Holger Kleinke

Holger Kleinke
Location: C2 067
Phone: 519-888-4567 x33577


Holger Kleinke's research focuses on finding and optimizing new thermoelectric materials. Thermoelectrics are capable of converting heat into electrical energy and vice versa. This environmentally friendly energy conversion currently has several applications, but is limited by its low efficiency. His research group is attempting to increase the efficiency so that thermoelectrics may be used to recover electricity from the nowadays abundant waste heat, e.g. in the exhaust of automobiles.

One of Holger Kleinke's newest projects is to utilize Cu ion mobility to lower the thermal conductivity of thermoelectric materials. This mobility has to be localized within each unit cell in order to inhibit Cu ion migration throughout the material, which would otherwise cause device degradation. Since the thermoelectric properties depend on the thermopower as well as on the electrical and thermal conductivity, various property measurements are routinely carried out in the group. The syntheses are guided by calculations performed by students who are fascinated by the theoretical aspects of chemical research.

Research Interests

  • Inorganic materials
  • Solid-state chemistry
  • Thermoelectric energy conversion
  • Machine Learning
  • Crystal structure predictions
  • Quantum Materials
  • Smart Materials
  • Energy Materials
  • Condensed Matter
  • Next Generation Energy Systems
  • Nanomaterials
  • Renewable Energy
  • Smart and Functional Materials


  • 1994, Ph.D., Chemistry, J.-G.-Universität Mainz, Germany
  • 1991, M.Sc., Chemistry, W.-W.-Universität Münster, Germany
  • 1988, B.Sc., Chemistry, W.-W.-Universität Münster, Germany


  • 2002, Ontario Distinguished Researcher Award, Toronto, Canada
  • 2001, Canada Research Chair in Solid State Chemistry (tier II, NSERC), Ottawa, Canada
  • 2000, Premier's Research Excellence Award (Province of Ontario), Toronto, Canada
  • 1999, Fellowship for Habilitands (DFG), Bonn, Germany
  • 1997-99, Liebig-Fellowship (FCI, Fonds der Chemischen Industrie and BMBF, Bundesministerium für Bildung, und Forschung), Frankfurt, Germany
  • 1995-97, Postdoctoral Fellowship (DFG, Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft), Bonn, Germany
  • 1994, Ph.D. Award (FCI, Fonds der Chemischen Industrie), Frankfurt, Germany


  • 2023-present, NSERC Evaluation Group for Chemistry member
  • 2022-present, Awards Committee
  • 2015-present, Science Faculty Council
  • 2013-present, Materials Nano Steering Committee
  • 2021-22, Chair, Health & Safety Committee
  • 2021-22, Promotions and Tenure Committee
  • 2019-20, Chair of the symposium Energy Conversion: Thermoelectrics and Solar Technologies Advancements in Thermoelectric Materials and Applications (with Drs. Lu and Zhao), The 20th IEEE International Conference on Nanotechnology, Montreal, QC
  • 2018-19, Director, Nanotechnology Graduate Program
  • 2017-20, Board of Directors, Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology
  • 2016-17, Interim Executive Director, Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology
  • 2016-17, Chair of the Solid State Chemistry Symposium (with Dr. Thangadurai), 100th CSC Conference and Exhibition, Toronto, ON
  • 2015-16, International Advisory Board member, 35th International Conference on Thermoelectrics, Wuhan, China

Affiliations and Volunteer Work

  • Member and Media Ambassador, Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology
  • 2016-17, Interim Executive Director, Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology


  • CHEM 212 - Structure and Bonding
    • Taught in 2020
  • CHEM 400 - Special Topics in Chemistry
    • Taught in 2019, 2021, 2022, 2024
  • CHEM 713 - Chemistry of Inorganic Solid State Materials
    • Taught in 2020, 2022, 2024

* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/Recent Publications

  • N. K. Barua, A. Golabek, A. O. Oliynyk, H. Kleinke, Experimentally Validated Machine Learning Predictions of Ultralow Thermal Conductivity for SnSe Materials, J. Mater. Chem. C 11, 11643 - 11652 (2023).
  • L. T. Menezes, E. Gage, A. Assoud, M. Liang, P. S. Halasyamani, H. Kleinke, Sr6Ge3OSe11: A Rationally Designed Noncentrosymmetric Oxyselenide with Polar [GeOSe3] Building Blocks, Chem. Mater. 35, 3033 - 3040 (2023).
  • C. Gayner, L. T. Menezes, Y. Natanzon, Y. Kauffmann, H. Kleinke, Y. Amouyal, Development of Nanostructured Bi2Te3 with High Thermoelectric Performance by Scalable Synthesis and Microstructure Manipulations, ACS Appl. Mater. Interf. 15, 13012 - 13024 (2023).
  • Y.-C. Tseng, S. S. Razavi-Tousi, D. Ramirez, H. Kleinke, Advancing the Reliability of Thermoelectric Materials: a Case Study of Silicides through Statistics, Appl. Phys. Lett. 119, 193903/1 - 6 (2021).
  • D. C. Ramirez, L. R. Macario, X. Cheng, M. Cino, D. Walsh, Y.-C. Tseng, H. Kleinke, Large Scale Solid State Synthetic Technique for High Performance Thermoelectric Materials: Magnesium-Silicide-Stannide, ACS Appl. Energy Mater. 3, 2130 - 2136 (2020).