related applications. 

Prussian Blue can be seen as the first and smallest MOF:s (molecular organic framework). It has a very simple open ReO3-related structure with large cavities and often numerous vacancies.. The general composition for Prussian Blue and it analogues (PBA) is AxM´[M(CN)6]y·H2O where M´and M are transition metals and Ax large cations e.g. alkaline metals. The presence of transition metals result as always in compounds with a large variety of interesting properties such as e.g. electrochemical, magnetic, adsorbent.

We are interested in Prussian Blue analogues and specially their CO2-adsorbing properties., although we have also made electrochemical in operando studies using X-ray diffraction. AxCu[Fe(CN)6]2/3·H2O is one compound we have studied in detail using a number of techniques; XRD, NPD, Mössbauer, EXAFS, XANES, IR/Raman, SEM-EDS, TGA/DSC, CO2/N2-adsorption, electrochemistry. The compound is a rather good, fast, robust and selective CO2adsorbent and we have made extensive kinetic studies using TGA. It is our plan to continue the study of CO2adsorption in various PBA:s including in situ XRD and NPD measurements combined with kinetic studies using TGA.


A selection from Stockholm University publication database
  • 2019. Viktor Renman (et al.). The Journal of Physical Chemistry C 123 (36), 22040-22049

    K2Mn[Mn(CN)(6)] is synthesized, characterized, and evaluated as possible positive electrode material in nonaqueous Li-, Na-, and K-ion batteries. This compound belongs to the rich and versatile family of hexacyanometallates displaying distinctive structural properties, which makes it interesting for ion insertion purposes. It can be viewed as a perovskite-like compound in which CN-bridged Mn(CN)(6) octahedra form an open framework structure with sufficiently large diffusion channels able to accommodate a variety of insertion cations. By means of galvanostatic cycling and cyclic voltammetry tests in nonaqueous alkali metal half-cells, it is demonstrated that this material is able to reversibly host Li+, Na+, and K+ ions via electrochemical insertion/deinsertion within a wide voltage range. The general electrochemical features are similar for all of these three ion insertion chemistries. An in operando X-ray diffraction investigation indicates that the original monoclinic structure is transformed into a cubic one during charging (i.e., removal of cations from the host framework) and that such a process is reversible upon subsequent cell discharge and cation reuptake.

  • 2019. Yunxiang Li (et al.).

    Microporous activated carbon was prepared by depositing and pyrolyzing propylene within the microporous voids of SAPO-37 and subsequently removing the template by a treatment with HCl and NaOH. The carbon had a high surface area and large micropore and ultramicropore volumes. The yield, crystallinity, morphology, and adsorption properties compared well with those of a structurally related zeolite-Y-templated carbon. No HF was needed to remove the SAPO-37 template in contrast to the zeolite Y template, which could be of industrial importance.

  • 2018. Jekabs Grins (et al.). Journal of Materials Chemistry A 6 (13), 5313-5323

    The structures of Ruddlesden-Popper n = 2 member phases Sr3-xYxFe1.25Ni0.75O7-delta with 0 <= x <= 0.75 have been investigated using neutron powder diffraction and K-edge Fe and Ni EXAFS/XANES spectroscopy in order to gain information about the evolution of the oxygen vacancy distribution and Fe/Ni oxidation state with x. Both samples prepared at 1300 degrees C under a flow of N-2(g), with delta = 1.41-1.00, and samples subsequently annealed in air at 900 degrees C, with delta = 0.44-0.59, were characterized. The as-prepared x = 0.75 phase has delta = 1, the O1 atom site is vacant, and the Fe3+/Ni2+ ions have a square pyramidal coordination. With decreasing x the O3 occupancy decreases nearly linearly to 81% for x = 0, while the O1 occupancy increases from 0 for x = 0.4 to 33% for x = 0. The air-annealed x = 0.75 sample has a delta value of 0.59 and the Fe3+/Fe4+/Ni2+/Ni3+ ions have both square pyramidal and octahedral coordination. With decreasing x, the delta value decreases to 0.45 for x = 0, implying an increase in the oxidation states of Fe/Ni ions. EXAFS/XANES data show that for the as-prepared samples the coordination changes are predominantly for Ni2+ ions and that the air-annealed samples contain both Fe3+/Fe4+ and Ni2+/Ni3+ ions.

  • 2018. Gunnar Svensson (et al.).

    Compounds Sr3-xPrxFe1.25Ni0.75O7- with 0 x 0.4 and Ruddlesden-Popper n = 2 type structures were synthesized and investigated by X-ray and neutron powder diffraction, thermogravimetry, and Mossbauer spectroscopy. Both samples, prepared at 1300 degrees C under N-2(g) flow and samples subsequently air-annealed at 900 degrees C, were studied. The structures contained oxygen vacancies in the perovskite layers, and the Fe/Ni cations had an average coordination number less than six. The oxygen content was considerably higher for air-annealed samples than for samples prepared under N-2, 7 - = similar to 6.6 and similar to 5.6 per formula unit, respectively. Mossbauer data collected at 7 K, below magnetic ordering temperatures, were consistent with X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) and neutron powder diffraction (NPD) results. The electrical conductivity was considerably higher for the air-annealed samples and was for x = 0.1 similar to 30 Scm(-1) at 500 degrees C. The thermal expansion coefficients were measured in air between room temperature and 900 degrees C and was found to be 20-24 ppmK(-1) overall.

Show all publications by Gunnar Svensson at Stockholm University

Last updated: April 22, 2020

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