The faculty members listed below are all doing chemistry research with a materials emphasis:


Trisha Andrew                     


Research Description:   Our research program focuses equally on synthesizing optically- and electronically-interesting materials, and fabricting optoelectronic or spintronic devices using these materials.  We are interesting in understanding the role of electron spin on organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) and photovoltaic cells (OPVs).  Additionally, we aim to demonstrate the utility of organic radical-containing materials in magnetic spin valves and magneto-optic devices.


Kyoung-Shin Choi                     


Research Description: Our research group focuses on the synthesis, characterization, and understanding of electrodes and catalysts composed of a broad range of solid state materials (e.g. metals, oxides, chalcogenides). We use electrochemical synthesis as the main synthesis tool, which allows for precise and facile composition and morphology control that may not be easily achieved by other synthesis means, creating new possibilities to discover and improve electrodes and catalyst materials. Our current interest lies in developing electrode and catalysts that can be used fro clean and sustainable energy conversion and energy storage (solar cells, solar fuel production, electrocatalysts).


Mark D. Ediger                     

Email: ediger@chem.wisc.edu

Research Description: Our research attempts to develop a molecular-level understanding of dynamics in polymeric materials and low molecular weight glass formers.  We try to understand why particular dynamics are observed.  What is it about the structure of the material and the potentials which govern the interaction of the atoms which makes dynamics fast or slow in a given system?  As devices move closer to the nanometer length scale, the knowledge obtained from our molecular level experiments will become more essential to the correct functioning of these devices.


Danny Fredrickson             

Email: danny@chem.wisc.edu

Research Description: The Fredrickson Group focuses on the structural chemistry of alloys and intermetallic compounds with two intertwined goals: an understanding of the chemical bonding principles underlying these structures, and a theoretical framework for the design of new metallic materials.  Our exploration of these complex structures involves a close interplay between electronic structure theory, solid state synthesis, and crystallography.  We develop theoretical methods to rationalize the formation of existing structures, then use the results to predict new experimental approaches.  These approaches can then be tested and further refined through solid state synthesis.  Finally, we use crystallography to solve new crystal structures, often modeling complex structural features such as disorder patterns and incommensurability


Randall Goldsmith


Research Description: We aim to develop new single-molecule techniques and apply them to outstanding and socially relevant problems in chemistry, materials science, and biophysics. Research targets will include novel mechanistic studies of homogeneous catalysts, investigation of electronic properties of conjugated polymers relevant for organic photovoltaic devices, and analysis of protein conformational dynamics. Our efforts will employ creative combinations of fluorescence microscopy, nanophotonics, and chemical synthesis to find the best means of studying our chemical systems of interest


Padma Gopalan


Research Description: Our group research interests involve the molecular design, synthesis, and characterization of novel functional organic/polymeric materials directed towards electro-optic, photonic and biological applications. Efforts are targeted towards developing versatile synthetic strategies, which would enable the control of nano-functionality, structure and property. Our current research focus is in three major areas: new synthetic strategies towards organic photonic and electronic materials and interfaces, design of imaging layers, self-assembly block copolymers containing highly polar molecule and directed assembly of inorganic/organic moieties in block copolymer templates.


Robert J. Hamers


Research Description: The focus of our research is focused on understanding the properties of surfaces and using this information to control interfaces between various types of organic and inorganic materials.  Most of our current work addresses surface/interface chemistry issues relevant to renewable energy and/or to biomaterials interfaces. Much of this work is based on the use of nanoscale materials, with a particular emphasis on understanding how to use molecular layers, often a single molecule thick, to link highly functional objects such as catalytic or photocatalytic centers, biomolecular recognition sites, or quantum-confined nanoparticles, to their surfaces.


Ive Hermans

Ive Hermans


Research Description: The Hermans Group is a multidisciplinary team, focusing on both fundamental and applied aspects of sustainable chemistry and catalysis. Topics of interest include:


  • Synthesis of heterogeneous catalysts
  • Immobilization of homogeneous catalysts
  • Catalytic and kinetic studies
  • Unravelling of reaction mechanisms
  • (In situ) spectroscopy (Infrared, Raman, UV-Vis)
  • Reactions in supercritical fluids and expanded liquid phases
  • Use of renewable resources
  • Quantum-chemical and theoretical kinetic calculations
  • Reaction engineering
  • High-pressure reaction technology

Considering the present challenges, our research group focuses on sustainable chemistry and catalysis:

  • Understanding the mechanisms of catalytic transformations
  • Viable use of renewable platform molecules
  • Design of energy efficient processes

Our interests range from purely mechanistic understandings of catalytic reactions to the design of applied catalytic systems. In order to contribute to these challenges, we use state-of-the-art equipment and set-ups.


Song Jin


Research Description: The focus of our research is centered on the chemistry and physics of nanomaterials. We develop rational strategies for chemical synthesis, assembly and integration of nanomaterials, and investigate fundamental synthesis-structure-property relationships, especially through device fabrication and characterization, and finally develope them for various applications.


Laura Kiessling


Research Description:  Our group develops and implements synthetic methods to access biologically-active compounds for hypothesis-driven and discovery-driven research. This important foundation of our program offers chemically-oriented researchers new opportunities to develop and apply their synthetic skills.


Robert J. McMahon


Research Description: Our research program focuses on bringing physical-organic insights and physical and analytical methods to bear on important problems in chemistry. Our interests range from mechanistic organic and organometallic chemistry to the fundamental chemistry underlying important problems in material science.


Lloyd M. Smith


Research Description: Our research is directed towards the development of powerful new technologies to drive biological research. The work is multi-faceted and highly interdisciplinary and collaborative in nature. Two major areas of interest are surface chemistries, particularly those related to the development and use of various sorts of biomolecule arrays, and mass spectrometry.


John C. Wright


Research Description: Our group has been developing the field of coherent multidimensional spectroscopy (CMDS), the optical analogue of multidimensional NMR methods. Our approach is unique in using a mixed frequency/time domain approach to CMDS. Our laser system creates multiple independently tunable sub-femtosecond excitation beams to excite a quantum mechanical superposition state involving multiple electronic and/or vibrational states of molecules and materials. The superposition state reemits multiple beams that are created by each pair of states within the superposition. Tuning the excitation frequencies provides multidimensional spectra with cross-peaks between quantum states that are coupled by intra- or inter-molecular interactions so CMDS is selective for interactions. 


Martin T.  Zanni

Email:  zanni@chem.wisc.edu

Research Description: The Zanni group is studying energy transfer in an exciting new type of material for solar cells made from semiconducting carbon nanotubes.  We also study the structures of organic/inorganic interfaces, such as used in DNA sensor technologies. These systems are very difficult to study with existing technologies. We bring to these topics sophisticated new spectroscopies, called 2D or multidimensional spectroscopies, that allows us to probe structures and dynamics with unprecedented resolution. We can time-resolve energy transfer with unprecedented accuracy and probe the structures of single monolayers of molecules with unrivaled resolution.