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Metamaterials for energy applications

Engineering and characterisation of improved materials to harvest, store, transmit, and save energy


We develop new pathways for solutions of today's and future energy challenges. Our areas of focus are:
  • The conversion of unused or wasted energy in the environment into electrical energy;
  • Atomic level manipulation and control of interfaces between two materials to engineer materials for better energy harvesting (thermoelectrics and solar)and energy storage (batteries);
  • Wireless power transfer systems;
  • Nanomaterials for energy storage and conversion;
  • 3D Metamaterials for energy harvesting applications

From harvesting to storage, our Centre brings together expertise from physics and engineering to explore, for example,

  • the role of electronic and thermal transport in materials and their optical properties and characterisation;
  • how to synthesize and characterise novel functional nanoporous materials for practical applications in for example solar and hydrogen energy creation, storage, and conversion, nanodevice construction, greenhouse capture and conversion, photocatalysis and environmental catalysis for renewable energy to lightweight wearable engineering devices;
  • the exploitation of metamaterials in energy harvesting to enhance conversion efficiency of unused or wasted energy into electrical energy to power small electronic devices such as wireless sensors.
Prof Janet Anders: Quantum thermodynamics: nano- machines, data storage, computation and communication, and diagnostic healthcare
Prof Bill Barnes: Nanophotonics; plasmonics; light-molecule interactions; photosynthetic materials
Prof Monica Craciun: Optoelectronic materials and devices; quantum phenomena; nanoelectronics
Dr Charles Downing: Nanophotonics and plasmonics
Prof Alastair Hibbins: Metasurfaces to modify fluid flow
Dr David Horsell: Thermoacoustics; electrical conduction in nanostructures
Dr Steve Hepplestone: Quantum mechanics and its applications to materials
Dr Simon Horsley: Theory of electromagnetic and acoustic materials
Prof Geoff Nash: Infrared sources; detectors and spectroscopy;surface acoustic wave devices
Dr Ana Neves:  Wearable technology; graphene; 2D materials
Prof David Wright: Active/Reconfigurable metasurfaces; phase-change materials
Dr Yongde Xia: Nanomaterials for energy
Dr Dibin Zhu: Energy harvesting and wireless power transfer