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ALD for clean energy conversion, utilization, and storage

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  18 November 2011

Jeffrey W. Elam
Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 60439, USA;
Neil P. Dasgupta
Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305;
Fritz B. Prinz
Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305;
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Atomic layer deposition (ALD) uses self-limiting chemical reactions between gaseous precursors and a solid surface to deposit materials in a layer-by-layer fashion. This process results in a unique combination of attributes, including sub-nm precision, the capability to engineer surfaces and interfaces, and unparalleled conformality over high-aspect ratio and nanoporous structures. Given these capabilities, ALD could play a central role in achieving the technological advances necessary to redirect our economy from fossil-based energy to clean, renewable energy. This article will survey some of the recent work applying ALD to clean energy conversion, utilization, and storage, including research in solid oxide fuel cells, thin-film photovoltaics, lithium-ion batteries, and heterogenous catalysts. Throughout the manuscript, we will emphasize how the unique qualities of ALD can enhance device performance and enable radical new designs.

Research Article
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2011

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