Nanophotonics and Nanoplasmonics

 

Our research topics in nanophotonics and nanoplasmonics include graphene plasmonics, thermoplasmonics, and infrared/terahertz metamaterials and metasurfaces. We also explore their applications in infrared/terahertz light sources, detectors, communication, and energy conversion.

Current Projects

Nanoscale Heat Transfer

 

Thermal transport properties of nanostructures can significantly deviate from their bulk counterparts. We use microfabricated thermal devices to characterize thermal and thermoelectric properties of 1D  materials (e.g., phase change nanowires, polymer nanofibers) and 2D materials or heterostructures (e.g., graphene, MoS2, WSe2). We also develop atomic force microscopy based techniques to measure radiative heat transfer at the nanoscale.

Multifunctional Materials

 

Multifunctional materials and structures can revolutionize system design and capability with reduced mass and cost. We are interested in multifunctional material concepts, involving thermal-mechanical or thermal-optical functionality. Our recent efforts include polymer nanofibers with high thermal conductivity and high Young's modulus, and nanostructured thermal interface materials with high thermal conductivity and high mechanical compliance.

Solar Thermal Energy Conversion

 

One major advantage of solar thermal systems over traditional solar cells is the utilization of nearly the entire solar spectrum by converting solar light into heat. In our group, we design and fabricate solar selective absorber and emitter for solar thermal systems (e.g., solar thermophotovoltaic system) by exploring low-cost, large-scale nanophotonic materials.

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