The field of nanoscience, especially for energy applications, is multidisciplinary. As such, my work with nanowires, graphene, nano-coatings, and QDs (both to remain confined and sintered together) has merged the fields of physics, chemistry, and engineering in unique ways. This interplay allows for a deeper understanding of the unique nanoscale properties that enable better energy utilization with solar cells and photoelectrochemical cells.
Though the focus is on devices, we use a holistic approach to tackle the most pertinent challenges of solar energy harvesting with a combination of synthesis, characterization, and spectroscopy. We currently focus on QD synthesis and optoelectronic properties of semiconductors in the larger group of Prof. Bachmann’s Chair Chemistry of Thin Film Materials.
Work is ongoing to develop advanced photoelectrodes and new materials for light harvesting. Using the principles of atomic layer deposition in a new solution-based methodology that we call QD-LD, we deposit various QD materials (PbS, CuInS2, CZTS, BaZrS3, ZnSe, ZnO, TiO2) and investigate their photoelectrochemical response and solar cell performance with particular interest on advanced photophysics of carrier multiplication, hot electron transfer, and multi-electron effects.
I have further developed an active collaboration with Profs. Guldi and Mandel where I lead my student workers (HiWis) and thesis students on understanding charge transfer properties of CZTS and CuInS2 QDs and metal oxide nanoparticles using transient absorption spectroscopy and spectroelectrochemistry.