Conferences - Seminars

  Thursday 15 February 2018 14:15 - 15:15 MED 0 1418

Harnessing light-matter interactions at the nanoscale for heat and power generation

By Dr. Giulia Tagliabue, Thomas J. Watson Sr. Laboratories of Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology

The ability to work and “engineer” with matter at the nanoscale guided by rational scientific principles enables unprecedented control of heat, mass and charge transport, paving the way to radically new technologies. Notably, nanoscale design links diverse processes across multiple scales in time and space and transforms traditional approaches to transport engineering and thermal management. 

In this talk I will show that by harnessing the intimate interplay of light, heat and electronics conceptually novel systems may be created to address problems in energy, sustainability, and heat management. Hence, I will show that through rational nano-structuring, efficient sunlight harvesting across large areas can be achieved in the extreme limit of nanometer-scale thickness. I will also demonstrate that by exploiting science-guided design at the nanoscale, ultra-rapid heaters with negligible thermal inertia and atomically-thin solar-cells can be created. Further, I will show that, by controlling non-equilibrium light-material interactions, new avenues for nanoscale interfacial transport and chemistry emerge.

I will therefore illustrate how, by using ultrashort lived excited-state phenomena, some of the key environmental problems facing us in the XXI century can be addressed. I will conclude by outlining transformative opportunities offered by nanoscale design for radiative heat-transfer, energy-storage, and thermo-nanofluidics that have the potential to shape the relevant technology landscape of the future.
Bio: Dr. Giulia Tagliabue obtained her B.S. and M.S degrees cum laude in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Udine in Italy. Concurrently she also obtained the diploma from the Scuola Normale Superiore of Udine. In 2009, during and after her master thesis project, she was a research assistant in the group of Prof. Thome at EPFL. She later joined ETH Zurich in the group of Prof. Poulikakos and in 2015 she obtained her PhD in Mechanical Engineering with a thesis on nanophotonic designs for light-to-heat and light-to-charge conversion devices. Since 2015 Dr. Tagliabue has joined the group of Prof. Atwater at Caltech as a Swiss National Science Foundation PostDoctoral Fellow. In collaboration with the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP) she investigates coupled light, heat and charge transfer processes in nanophotonic structures and low-dimensional materials for photoelectrochemical and photothermal sustainable energy conversion.  

Organization IGM

Contact Prof. François Gallaire IGM - LFMI

Accessibility Informed public

Admittance Free