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PhD Thesis Proposal: Congran Jin



12:30pm - 2:00pm ET


For info on how to attend this videoconference, email congran.jin.th@dartmouth.edu.

"Zinc-oxide-based nanomaterials and device designs—for bioenergy harvesting, sensing and water purification"


Harvested biomechanical energy from human body can be used to power implantable electronics, such as cardiac pacemakers. This power strategy replaces conventional batteries and increase the lifespan of these electronics by offering a life-long energy solution. The electrical signals converted from the biomechanical motions contain vital physiological information such as heart rate and blood pressure. Therefore, it can also serve as a sensor that monitors one’s health condition. This thesis proposes to exploit and enhance these inherent properties of ZnO by rationally designing its nano- and micron-structures and employ them, with other functional materials, in the development of novel biomechanical energy harvesting, water purification and sensing devices.

In this thesis, flexible energy harvesters and sensors, such as implantable pacemaker-based EHs and wearable body motion sensors, are developed by incorporating rationally designed ZnO nano- and micron-materials by utilizing its piezoelectric property. In addition, this thesis proposes to develop a flexible platform for water purification and contamination detection. The piezo- and photo-catalytic properties of ZnO allows it to be used for degrading common water pollutant such as organic dyes, antibiotics, and pesticides. The device is fabricated by ZnO nanorod coated silica nanofiber (SNF@ZnO NR). Silver (Ag) nanoparticles are decorated on the composite material for (1) further enhancing the antibacterial performance and (2) induce plasmonic coupling effect for surfaced enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) based detection of water contaminants.

Thesis Committee

  • Prof. John X.J. Zhang (chair)
  • Prof. Jifeng Liu
  • Prof. William Scheideler
  • Dr. Marc Feldman (external)


For more information, contact Theresa Fuller at theresa.d.fuller@dartmouth.edu.