Tengfei Luo

Professor, Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

Thursday, March 31
1:30 - 2:00 PM (ET)

“Artificial Intelligence Optimizes Additive Manufacturing of Thermoelectrics”


Energy crisis is striking the world in aspects ranging from energy shortage and air pollution to climate change. Energy production using fossil fuel is the single largest source of greenhouse gas emission and pollution. The overwhelming majority in the energy sector is still using fossil fuel of some kind. The same can be said for the transportation sector. Limited by the 2nd law of thermodynamics, close to 70% of energy consumed is wasted, mostly in the form of heat rejected to the environment. The ability to recover such waste heat is thus highly desirable. A promising technology for waste heat recovery is solid state thermoelectrics, which converts heat directly into electricity without any moving parts. One major challenge for this technology is the relatively low efficiency of the thermoelectric materials. In this talk, I will discuss our effort in using artificial intelligence to guide the optimization of the manufacturing process of thermoelectric materials via high-throughput aerosol printing. I will show that with the proper combination of expert opinion, machine learning and experiment, the figure of merit of the processes thermoelectric materials can be significantly enhanced within a few iterations which would not have been possible through the conventional Edisonian approaches.  


Tengfei Luo is a Professor in the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering at the University of Notre Dame. Before joining Notre Dame, he was a postdoctoral associate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2009-2011) after obtaining his Ph.D. from Michigan State University (2009). Prof. Luo’s research focuses on exploring the chemistry-conformation-property relationships of polymers using molecular simulations, machine learning and experiments. He is an ASME Fellow (2019), JSPS Invitational Fellow (2019), DuPont Young Professor Awardee (2016), DARPA Young Faculty Awardee (2015), and Air Force Summer Faculty Fellow (2015).