The Smart Materials and Structures group focuses on the applications of smart materials to the engineering problems in the field of energy harvesting, structural health monitoring or energy efficiency to name a few. Our industry driven approach make us often involved in solving significant problems of nowadays engineering. The usual work path involves numerical studies followed by prototype tests and after getting promising laboratory results we are commissioning systems in operational conditions reaching TRL (technology readiness level) of 4 or 5. Further development is outsourced to spin-off companies or licensed.
Our group covers the following research areas:
- Electromechanical impedance
- Shunt damping systems
- Energy harvesting both using thermoelectric and piezoelectric materials
- Waste heat recovery, with special interest in enhancement of small ORC turbines efficiency with thermoelectricity
- Active power curtailment of PV systems for better grid integration
- Thermal energy storage