Experiments on strongly correlated electron systems and/or thermoelectric materials
The group of Silke Bühler-Paschen (SP) studies intermetallic compounds with extraordinary electronic and/or thermoelectric properties. Focus is on one hand on strongly correlated electron systems (heavy fermion compounds, Kondo insulators, quantum critical systems) and on the other hand on promising thermoelectric materials (cage compounds, clathrates, giant unit cell compounds). There is an interesting cross section between these two research directions, – the emerging field of strongly correlated thermoelectrics. A particularly fascinating approach for future research is to nanostructure electronically and/or structurally complex solids.
Unlike in simple semiconductors, this field is internationally only starting to develop. The scientific environment of the DK SolidFun is ideal to pursue this challenging new direction, with questions in mind such as: How does dimensionality change quantum critical behavior? Can correlation effects be further enhanced by quantum confinement? Are nanostructured Kondo insulators good thermoelectrics?