Physics and Materials Science

Faculty Mentor: Xiao Shen

Faculty Mentor's Department: Physics and Materials Science

Email/Phone: - 901-678-1668

Project Description: Dr. Shen's group engages in the computational study of materials at the quantum mechanical level. One area of interest is the property of two dimensional (2D) materials. The group needs a student to investigate the optical properties of MoS2, MoSe2, and of WSe2. The student will use the ADF BAND code to (1) construct atomistic computer models of 2D MoS2, MoTe2, and WSe2, (2) optimize the atomic structures, (3) compute the dielectric constants from the optimized structures. Overall, this project will provide research experience to the student in the quantum mechanics, computational physics, and materials science.

Requirement for Student Applicants: Major in Physics or a related field

Application Process: Please send a cover letter, one letter of reference, and unofficial transcripts.

Starting Date: 8/27/2018

Method of Compensation: Federal Work Study


Faculty Mentor:  Thang Hoang

Faculty Mentor's Department:  Physics and Materials Science


Project: Metamaterials Meet Nanomaterials

Project Description: Metamaterials are a class of material engineered to have exotic properties. Most generally, metamaterials are made to have unique ways of interacting with light such as bending, absorbing, reflecting or transmitting light in specific designed manners. Some analogue of metamaterials are found in nature such as eyes of some lobsters or wings of butterflies. Nanomaterials, on the other hand, can be understood as traditional materials but appeared at nanoscale. Examples of novel nanomaterials includes semiconductor quantum dots, semiconductor nanowires (rods), molecules and recently discovered 2D layered dichalcogenides. By integrating nanomaterials with metamaterials many interesting physical phenomena occur. For instance, when integrate semiconductor quantum dots or molecules (nanomaterials) with plasmonic nanocavities (metamaterials) the photon emission rate of the quantum dots or molecules is enhanced by nearly a 1000-fold. This happens because of the interaction between the nanomaterials with light that is being stored in the metamaterials. The Hoang group experimentally investigates the light-matter interaction between nanomaterials and single plasmonic and photonic nanostructures. Students will be involved in: nano-fabrication, micro-photoluminescence, single particle spectroscopy, time-correlated single photon spectroscopy. This research topic is aligning perfectly with current trends of nanophotonics, which promise a new generation efficient light absorbing and emitting devices ranging from photon detection/emission, bio-sensing, quantum information and photovoltaic applications.

Requirement for Student Applicants:  Amount of physics and optics coursework completed will determine suitable project choices, current enrollment in General Physics I or higher required.

Starting Date: Anytime

Method of Compensation:  To be arranged