The Center for Energy Harvesting Materials and Systems (CEHMS) at Virginia Tech is currently housed in a 6,000 sq. ft. facility in Durham Hall, dedicated to the administrative, educational, and technical activities of the Center. Additional CEHMS–specific lab spaces are located in Kelly Hall and ICTAS II building and Goodwin Hall for a total space of about 10,000 sq. ft. Several large facilities including a wind tunnel, a wave basin, a modal testing laboratory, numerous testing machines an acoustics facility and equipment in the fiber optics and wireless centers of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering are available for CEHMS faculty to perform their research. Examples of other state-of-the-art facilities available to CEHMS include: the electrical characterization laboratory, the power electronics facility, an x-ray laboratory, an electron microscopy laboratory, a mechanical testing lab, and a thermal processing and characterization lab. Facilities are also available for the processing and characterization of dielectric materials, both for bulk and thin layer forms. CEHMS has a 4-circle goniometer for reciprocal space mapping, which is equipped with a hot-stage for T-dependent studies and state-of-the-art optics and the equipment needed to make epitaxial thin-layers, grow single crystals, process bulk ceramics, tape cast layers, and to make intricate patterns using a miniature rapid prototyping method. CEHMS has an atomic force microscope, capable of operating in piezo-, magnetic, and dielectric-force modes. In addition, CEHMS has a scanning electron microscope with an environmental stage, and a new high resolution TEM. These structural tools, in conjunction with our polarized light microscope with an electric field stage, allows CEHMS researchers to characterize the structural aspects of dielectric materials at various length scales ranging from the atomic level and up. Furthermore, VT has one of the nation’s best facilities for functional property and device evaluations. These include dielectric, magnetic, piezoelectric, and magnetostrictive functionalities that are highly relevant to this program. We also have a SQUID magnetometer, magnetoelectric measurements, and a magnetically shielded test environment that has a noise rejection capability of ~105x at low frequencies.
Other facilities available on the VT campus, which can be used for a service fee include:
- Ceramic tapecasting, hot isostatic pressing and uniaxial pressing
- Thin film magnetron sputtering, sol-gel chemical deposition, e-beam evaporation
- ADL and Crystalox single crystal growth systems
- Automated Scintag and Philips X-ray diffraction units, X-ray PSSD residual stress analysis units
- Scanning electron microscope, Environmental scanning electron microscope, transmission electron microscope, Raman spectroscopy.
- Neutral beam state secondary ion mass spectrometer, high resolution scanning auger ion scattering analyzer for surface analysis
- X-ray florescence spectrometer
- State of the art ceramic processing laboratory
- Nanoscale Fabrication and Characterization Laboratory (http://www.ictas.vt.edu/ncfl/)
- MicrON – clean room facilities (microelectronics, optoelectronics, and nanoelectronics): E-Beam Evaporation, Thermal Evaporation, PECVD, RIE, Deep RIE, Photo Resist Spinners, Mask Aligner, Thermal Anealer, Dicing Saw, Acid/Corrosive Wet Deck, Solvent Wet Deck, P,N and Thermal Oxide Furnaces, VASE, DekTak Profile measurement, FilmMetric, Optical Microscope, Critical Point Dryer, Wet Etching (TMAH, KOH).
The Pao Sustainable Engineering and Materials Laboratory is located at 7 Industry Street in Poughkeepsie, NY, with 16500 square feet of office and laboratory space.
Between and 2016, the facility was occupied by Atlantis Energy Systems, Inc. (AES). AES specialized in Building Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) solar modules. Frank Pao, owner of AES, donated all the solar manufacturing equipment to Columbia University in early 2017. The laboratory is now dedicated to the field tests of renewable energy sources with a focus in solar energy.
The Department of Materials Science and Engineering, part of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences at Penn State, boasts a storied history. The Department has top-ranked research programs that are creating new knowledge to address some of the world’s most challenging problems. Our research is advanced by internationally renowned faculty, research institutes, centers, and laboratories, and world-class facilities.
The “Thermal Science Laboratory”, one of the research facilities in the Steidle building is conducting leading research in advanced materials research in energy generation such as thermoelectrics, shape memory alloy, and thermomagnetics. It has state-of-the-art facilities in materials fabrication, characterization, device fabrication and device testing.
Penn State is leading the emerging research field of energy storage with the Battery and Energy Storage Technology (BEST) Center. The BEST Center was formed in 2011 to bring together the campus-wide expertise in energy storage, foster collaboration, and provide a focal point for research and education activities.
The expertise of Penn State researchers within the BEST Center spans from materials to cells to systems. These BEST researchers have made and continue to make significant and pioneering contributions to the most important aspects of energy storage technology. The BEST Center co-directors, Chris Rahn and Chao-Yang Wang, invite you to visit our website and engage our world-class researchers with your most challenging research and education initiatives in energy storage.
Millennium Science Complex (MSC)
The convergence of engineering, physical science, and life sciences, augmented by high-speed computation and data search, is opening new frontiers in human health, energy, and materials science. At Penn State, this convergence has a new home in the Millennium Science Complex, a 275,600 square-foot science building housing two of the University’s premier research organizations – the Materials Research Institute and The Huck Institutes for the Life Sciences.
Designed by internationally renowned architect Rafael Vinoly, the MSC is one of the nation’s first buildings specifically constructed to support the integration of the physical and life sciences. Instruments for the characterization of organic and inorganic materials are co-located in a vibration-free quiet space, part of 50,000 net square feet of user facilities dedicated to current and future generations of characterization and fabrication tools. Shared meeting and common areas are designed to encourage the free exchange of ideas that existed in the great corporate labs that defined physical science and engineering in the 20th century.
The Energy and Environmental Laboratory (EEL) provides cutting edge research opportunities and facilities to address some of the most challenging energy generation problems. Penn State researchers at EEL have shown leadership position in solar and piezoelectric materials and device research. The laboratory includes state-of-the-art facilities in materials and device fabrication together with most advanced testing equipment.