News Release

Michael Thackeray named Fellow of the Royal Society

Grant and Award Announcement

DOE/Argonne National Laboratory


image: Michael Thackeray. view more 

Credit: (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)

Argonne scientist recognized for his pivotal research on lithium-ion batteries.

Michael Thackeray has been elected a Fellow in the Royal Society. He is an emeritus materials chemist and has been a leading battery researcher for three decades at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory.  

The Society recognized Thackeray “For the discovery, design and development of improved materials for industry, particularly lithium metal oxide electrodes for lithium ion battery systems.”

Founded in London in 1660, the Royal Society is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence. Isaac Newton was a Royal Society Fellow, elected in 1672.

The current list of fellows boasts many of the world’s most prominent scientists. Among the 1700 Fellows and Foreign Members are around 85 Nobel laureates. Each year, the society elects up to 52 Fellows and 10 Foreign Members from a group of around 800.

“It is an honor to welcome so many outstanding researchers from around the world into the Fellowship of the Royal Society,” said Sir Adrian Smith, president of the Royal Society. ​“Through their careers so far, these researchers have helped further our understanding of human disease, biodiversity loss and the origins of the universe. I am also pleased to see so many new Fellows working in areas likely to have a transformative impact on our society over this century.”

Thackeray’s impact has been in contributing to the adoption of large lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles and their continued improvement. He has authored 230 scientific papers and holds 65 patents on battery science and technology. Eight of his scientific papers have received more than 1000 citations in Google Scholar.

Thackeray is the lead inventor in two of the five principal lithium cathode chemistries that are used in devices powered by lithium batteries. His spinel cathode was the material of choice for the Nissan Leaf electric vehicle. His more recent cathode chemistry (a lithium-rich mixture of nickel, manganese, and cobalt) is one of the preferred candidates for future electric vehicles and could become the dominant lithium battery chemistry over the next decade.

“Becoming a Royal Society Fellow is indeed a great honor,” Thackeray said. ​“The path I have trodden would not have been possible without the opportunities that have come my way and the numerous colleagues and friends across the world with whom I have collaborated and learnt much. My grateful thanks to them all.”

Argonne National Laboratory seeks solutions to pressing national problems in science and technology. The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne conducts leading-edge basic and applied scientific research in virtually every scientific discipline. Argonne researchers work closely with researchers from hundreds of companies, universities, and federal, state and municipal agencies to help them solve their specific problems, advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for a better future. With employees from more than 60 nations, Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://​ener​gy​.gov/​s​c​ience.

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