My research group studies and manipulates how electrons organize themselves and flow on the nanoscale. In this regime, quantum effects and electron interactions are important, confounding intuitions gleaned from larger-scale electronics. Our group has been excited about making and steering beams of electrons within atomically-thin materials, using topological insulators to build 1D wires whose resistance does not increase with length, gaining insights into complex materials by designing “quantum simulators” based on electrons in well-controlled nanostructures, transforming properties of materials by applying extremely strong electric fields: applying the concept of the transistor to materials far beyond traditional semiconductors to create novel magnets and superconductor, and working toward quantum bits based on topological materials. We are also exploring how nanostructured materials can change our thinking on electronic devices and energy conversion technology.

Awards and Achievements

  • Award for Initiatives in Research ( 2006)
  • National Academy of Sciences McMillan Award ( 2002)
  • University of Illinois George E. Valley Prize ( 2002)
  • American Physical Society