SpeakerTitle and Abstract

Prof. Nigel Brandon OBE FREng

1 Dean, Faculty of Engineering, 2.06 Faculty Building, Imperial College London, SW7 2 AZ

2 Director, Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Supergen Hub Co-Director, Energy SuperStore Hub Co-Director, Sustainable Gas Institute

3 Editor in Chief, Progress in Energy

Development and characterisation of functional thick film electrodes for Solid Oxide Cells

Solid Oxide Fuel Cells and Electrolysers are rapidly emerging technologies for low carbon energy systems. A critical component that determines the performance and lifetime of these devices are the electrodes, typically porous composite films around 20 to 100 microns thick. This paper will review the current state of the art of Solid Oxide Cells, and the role and function of electrode materials. Work from the speaker’s group on understanding, designing and fabricating different electrode microstructures will be presented, with a focus on porous metal-ceramic composite materials.

Prof. Li Chang Ming

1 Institute for Clean Energy & Advanced Materials (ICEAM), Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China

2 Institute for Materials Science and Devices,Suzhou University of Science and Technology, Suzhou 215009, China

Architecting unique thin film structure for high performance biosensors

Architecting innovative thin film structures for smart biosensors and lab-on-a chip systems for medical and biological applications faces great challenges. The advances of nanoscience allow us to engineering smart thin film sensors in nanoscales from both physics and chemistry for high sensitivity and specificity in broad bio- and medical applications. Delicate design and fabrication of well-controlled thin film, layered structures and unique chemical compositions are used to construct sensing platforms for various unique biosensors, drug carriers and biochips, which offer high-throughput, high sensitivity, excellent reliability and great selectivity. The mechanisms behind are explored for scientific insights.

Prof. Xie Zonghan 1

1 School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Adelaide, Australia


Making the strongest metal

High entropy alloy (HEA) represents a bold step forward in alloy development. This is driven by an ever-increasing demand for high strength in metals used for aerospace, mining, energy and transportation. In this keynote, recent advances in HEA will be presented with a focus on the strength improvement enabled by a synergy of various strengthening mechanisms over multiple length scales.      

Prof. Takashi Goto 1,2

1 New Energy Creation Hatchery Center, Tohoku University, Japan

2 Wuhan University of Technology, China

Thin Film Coating on Powders by Chemical Vapor Deposition

Although thin film is usually coated on a plate substrate, powder can be also coated by thin film. Since gas/vapor can impregnate into a narrow area, chemical vapor deposition (CVD) can prepare thin films even on agglomerated powders. The characteristics of powder surface can be significantly modified by the thin film, which enables one to improve the functionality of powders, such as catalytic activity and sinterability. The authors have developed a rotary CVD (RCVD) technique, in which a CVD chamber rotates and powders can be floated in the CVD chamber. By introducing precursor vapor in the CVD chamber, various kinds of thin films can be coated on powders.

Diamond and cubic boron nitride (cBN) powders are difficult to sinter because of its strong covalent nature and low diffusivity. These powders need ultrahigh pressure more than several tens GPa to sinter. We have coated SiC thin film (25 to 30 nm in thickness) on diamond powder (2 to 4 µm in dia.) by RCVD using hexamethyldisilane as a precursor. Diamond powder coated with SiC thin film was densified with SiO2 additive by spark plasma sintering (SPS). No phase transformation from diamond to graphite was observed in the sintered SiC-coated diamond at a sintering temperature of 1873 K. The diamond powder without SiC coating was densified to about 50 %, while the SiC-coated diamond had the highest density and Vickers micro-hardness of 94 % and 39 GPa (4.9 N load), respectively. c-BN powder (2 to 4 µm in dia.) was coated with SiO2 thin film (~50 nm in thickness) using tetraethoxysilane precursor. SiO2-coated cBN was densified with SiO2 additive by SPS at 1773 K. The highest density and Vickers micro-hardness were 98 % and 14 GPa (4.9 N load), respectively. Ni particles (8 nm in dia.) were coated on Al2O3 powder (0.08 µm in dia.) by RCVD using nickelocene precursor, which showed 12 times higher catalytic activity of hydrogen production in methanol-steam reforming than that of commercial Raney Ni at 633 K.

Prof. Kisuk KANG 1

1 College of Engineering, Seoul National University, Korea


Rational Design of Advanced Materials for Lithium-Ion Batteries and Beyond

High-performance and cost-effective rechargeable batteries are key to the success of electric vehicles and large-scale energy storage systems. Extensive research has thus focused on the development of new high-energy electrodes that can store more lithium at faster rates with stable cycle performance. However, the current status of lithium batteries still remains far below the demands required for the proposed applications. In this presentation, I introduce our approaches to address this issue, which include the discovery of new energy storage mechanism in the electrode for lithium ion batteries, bio-mimetic batteries and some developments made in the field of post lithium ion batteries in our group.      

Prof. Eduard Arzt 1

1 INM – Leibniz Institute for New Materials, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Saarland University, Saarbrücken, Germany


Bioinspired thin-film adhesives for robotics and medicine

Bioinspiration is an attractive concept for the creation of new materials and surfaces as natural evolution has, with comparatively few materials, arrived at interesting new solutions by surface patterning. In this talk, the successful implementation of 3D micropatterning of polymeric thin films and surfaces for the control of mechanical surface functionalities will be described. Novel adhesive surfaces based on the “gecko principle” were developed in our group which allow even switchable adhesion to be realized. These new microstructures have thus unique properties that make them interesting for new precise handling solutions. Another emerging application is the controlled contact to skin and tissue. The “intelligence” of these micropatterned surfaces has thus led to a new paradigm in automatic handling processes and biomedicine. The talk will highlight emerging applications in novel robotic pick-and-place systems, assembly machines, in space technology and in biomedicine..      

Prof. Ray Hua HORNG 1

1 Distinguished Professor, National Chiao Tung University Chairperson, Department of Electrical Engineering, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan


Epitaxial growth of wide bandgap oxide semiconductors and device applications

Wide band-gap oxide materials have become important materials for novel device applications due to their electrical, thermally and chemically unique properties. The band-gaps of oxide materials are larger than 4.9 eV, which yields a very high theoretical breakdown electric field (~8 MV/cm). The epitaxial growth of wide bandgap oxide semiconductors will be introduced. The performances of power device, photodetectors and gas sensors are investigated and also discussed in this presentation.