Honorary Professor Zhi-Gang Chen

Honorary Professor

School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering
Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology
zhigang.chen@uq.edu.au
+61 7 336 54183

Overview

Prof. Dr Zhigang Chen is currently an Honorary Professor in the School of Mechanical & Mining Engineering, the University of Queensland. Dr Chen received his PhD from the Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2008 under the supervision of Professor Hui-Ming Cheng, and Professor Gaoqing (Max) Lu. His research focuses on thermoelectrics for power generation and cooling; next-generation optoelectronic devices and functional System; topological insulators for next-generation chips; and high-speed sensors. As a lead Chief Investigator or Chief Investigator, Dr Chen has succeeded in winning 4 ARC Discovery grants (three are first lead CI and other one is APD Fellow), 1 ARC Linkage, 1 ARC LIEF grant, more then 10 Industry Investments, 2 Queensland smart future funds, 1 international linkage grant from the Australian Academy of Sciences, 1 UQ foundation excellence Award, and 4 UQ grants. Dr Chen has contributed more than 220 original journal publications (including top ranking journals, such as Nature Nanotechnology, Nature Communications, Advanced Materials, Journal of the American Chemical Society, Angewandte Chemie-International Edition, Energy & Environmental Science, Nano Letters, Advanced Functional Materials, Advanced Energy Materials, and Nano Energy), 4 patents, and over 50 keynote/invited talks presentations. His publications have been cited > 12100 times (ISI web) with H index of 55.

Research Interests

  • Design inexpensive, abundant, low-toxic and high-efficiency thermoelectric nanomaterials
    Thermoelectric materials directly convert thermal energy into electrical energy, offering a green and sustainable solution for the global energy dilemma. This proposal aims to develop inexpensive, abundant, and low-toxic thermoelectric nanomaterials for high-efficiency energy conversion using novel industry-level approach, coupled with nanostructure and band engineering strategies.
  • Topological Insulators
    High-Speed Hard Drive: Topological Insulators Open a Path to Room-Temperature Spintronics

Research Impacts

Thermoelectric materials for power generation and cooling

Identifying new approaches to develop energy-saving methods and tap into new renewable energy sources is set to be the greatest challenge of the 21st Century. Thermoelectric (TE) energy is one of the approaches that offers great promise as it can be used in multiple applications for power generation and refrigeration. It can create electricity from waste heat at any scale, it can significantly improve energy efficiency at a medium industrial scale, including significantly improving vehicular weight and emissions, and it can even generate electricity or cooling at the nanoscale. For instance, it could potentially be used to convert body heat into electricity in clothing or to charge a cell phone. The thermoelecric materials developed by Dr Chen have extremely high hopes for this technology.

Topological insulators for high speed chips

Imagine if the "information superhighway" had HOV lanes so that data could be stored, processed and disseminated many times faster than possible with today's electronics. New topological insulators developed by Dr Chen will be used for this new generation devices, such a speedway for future devices, an exotic type of electrical conductor.

Qualifications

  • PhD in Materials Science and Engineering, Chinese Acad.Sc.

Publications

View all Publications

Supervision

View all Supervision

Available Projects

  • Superfast information technology had HOV lanes so that data could be stored, processed and disseminated many times faster than possible with today's electronics. This project aims to develop new topological insulators using chemical vapor depostion and coupling unique nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The ultimate target is to be used for this new generation devices, such a speedway for future devices, an exotic type of electrical conductor.

  • The direct energy conversion between heat and electricity, based on thermoelectric effects without moving parts, has been considered as a green and sustainable solution to the global energy dilemma. This project aims to develop novel band-engineered metal selenides for high-efficiency energy conversion using novel microwave assisted wet chemistry approach, coupled with nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The key breakthrough is to design high performance metal selenide thermoelectrics for satisfying the high efficiency solid-state devices. The expected outcomes will lead to an innovative technology that waste heat recovery and refrigeration, which will place Australia at the forefront of practical energy technologies.

View all Available Projects

Publications

Book Chapter

  • Chen, Zhi-Gang and Zou, Jin (2016). Layer-structured thermoelectric materials: fundamentals, strategies and progress. Two-dimensional nanostructures for energy-related applications. (pp. 23-47) edited by Kuan Yew Cheong. Boca Raton, FL, United States: CRC Press. doi: 10.1201/9781315369877

  • Chen, Zhi-Gang, Zou, Jin and Cheng, Hui-Ming (2015). Fabrication, characterization, and application of boron nitride nanomaterials. Nanotubes and nanosheets: functionalization and applications of boron nitride and other nanomaterials. (pp. 91-111) edited by Ying (Ian) Chen. Boca Raton, FL, United States: CRC Press. doi: 10.1201/b18073-6

Journal Article

Conference Publication

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

  • Superfast information technology had HOV lanes so that data could be stored, processed and disseminated many times faster than possible with today's electronics. This project aims to develop new topological insulators using chemical vapor depostion and coupling unique nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The ultimate target is to be used for this new generation devices, such a speedway for future devices, an exotic type of electrical conductor.

  • The direct energy conversion between heat and electricity, based on thermoelectric effects without moving parts, has been considered as a green and sustainable solution to the global energy dilemma. This project aims to develop novel band-engineered metal selenides for high-efficiency energy conversion using novel microwave assisted wet chemistry approach, coupled with nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The key breakthrough is to design high performance metal selenide thermoelectrics for satisfying the high efficiency solid-state devices. The expected outcomes will lead to an innovative technology that waste heat recovery and refrigeration, which will place Australia at the forefront of practical energy technologies.