IRG1 Trainees

IRG1 - MRSEC Funded Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Researchers

Krista Balto

Krista is second-year graduate student in the department of Chemistry at UC San Diego. She works with Professor Joshua Figueroa on the synthesis of low valent m-terphenyl isocyanide coordination networks. Her specific project focuses on the synthesis of capping reagents (designer ligands) for the mesoscale assembly of inorganic nanocrystals. As an undergraduate, she worked on the synthesis of porous molecular cages under the guidance of Dr. Eric Bloch at the University of Delaware and graduated with honors B.S. in Chemistry in 2019.

Kyle Barcus

Kyle is a fourth-year Ph.D. student at the department of Chemistry & Biochemistry at UC San Diego. He received his B.S. in Biochemistry at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in 2017. He is working on the synthesis and characterization of polymer/metal-organic framework hybrid nanoparticles, with a focus on their self-assembly into porous thin films.

Rourav Basak

Rourav is a third-year Ph.D. student in Professor Alex Fraño’s XLab in the Department of Physics at UC San Diego. Rourav is interested in order, defects, and excitations in strongly interacting systems.  Before joining UC San Diego, he earned his M.S. in Applied Physics from New York University, where he pursued such interests in Prof. L. A. Wray’s lab. Presently he is studying strongly interacting quantum systems, such as nickelates and cuprates, and strongly interacting classical systems, such as self-assembled nanoparticles in polymers and macro-molecular crystals in polymer networks. As a member of Xlab, Rourav uses various x-ray spectroscopy, microscopy, scattering (both elastic and inelastic) and correlation techniques to probe nanoscale and mesoscale systems.

Liya Bi

Li-Ya is a Ph.D. student of the Materials Science and Engineering Program. He currently works with Professor Shaowei Li on the statics and dynamics of single molecules on the metal surface with the Laser-Coupled STM.

Amanda Chen

Amanda is a Ph.D. student of Chemical Engineering program at the department of NanoEngineering at UC San Diego. Her research is centering on analyzing the molecular properties and thermodynamic properties via both quantum calculations and molecular dynamic simulations. Current works include analyzing the forcefield parameters of various molecules, the adsorption capacities of small molecules in metal-organic frameworks, and the thermodynamic properties of adsorbates/adsorbents. With the understanding of the practical inter- and intramolecular forces of a system, the research team is able to design an efficiently experimental procedure in the real world.

Alexandria Do

Alexandria is a Ph.D. student in Professor Tod Pascal’s group in the NanoEngineering department. She received her B.S in NanoEngineering from UC San Diego in 2020. Alexandria’s current work involves understanding the entropy-driven structuring of water, and predicting the self-assembly of nanoparticles.

 

Dong Le (IRG1 Trainee Leadership Council Representative)

Dong is a first-year Ph.D. student in Professor Alex Fraño’s XLab in the Department of Physics at UC San Diego. She received her B.S. in NanoEngineering with a minor in Physics from UC San Diego in 2020. Dong is studying nonequilibrium dynamics in classical systems, such as assembly dynamics of solid-state nanocrystals and of genetically modified proteins in polymer networks. As a part of the Fraño group, she learns about different X-ray characterization techniques including scattering (both elastic and inelastic) and correlation to study dynamics of various material systems at the nano- to mesoscale.

Po-An Lin

Po-An Lin is a first-year Ph.D. student in Professor Gaurav Arya’s lab in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science at Duke University. Po-An received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan. His current research focus on applying machine learning on molecular simulation to predict the assembly behavior of polymeric nanoparticles.

Sharon Lin

Sharon is a postdoctoral researcher at the Seth Cohen lab in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at UC San Diego. Her current research focuses on the synthesis and characterization of hybrid materials containing polymers and metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). She obtained her B.S. in Chemical and Biological Engineering at SUNY Buffalo, and later obtained her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). During her Ph.D., Sharon conducted research on polymer film morphology for gas separation applications.

Yui Na

Yui is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Chemical Biology program track at UC San Diego. Yui received her B.S in Pharmacological Chemistry at UC San Diego in 2019. She joined Professor Akif Tezcan’s lab to learn about protein self-assembly and to develop protein-based functional materials. Her current research focuses on polymer infused protein crystals.

Alec Rachkov

Alexander is a fifth-year Ph.D. student in the laboratory of Professor Alina Schimpf in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at UC San Diego. He received his B.S. in Chemistry at the University of Washington, where he started his research career under the supervision of Professor Daniel Gamelin and contributed to research studying the ferromagnetism of impurity-containing europium sulfide nanocrystals. His current research involves the synthesis and post-synthetic modification of tunable colloidal copper phosphide nanocrystals.

Baharak Sayahpour

Baharak is a Ph.D. student in Materials Science and Engineering department at UC San Diego. She received her B.Sc. in Chemical Engineering from University of Tehran and her M.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) with a research background in 2D materials synthesis and characterization. She is currently working on controlled-synthesis and advanced characterizations of energy storage materials for high energy density battery materials.

Bin Wang

Bin Wang received his PhD from UC Davis, where he worked with Prof Alexandra Navrotsky on the thermodynamics of halide perovskite systems. As a MRSEC postdoc fellow with Prof Andrea Tao, his current research focuses on designing/programming energy landscape for self-assembling shaped nanocrystals.

Yufei Wang

Yufei received her BS in Chemistry at Davidson College, North Carolina. Her research focuses on synthesis and self-assembly of inorganic nanocrystals.

Yu Xie

Yu received his B.S. from ShanghaiTech University. He joined Professor Andrea Tao's research group in the Fall of 2019 as a graduate student in Nanoengineering. With the interest in self-assembly, he now focuses on the interfacial self-assembly of inorganic nanoparticles. He works to design the surface chemistry of nanoparticles, which affects the interaction between nanoparticles and the surrounding environment, to modulate the self-assembly patterns or even to get new materials.

Yilong Zhou

Yilong is a fourth-year PhD student in the department of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science at Duke University. He received a B.S. from Huazhong University of Science and Technology (China) in 2013, and an M.S. from Clemson University in 2016. Yilong's current research is on the self-assembly of polymer-grafted nanoparticles and he is using both molecular dynamics simulations and powerful MC-based optimization algorithms to explore new strategies for self-assembling particles into unconventional arrangements to fabricate new functional materials.

IRG1 - Funded SEED Researchers

Isabel Albelo

Isabel is a PhD student in Materials Science and Engineering under the advisement of Dr. David Fenning. She received her B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering from UCLA in 2020. Her current research focuses on the design and characterization of catalyst materials to promote the generation of renewable chemical fuels and feedstocks. Through her work with the MRSEC, she will be exploring the use of surface acoustic waves to dynamically modify catalyst surfaces and improve performance.

Guorui Cai

Guorui Cai received his Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) in 2019 under the guidance of Prof. Hai-Long Jiang. He is currently a postdoctoral researcher in Prof. Zheng Chen's group at UC San Diego. His current research is focused on the design of MOF-based materials for heterogeneous catalysis, electrolyte chemistry, and functional separators for rechargeable batteries at extreme temperatures.

 

IRG1 - MRSEC Affiliate Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Researchers

Ruhan Fan

Ruhan Fan is a PhD student in the UCSD Department of Nanoengineering (NENG) who joined the Sailor lab in March 2018. Prior to joining, she received a BS degree in Pharmacy from Zhengzhou University (ZZU), China, where she studied drug delivery systems. She has been a participant (2018) and a Senior Mentor in the Summer School for Silicon Nanotechnology. Ruhan's project focus is on porous nanoparticle drug delivery systems for treatment of bacterial infections and cancer.

Alex Fuqua

Alex Fuqua is an incoming PhD student at UC San Diego in the Nanoengineering department. He will be in Dr. Andrea Tao's group. He graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor's Degree in Materials Engineering June 2021. He is interested in self assembly of inorganic nanocrystals.

Yubin Huang

Yubin is an MS student in the Materials Science and Engineering program at UC San Diego. He completed his undergraduate studies at UC Santa Barbara, where he studied porous silicon carbide materials for catalyst immobilization with Prof. Galen Stucky. Before he joined the Sailor Group in 2020, he worked for a local biosensor company to develop minimally invasive enzymatic continuous glucose monitoring sensors (CGMs) for diabetic patients. His research at the company included enzyme stabilization, polymer coating, and in-vitro data analysis. He became a member of the Sailor group in October 2020, at the same time he participated in the 2020 Summer School for Silicon Nanotechnology (SSSiN). His thesis focuses on porous silicon nano materials for enzyme immobilization.

Dowon Kim

Dowon Kim is a combined MS/PhD graduate student at the UNIST School of Energy and Chemical Engineering in the Republic of Korea, under the direction of Prof. Jiseok Lee. He completed undergraduate studies in the same department. His MS/PhD project involves diacetylene-based colorimetric chemosensors and structurally colored organogels formed by dithering mask lithograpy. He is visiting our labs from July 2021 until July 2022.

Yi-Sheng Lu

Yi-Sheng "Eason" Lu is a PhD student in the Materials Science and Engineering program at UC San Diego. He earned his BS in Biomedical Engineering at National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan, where his undergraduate thesis focused on magnetic-responsive iron oxide nano-spheres for deep tumor therapy. He was a participant in the 2018 Summer School for Silicon Nanotechnology (SSSiN) and served as a Senior Mentor in the 2019 and 2021 SSSiN. His thesis interests focus on remote sensing and catalysis with porous silicon photonic crystals

Sanahan Vijayakumar

Sanahan Vijayakumar is a PhD student in the UCSD Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) program who joined the Sailor Group in Fall 2018. He completed his B.Eng. in 2017 in Materials Engineering at McGill University in Montreal, Canada where his previous research focused on preparation of porous silicon nanowires using Metal Assisted Chemical Etch (MACE). During his studies at McGill, Sanahan interned with Prof. Gaël Gautier at the University of Tours, France and then with Prof. Nicolas Vöelcker at the University of South Australia. Sanahan was a participant in the 2012 Summer School for Silicon Nanotechnology (SSSiN) and he served as a Senior Mentor in the 2013, 2018, and 2019 SSSiN. His thesis focuses on porous silicon-based sensors and drug delivery materials.

Qinglin Yang

Qinglin began her PhD studies in Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) at UCSD in Summer 2017. Her undergraduate research at UIUC with Professor John A. Rogers involved flexible and stretchable structures and electronic devices. She performed graduate research at Stanford with Professor Debbie G. Senesky focused on GaN-based devices that can operate in harsh environments before transferring to UC San Deigo. She began her work in the Sailor labs as a participant in the 2017 Summer School for Silicon Nanotechnology (SSSiN) and she served as a Senior Mentor in the 2018 and 2019 SSSiN. Her thesis focuses on porous silicon nanoparticles for delivery of therapeutics for bacterial infections, opthalmic diseases, and cancer.

Zhiying (Iris) Zhang

Iris received her B.S. in Chemistry from Zhejiang University, China, in 2018. She is a third-year graduate student in Professor Akif Tezcan’s lab at UC San Diego, and her research is focusing on protein self-assembly at interfaces.

Arthur Ziming Zhou

Arthur is an undergraduate (class of 2023) Nanoengineering student at UC San Diego. He participated remotely in the 2021 Spring Break Undergraduate Research Experience (a "mini RIMSE" program of the UC San Diego MRSEC), and in the 2021 Summer School for Silicon Nanotechnology (SSSiN), one of the UC San Diego MRSEC RIMSE research immersion programs. He is interested in exploring the uses of silicon nanoparticles as encapsulants for catalytic systems.

Qingyi Zhu

Qingyi is a first-year M.S student in Chemistry. She received her Chemistry B.S at UC San Diego. She joined Shaowei Li's group in Fall, 2021.