R&D Projects under Investigation by the Woodall Group at UC Davis

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Friday, September 28, Giedt Hall 1003, 12:00pm-1:00pm

Speaker: Jerry M. Woodall
University of California, Davis

Host: Professor Bevan Baas


This seminar will briefly overview two of the R&D projects under investigation by the Woodall Group at UC Davis followed by an in-depth discussion of a third project. There are three areas of current interest. One is PRACTICAL solar cell ideas that will enable the needed technical performance at a cost that will at least make them attractive for niche applications. The second area of interest is semiconductor based high performance devices that have been optimized via the optimal choice of merged semiconductor materials rather than by just device design per se. The third project, which will receive the bulk of the lecture's focus, will be my research on splitting water with aluminum alloys. The goal of all my projects is to do R&D that has a good chance of being commercialized. The presentation will be at an elementary science literacy level.



Jerry M. Woodall, a National Medal of Technology Laureate, and a Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UC Davis, received a B.S. in metallurgy in 1960 from MIT. In 1982, he was awarded a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University. He pioneered and patented the development of GaAs high efficiency IR LEDs, used today in remote control and data link applications such as TV sets and IR LAN. This was followed by the invention and seminal work on gallium aluminum arsenide (GaAlAs) and GaAlAs/GaAs heterojunctions used in super-bright red LEDs and lasers used, for example, in CD players and short link optical fiber communications. He also pioneered and patented the GaAlAs/GaAs heterojunction bipolar transistor used in, for example, cellular phones. Also, using GaAs/InGaAs strained, non-lattice-matched heterostructures, he pioneered the “pseudomorphic” high electron mobility transistor (HEMT), a state-of-the-art high speed device widely used in cellular phones. His recent past work involves the MBE growth of III-V materials and devices with special emphasis on metal contacts, the thermodynamics of extremely large doping concentrations, and devices made of non-lattice matched heterojunctions and substrates. More recently he invented, developed and published a breakthrough global scale “green” energy storage technology in which bulk aluminum rich alloys split both fresh water and salt water into hydrogen gas on demand, thus obviating the need to store and transport hydrogen.