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Energy Resolving Photodetection with Hot Carriers


   School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering (SPREE)

   Applications accepted all year round  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

The School of Photovoltaic & Renewable Energy Engineering (SPREE) within the UNSW Faculty of Engineering has been at the leading edge of global solar cell development for over 30 years, reporting many world record solar cell efficiencies and furthering the development of a range of associated optoelectronic devices. Building on the recent demonstration of a hot carrier photovoltaic device [1] by the group of Associate Professor Nicholas Ekins-Daukes, This project (funded in part by the Australian Research Council) aims to develop a hot carrier photodetector with a paradigm shifting new capability: energy (or wavelength) resolving photodetection.

This project will consist of developing new hot carrier absorber materials with frustrated carrier cooling via slowed electron-phonon interactions, and processing those absorber materials into photodetectors with energy selective contacts followed by spectroscopic characterisation. The use of modelling will be required to understand the function of these new style of photodetector and demonstrate energy resolving photodetection. A focus will be on photodetection in both the visible and near infrared spectrum. For this project we are looking for outstanding PhD candidates who are interested in the areas of:

·        Modelling of solid-state semiconductor optoelectronic devices

·        Fabrication advanced photodiode devices in the III-V material system

·        Both steady-state and ultrafast spectroscopy to study device and material properties

The supervisory team will consistent of Associate Professor Nicholas Ekins-Daukes, Dr Michael Nielsen, and Professor Gavin Conibeer. We will provide high-quality training for conducting scientific experiments and will ensure that our students develop a good understanding of semiconductor and material physics, sample fabrication, and spectroscopy. The project is suitable for applicants with a first degree in physics or engineering, and will benefit from a background in material and semiconductor physics. As this project will be a mix of theory, hands-on experimentation, and fabrication, we are looking for well-rounded students interested in learning a range of skills and who are motivated to find creative solutions to overcome unforeseen problems.

Please contact Dr Michael Nielsen () for further information. For your application please also attach the following documents: CV, academic transcript, and your motivation for doctoral studies. Please include how you feel your background potential aligns with the project.

[1] James AR Dimmock, Matthias Kauer, Jiang Wu, Huiyun Liu, Paul N Stavrinou, Nicholas J Ekins-Daukes, " A metallic hot-carrier photovoltaic device," Semiconductor Science and Technology 34, 064001 (2019).


Funding Notes

Candidates will be supported by a competetive Research Stipend (according to the Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) rate of $28,854 per year (2022 rate)). Candidates who obtain a RTP Scholarship may be eligible for a stipend top-up (see also View Website for more information on Scholarships). Potential external funding is available.
Applications will be accepted until the right candidate is found.

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