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Dielectric Nanocomposite Layering Configurations for Thermal Conductivity Reduction

[+] Author Affiliations
E. S. Landry, A. J. H. McGaughey

Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA

M. I. Hussein

University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO

Paper No. MN2008-47052, pp. 15-25; 11 pages
  • ASME 2008 2nd Multifunctional Nanocomposites and Nanomaterials International Conference
  • ASME 2008 2nd Multifunctional Nanocomposites and Nanomaterials
  • Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, January 11–13, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: Nanotechnology Institute
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4291-6 | eISBN: 1-7918-3814-5
  • Copyright © 2008 by ASME


Thermal transport in crystals is governed by dynamic phenomena that take place at the atomic scale, namely phonon dispersion and scattering. A growing understanding of these mechanisms, coupled with increasingly capable nanofabrication and characterization technologies, provide a not-too-distant opportunity for designing a new class of materials with tailored thermal characteristics such as thermal conductivity, among other physical characteristics. Focusing on layered nanocomposites, also known as superlattices, modeled using the Lennard-Jones potential as a starting platform, we examine the effects of layering topology on the bulk property of thermal conductivity. We use molecular dynamics simulations to examine the link between structure and property; and employ ideas from phononic crystal design to investigate the potential of realizing dielectric crystals with exceedingly low thermal conductivities. This work potentially targets a range of applications such as thermal insulators for space applications and thermoelectrics for energy harvesting.

Copyright © 2008 by ASME



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