Energy Conversion Application of Chemicurrents Induced in Metal-Semiconductor Nanostuctured Devices
thesisposted on 21.02.2013 by Suhas Kiran K. Dasari
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Hydrogen is one the most attractive and suitable energy systems for generation of power in the future with high efficiencies and renewable properties. Nanoscale materials, because of their surface and physical properties are the promising candidates for the development of high performance energy conversion devices, essential components to ensure the efficient operation of the infrastructure and to facilitate the wide spread implementation of hydrogen technologies. This work realizes the use of solid state energy conversion concept to develop metal-semiconductor, metal-oxide architecture devices for electrolyte free conversion of chemical energy to electrical energy by hydrogen oxidation process. This investigation addresses the synthesis of these nanostructure devices by selection of suitable system material combinations, electrical and surface morphological characterization leading to the successful implementation in generation of chemicurrents. Also, the hydrogen oxidation process on each nanostructure device is elucidated with the help of corresponding mechanisms and the performance of each system developed was evaluated based on the resulting output efficiency. The two systems (metal-semiconductor and metal-oxide) realized, showed excellent chemical to electrical energy conversion abilities. Compared to metal-semiconductor nanostructure devices, metal-oxide systems exhibited better energy conversion abilities for indefinitely long duration of time at room temperature. The electron yield observed in considered metal-oxide systems can be sufficient for their use in practical applications. A continued realization of these metal-oxide systems with different material combinations would lead to more ecologically friendly and sustainable energy economics.