Faculty of Natural
Comenius University Bratislava

M² group

Team members

Assoc. Prof. Olivier Monfort, PhD.

Dr. Martin Motola

Prof. RNDr. Gustáv Plesch, DrSc.

Dr. Shalu Atri

M.Sc. Sridhar Gowri Sankaran

M.Eng. Muhammad Bilal Hanif

M.Sc. Arshitha Madhusudhan

M.Sc. Lenin Thulluvan Valappil

M.Sc. Hamidrez Behtooei



The M² group is a research group which is led by Assoc. Prof. Olivier Monfort, PhD. and Dr. Martin Motola at the department of Inorganic Chemistry, FNS CU Bratislava. The group is composed of two laboratoeries: materials innovation and advances (MIA lab) and mechanisms and reactivities in remediation processes (MR2P lab). In other words, the M² group is focused on fundamental research of nanomaterials for environmental applications such as innovative wastewaters treatment, production of green energy (like hydrogen), and biomedical applications.

More info about the scientific research of Assoc. Prof. Olivier Monfort (MR2P lab) along with its context: CLICK HERE

About the PIs

Olivier Monfort is a French scientist, who got his PhD from Faculty of Natural Sciences, Comenius University Bratislava (FNS CU). He performed two postdoctoral fellowships in France at (i) Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Rennes, where he worked on the remediation of soil contaminated by PCBs, and (ii) at the prestigious CNRS in the Institut de Chimie de Clermont-Ferrand, where he worked on the photochemically induced processes for wastewaters treatment. In 2020, he decided to come back to his alma mater, where he recently became an Associate Professor and where he created the M² group with Martin Motola. Martin Motola got his PhD from FNS CU and he performed more than two years postdoctoral stay at the Centre of Material and Nanotechnologies, University of Pardubice, in the prestigious group of Dr. Macáka. He came back to his alma mater in 2021.

The M² group in numbers

During the last 5 years, the M² group hs published more than 80 articles in top internationa peer-reviwed journals. The PIs are leading several national and international sicentific projects, and they are supervising and young and dynamic team composed of 2 postdocs and 6 PhD students, who are the fundamental bricks of the M² group succes.

We are hiring

We are currently looking for motivated students. If you are interested in fundamental Science, environmental thematics, preparation of nanomaterials and advanced anaytical techniques, just write him an email at olivier.monfortuniba.sk. or martin.motolauniba.sk.

We are also seeking for a postdoctoral candidate to support to the MSCA postdoctoral European fellowships. More info about how to appply HERE.


Our website

Just click here: M² group


List of financed projects (as PIs)

Project No. APVV-21-0039: Photochemically versatile materials for water treatment

Project VEGA No. 1/0319/23: Photoinduced production of hydrogen from biomass using anodic nanostructures

Project No. SK-FR-22-0002: Solar-active nanostructured materials for innovative remediation of water contaminated by pharmaceuticals

Project No. SK-CN-23-0002: Innovative iron-based photoactive materials for sustainable wastewaters treatment


List of publications from last year (2023)

Q. U. Ain, M. Irshad*, M. S. Butt, A. N. Tabish, M. B. Hanif*, M. A. Khalid, R. Ghaffar, M. Rafique, D. E. Shawar, K. Siraj, A. A. A. Hafez, H. S. M. Abd-Rabboh, Z. Zmrhalova, E. Filonova, D. A. Medvedev, M. Motola*, Towards sustainable electrochemistry: green synthesis and sintering aid modulations in the development of BaZr0.8Y0.1M0.03O3–δ (M = Mn, Co, and Fe) IT-SOFC electrolytes, Frontiers in Chemistry 11 (2023) 1322475. doi.org/10.3389/fchem.2023.1322475


J. Gao, M. B. Hanif, H. Zhang, M. Motola, Ch.-X. Li*, Recent advances in microstructural control via thermal spraying for solid oxide fuel cells, Chemical Engineering Journal 478 (2023) 147352. doi.org/10.1016/j.cej.2023.147352

A. M. Mehdi, A. Hussain, M. Z. Khan*, M. B. Hanif*, R.-H. Song, W. W. Kazmi, M. M. Ali, S. Rauf, Y. Zhang, M. M. Baig, D. A. Medvedev*, M. Motola, Progress and prospects in direct ammonia solid oxide fuel cells: a review, Russian Chemical Reviews 92 (2023) RSCR5098. doi.org/10.59761/RCR5098


V. V. Kusumkar, S. Atri*, S. Inan, M. Gregor, T. Roch, H. Makarov, M. Caplovicova, M. Galambos, E. Viglasova, G. Plesch, O. Monfort*, Application of MXene for remediation of low-level radioactive aqueous solutions contaminated with 133Ba and 137Cs, Chemical Communications 59 (2023) 12007-12010. https://doi.org/10.1039/D3CC02147E

H. G. Ali, K. Khan, M. B. Hanif*, M. Z. Khan, I. Hussain, M. S. Javed, H. A. Z. Al-Bonsrulah, M. Mosialek, M. Fichtner*, M. Motola*, Advancements in two-dimensional materials as anodes for lithium-ion batteries: exploring composition-structure-property relationships emerging trends, and future perspective, Journal of Energy Storage 73 (2023) 108980. doi.org/10.1016/j.est.2023.108980


M. Irshad*, K. Baber, M. S. Butt, M. B. Hanif, M. Asad, A. Ghaffar, M. Rafique, I. Hussain, M. M. Al-Anazy, H. Makarov, B. D. Napruszewska, M. Mosialek, M. Motola*, Synergistic role of biomolecules and biochelating agents in the sustainable development of an efficient BaCe0.97M0.03O3–δ (M = Sm, Gd) perovskite electrolyte for IT-SOFC, Ceramics International 49 (2023) 38360-38366. doi.org/10.1016/j.ceramint.2023.09.170

E. Paluch*, A. Seniuk, G. Plesch, J. Widelski, D. Szymanski, R. F. Wiglusz, M. Motola, E. Dworniczek, Mechanism of action and efficiency of Ag3PO4-based photocatalysts for the control of hazardous gram-positive pathogens, International Journal of Molecular Science 24 (2023) 13553. doi.org/10.3390/ijms241713553

V. Liapun, M. B. Hanif, M. Sihor, X. Vislocka, S. Pandiaraj, Unnikrishnan V. K., G. K. Thirunavukkarasu, M. F. Edelmannova, M. Reli, O. Monfort, K. Koci*, M. Motola*, Versatile application of BiVO4/TiO2 S-scheme photocatalst: Photocatalytic CO2 and Cr(VI) reduction, Chemosphere 337 (2023) 139397. doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2023.139397

G. K. Thirunavukkarasu*, M. B. Hanif, V. Liapun, K. Hensel, J. Kupcik, J. Lorincik, I. Elantyev, O. Monfort, M. Motola*, Decrypting the growth of anodic TiO2 nanotube layers in eco-friendly fluoride-free nitrate-based electrolyte for enhanced photocatalytic degradation of organic pollutants, Materials Research Bulletin 165 (2023) 112322. doi.org/10.1016/j.materresbull.2023.112322

M. B. Hanif*, S. Rauf, Z. u. Abadeen, K. Khan, Z. Tayyab, S. Qayyum, M. Mosialek*, Z. Shao*, Ch. X. Li, M. Motola*, Proton-conducting solid electrolysis cells: interrelationship of composition-structure on the property, their challenges, and prospects, MATTER 6 (2023) 1782-1830. doi.org/10.1016/j.matt.2023.04.013

K. Khan, H. Xin, B. Fu, M. B. Hanif, P. Li, B. A. Beshiwork, Z. Fang, M. Motola, Z. Xu, M. Wu*, Garnet/polymer solid electrolytes for high-performace solid-state lithium metal batteries: the role of amorphous Li2O2, Journal of Colloid and Interface Science 642 (2023) 246-254. doi.org/10.1016/j.jcis.2023.03.116

S. Rauf, M. B, Hanif, F. Wali, Z. Tayyab, B. Zhu, N. Mushtaq, Y. Yang*, K. Khan, P. D. Lund, M. Motola, W. Xu*, Highly active interfacial sites in SFT-SnO2 heterojunction electrolyte for enhanced fuel cell performance via engineering energy bands: envisioned theoretically and experimentally, Energy & Environmental Materials 49 (2023) [accepted]. doi.org/10.1002/eem2.12606

M. Usman*, O. Monfort, S. Gowrisankaran, B. H. Hameed, M. Al-Abri, K. Hanna, Dual functional materials capable of integrating adsorption and Fenton-based oxidation processes for highly efficient removal of pharmaceutical contaminants, Journal of Water Process Engineering 52 (2023) 103566. doi.org/10.1016/j.jwpe.2023.103566 


K. Khan*, Z. U. D. Babar, S. Qayyum, M. B. Hanif*, S. Rauf, A. Sultan, M. Mosialek, M. Motola*, B. Lin*, Design of efficient and durable symmetrical proton ceramic fuel cells at intermediate temperature via B-site doping of Ni in BaCe0.56Zr0.2Ni0.04Y0.2O3–δ, Ceramics International 49 (2023) 16826-16835. doi.org/10.1016/j.ceramint.2023.02.043

M. Dobesova, M. Kolackova, O. Pencik, P. Capal, P. Chaloupsky, P. Svec, A. Ridoskova, M. Motola, V. Cicmancova, H. Sopha, J. M. Macak, L. Richtera, V. Adam, D. Huska*, Transcriptomic hallmarks of in vitro TiO2 nanotubes toxicity in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, Aquatic Toxicology 256 (2023) 106419. doi.org/10.1016/j.aquatox.2023.106419

S. Gowrisankaran, G. Karthikeyan Thirunavukkarasu, H. Makarov, T. Roch, G. Plesch, M. Motola, G. Mailhot, M. Brigante*, O. Monfort*, New insights into the mechanism of coupled photocatalysis and Fenton-based processes using Fe surface-modified TiO2 nanotube layers: the case study of caffeine degradation, Catalysis Today 413-415 (2023) 114027. doi.org/10.1016/j.cattod.2023.02.004

V. Liapun*, M. Motola*, Current overview and future perspective in fungal biorecovery of metals from secondary sources, Journal of Environmental Management 332 (2023) 117345. doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2023.117345

M. Mosialek*, M. B. Hanif*, T. Salkus, A. Kezionis, E. Kazakevicius, A. F. Orliukas, R. P. Socha, W. Lasocha, M. Dziubaniuk, J. Wyrwa, M. Gregor, M. Motola*, Synthesis of Yb and Sc stabilized zirconia electrolyte (Yb0.12Sc0.08Zr0.8O2-δ) for intermediate temperature SOFCs: microstructural and electrical properties, Ceramics International 49 (2023) 15276-15283. doi.org/10.1016/j.ceramint.2023.01.111


M. B. Hanif*, S. Rauf, M. Mosialek*, K. Khan, V. Kavaliuke, A. Kezionis, T. Salkus, J. Gurgul, D. Medvedev, M. Zimowska, D. Madej, M. Motola*, Mo-doped BaCe0.9Y0.1O3-δ proton-conducting electrolyte at intermediate temperature SOFCs. Part I: microstructure and electrochemical properties, International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 48 (2023) 37532-37549. doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhydene.2023.01.144

H. Sopha, Z. Spotz, M. Sepulveda, M. Alijani, M. Motola, L. Hromadko, J. M. Macak*, Intrinsic properties of anodic TiO2 nanotube layers: in-situ XRD annealing of TiO2 nanotube layers, Ceramics International  49 (2023) 24293-24301. doi.org/10.1016/j.ceramint.2022.11.032


K. K. Kumar, S. Sujatha, W. Skarka, O. Monfort*, Innovative hybrid biosorbent composed of nano ZnO and marine macro algae Jania rubens embedded in alginate/PVA matrix: Insights into Pb2+ removal in water, New Journal of Chemistry 47 (2023) 373-383. doi.org/10.1039/D2NJ04896E

K. Kashif, B. Fu, H. Xin, B. A. Beshiwork, M. B. Hanif, J. Wu, Z. Fang*, J. Yang, T. Li, Ch. Chen, M. Motola, Z. Xu*, M. Wu*, Composite polymer electrolyte incorporating WO3 nanofillers with enhanced performance for dendrite-free solid-state lithium battery, Ceramics International 49 (2023) 4473-4481. doi.org/10.1016/j.ceramint.2022.09.333