- Electronic, Photonic, and Magnetic Materials
- Energy Storage
- Mechanical Behavior of Materials
- MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems)
- Thin Films
Professor Thompson and his students carry out research on thin films and nanostructures for use in micro- and nano-systems, especially electronic, electromechanical and electrochemical systems. His group carries out basic research on stress and structure evolution during growth of polycrystalline films, and on solid-state dewetting of thin films. The former is especially important for applications in microelectromechanical devices and systems, and the latter is being explored as a new mechanism for patterning of thin films. Prof. Thompson also carries out research on the mechanisms of carbon nanotube growth and metal-catalyzed etching for creation of nanowire arrays. Carbon nanotubes are used in ongoing research on Li-air batteries and nanowires are used in Li-ion batteries. Research on Li-ion microbatteries and thermogalvanic energy harvesting devices for applications in autonomous microsystems are also under investigation.