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Thermoelectrics Summer School 2014

About the School





Accommodation Information


About the School

Join us for the second annual Thermoelectrics Summer School!

This year’s School takes place on July 11- 12, 2014 at the University of Toronto.

Bringing experts from academia and industry together with trainees and collaborators, the School provides a unique training opportunity. With Professional Development workshops and research presentations for students, this is an unparalleled opportunity for students to grow as researchers and connect with leaders in the field of thermoelectrics.

For information on last year's school, click here: 2013 Thermoelectrics Summer School 

Please contact Erin Macnab, HEATER Program Coordinator with any questions:

Funding for the School is provided by NSERC-CREATE.



Registration is free, and meals will be provided throughout the day. We invite students, Faculty members and our governmental and industrial partners to register for the School as described below.

The School is open to Canadian and international students studying in Canada, and to students attending universities across the world. 

For Students

NSERC requires that we collect certain information from all School participants currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program, or completing a postdoctoral fellowship. To register, please email Erin Macnab, Program Coordinator, at with the following information:

  • Name
  • Institution
  • Department
  • Level of Study 
  • Start/Estimated End Date of Current Degree/Fellowship
  • Citizenship Status as of January 1, 2014 (Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident or International Student)

For Faculty and Guests

Please email Erin Macnab, Program Coordinator, at with the following information:

  • Name
  • Institutional/Company Affiliation



Qiang Li, Brookhaven National Laboratory

Dr. Qiang Li is a tenured Physicist in the Condensed Matter Physics and Materials Science Department at US Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, New York, where he is the head of Advanced Energy Materials Group which studies microscopic and macroscopic properties of complex and nano-structured materials with a view to basic science understanding and developing their application in energy related technologies.

Dr. Li received his Ph. D in physics from Iowa State University in 1991, while researching on superconductivity at US DOE’s Ames Lab. In 2011, he was named a New York State Leader in Superconductivity during the Centennial celebration of the superconducting technology, at the Superconductor Technology Summit.

Dr. Li is a Fellow of American Physical Society, an author in over 160 peer-viewed publications, including those published in leading scientific journals, such as Science and Nature. His current research ranges from basic physics and material science studies to the applications of superconducting materials and thermoelectrics. His fundamental science work has seen practical application in the superconducting wires now being developed for use in the electricity grid, and in thermoelectric power generators now being developed for vehicle waste heat recovery. 

George Nolas, University of South Florida

George S. Nolas is a Professor of Physics at the University of South Florida. His research interests include experimental solid state and materials physics, and new materials for energy-related applications, with particular focus on thermoelectrics. He has written the foremost text in the field of thermoelectrics; Thermoelectrics: Basic Principles and New Materials Developments published by Springer with co-authors Jeffrey Sharp and Julian Goldsmid.  He holds six patents, with others currently pending, on materials for power conversion applications, edited seven volumes on thermoelectric materials research, has published numerous journal articles and reviews, has received several teaching and mentoring awards, and is Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Physical Society.


Joseph Poon, University of Viriginia

Joseph Poon is the William Barton Rogers Professor and Chair of Physics Department at University of Virginia. After receiving his BS and PhD degrees from the California Institute of Technology in 1978, he went to Stanford University as a research associate. In 1980, he was assistant professor of physics at U. Virginia, becoming a professor in 1987. Over the years, he has published in the areas of amorphous superconductors and magnetic phases, high-Tc superconductors, quasicrystals, and bulk metallic glasses. His recent research involves thermoelectrics, nanomagnetic systems, and bulk metallic glasses. He is Fellow of the American Physical Society and APS Outstanding Referee. In 2004, he was named one of the 50 research leaders by Scientific American for the creation of amorphous steel. 

James R. Salvador, General Motors

James Salvador received his BS in Chemistry from Western Michigan University in 1998, and Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from Michigan State University in 2004.  After a post-doctoral position as a Marsden Fellow in Structural Biology at Massey University in New Zealand, he returned to the US and in 2007 took a position as a materials researcher at the GM Research and Development Center in Warren, MI, working on advanced thermoelectric materials discovery.  He is currently the principal investigator for DOE funded, GM-led program focused on the commercialization of thermoelectric based waste heat recovery for fuel economy improvement.  

Yu-Chih Tseng, Natural Resources Canada, CanmetMATERIALS

Yu-Chih Tseng is currently a Research Scientist with Natural Resources Canada.  His present work focuses on integrating low-cost thermoelectric materials into waste heat recovery technologies for automobiles.  Prior to his current appointment, he worked at Argonne National Laboratory on the development of novel methods of nanoscale manufacturing.  He obtained his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in 2009.



Friday, July 11

Bahen Centre for Information Technology, Room 1230, 40 St. George Street

9:00 - 9:15 AM


9:15 - 9:30 AM

Opening Remarks

Young-June Kim, HEATER Program Director

University of Toronto

9:30 - 10:30 AM

Practical Realization of High ZT from the Materials Perspective

Joseph Poon

University of Virginia

10:30 - 11:00 AM


11:00 - 12:00 PM

Integration of low-cost and earth-abundant thermoelectric materials into vehicle exhaust for waste heat recovery – a status update

Yu-Chih Tseng

Natural Resources Canada, CanmentMATERIALS

12:00 - 1:00 PM

Opportunities and Challenges for TE-Based Waste Heat recovery in the Automotive Industry

James Salvador

General Motors

1:00 - 3:00 PM

Student Lunch and Professional Skills Session

University of Toronto Career Centre

3:00 - 4:00 PM

Fundamental Understanding of Thermoelectric Materials 

Qiang Li

Brookhaven National Laboratory

4:00 - 6:00 PM 

Poster Session and Reception

McLennan Physical Laboratories, Room 110, 60 St. George Street


Saturday, July 12

Bahen Centre for Information Technology, Room 1230, 40 St. George Street

10:00 - 11:00 AM

Making Materials: Traditional, Innovative and Unique approaches to New Thermoelectric Materials Research

George Nolas

University of South Florida

11:00 - 11:30 AM


11:30 - 12:30 PM

Thermal Conductivity of Nanostructured Materials: An Effective Medium Approach

Joseph Poon

University of Virginia

12:30 - 1:30 PM


1:30 - 3:00 PM

Thermoelectric Properties Measurement System Training

McLennan Physical Laboratories, 60 St. George Street

3:00 - 3:30 PM


3:30 - 5:00 PM

Thermoelectric Properties Measurement System Training 

There will be a poster session. All participants are welcome to bring their poster. If you plan on participating in the poster session, please email Erin Macnab at before July 1, 2014. 



The School will take place on University of Toronto campus, easily accessible by public transportation and taxi. 

Join us for seminars in the the Bahen Centre for Information Technology, room 1230 (ground floor) at 40 St. George Street.

Located at the intersection of St. George and College Street, the Bahen Centre is a short walk from Queen’s Park subway station, the Spadina/College streetcar stop, or the College streetcar. 

Click here for a detailed map. 

The Poster session will take place in McLennan Physical Laboratories, located across the street at 60 St. George Street. The session and reception will be held in room 110. 

On Saturday, the Thermoelectric Properties Measurement System training will also take place in McLennan Physical Laboratories, at 60 St. George Street. 


Accommodation Information 

The University of Toronto offers special rates at a number of hotels around the city of Toronto. We recommend the following:


Holiday Inn Toronto Bloor Yorkville

280 Bloor Street W, Toronto, M5S 1V8 (near the corner of Bloor and Huron streets)

Quote "University of Toronto" to receive the preferred rate. 

See here for map. 


Doubletree Hilton Downtown Toronto

108 Chestnut Street, Toronto, M5G 1R3 (near the corner of Armoury and University Ave)

Quote "University of Toronto" to receive the preferred rate. 

See here for map. 


Student Accommodation

Student accommodation is available on a limited basis at student residences at the University of Toronto. Please contact Erin Macnab at for more information. 

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