Research @ NRIIC

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Flexible Electronics

The flexible electronics group focusses on design and modeling of organic thin film transistors using Silvaco TCAD involving modelling new materials, new device configuration for organic electronics application such as compensating circuits for display drivers, impedance matching for antenna driving circuit etc. The choice of materials and processes are based on compatibility requirement for flexible substrates. Multi source PVD system with parylene coater, Silane based CVD, spin coater, screen printer and rapid annealing are the fabrication facilities for the development of flexible devices on polymer substrates. The lab has CV-IV analyzer to perform complete characterization of devices. The group also works on design of antenna suitable for flexible RFID applications.

Structural Nanomaterials

Structural Nanomaterials group investigates structure property correlations in various advanced materials for structural and functional applications. The materials studied are mostly metallic materials of nanocrystalline or amorphous (bulk metallic glasses) in nature. Among the nanocrystalline materials, the group’s interests are in developing high strength nanocomposites for both ambient and high temperature applications, nano coatings for self-cleaning and thermal barrier applications. In case of bulk metallic glasses our interest is mainly to predict best glass forming compositions through thermodynamic modelling and their experimental validation.

Functional, Innovative & Smart Textiles (FIST)

Functional, Innovative & Smart Textiles (FIST) group works on research and development in the area of advanced smart and innovative textiles with a focus to convert the nanotechnology based research outcome into products, acceptable for industries as well as domestic and international markets. Machine and device developments are also in the priority list of the group. The group acts as a customer service provider by providing solutions to industries for their specific problems, supports technically to the incubates to develop business, innovate and transfer researched products to industries and collaborates national and international institutes to carry out joint research and development work.

Sensors

The Nanosensor Laboratory is equipped with the state-of-art facilities for fabrication, testing and calibration of gas sensors and electrochemical sensors. The sensor group focusses on implementing innovative ideas based on Nanotechnology to realize nanosensor devices for real time applications.

Tissue Engineering

Tissue engineering group has been focusing on developing of scaffolds for damaged human knee meniscus replacement and developing techniques to enhancing the proliferation rate of primary human meniscus cells. Other than meniscus, the group is working on bone and nerve tissue engineering area also. The group has collaborations with PSG Institute of Medical Sciences & Research and Ortho One Hospitals, Coimbatore for meniscal tissue engineering. Innov4Sight Health and Biomedical Systems Private Limited, a Bangalore based company is collaborating for stem cell research. The group is working with RMIT and St. Vincent’s Hospital, Australia on nerve tissue regeneration using polymer nanocomposite fibers and film based structures.

Nanobiotechnology

Fields of interest of this research group are Nanobiotechnology, Water purification using microorganisms and nanomaterials, Meniscal tissue engineering, Biotemplates and Biosensors with current focus on developing technology for treatment of drinking water contaminated with various contaminants like strontium, fluoride, uranium etc. we are also developing a technology for enhancing the extractability of various rare earth metals, actinides and lanthanides from its ore.

Functional Materials

The research activities in Functional materials group is focused on complex oxides for clean energy applications. Complex oxides such as perovskite, spinel, Brownmillerite or Kesterite based structures and doped primary oxides made up of earth abundant materials are synthesised for Solid oxide Fuel Cell, thermoelectrics, solar photovoltaic, supercapacitor and photocatalytic hydrogen generation applications. These materials are modified to get the highest possible efficiency in the proposed application. Once the materials with optimum characteristics are obtained, a prototype device for the clean energy generation is fabricated and its efficiency is analysed.

Plasmonic Nanomaterials

Our research focuses on exploiting optical properties of nanomaterials to be developed into products that can be deployed in various applications. One part of the research is focused on developing robust nanocomposites for monitoring hazardous gases like CO, NO2 under harsh combustion environments such as gas turbines. Another critical area of research is on investigating the use of plasmonic nanomaterials in augmenting the properties of phase change materials, which find direct applications in the field of energy storage.

Nanostructured Surfaces and Thin Films

Our group primarily focuses on non-equilibrium processing using vacuum based techniques viz., sputtering, thermal evaporation and electron beam evaporation intended for super-hard surfaces, bio-compatible coatings and high efficiency thermoelectric thin film. We also focus on the non-vacuum based techniques like spin-coating, hydrothermal etching and spray-pyrolysis processes for developing highly transmittance broad band glass surfaces and large-scale thermoelectric thin film devices for energy harvesting applications. Formulation of underlying mechanism responsible for the unique properties exhibited by novel materials is being understood by process, structure and property relationship protocols. Our major focus is to carry out performance evaluation of the developed technology in a prototype scale, with a focus to reach technology readiness level of 4.

Electrochemical Sensors and Energy Materials

Our group focuses on developing nanomaterials for high performance electrochemical sensors, supercapacitor and battery applications. The performance enhancement was brought about by tuning the structural and electronic properties of the nanomaterials. Electrochemical sensors for the detection of neurotransmitters like dopamine, development of suitable cathode and anode materials for improving the performance of lithium/sodium ion batteries and fabrication of mixed metal oxide based electrode materials for supercapacitor applications are some of the significant work being carried out in our lab.

Oxide Thin-Film and Device

We are working on oxide thin-film and device, in particular those based on amorphous oxide thin-film transistor (TFT) and photovoltaic applications. The research focus is on development of high mobility amorphous oxide thin-film and device fabrication for an alternative of amorphous Silicon (a-Si:H) TFT. The group also involved in the development of earth abundant transparent conducting oxide (TCO), metal oxide electron/hole carrier selective layers using both the vacuum and non-vacuum techniques for Photovoltaics device fabrication.