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Maria Helena Sousa Soares de Oliveira Braga is assistant professor at the Engineering Physics Department of University of Porto, Portugal.[1] She is currently focused on research areas in Materials Science and Materials Engineering at University of Porto and University of Texas at Austin.[2] She is credited with expanding the understanding of glass electrolyte and glass batteries with colleague John B. Goodenough.[3] Braga is a senior research fellow in the Materials Institute headed by Goodenough.

Maria Helena Braga
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Native name
Maria Helena Sousa Soares de Oliveira Braga
Other namesM. H. Braga; M.H. Braga; M. Helena Braga; Helena Braga
EducationDoctor, Materials Science and Metallurgy
Alma materUniversidade do Porto
Known forBattery technology
Scientific career
FieldsMaterials Science, Physics, Thermodynamics
InstitutionsMaterials Science and Engineering Program and Texas Materials Institute-The University of Texas at Austin, Engineering Physics Department-University of Porto, Energy and Geology National Laboratory (LNEG), S. Mamede Infesta, Portugal



Braga was Licentiate in physics at Porto University, Portugal in 1993 and received Doctor of Philosophy from Porto University, Portugal, in 1999.


Braga was Research Scholar and a Long Term Visiting Staff Member at Los Alamos National Laboratory (2008-2011). Braga is recognized for expanding our understanding of solid-glass electrolytes and glass-batteries. She has contributed research in light alloys, lead-free solders, and hydrogen storage materials.[4][5][6][7][8] Her work with glass electrolytes was recognized by Goodenough as important, and she was persuaded to join his group to further this research.[9]

Glass-amorphous solid electrolytes in the form of Ba-doped Li-glass and Ba-doped Na-glass are proposed by Braga as a solution to problems identified with organic liquid electrolytes used in modern lithium-ion battery cells. Sodium is easier to obtain and more environmentally friendly than lithium, and the glass electrolyte eliminates the possibility of short circuit. Batteries based on this new design may store three times as much energy as comparable Li-ion cells.[10][11] In addition, designs based upon Bragas research improve the existing limitation of 500 charge cycles in Li-ion to over 1200 charge cycles and over a wider temperature range.[12][13]

Helena Braga is the really force behind all of this.

— Andrew Murchison, DesignNews

Braga and colleagues at Materials for Energy Research Group in University of Porto host research projects related to glass electrolyte, magnetic refrigerators, catalyst for fuel cell reactions, and other advanced materials research.[14]

Braga has submitted an application for a patent on a solid-carbon sodium ion based device for energy storage applications.[15]


  1. ^ Porto, Faculty of Engineering of the University of. "FEUP - Helena Braga". Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  2. ^ "Maria Helena Braga at University of Texas at Austin | Government Salaries Explorer | The Texas Tribune". The Texas Tribune. Retrieved 2017-04-30.
  3. ^ "Lithium-Ion Battery Inventor Introduces New Technology for Fast-Charging, Noncombustible Batteries". UT News | The University of Texas at Austin. 2017-02-28. Retrieved 2017-04-30.
  4. ^ Braga, M. Helena; Ferreira, Jorge A.; Murchison, Andrew J.; Goodenough, John B. (2017-01-01). "Electric Dipoles and Ionic Conductivity in a Na+ Glass Electrolyte". Journal of the Electrochemical Society. 164 (2): A207–A213. doi:10.1149/2.0691702jes. ISSN 0013-4651.
  5. ^ Braga, M.H.; Grundish, N.S.; Murchison, A.J.; Goodenough, J.B. (2016-12-09). "Alternative strategy for a safe rechargeable battery". Energy and Environmental Science. 10: 331–336. doi:10.1039/C6EE02888H. Retrieved 2017-03-15.
  6. ^ Labrini, Mohamed; Scheiba, Frieder; Almaggoussi, Abdelmajid; Larzek, Mohamed; Braga, M. Helena; Ehrenberg, Helmut; Saadoune, Ismael (2016-06-01). "Delithiated LiyCo0.8Ni0.1Mn0.1O2 cathode materials for lithium-ion batteries: Structural, magnetic and electrochemical studies". Solid State Ionics. 289: 207–213. doi:10.1016/j.ssi.2016.03.017.
  7. ^ Braga, M. Helena; Murchison, Andrew J.; Ferreira, Jorge A.; Singh, Preetam; Goodenough, John B. (2016-03-09). "Glass-amorphous alkali-ion solid electrolytes and their performance in symmetrical cells". Energy Environ. Sci. 9 (3): 948–954. doi:10.1039/c5ee02924d. ISSN 1754-5706.
  8. ^ "Revolutionizing Batteries With Sodium". Retrieved 2017-04-30.
  9. ^ Kennedy, Pagan (2017-04-07). "To Be a Genius, Think Like a 94-Year-Old". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  10. ^ "Lithium-Ion Pioneer Introduces New Battery That's Three Times Better". Fortune. Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  11. ^ "The Inventor of the Lithium-Ion Battery Invents an Even Better One". Popular Mechanics. 2017-03-03. Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  12. ^ "Could this be the battery that revolutionizes our cars and phones?". NBC News. Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  13. ^ "Lithium-Ion Battery Inventor Ups Ante With Advanced Solid-State Rechargeable". Design News. 2017-05-23. Retrieved 2017-05-27.
  14. ^ "Physics_MATERIALS". Retrieved 2017-05-05.
  15. ^ Sousa, Soares De Oliveria; Do, Amral Ferreira José Jorge; Murchison, JR Andrew Jackson; Braga, Maria Helena (October 6, 2016). "An electrochemical solid carbon-sulfur na-ion based device and uses thereof" (WO2016157083 A1). European Patent Office. Retrieved 2017-05-31.[dead link]

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