Energy conversion and transfer

Birck researchers seek to understand and exploit nanoscale physical phenomena that impact energy conversion and heat transfer at multiple levels, from materials to devices to systems. These endeavors promise to yield more efficient and higher-performance microelectronics, high-performance thermoelectrics, photovoltaics, thermophotovoltaics to convert heat to electricity, compact and environmentally friendly solid-state refrigeration, high-efficiency separation processes, and safe, high-performance batteries. Progress in these applications demands an understanding of the coupling between phonons, electrons and photons at length scales comparable to their wavelengths and scattering lengths, and at timescales ranging from femtoseconds to microseconds.