Michael F. Toney


BS California Institute of Technology, 1979

PhD University of Washington, 1983


  • American Physical Society Fellow, 2019
  • Farrell W Lytle Award, Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource, 2009
  • IBM Outstanding Technical Achievement Award, 1997.
  • IBM Technical Group Award, 1996
  • IBM Outstanding Technical Achievement Award, 1988
  • NATO Postdoctoral Fellowship, 1983

Selected Publications

  • “Structural Origins of Light-Induced Phase Segregation in Organic-Inorganic Halide Perovskite Photovoltaic Materials”, RE Beal, N Zhou Hagstrom, J Barrier, A Gold-Parker, R. Prasanna, K.A. Bush, D. Passarello, L.T. Schelhas, K. Bruning, C.J. Tassone, H-G Steinruck, M.D. McGehee, M.F. Toney, Ana Flavia Nogueira, Matter 2, 207-219 (2020). DOI: 10.1016/j.matt.2019.11.001

  • "Shedding X-ray Light on the Interfacial Electrochemistry of Silicon Anodes for Li-Ion Batteries”, C. Cao, B. Shyam, J. Wang, M.F. Toney, H.-G. Steinrück, Accts Acc. Chem. Res. 31, 1562-1572 (2019). DOI: 10.1021/acs.accounts.9b00233

  • “Solid Electrolyte Interphase on Native Oxide-Terminated Silicon Anodes for Li-Ion Batteries”, C. Cao, I.I. Abate, E. Sivonxay, B. Shyam, C. Jia, B. Moritz, T.P. Devereaux, K.A. Persson, H.-G. Steinruck, M.F. Toney, Joule 3, 762-781 (2019). DOI: 10.1016/j.joule.2018.12.013

  • “Impact of Polymer Side Chain Modification on OPV Morphology and Performance”, V. Savikhin, M. Babics, M. Neophytou, S. Liu, S.D. Oosterhout, H. Yan, X. Gu, P.M. Beaujuge, M.F. Toney, Chem Mater 30, 7872–7884, (2018). DOI: 10.1021/acs.chemmater.8b03455

  • “Acoustic Phonon Lifetimes Limit Thermal Transport in Methylammonium Lead Iodide”, A. Gold-Parker, P.M. Gehring, J.M. Skelton, I.C. Smith, D. Parshall, J.M. Frost, H.I. Karunadasa, A. Walsh, M.F. Toney, Proc Nation Acad Sci, 115, 11905–11910 (2018). DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1812227115

  • “Transformation from crystalline precursor to perovskite in PbCl2-derived MAPbI3”, K.H. Stone, A Gold-Parker, V.L. Pool, E.L. Unger, A.R. Bowring, M.D. McGehee, M.F. Toney, C.J. Tassone, Nature Comms. 9, 3458 (2018). DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-05937-4

  • “Band Gap Tuning via Lattice Contraction and Octahedral Tilting in Perovskite Materials for Photovoltaics”, R Prasanna, A Gold-Parker, T. Leijtens, B. Conings, A. Babayigit, H.-G. Boyen, M.F. Toney, M.D. McGehee, J Amer Chem Soc 139, 11117–11124 (2017). DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b04981

  • “Mixing Behavior in Small Molecule:Fullerene Organic Photovoltaics”, S.D. Oosterhout, V. Savikhin, J. Zhang, Y. Zhang, M.A. Burgers, S.R. Marder, G.C. Bazan, M.F. Toney, Chem. Mater. 29, 3062–3069 (2017). DOI: 10.1021/acs.chemmater.7b00067

Research Interests

My research group focuses on incisively characterizing and understanding the physics and chemistry that underlie the functioning of materials for sustainable energy as well as synthesis pathways. We focus on energy storage, solar materials, hydrogen storage, and materials and process to address clean water challenges, and use X-ray and neutron scattering, together with X-ray spectroscopy and imaging often operando and in situ. The insight gained enables the rationale design and control of properties, performance and synthesis pathways and can enable the creation of a road map to the development and discovery of next generation materials and processes.

Electrochemical energy storage, including Li-ion and beyond Li-ion batteries. Our research includes;

Foundational and applied materials science of hybrid metal halide perovskite semiconductors. I am part of the Center for Hybrid Organic-Inorganic Semiconductors for Energy (CHOISE), an Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) https://www.choise-efrc.org/.  

Research activities are:

  • Lattice Dynamics and impact on properties
  • Characterize homogeneity in multi-component compounds
  • The impact of imposed strain on stability
  • Quantify defect chemistry and impact on properties
  • Determine film formation mechanisms in situ and develop reaction pathways
  • Structure-property relationship in “2D perovskites”

Establishing structure-function relationship in organic photovoltaics (OPVs). This is part of an Office of Naval Research MURI.

Materials and processes for clean water technologies, including fouling of membrane surfaces and transport in membranes. This is a new area for me and we have a recent submitted manuscript to Joule that can be found here describing opportunities.

Hydrogen storage materials. The goal is to address the scientific gaps blocking the advancement of solid-state hydrogen storage materials. Part of Hymarc https://www.hymarc.org/