Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering Seminar


Nanoengineering for Efficient Heat Transfer and Energy Conversion Materials and Systems


Prof. Gang Chen


Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Friday, August 22, 2014 at 11:00:00 AM


MRDC Building, Room 4211


Dr. Asegun Henry


Understanding the transport of heat carriers at microscopic level leads to new ways to design better materials for thermal energy conversion and utilization. This talk starts with a few examples of extraordinary microscopic pictures of heat transport, such as ballistic and coherent heat conduction in solids, and near-field thermal radiation exceeding Planck’s blackbody radiation. New insights on heat transfer mechanisms led to opportunities in developing materials for heat transfer and energy applications such as improved thermoelectric energy conversion materials and high thermal conductivity plastics. Great opportunities exist in taking the fundamental understandings and advanced materials to develop innovative devices and systems. Examples will be giving including solar thermoelectric energy conversion and steam generation, and crystalline thin-film Si PV devices


Dr. Gang Chen is currently the head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Carl Richard Soderberg Professor of Power Engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He obtained his Ph.D. degree from UC Berkeley in 1993 working under then Chancellor Chang-Lin Tien. He was a faculty member at Duke University (1993-1997), University of California at Los Angeles (1997-2001), before joining MIT in 2001. He is a recipient of the NSF Young Investigator Award, the ASME Heat Transfer Memorial Award, the Nukiyama Memorial Award, the R&D100 Award, and the MIT McDonald Award for Excellence in Mentoring and Advising. He is a member of the US National Academy of Engineering, an academician of Academia Sinica, a Guggenheim Fellow, an AAAS Fellow, an APS Fellow, and an ASME Fellow. He has published extensively in the area of nanoscale energy transport and conversion and nanoscale heat transfer. He is the director of Solid-State Solar-Thermal Energy Conversion Center funded by the US DOE’s Energy Frontier Research Centers program