Materials for Energy Conversion and Conservation


The aim is to supply the right knowledge about the materials used for energy conversion namely: solar energy to electrical energy; solar energy to thermal energy; thermal energy to electrical energy; materials used for saving energy (inteligent materials); materials used for energy storage including bateries and fuel cells, among others



General characterization





Responsible teacher

Isabel Maria Mercês Ferreira, Rodrigo Ferrão de Paiva Martins


Weekly - 5

Total - 84

Teaching language



For an efficient monitoring of matter is required that students have accomplished the propaedeutic of physics, chemistry and mathematics.


 Thin film solar cells-next generation photovoltaics and applications, ed. Y. Hamakava, Springer, 2004;

Pratical Handbook of Photovoltaics – Fundamentals and applications, ed. T. Markvark & L. Castner; Elsevier,2003;

Solar cells and their applications, ed. L. D. Partain; John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1995

Fuel Cells and their applications; ed. K. Kordesh & G. Simader; VCH Publishers, 1996;

Electrochemical Power sources, primary and secondary batteries, ed. M. BaraK, Peter Perecrinus ltd, 1980

Handbook of batteries and fuel cells, ed David Linden, McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1984

Acetatos da disciplina

Teaching method

The discipline has two hours of theoretical lessons a week and 3 hours of theoretical-practical lessons and laboratories.


 A PowerPoint presentation is used for theoretical classes being the matter exposed in a class room.


 The resolution of exercices is done during the theoretical-practical lessons in class room about the matter given during the theoretical classes.


Laboratorial classes are related to the experiences demonstration of the concepts already given both in theoretical and problem sessions



Evaluation method

The evaluation is obtained through two tests for the students that obtained frequency by being assisting at labs and presenting the respective reports.

The final note is obtained by: 50% of the reports note+50%of the examination note or test''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''s average note it both are positive (9.5 over 20).

Subject matter

Introduction to the global energy policy: materials and system employed in the solar energy to electrical energy: - working principle of a solar cell; production processes, materials that can be used vantages and disadvantages at economical and environmental level; materials and system employed in the conversion of solar energy to thermal energy- importance of the protection/materials radiation absorbers; materials employed and other in development that can implement that function; materials and systems for conversion of thermal energy to electrical energy through the thermoelectric effect (Peltier elements) - working principle; materials used, production processes; materials used in saving energy- electro/photochromic materials - working principle, type of materials, production processes; materials used in energy storage - batteries; fuel cells and other energy conversion/conservation systems.

Lab Classes: Electrical and optical characterization of solar cells; Project and production of an integrated amorphous silicon solar cell; Project of a photovoltaic system; Production of an electrochromic devices;Application of a fuel cell and/or a thermoelectric device.