Advanced Energy Materials Manufacturing
Discovery of new materials and development of cost-effective and scalable methods for their manufacturing are the two most important enabling aspects for advancing most of these renewable and energy efficiency technologies. The Conn Center is focused on developing viable materials and refining their production to meet these criteria. Almost all of the technological challenges with renewable energy and energy storage processes are currently due to our inability to discover:
- Suitable materials
- Processes for making and testing theoretically predicted materials
- Processes for scaling up production of materials that show promise in laboratory tests.
In this regard, the Conn Center’s research agenda is comprehensive. Our interests span from basic- to manufacturing scale research to enable rapid discovery and development of new materials for various renewable and energy efficiency applications. These interests are currently focused in the following areas:
- Chemistry of synthesis for new materials by design for energy conversion and storage applications
- Basic research on nucleation and growth mechanisms of crystals and processes for large-area single crystal quality film growth (Gallium Nitride-related materials for energy efficiency technologies)
- Process development for bulk production of 1-dimensional nanomaterials and their functionalization
- Process development for large-area production of vertical nanowire arrays and graphene
Process and product development research requires extensive structural and optical characterization of the materials and their surfaces. Using our array of Materials Characterization equipment and the expertise of our scientists, engineers, and technologists, we have the capability to qualify the performance of advanced energy materials developed at UofL, at research institutions across the state, or by industry partners.