NJIT Physics Department Seminar


November 16th, Monday


Colloidal Semiconductor Nanocrystals: Basic Building Blocks for Advanced Energy Conversion Devices


Prof. Dong-Kyun Ko

Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering, NJIT

(Materials & Device Physics, Host: Ahn)


Time: 11:45am-12:45pm with 11:30am tea time

Room: ECE 202



         Nanocrystals measure around one billionth of an inch and they can be metals, semiconductors, or insulators. They are the smallest objects we can synthesize on the nanoscale and are used as enabling materials for diverse applications with unmatched tunability and versatility. This talk focuses on how we can utilize these nanomaterials for direct conversion into electricity of two of the most important ubiquitous sources of free energy: sunlight and waste heat. Unlike fossil fuel plants, direct energy conversion devices have no moving parts. They are silent, and require no maintenance, since “electrons and holes do all the work”. This presentation details how in solar cells, we can “maximize the number of electrons and holes that do the work” and in thermoelectrics, engineer the material so that the “electrons or holes do the work better.” Manipulating the matter at this scale to make radical improvements in capturing, transporting, and converting energy can help us close the gap between today's power production and tomorrow's needs.



Dong-Kyun Ko is currently an Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at NJIT. He received his BS in Materials Science and Engineering from Yonsei University (Korea, 2005). He received his MS (2007) and PhD (2011) degrees in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, advised by Dr. Christopher Murray. After his PhD, he held a joint appointment with Dr. Vladimir Bulovic’s and Dr. Moungi Bawendi’s labs at MIT as a Postdoctoral Associate. Dong-Kyun's research focuses on energy materials and devices utilizing colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals (quantum dots). Specifically, he is interested in developing more efficient solar and thermal energy harvesting devices by manipulating matter at the nanoscale. His research involves multidisciplinary approaches that span from physics, chemistry, and materials science to electrical engineering.