Ransell D’Souza


The Internet of Things (IoT) will connect the physical world to the Internet so that one will be able to use data from devices to increase productivity and efficiency, and improve quality of life. Powering of autonomous wireless sensors is one of the key challenges in the development of the IoT infrastructure. Thermoelectric energy conversion can be a feasible solution to this problem, since thermoelectric materials can convert heat into electrical energy. However, the thermoelectric conversion efficiency ZT is low for most materials therefore limiting their commercial viability. Furthermore, to power projected one trillion sensors it would be beneficial to develop inexpensive thermoelectic materials suitable for large scale production. Such nanocomposite materials based on two-dimensional (2D) nanosheets of transition metal dichalcogenides are being developed by Dr. Graeme Cunningham at Trinity College Dublin in collaboration with Dr. Ryan Enright from Nokia Bell Labs. Nevertheless, these materials still do not have sufficiently high thermoelectric conversion efficiency for IoT applications. The main goal of this project is to computationally design composite materials based on MoS2 that will have significantly improved thermoelectric performance.