Academic Research Papers from the projects funded in Phase 1 of the Network
NRN150 - Proppant immobilization facilitated by carbon nanotube mediated microwave treatment of polymer-proppant structures
The application of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) to facilitate the aggregation of ceramic particles (proppants) by embedding in the coating through localized microwave heating is reported. Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) along with energy dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) were used to characterize a series of covalently functionalized proppants with carboxylic acids (lysine and fumaric acid). The bi-functional acids allow for a controlled reaction with a coating (resin and polymer). The addition of carbon nanotubes results in the melting of the coating under exposure to microwave irradiation (20 s @ 100 W) joining the particles. The significant reduction in reaction time (compared to the thermal treatments of 2–24 h) is due to the presence of the MWCNTs. The microwave heating of the MWCNTs can thus be used to create interaction and adhesion between functionalized particles subject to a specific stimulus.
NRN152 Scalable Thermoelectrics with Photovoltaics, SUNTRAP
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
This paper presents the design, manufacture and electrical test of a novel integrated III:V low concentrator photovoltaic and thermoelectric device for enhanced solar energy harvesting efficiency. The PCB-based platform is a highly reliable means of controlling CPV cell operational temperature under a range of irradiance conditions. The design enables reproducible data acquisition from CPV solar cells whilst minimizing transient time for solid state cooling capability.
NRN026 - Exact mode volume and Purcell factor of open optical systems
The Purcell factor quantifies the change of the radiative decay of a dipole in an electromagnetic environment relative to free space. Designing this factor is at the heart of photonics technology, striving to develop ever smaller or less lossy optical resonators. The Purcell factor can be expressed using the electromagnetic eigenmodes of the resonators, introducing the notion of a mode volume for each mode. This approach allows an analytic treatment, reducing the Purcell factor and other observables to sums over eigenmode resonances.
NRN094 One-step Deposition by Slot-Die Coating of Mixed Lead Halide Perovskite for Photovoltaic Applications
In this work we demonstrate the suitability of a one-step slot-die coating method for the deposition of lead halide perovskite layers, in particular for infiltration into a mesoporous titania scaffold.
NRN113 Spider Silk: Mother Nature’s Bio-Superlens
Here, we report for the first time a biological superlens provided by nature: the minor ampullate spider silk spun from the Nephila spider. This natural biosuperlens can distinctly resolve 100 nm features under a conventional white-light microscope with peak wavelength at 600 nm, attaining a resolution of λ/6 that is well beyond the classical limit. Thus, our work opens a new door to develop biology-based optical systems that may provide a new solution to integrating optics in biological systems.