Perla B. Balbuena

Professor - Chemical Engineering

Holder of Mike O'Connor Chair I Professor

Contact Information

Phone: (979) 845-3375

Fax: (979) 845-6446


Departmental Page


2004 – Present            Mike O’Connor Chair I Professor of Chem. Engineering, Texas A&M University.
2016 – Present            Professor of Chemistry (joint appointment), Texas A&M University
2006 – Present            Professor of Materials Sci. and Eng. (affiliated), Texas A&M University
2002-2004                    Associate Professor, University of South Carolina
1997-2002                    Assistant Professor, University of South Carolina
1992-1996                    Research Associate, University of Texas at Austin
1990-1992                    Visiting Scientist, Cornell University, School of Chemical Engineering
1978-1994                    Associate Professor, Univ. Nacional del Litoral, Santa Fe, Argentina
1974-1978                   CONICET Graduate Fellow, INTEC, Santa Fe, Argentina



  • 1996 Ph. D., Chemical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin
  • 1983 M.S.E., Chemical Engineering, University of Pennsylvania
  • 1973 B.S., Chemical Engineering, Universidad Tecnológica Nacional, Argentina


Research Interests

Reactions on nanoclusters and surfaces: applications to catalysis, electrochemistry, and corrosion; prediction of thermodynamic and transport properties; first-principles materials design.




  • Jose Fernando Godínez-Salomón, Francisco Ospina-Acevedo, Luis A. Albiter, Kathleen O. Bailey, Zachary G. Naymik, Rubén Mendoza-Cruz, Perla B. Balbuena, and Christopher P. Rhodes, “Titanium Substitution Effects on Structure, Activity, and Stability of Nanoscale Ruthenium Oxide Oxygen Evolution Electrocatalysts: Experimental and Computational Study,” ACS Appl. Nano Materials, in press.
  • Stefany Angarita-Gomez and Perla B. Balbuena, “Ion Mobility and Solvation Complexes at Liquid-Solid Interfaces in Dilute, High Concentrated, and Localized High Concentrated Electrolytes,” Mater. Adv., 3, 6352-6363, (2022).
  • Stefany Angarita-Gomez and Perla B. Balbuena, “Ion Motion and Charge Transfer through a Solid-Electrolyte Interphase: An Atomistic View,” J. Solid State Electrochem., in press.
  • Denis Johnson, Hao-En Lai, Kyle Hansen, Perla B. Balbuena, and Abdoulaye Djire “Hydrogen evolution reaction mechanism on Ti3C2 MXene revealed by in situ/operando Raman spectroelectrochemistry”, Nanoscale, 14, 5068-5078, (2022).
  • Luis E. Camacho-Forero, Fernando Godínez-Salomón, Guadalupe Ramos-Sánchez, Christopher P. Rhodes, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Theoretical and Experimental Study of the Effects of Cobalt and Nickel Doping within IrO2 on the Acidic Oxygen Evolution Reaction,” J. of Catalysis, 408, 64-80, (2022).
  • Padmakar Kichambare, Stanley Rodrigues, Kie Hankins, Perla B. Balbuena, William A. Feld, and Lawrence Scanlon, “Phthalocyanine as catalyst for rechargeable lithium-oxygen batteries,” J. Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines, in press.
  • Dacheng Kuai and Perla B. Balbuena, “Solvent Degradation and Polymerization in the Li-Metal Battery: Organic Phase Formation in Solid-Electrolyte Interphases,” ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 14, 2817-2824, (2022).
  • Florian Baakes; Maximilian Lüthe; Michail Gerasimov; Vincent Laue; Fridolin Röder; Perla B. Balbuena; and Ulrike Krewer, “Unveiling the interaction of reactions and phase transition during thermal abuse of Li-ion batteries,” J. Power Sources, 522, 230881, (2022).
  • S. Angarita-Gomez and P. B. Balbuena, “Understanding Solid Electrolyte Interphase Nucleation and Growth on Lithium Metal Surfaces,” Batteries, 7, 73, (2021).
  • K. Hankins, V. Prabhakaran, S. Wi, V. S. V. Shutthanandan, G. E. Johnson, S. Roy, H. Wang, Y. Shao, S. Thevuthasan, P. B. Balbuena, K. T. Mueller, and V. Murugesan “Role of Polysulfide Anions in Solid-Electrolyte Interphase Formation at the Lithium Metal Surface in Li–S Batteries,”, J. Phys. Chem. Lett., 12, 38, 9360-9367, (2021).
  • K. Hankins, E. P. Kamphaus, P. B. Balbuena, “Combined Density Functional Theory/Kinetic Monte Carlo Investigation of Surface Morphology during Cycling of Li-Cu Electrodes,” Electrochim. Acta, 397, 139272, (2021).
  • Ethan P. Kamphaus and Perla B. Balbuena, “Liquid State Properties of SEI Components in Dimethoxyethane,” J. Chem. Phys., 155, 124701, (2021).
  • Xiangye Liu, Baichang Li, Fernando A. Soto, Xufan Li, Raymond R. Unocic, Perla B. Balbuena, Avetik R. Harutyunyan, James Hone, Daniel V. Esposito, “Enhancing Hydrogen Evolution Activity of Monolayer Molybdenum Disulfide via a Molecular Proton Mediator,” ACS Catalysis, 11, 19, 12159-12169 (2021).
  • Ethan P. Kamphaus and Perla B. Balbuena, “Localized High Concentration Electrolyte and its Effects on Polysulfide Structure in Solution,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 125, 37, 20157-20179 (2021).
  • Mauricio C. Diaz and Perla B. Balbuena, “On the Role of Surface Oxygen during Nascent Single-Walled Carbon Nanotube Cap Spreading and Tube Nucleation on Iron Catalysts,” Carbon, 184, 470-478 (2021).
  • Saul Perez Beltran, Xia Cao, Ji-Guang Zhang, Patrick Z. El-Khoury, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Influence of Diluent Concentration in Localized High Concentration Electrolytes: Elucidation of Hidden Diluent-Li+ Interactions and Li+ Transport Mechanism,” J. Mater. Chem. A, 9, 17459-17473, (2021).
  • Birger Horstmann, Jiayan Shi, Rachid Amine, Martin Werres, Xin He, Hao Jia, Florian Hausen, Isidora Cekic-laskovic, Simon Wiemers-Meyer, Jeffrey Lopez, Diego Galvez-Aranda, Florian Baakes, Dominic Bresser, Chi-Cheung Su, Yaobin Xu, Wu Xu, Peter Jakes, Rüdiger-A Eichel, Egbert Figgemeier, Ulrike Krewer, Jorge M. Seminario, Perla B. Balbuena, Chongmin Wang, Stefano Passerini, Yang Shao-Horn, Martin Winter, Khalil Amine, Robert Kosteckie, Arnulf Latz, “Strategies towards enabling lithium metal in batteries: interphases and electrodes,” Energy and Environ. Sci., 14, 5289-5314, (2021).
  • Longsheng Cao, Dan Li, Fernando A. Soto, Bao Zhang, Victor Ponce, Lu Ma, Tao Deng, Jorge M. Seminario, Enyuan Hu, Xiao-Qing Yang, Perla B. Balbuena, and Chunsheng Wang, “Highly reversible aqueous Zn batteries enabled by zincophilic-zincophobic interfacial layer and interrupted hydrogen bond electrolyte,” Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 60, 2-9, (2021).
  • Saul Perez Beltran and Perla B Balbuena, “Sulfurized Polyacrylonitrile (SPAN): Changes in Mechanical Properties during Electrochemical Lithiation,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 125, 24, 13185-13194, (2021).
  • Stefany Angarita-Gomez and Perla B. Balbuena, “Solvation vs. Surface Charge Transfer: An Interfacial Chemistry Game Drives Cation Motion,” Chem. Comm., 57, 6189-6192, (2021).
  • Jian Tan, Fernando A. Soto, Juran Noh, Peng Wu, Digvijay Rajendra Yadav, Kelvin Xie, Perla B. Balbuena, and Choongho Yu, “Large areal capacity and dendrite-free anodes with long lifetime enabled by distributed lithium plating with mossy manganese oxides,” J. Mater. Chem. A, 9, 9291-9300, (2021).
  • Ahmed Badreldin, Muhammad Danyal Imama, Yiming Wubulikasimua, Khaled Elsaida, Aya E. Abusrafaa, Perla B. Balbuena, Ahmed Abdel-Wahab, “Surface microenvironment engineering of black V2O5 nanostructures for visible light photodegradation of methylene blue,” J. Alloys and Compounds, 871, 159615, (2021).
  • Saul Perez Beltran and Perla B Balbuena, “A Solid Electrolyte Interphase to Protect the Sulfurized Polyacrylonitrile (SPAN) Composite for Li-S Batteries: Computational Approach
    Addressing the Electrolyte/SPAN Interfacial Reactivity,” J. Mater. Chem. A, 9, 7888-7902, (2021).
  • Yu Zheng and Perla B. Balbuena, “Localized High Concentration Electrolytes Decomposition under Electron-rich Environments", J. Chem. Phys, 154, 104702 (2021).
  • Xin He, Dominic Bresser, Stefano Passerini, Florian Baakes, Ulrike Krewer, Jeffrey Lopez, Christopher Mallia, Yang Shao-Horn, Isidora Cekic-Laskovic, Simon Wiemers-Meyer, Fernando Soto, Victor Ponce, Jorge Seminario, Perla B. Balbuena, Hao Jia, Wu Xu, Yaobin Xu, Chongmin Wang, Birger Horstmann, Rachid Amine, Chi-Cheung Su, Jiayan Shi, Khalil Amine, Martin Winter, Arnulf Latz, and Robert Kostecki , “The passivity of lithium electrodes in liquid electrolyte for secondary batteries,” Nat. Rev. Mats., 6, 1036–1052 (2021).
  • Saul Perez Beltran and Perla B. Balbuena, “Sulfurized Polyacrylonitrile for High-Performance Lithium-Sulfur Batteries: In-Depth Computational Approach Revealing Multiple Sulfur’s Reduction Pathways and Hidden Li+ Storage Mechanisms for Extra Discharge Capacity,” ACS Appl. Mater. & Interfaces, 13, 1, 491-502, (2021).
  • E. P. Kamphaus and P. B. Balbuena, “Polysulfide Reduction and Li2S Phase Formation in the Presence of Lithium Metal and Solid Electrolyte Interphase Layer,” J. Power Sources, 485, 229289, (2021). .
  • Ahmed Badreldin, Ahmed Abdel-Wahab, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Local Surface Modulation Activates Metal Oxide Electrocatalyst for Hydrogen Evolution: Synthesis, Characterization and DFT Study of Novel Black ZnO,” ACS Applied Energy Materials, 3, 11, 10590-10599, (2020).
  • Hsin-Yun Chao, Hua Jiang, Francisco Ospina Acevedo, Perla B. Balbuena, Esko I. Kauppinen, John Cumings, and Renu Sharma, “Structure and Activity Relationship for Single-Walled Carbon Nanotube Growth Confirmed by In-Situ observations and Modeling,” Nanoscale, 12, 21923-21931 (2020).
  • Niranjan Sitapure, Hyeonggeon Lee, Francisco Ospina-Acevedo, Perla B. Balbuena, Sungwon Hwang, and Joseph Sang-Il Kwon , “A computational approach to characterize formation of a passivation layer in Lithium metal anodes,” AIChE J., in press,
  • Stefany Angarita-Gomez and Perla B. Balbuena, “Insights into Lithium Ion Deposition on Lithium Metal Surfaces,” Phys.Chem.Chem.Phys., 22, 21369-21382, (2020).
  • Jaebeom Han, Yu Zheng, Ningxua Guo, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Calculated Reduction Potentials of Electrolyte Species in Lithium-Sulfur Batteries,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 124, 20654-20670, (2020).
  • Francisco Ospina-Acevedo, Ningxuan Guo, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Lithium Oxidation and Electrolyte Decomposition at Li-Metal/Liquid Electrolyte Interfaces,” J. Mater. Chem. A, 8, 17036-17055, (2020).
  • Zhimeng Liu, Xin He, Chen Fang, Luis E. Camacho-Forero, Yangzhi Zhao, Yanbao Fu, Jun Feng, Robert Kostecki, Perla B. Balbuena, Junhua Zhang, Jingxin Lei, and Gao Liu, “Reversible Crosslinked Polymer Binder for Recyclable Lithium Sulfur Batteries with High Performance,” Adv. Funct. Mater. 2003605, (2020).
  • Saul Perez Beltran, Xia Cao, Ji-Guang Zhang, and Perla B. Balbuena, “: Localized High Concentration Electrolytes for High Voltage Lithium-Metal Batteries: Correlation between the Electrolyte Composition and its Reductive/Oxidative Stability,” Chem. Mater. 32, 5973-5984, (2020).
  • Luis E. Camacho-Forero and Perla B. Balbuena, “Effects of Charged Interfaces on Electrolyte Decomposition at the Lithium Metal Anode,” J. Power Sources, 472, 228449, (2020).
  • Ethan P. Kamphaus, Stefany Angarita-Gomez, Xueping Qin, Minhua Shao, Perla B. Balbuena, "Effects of solid electrolyte interphase components on the reduction of LiFSI over lithium metal", ChemPhysChem, 21, 1310-1317, (2020).
  • Ana E. Torres, Estrella Ramos, Perla B. Balbuena, “LiOH Formation from Lithium Peroxide Clusters and the Role of Iodide Additive,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 124, 10280-10287, (2020).
  • Supareak Praserthdam, Siriwimol Somdee, Meena Rittiruam, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Computational Study of the Evolution of Ni-Based Catalysts during the Dry Reforming of Methane,” Energy &Fuels, 34, 4, 4855-4864, (2020).
  • D. Tewari; S. Rangarajan; P. B. Balbuena; Y. Barsukov; P. P. Mukherjee, “Mesoscale Anatomy of Dead Lithium Formation,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 124, 6502-6511, (2020).
  • Roberto C. Longo, Luis E. Camacho-Forero, Perla B. Balbuena, “Li2S Growth on Graphene: Impact on the Electrochemical Performance of Li-S Batteries,” J. Chem. Phys., 152, 014701, (2020).
  • Ethan P. Kamphaus, Karoline Hight, Micah Dermott, Perla B. Balbuena, “Model Systems for Screening and Investigation of Lithium Metal Electrode Chemistry and Dendrite Formation,” Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 22, 575-588, (2020).
  • Luis E. Camacho-Forero and Perla B. Balbuena, “Elucidating Interfacial Phenomena between Solid-State Electrolytes and the Sulfur-Cathode of Lithium-Sulfur Batteries,” Chem. Mater., 32, 1, 360-373, (2020).
  • 295. Mauricio C. Diaz, Hua Jiang, Esko Kauppinen, Renu Sharma and Perla B. Balbuena, “Can single-walled carbon nanotube diameter be defined by catalyst particle diameter?,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 123, 30305-30317, (2019).
  • F. A. Ospina-Acevedo, S. Perez Beltran, P. B. Balbuena, “Mechanisms of Alumina Growth via Atomic Layer Deposition on Nickel Oxide and Metallic Nickel Surfaces,” Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 21, 24543-24553, (2019).
  • Yu Zheng, Fernando A. Soto, Victor Ponce, Jorge M. Seminario, Xia Cao, Ji-Guang Zhang, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Localized High Concentration Electrolyte Behavior near a Lithium-Metal Anode Surface,” J. Mater. Chem. A, 7, 25047-27055, (2019).
  • Zhang, Lulu; Qin, Xueping; Xu, Guiliang; Wang, Qi; Gu, Meng; Zhang, Xiaoyi; Sun, Chengjun; Balbuena, Perla; Amine, Khalil; Shao, Minhua, “The Role of Ru in Improving the Activity of Pd toward Hydrogen Evolution and Oxidation Reactions in Alkaline Solutions,” ACS Catalysis, 9,9614-9621, (2019).
  • Behnaz Rahmani Didar and Perla B. Balbuena, “Methane Dehydrogenation on Cu and Ni Surfaces with Low and Moderate Oxygen Coverage,” Int. J. Quantum Chemistry, 2019; e26065.
  • Behnaz Rahmani Didar and Perla B. Balbuena, “Reactivity of Cu and Co Nanoparticles Supported on Mo-doped MgO,” Ind.& Eng. Chem. Res., 58, 18213-18222, (2019).
  • Ethan P. Kamphaus, Stefany Angarita, Xueping Qin, Minhua Shao, Mark Engelhard, Karl T. Mueller, Vijayakumar Murugesan, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Role of inorganic surface layer on solid electrolyte interphase evolution at Li-metal anodes,” ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 11, 31467-31476, (2019).
  • Qin, Xueping; Balbuena, Perla; Shao, Minhua, "First-Principles Study on the Initial Oxidative Decompositions of Ethylene Carbonate on Layered Cathode Surfaces of Lithium Ion Batteries,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 123, 14449-14458, (2019).
  • Soto, F. A., Bernaola-Flores, R., Rodriguez-Reyes, J. C. , Balbuena, P. B., Tarazona-Vasquez, F., “Atomistic Simulations of the Reactivity of Acanthite Facets toward Cyanidation,” J. Phys. Chem. C, 123, 11888-11898, (2019).
  • C. Ardila-Suárez, A. M. Díaz- Lasprilla, L. A. Díaz- Vaca, P. B. Balbuena, V. G. Baldovino-Medrano, and G. E. Ramírez-Caballero, “Synthesis, Characterization, and Post-Synthetic Modification of a Micro/Mesoporous Zirconium-Tricarboxylate Metal-Organic Framework: Towards the Addition of Acid Active Sites”, Crystal Eng. Comm., 21, 3014-3030, (2019).
  • S. Sharifi-Asl, F. A. Soto, Y. Yuan, T. Foroozan, P. Abbasi, R. Deivanayagam, R. Rojaee, B. Song, A. Salehi-khojin, K. Amine, J. Lu, P. B. Balbuena, R. Shahbazian-Yassar, “Anti-Oxygen Leaking LiCoO2,” Adv. Funct. Mater., 1901110, (2019).
  • F. Hao; Z. Liu; P. B. Balbuena; P. P. Mukherjee, “Mesoscale Elucidation of Self-Discharge Induced Performance Decay in Lithium-Sulfur Batteries,” ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, in press.
  • Roberto C. Longo, Luis E. Camacho-Forero, and Perla B. Balbuena, “Charge-Mediated Cation Deposition on Metallic Surfaces,” J. Mater. Chem. A, 7, 8527-8539, (2019).
  • R. Bernaola-Flores, D. Silva-Quiñones, P. B. Balbuena, J. C. F. Rodríguez-Reyes, F. Tarazona-Vasquez , “Atomic scale study of silver sulphide leaching with cyanide and thiourea,” Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. , 55(4):969–980, (2019).
  • Ethan Kamphaus and Perla B. Balbuena, “Effects of Dimethyl Disulfide Cosolvent on Li-S Battery Chemistry and Performance,” Chem. Mater., 31, 2377-2389, (2019).
  • D. E. Galvez-Aranda, A. Varma, K. Hankins, J. M. Seminario, P. P. Mukherjee, and P. B. Balbuena, “Chemical and Mechanical Degradation and Mitigation Strategies for Si Anodes”, J. Power Sources, 419, 208-218, (2019).