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Personal profile

Research interests

In short, our research investigates nano materials for making better energy devices. 

The aim is to enhance the electronic, optical and thermal properties of silicon-based materials through changes at the nano-scale – usually involving nano-structuring or the introduction of nano-scale defects.

This makes these semiconductors better for applications in energy harvesting devices, such as photovoltaic cells or thermoelectric generators.

While the research starts at the nano-scale, it doesn’t stop there – the group builds and tests macroscale demonstrator devices based on our materials innovations.


Nick received a Master’s degree in Physics from the University of Warwick in 2004. Later in the same year he began a PhD at the University of Surrey. His research thesis investigated the effects of strain on dopants in silicon. In 2007 Nick joined Newcastle University as a Postdoctoral Researcher, continuing work on nano-scale doping of silicon- and germanium-based materials.

In 2009 he accepted a research position at Dublin City University, initially in a Postdoctoral Researcher position, before assuming a Lecturing role and leading two projects as Principal Investigator – the first on novel doping metrologies for nano-electronics/photovoltaics, and the second on silicon nano-pillars for thermoelectrics.

Since 2013 Nick has been Assistant Professor at Heriot-Watt University where he leads the Nano-Materials Lab (www.nanomaterialslab.com). His research aims to enhance the electronic, optical and thermal properties of silicon-based materials for applications in energy harvesting devices, such as photovoltaic cells or thermoelectric generators. He is also a Lecturer in Renewable Energy within Heriot-Watt’s School of Engineering & Physical Sciences.

Research Group Contact Details

Group website: www.nanomaterialslab.com


  • TK Electrical engineering. Electronics Nuclear engineering
  • Electronics
  • Energy & Renewables
  • Functional Materials
  • thermoelectric
  • Photovoltaic
  • nanomaterials
  • nanofabrication

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

  • 2 Similar Profiles
Silicon Chemical Compounds
silicon Physics & Astronomy
Doping (additives) Engineering & Materials Science
Vacancies Engineering & Materials Science
Chemical activation Engineering & Materials Science
thermal conductivity Physics & Astronomy
Sheet resistance Engineering & Materials Science
Thermal conductivity Engineering & Materials Science

Co Author Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2005 2018

  • 41 Article
  • 14 Conference contribution
  • 1 Comment/debate

Experimental up-scaling of thermal conductivity reductions in silicon by vacancy-engineering: From the nano- to the micro-scale

Wight, N. M. & Bennett, N. S., 22 May 2018, In : Materials Today: Proceedings. 5, 4, Part 1, p. 10211-10217

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Manufacture of glass and mirrors from lunar regolith simulant

Schleppi, J., Gibbons, J., Groetsch, A., Buckman, J., Cowley, A. & Bennett, N., 19 Nov 2018, In : Journal of Materials Science. p. 1-22 22 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Microwave ovens

A universal method for thermal conductivity measurements on micro-/nano-films with and without substrates using micro-Raman spectroscopy

Wight, N. M., Acosta, E., Vijayaraghavan, R. K., McNally, P. J., Smirnov, V. & Bennett, N. S., Sep 2017, In : Thermal Science and Engineering Progress. 3, p. 95-101 7 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Raman spectroscopy
Thermal conductivity
Design of experiments
Analytical models

Hydrogenated Nano-/Micro-Crystalline Silicon Thin-Films for Thermoelectrics

Acosta, E., Wight, N., Smirnov, V., Buckman, J. & Bennett, N., 30 Nov 2017, In : Journal of Electronic Materials. p. 1-8

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
thin films
Seebeck effect
carrier mobility
Doping (additives)
Seebeck effect
Seebeck coefficient

Activities 2014 2014

  • 1 Participation in Festival or Exhibition

SET for Britain

Bennett, N. S. (Participant)
17 Mar 2014

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in Festival or Exhibition