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Home > Employee Directory > Solar Technologies Research > Nicoleta Hickman

Portrait of William Wilson.Nicoleta Hickman
Associate Professor
Solar Technologies Research

(321) 638-1428
(321) 638-1010


Ph.D., Physics
Clemson University USA, 2006

M.S., Physics
Clemson University USA, 2004

M.S., Physics
University “ Al. I. Cuza” Romania, 1998

Research Focus:

Dr. Hickman's major research interest is in photovoltaic and thermoelectric materials, devices and testing.

Her group performs research at the leading edge of advances in electronic, thermal and optical materials (nanostructures, thin film and bulk), and devices for applications in photovoltaic, thermoelectric, and solar energy integrated systems. The interdisciplinary philosophy of research within her lab combines the disciplines of physics, materials science, chemistry and electrical engineering leading toward attractive research opportunities. The background of students and researchers within the lab reflect this breadth, and as a result, the laboratory is vertically integrated in its activities, straddling from basic to applied research.

One of her group’s intense research is ongoing to develop hybrid III-V and Si solar cell for both terrestrial and space solar energy conversion applications. Pushing back the boundaries of conversion efficiency for ideal solar cells and looking at how the performance of practical devices can be brought to the level of those of ideal devices, working on multi and single junction III-V (GaAs based) and Si solar cells, and developing methods to integrate super efficient quantum wells and dots with inexpensive and thin substrates are few of the directions explored in her laboratory.

In the thermoelectric materials and devices area, the research includes efforts to advance both photovoltaic (PV) and thermoelectric (TE) devices based on unique integrated structures, band gap engineering and selective use of nanostructures. This combined research will improve the Solar Cell efficiency and longevity.

Dr. Hickman is also affiliate assistant professor in the NanoScience and Technology Center at UCF.