First principles insights into oxide/polymer composites: SrTiO3/polyaniline/graphene

Nathan D. Wood, Joshua S. Tse, Jonathan M. Skelton, David J. Cooke, Lisa J. Gillie, Stephen C. Parker, Marco Molinari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A detailed computational investigation, based on density functional theory, of the interaction of polyaniline (PANI) and graphene nanoribbons (GNRs) with SrTiO3 is presented. The adsorption of PANI in various oxidation states and co-adsorption with GNRs is found to be thermodynamically favourable. Adsorbed PANI introduces N and C 2p states into the SrTiO3 bandgap, while co-adsorption of PANI and GNRs leads to a bridging of the gap and semi-metallic behaviour, thus rendering the electrical properties highly sensitive to the loading of the GNRs/PANI in the composites. Modelling the lattice dynamics of the composites predicts a 68–88% reduction in the lattice thermal conductivity due to reduced phonon group velocities. Taken together, these findings provide insight into the growing number of experimental studies highlighting the enhanced thermoelectric performance of oxide-polymer composites and indicate co-adsorption with graphene as a facile direction for future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)250-260
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Materials Science and Technology
Early online date16 Jun 2023
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
NDW thanks the EPSRC DTP competition 2018–19 at the University of Huddersfield for funding ( EP/R513234/1 ). JMS is currently supported by a UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship ( MR/T043121/1 ) and previously held a University of Manchester Presidential Fellowship. Calculations were performed on the Orion computing facility and the Violeta HPC at the University of Huddersfield, and the THOMAS and YOUNG facilities at the UK Materials and Molecular Modelling Hub (MMM Hub), which is partially funded by the EPSRC ( EP/P020194/1 and EP/T022213/1 ), via our membership of the UK's HEC Materials Chemistry Consortium (MCC), which is also funded by the EPSRC ( EP/R029431/1 and EP/X035859/1 ).


  • Electrical transport
  • PANI/GNR/SrTiO composites
  • Polyaniline/strontium titanate/graphene nanoribbon composites
  • Polymer/inorganic composites
  • Thermal conductivity1 Introduction
  • Thermoelectric composites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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