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研究  Research



Chemical elements shape everything of human civilization. We are devising novel processes to extract pure elements from complex systems, to gain insight into the nature of material transformation.

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​Physical chemistry of oxyanions in molten salts


Multiple elements in the periodic table groups 13-16 possess semiconductor properties. They usually bind with O to form oxyanions, such as borate, silicate, phosphate and selenate. We found that all these oxyanions are soluble in molten CaCl2. Accordingly, the focus of our research is to clarify the physical chemistry of oxyanions in molten CaCl2, including formation mechanism, mass transfer, microstructure and electrochemical behavior, so as to lay the fundation to develop novel processes for elements extraction or recycling.

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电化学提取单质磷元素 (P4)
​Electrochemistry isolates elemental phosphorus



In 1669, a German alchemist named Brandt first discovered elemental phosphorus from urine distillate by carbothermic reduction.

In 2019, we devised a new method to isolate or recycle elemental phosphorus from phosphate-bearing solids by electrochemistry. 

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资料 Reference


* X. YANG* and T. NOHIRA, “A New Concept for Producing White Phosphorus: Electrolysis of Dissolved Phosphate in Molten Chloride”, ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering, 8 (2020), 13784-13792.

*. Y. ZHONG, X. YANG*, “Dissolution Behavior of Solid Ca3(PO4)2 in molten CaCl2”, Metallurgical and Materials Transactions B, 52 (2021), 3515-3523.


​A video showing the process of isolating P4 from sewage sludge ash by electrochemistry (click and play)

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