The Renewable Energy and Photonics (REAP) Labs are the labs of Dr. Thomas Vandervelde in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Tufts University
I began research in Dr. Vandervelde's labs at Tufts University as a graduate student in 2019. I remained an graduate research fellow until my graduation in 2021.
While in Dr. Vandervelde's lab, I had the opportunity to be trained in Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE) growth - a technique which allows for the development of ultra-high quality semiconductor devices. Unfortunately, the
COVID-19 pandemic coincided directly with my graduate school years, making it difficult to get research done.
I used this time to develop a GUI to be used in conjunction with Silvaco ATLAS simulation software for the rapid design and simulation of semiconductor devices.
Additional information about the lab and this projects can be found below.
As indicated by its name, REAP Labs are concerned with the study of light/matter interactions for the development of novel devices and technologies
REAP Labs study of light/matter interactions occurs through a variety of equipment. In the Tufts Epitaxial Core (TEC) facility, multiple MBE systems allow for the development of both III-V and IV-IV epitaxial thin film structures. Characterization of created devices also begins here in the Materials Characterization Laboratory.
The devices can then be brought to any or all of the (i) Thermal, (ii) Optical, or (iii) Electrical Characterization Labs for further study such as Hall measurements or Ellipsometry.
Topics of study include materials research, photovoltaics, thermophotovoltaics, metamaterials, photodetectors, and high-speed devices. Example research projects include:
Auger recombination reduction in infrared materials
Extended wavelength (2-10 micron) TPV cells
High temperature selective thermal emitters for TPV cells
Silicon-Germanium quantum dot superlattices
DeviceBuilder is the name of the GUI that I designed in Python which allows for the quick design and simulation of semiconductor devices in Silvaco ATLAS (in contrast to explicitly writing code in the Atlas language). The GUI automatically generates input code files for Atlas based of of the design created in the GUI
The project provided me with a lot of experience using the NumPy, Matplotlib, and PyQT packages.
The program is over 7,000 lines, and a short document describing how the program works can be seen below. Note that the GUI screenshots are not from the final version of it - this document was distributed to REAP Labs researchers during development.