Assoc. Prof. Yaron Amouyal

Group Leader

B.A. 2001, Physics (Technion)
B.Sc. 2001, Materials Engineering (Technion)
M.Sc. 2003, Materials Engineering (Technion)

De-Jur bldg. room 605,
Tel: +972-77-8871915
Fax: +972-4-8295677

Google Scholar profile

Yaron Amouyal is an Associate Professor at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. Upon graduating from the Technion (Ph.D., 2007), he joined the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Northwestern University (Evanston IL, USA) as a Marie Curie Research Associate in the framework of the International Outgoing Fellowship (IOF) program of the European Union. After a reintegration period as a senior researcher at the Technion Research and Development Foundation (TRDF), he joined the Materials Science and Engineering Department, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, as a faculty member, and since 2011 he has been leading a dynamic group specializing in experimental and computational aspects of materials design for tailoring thermal and electronic transport properties of thermoelectric materials.


  • Thermoelectric materials;
  • Atom-probe tomography (APT);
  • Computational materials science based on the density functional theory (DFT);
  • Diffusion and mass transport in solids and short-circuit diffusion;
  • Phase transformations in materials;
  • Energetics of interfaces in crystalline solids.

One of the fundamental and intriguing questions in materials science is how to control functional properties of materials by manipulating their microstructure. An outstanding example for a functional property that is highly sensitive to the finest features of microstructure is thermoelectricity. In the thermoelectric (TE) effect thermal energy is converted into electrical energy and vice-versa. TE devices can, therefore, serve for heat-exchange or refrigerating as well as for capturing waste heat and converting it into electricity; the latter has major implications for energy harvesting.

The performance of TE materials can be improved by increasing their electrical conductivity and/or reducing their thermal conductivity. These two requirements are usually contradictory, which makes the development of TE materials a grand challenge from the materials science point of view. One of the promising approaches for reducing thermal conductivity with no deterioration of the electrical conductivity is formation of coherent nanometer- size precipitates dispersed in a TE matrix, thereby scattering of heat conducting phonons.

We process two-phase TE alloys comprising matrix and precipitates, and apply different heat treatments to obtain diverse microstructures. Supplemented by ab-initio calculations, we aim to “smartly-design” new materials processing in a time and cost-effective manner. Employing advanced characterization techniques, we analyze the materials structure and chemistry down to the nanometer length-scale. Finally, we measure the TE properties of these materials and correlate them with their microstructures. This helps us modeling the thermal conductivity in heterogeneous materials, and provides us with insight of the underlying physics. Besides possible improvements of TE properties, we endeavor to advance our understanding of how functional properties of materials depend on their microstructure.

A detailed description of our current research activity can be found in Research and Research highlights.

Selected publications

A full list of Yaron’s publications can be found in his Google Scholar profile.

A minimized list of Selected Publications can be found here.


  • Mechanical Behavior of Materials (315008) for undergraduate students
  • Advanced Materials Selection (315012) for undergraduate students
  • Charge and Heat Transport Properties & Thermoelectric Materials (318532) for graduate students
  • Diffusion and Mass Transport in Solids (318337) for graduate students