Plenary Speakers

Maxim Bykov - University of Cologne, Germany

Bio: Maxim Bykov is a group leader at the Institute of Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Cologne in Germany. He received his Ph.D. degree in Crystallography from the University of Bayreuth in 2015, where he applied high-pressure diamond anvil cell technique and single-crystal X-ray diffraction to study compounds featuring complex incommensurately modulated structures. In 2015 he joined Bayerisches Geoinstitute as a postdoctoral researcher and concentrated on high-pressure chemical synthesis in diamond anvil cells. Application of multigrain X-ray diffraction analysis allowed him to discover numerous nitrogen-rich phases in various metal-nitrogen systems including polynitrides of Fe and Ta, metal-inorganic frameworks in Re-, W-, Hf- and Os-N systems, pentazolate frameworks in the Na-N system as well as an ultrahard rhenium nitride pernitride Re2(N2)N2. For his works on the chemistry of nitrogen, he received the award of the European High-Pressure Research Group (EHPRG) in 2020. He continued this research direction during the postdoctoral positions in Howard University and Carnegie Institution for Science by extending into the problems of synthesis scalability, reproducibility and predictability.

Title: Single-crystal X-ray diffraction in high-pressure chemical synthesis

Wendy Mao - Stanford University, United States

Bio: Wendy Mao is a professor in Geological Sciences at Stanford University and a professor in Photon Science at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. She received her B.S. degree in Materials Science & Engineering in 1998 from MIT, and her Ph.D. in Geophysical Sciences in 2005 from the University of Chicago. Wendy’s thesis research focused on experimental mineral physics studies of iron and iron-bearing compounds for understanding Earth’s core and core-mantle boundary. From 2005 to 2007 she was a J. R. Oppenheimer Post-doctoral Fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Wendy’s research group works on understanding the behavior of materials under extreme conditions. She uses diamond anvil cells and laser-shock compression to access high pressure and variable temperatures and studies the dramatic changes that are induced using a suite of laboratory and synchrotron x-ray and x-ray free electron techniques. Her work has applications in understanding Earth and planetary interiors and developing new energy-related materials. She is the recipient of the Rosalind Franklin Young Investigator Award and the Mineralogical Society of America Award. Wendy is a fellow of the Geochemical Society, the European Association of Geochemistry, the American Geophysical Union, and the Mineralogical Society of America. 

Title: X-ray studies of materials at extreme conditions for understanding planetary interiors

Jun Tsuchiya – Ehime University, Japan

Bio: Jun Tsuchiya is an associate professor at the Geodynamics Research Center, Ehime University in Japan. She received ph.D in Science at Osaka University in 2003. She is one of the pioneers in the application of first-principles calculation based on density functional theory to high pressure Earth and Planetary Sciences. In particular, she has elucidated the symmetrization of hydrogen bonding in hydrous minerals such as d-AlOOH and phase D (MgSi2O6H2) possibly existing in the colder part of Earth’s lower mantle and predicted its profound influence on the elastic and spectroscopic properties of these high-pressure hydrous phases. She has also made significant contributions in predicting the existence of new hydrous phases. Among them, she has reported the possible phase transition of phase D to the new dense hydrous magnesium silicate, phase H. This theoretical predication has soon proven by the experiments. This new phase is now considered to be a carrier of hydrogen into further deeper part of Earth’s interior. Her collaborative research with experimentalists has attracted international attention, and her results have been published in many peer-reviewed international journals.

Title: First principles investigations of proton dynamics in hydrous phases at high pressure conditions

Workshop Contacts


Vitali Prakapenka

Research Professor
Center for Advanced Radiation Sources
The University of Chicago

Stella Chariton

Beamline Scientist
Center for Advanced Radiation Sources
The University of Chicago

Workshop Organizers


  • Vitali Prakapenka (GSECARS/Univ. Chicago)
  • Stella Chariton (GSECARS/Univ. Chicago)
  • Dongzhou Zhang (Univ. Hawaii/GSECARS)
  • Yanbin Wang (GSECARS/Univ. Chicago)