New Faculty Profile: Shannon Yee

Feb 27, 2014 | Atlanta, GA

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  • Shannon Yee

Shannon Yee is an Assistant Professor in the School of Mechanical Engineering since the fall semester of 2013 and recently became a member of Georgia Tech–COPE.

Dr. Yee graduated with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering (2007) and then an M.S. in Nuclear Engineering (2008) from The Ohio State University. He was a Department of Energy Advanced Fuel Cell Cycle Initiative Fellow (2007) and was also awarded prestigious the Hertz Fellowship (2008) to support his research in energy. Dr. Yee graduated with a Ph.D. (2013) in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California Berkley. During that time, he assisted in forming the Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Project Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) as it’s first Fellow.

Now at Georgia Tech, Dr. Yee is focused on taking fundamental scientific principles, applying them to interesting materials, leveraging unique manufacturing strengths, and producing low-cost, scalable, energy conversion technologies.

For example, by understanding how heat and energy flow through materials, energy conversion mechanisms and processes can be integrated into functional devices. These devices include thermoelectric generators, solid-state coolers, pyroelectric converters, alpha- and beta-voltaics, multi-ferroic and -caloric systems, and photovoltaics. 

In the near-term, Dr. Yee is developing polymer thermoelectrics that leverage the low cost of conducting polymers to make scalable thermoelectric generators. This work is inherently interdisciplinary involving backgrounds in synthetic chemistry, polymer physics, condensed matter physics, soft-material science, and materials characterization.

According to Dr. Yee, “With >60% of primary energy being discarded as heat, inexpensive methods of converting heat directly to electricity allow for greater efficiency and utilization of energy resources. A polymer thermoelectric generator is one new technology that is capable of doing this at scale.”

Ultimately, Dr. Yee hopes to impact the world by creating new energy technologies and training the next generation of energy technologists and educators.  To do this, he mentors students at the intersection of technology, policy, and business where they prepare for careers in government as technology policists, in start-ups as technical executives, and in academia as professors.

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