Experimental Condensed Matter Group

We study the physics of energy transport in metals, semimetals and semiconducting materials.  These materials exhibit fascinating behavior with respect to thermal, thermoelectric and electrical transport when configured appropriately.  Our research encompasses a wide range of phenomenon including quantum mechanics, classical mechanics, thermodynamics, heat transfer, electromagnetism and crystallography.  A current research interest in our lab is thermoelectric metamaterials.   Metamaterials are materials that are artificially created to exhibit properties that may not be found in any other naturally occurring material.   For example, through intelligent design of thermoelectric metamaterials, thermal currents may be decoupled from electrical currents and manipulated as needed to increase thermoelectric power generation efficiency.  Our research also entails experimental measurement of transport properties of materials.  Through the use of dynamic electron scattering, we are able to measure various properties of the electron ensemble in conducting materials. 

Our group also formulates theoretical models from fundamental physical laws that predict transport property behavior, followed by algorithm development in software programs such as MATLAB or Mathematica.  We then validate these models through comparison to experimental results.  This coupled approach utilizing theory, experimentation, and analysis allows valid scientific predictions to be made with respect to enhancing (or degrading in some cases) material properties.  As a result our group has produced important contributions to various materials science areas such as alternative energy, green material development, experimental transport property measurements, etc.

Major Research Areas in our Group:

  • Thermoelectric Metamaterials:  We are developing artificial materials that exhibit precise thermal management and manipulation.  Our intent is to decouple and reduce the thermal conductivity in order to enhance the thermoelectric figure of merit.
  • Material Fabrication:  We synthesize and fabricate semiconducting materials that may be used for various applications and processes where we control their energy transport mechanisms.
  • Transport Property Measurements and Modeling:  We experimentally measure electrical and thermal conductivity, Seebeck coefficient, carrier concentrations and dielectric constants to name just a few.  Additionally, our group carries out advanced finite element multiphysics modeling using software such as ANSYS, Quickfield, MATLAB and Mathematica.


Link to selected publications: http://chn.loyno.edu/physics/bio/patrick-l-garrity


Current Research Assistants:



            Emily Reynolds                                     Thomas Slack                             Colleen Lattyak

         eereynol@loyno.edu                             teslack@loyno.edu                      cjlattya@loyno.edu