Alejandro A. Franco

Professor Coordinator

Amiens - France

Dr. Alejandro A. Franco (born in Argentina) is a Full Professor at Université de Picardie Jules Verne in France (Laboratoire de Réactivité et Chimie des Solides) and Honorary Member of the Institut Universitaire de France. His main research interests include battery and fuel cell technologies, battery manufacturing and prototyping, physical electrochemistry, multiscale modeling in combination with characterization techniques, artificial intelligence and virtual/mixed reality. He leads the Theory Open Platform at the ALISTORE European Research Institute and has been awarded an ERC consolidator grant for his ARTISTIC project on battery manufacturing digitalization based on multiscale modeling and artificial intelligence. He has also been awarded an ERC Proof of Concept grant for his SMARTISTIC project on assisting battery manufacturers with mixed reality technology. He is/has been also involved in numerous european projects and bilateral collaborations with battery industry.  Dr. Franco is a consultant for a major battery gigafactory company and Chairman of the Expert Group "Digitalization, Measurement Methods and Quality" in the European LiPLANET battery pilot lines network. He was awarded the French Prize for Pedagogy Innovation in 2019 for his use of Virtual Reality to teach battery sciences. He is the author of more than 140 publications, 11 invited book chapters, 3 invited edited books and 20 patents. He has been invited to deliver 120+ invited plenary/keynotes/invited oral presentations in international conferences as well as 60+ invited seminars in first class universities, institutes and companies. He is also the coordinator of the newly Erasmus+ granted i-MESC Master Programme (Interdisciplinarity in Materials for Energy Storage and Conversion).

Academic Training

  • ERC Consolidator Grant 2017 Awardee
  • Membre Junior de l’Institut Universitaire de France (Octobre 2016-Septembre 2021)
  • Professeur des Universités (Université de Picardie Jules Verne, LRCS UMR CNRS 7314, 2013-présent)
  • Ingénieur chercheur (Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique est aux Energies Alternatives/LITEN, 2005-2013)
  • Thèse de doctorat (Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique est aux Energies Alternatives/LITEN)
  • 2003-2005, Multiscale modeling of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells)
  • Visiting scientist (Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique est aux Energies Alternatives/LITEN, 2002, Direct Methanol Fuel Cells)
  • Master Sc. In Theoretical Physics (Universidad Nacional del Sur, Argentina, 2001)

Professional skills

Multiscale modeling, physical electrochemistry, electrocatalysis, batteries, fuel cells, electrolyzers.

Running Projects

ARTISTIC (Advanced and Reusable Theory for the In Silico optimization of composite electrode fabrication processes for rechargeable battery Technologies with Innovative Chemistries)  (ERC Consolidator Grant,  duration: 5 years, started on 1st of April 2018). Topic: Modeling of Fabrication Processes of Lithium Ion Batteries. Professor Franco is the Principal Investigator of this project.

MAGIC (CNRS PEPS, duration 1 year, started in September, 2017). Topic: Redox Flow Batteries with particle suspensions. Prof. Franco is involved in this project as the Leader.

Pedagogy Innovation Project (Université de Picardie Jules Verne, started in September, 2017, project coordinator). Topic: Use of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality for the teaching of energy materials, energy conversion and storage.

Project on modeling of mechanical properties of silicon-based electrodes for lithium ion battery applications (Thomas Jefferson Fund project, duration 1 year, started in September 2017). Partners: Prof. Franco (LRCS) and Prof. P. Mukherjee (Purdue University).

POROUS4APP (EU H2020, duration 4 years, started in March, 2016). Topic: Carbonaceous materials for chemical reactors and electrochemical energy storage applications. Prof. Franco is involved in this project as the Modeling Work Package Leader.  

CELIA (National Project coordinated by IRT Saint Exupery, duration 3 years, started in January 2016). Prof. Franco is the supervisor of the PhD student (Caroline Gaya) involved in the Work Package on the development of lithium air batteries for electric aircrafts.  The PhD is funded by IRT Saint Exupery (involving the companies Airbus and Zodiac).

SAFT (bilateral collaborative PhD project with SAFT Batteries, duration 3 years, started in October, 2015). Co-funded by SAFT Batteries and the FEDER. Topic: physical modeling of lithium ion batteries. Prof. Franco is co-supervising a PhD student with SAFT Batteries (Mariem Maiza).   

WONDERFUL (Region Picardie/Hauts de France, duration 3 years, started in October 2015). Topic: Multiscale Modeling and Experimental Characterization of Slurry Redox Flow Batteries. Prof. Franco is the project coordinator.  

HELIS (EU H2020, duration 4 years, started in July 2015). Topic: Design and Optimization of Lithium-Sulfur Batteries for Automotives Applications. Prof. Franco is involved in this project as the Computational Modeling Work Package leader.

MASTERS (Project "Accueil Chercheur Haut Niveau", Region Picardie/Hauts de France, duration 3 years, started in October 2014) Topic: Lithium Air Batteries multiscale modeling and experimentation. Prof. Franco is the Laureate and Project Coordinator.

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