Date of Award

January 2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Chemical Engineering

First Advisor

Yue Wu

Committee Member 1

R B Pipes

Committee Member 2

James Caruthers

Committee Member 3

Timothy S Fisher

Committee Member 4

John Morgan


Thermoelectric heat engines are currently used in several niche applications for electricity generation and cooling. Many additional applications would be practical if thermoelectric materials with improved figures of merit could be made. Over the past twenty years, many nanostructured materials have been shown to possess improved figures of merit compared to their bulk counterparts mostly due to the reduction in thermal conductivity associated with nanostructured materials. Several classes of solution synthesized nanostructured materials have achieved high figures of merit, yet significant room for improvement exists for solution synthesized nanostructured PbTe.