IV. Functional Materials
Forest-based functional material composites for sustainable and high-performing energy, electronics, and photonics technology.
Forest biopolymers provide an array of appealing characteristics for the area of electronics, energy technology, and photonics. These features involve structure, hierarchy, and organization of materials ranging from the atomic, macromolecular, all the way to the macroscopic scales. In addition, the forest-materials also provide some key-assets, related to chemical, electrochemical, and physical properties, being of particular interest for advanced sustainable technologies. With those characteristics at hand, we here explore and develop material amalgamations based on functional organic and inorganic materials and the different forest biopolymers. With an initial focus on achieving sustainable materials with high-performing electric conductivity and photonic functionality, we then head towards developing novel devices for an array of different applications.
When combining conducting materials with cellulose and redox-active lignin derivatives, eco-friendly electrodes for batteries and pseudo-capacitors can be reached. Those can then serve as the fundamental electrode system for large-scale electrical energy-storage systems. By including additional functional materials, electrodes for other energy converting or storage systems are enabled, such as those related to fuel cells and electrolyzers. Further, by including photonic materials into cellulose-based composites, we also explore electrochromic papers and metamaterials to impact the infrared radiation characteristics. These efforts open the door to actively control several of the photonic properties of for instance smart papers.