People

Professor Michael R. Wasielewski

mrwasielewski

Michael R. Wasielewski

Michael R. Wasielewski is the Clare Hamilton Hall Professor of Chemistry, Northwestern University, Executive Director of the Institute for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern, Director of the Argonne-Northwestern Solar Energy Research Center, a US-DOE Energy Frontier Research Center, and Executive Director of the Solar Fuels Institute, a global consortium of energy research centers.

He received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago and was a postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University. He began his career at Argonne National Laboratory, where he advanced to Senior Scientist and Group Leader.  In 1994, he joined the faculty of Northwestern University. From 2001-2004 he served as Chair of the Department of Chemistry at Northwestern. His research has resulted in over 650 publications and focuses on light-driven processes in molecules and materials, artificial photosynthesis, molecular electronics, and molecular spintronics.

His recent honors and awards include membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; the Chemical Pioneer Award of the American Institute of Chemists; the Honda-Fujishima Award of the Japanese Photochemistry Association; the Royal Society of Chemistry Environment Prize; the Humboldt Research Award; the Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award of the American Chemical Society; the Porter Medal for Photochemistry; and the James Flack Norris Award in Physical Organic Chemistry of the American Chemical Society.

Research Professors & Associates
Matthew Krzyaniak

Research Associate

EPR Specialist

Matthew D. Krzyaniak is an Electron Paramagnetic Resonance(EPR) specialist in Michael Wasielewski’s lab. His research interests include the application of EPR to the field of quantum information science, and the spin dynamics of radical and triplet pairs for use in solar energy.

He obtained his B.S. in Chemistry at the University of Michigan, Dearborn in 2005. While there he was involved in undergraduate research, in Dr. Yiwei Deng’s Laboratory, optimizing separation procedures for capillary zone electrophoresis. He continued his studies at Michigan State University in the group of John McCracken and received his Ph.D. in 2010. At MSU he utilized advanced Electron Paramagnetic Resonance spectroscopic techniques to characterize the active site of metallo-enzymes. Following graduation he joined the group of Michael K. Bowman at The University of Alabama as a Postdoctoral Fellow and continued to master EPR spectroscopy by studying the spin relaxation of radicals and radical intermediates trapped within proteins. From there he joined Michael R. Wasielewski’s group at Northwestern University as a Research Associate in 2013. In addition to performing research, he maintains Michael Wasielewski’s EPR lab, coordinates EPR collaborations, and helps to mentor graduate students.

 

LEAP Center
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1038
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: mdkrzyaniak@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-1896

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Nathan La Porte

Director of Operations for LEAP Center

Nathan grew up in Washington, DC before attending Swarthmore College as an undergraduate. There, he did research with Prof. Tom Stephenson on collision-induced electronic energy transfer in Br2 gas, graduating in 2008. After graduation he spent a short time working in the pharmaceutical industry before returning to academia in 2010 to do his PhD with Prof. Michael Hopkins at the University of Chicago, where he worked on artificial photosynthetic systems, specifically the photocatalysis of the reverse water-gas shift reaction. In 2015, he joined the Wasielewski group, where he works on electron transfer reactions involving radical anion chromophores. When he isn’t at work, he can be found playing with his two sons Cyrus and Felix, working in his garden, or building something in his basement.

LEAP Center
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 2025
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: nlaporte@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-5595

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Yi-Lin Wu

wu-yl_photo

yi-lin.wu[at]northwestern.edu

Research Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Northwestern University

Ph.D. Chemistry, ETH Zürich, Switzerland, 2012

M.Sc. Chemistry, ETH Zürich, Switzerland, 2008

B.S. Chemistry, National Taiwan University, Taiwan, 2005

Ryan 1015 | 7-2918

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Ryan Young

Research Associate Professor at Northwestern University, Chemistry 

Director of Laboratory Research at Institute for Sustainability and Energy (ISEN) 

Ryan M. Young obtained his B.S. in Chemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles in 2006. He then studied anion dynamics using time-resolved photoelectron imaging at the University of California, Berkeley in the group of Daniel Neumark, receiving his Ph.D. in 2011. From there, he joined Michael Wasielewki’s group at Northwestern University as a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Environmental Chemistry Postdoctoral Fellow. Ryan directs research activities within the ISEN lab, ensuring a safe, productive, and collaborative research environment. 


ISEN
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1015/Tech J425
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: ryan.young@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-5832

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Postdocs

Aritra Mandal

Postdoc

Aritra is from Kolkata, India. His professional education started at Jadavpur University, Kolkata, where he obtained B.Sc. in Chemistry. Thereafter, he moved to Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur for M.Sc. in Chemistry. Following that, he came to the US and did his Ph.D. from MIT working with Prof. Andrei Tokmakoff. Subsequently, he spent two years at Boston University as a postdoc with Prof. Lawrence D. Ziegler before joining the Wasielewski group in February 2017. His work here has revolved around development and implementation of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy to study dynamics of singlet fission and electron transfer processes.

ISEN
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1038
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: aritra.mandal@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-1896

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Jacob Olshansky

Postdoc

Jacob is from Urbana, Illinois, where he got his start in scientific research by spending his summers in corn fields carefully pollinating corn plants one at a time. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry and Physics from Haverford College where he studied hydrothermal syntheses of amine-templated metal oxides. He then moved to the California to pursue his Ph.D. at UC Berkeley. His dissertation research  aimed to understand the mechanism of charge transfer from photoexctied quantum dots and was advised by Paul Alivisatos. He joined the Wasielewski group in September of 2017 and has been studying  spin dynamics of photogenerated charges in synthetic DNA. 

ISEN
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 2025
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: jolshansky@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-5595

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Itai Schlesinger

Postdoc

Itai joined the Wasielewski group in August 2018 and joins us from the Physics department at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, where he studied under Prof. Uri Sivan. His work focuses combining atomic force microscopy with ultrafast optical experiments for high spatio-temporal resolution, as well as Investigating charge transport properties of short DNA molecules in different environments

 

LEAP Center
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1030
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: Office: 847-467-6696

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Jaeyoon Shin

Postdoc

Jae was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea. He did his undergraduate and master degree in Yonsei University with Prof. Dongho Kim. He received his PhD in University of Wisconsin – Madison with Prof. Fleming Crim. After more than two years of PostDoc with Prof. Michael Fayer at Stanford University, he joined Wasielewski group in September, 2018. His research areas  are broadband fluorescence up-conversion, two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy, ultrafast AFM, and related projects.

ISEN

Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1030
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: jaeyoon.shin@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-6696

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Jiawang Zhou

Jiawang is from Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China. He obtained his B.S. in Chemical Physics from the University of Science and Technology of China in 2010. He then worked with Professor Art Bragg at Johns Hopkins University as a Ph.D. student, where his research focused on interrogation of photoresponsive materials (e.g., π and hybrid σ–π conjugated oligomers, polymers, and photoswitches) by means of femtosecond stimulated Raman and transient absorption spectroscopies. Currently, he is a postdoc in the Wasielewski group and studies photoinduced electron and energy transfer processes with various time-resolved spectroscopies.​

ISEN
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1033
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: jiawang.zhou@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4948

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Jinyuan Zhang

Postdoc

Jinyuan was born in Yunnan Province, China. He began his studies at Xiamen University in 2006 and conducted his undergraduate project on asymmetric synthesis of a natural product under Prof. Peiqiang Huang’s guidance.

After his undergraduate studies, he joined Prof. Hongping Zhu’s Group to do research on main-group organometallic chemistry.

Later, he came to the U.S. and joined North Carolina State University in 2011, under his advisor Prof. David Shultz.

His Ph.D research was organic and magnetochemistry and studied electronic/exchange coupling of donor-bridge-acceptor biradical metal complexes.

In 2016, Jinyuan joined the Wasielewski research group, where his research mainly focused on spin coherence, electronic transfer dynamics and solor fuel.

ISEN
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1031
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email:  Office: 847-467-5595

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Xingang Zhao

Postdoc

Xingang was born and grew up in Handan, Hebei province, China. Xingang did his undergraduate study at Hebei University of Technology in Tianjin, China and obtained his master degree in Institute of Petrochemistry, Heilongjiang Academy of Sciences with Prof. Chao Wang in Harbin, China. He  pursued his PhD in Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences (ICCAS) with Prof. Xiaowei Zhan. After worked with Prof. Fred Wudl at University of California, Santa Barbara and with Prof. Howard E. Katz at Johns Hopkins University as a Postdoc, he joined Wasielewski group in May, 2017. His research focus on the design and synthesis of new materials based largely on self-assembling singlet fission materials for solar cells.

ISEN
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1031
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: xingang.zhao@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-5595

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Undergraduates
Daniel Abia

danielabia2019@u.northwestern.edu

B.S. in Chemistry & Global Health,  Northwestern University, June 2019

Ryan 2025 | 1-4409 |

Graduate Students

Joaquin Alzola

Graduate Student

Joaquin was born in Durham, North Carolina, and shortly after moved to Vienna, Virginia where he grew up.  He completed his undergraduate degree at Cornell University, where he worked under Prof. Will Dichtel developing the synthesis of polyheterohalogenated building blocks for functionalized graphene. He then came to Northwestern in the Fall of 2016, where he joined the Wasielewski group as a co-advised student with Prof. Tobin Marks. His work in the Wasielewski group involves the synthesis and photophysical studies of nonfullerene acceptors for organic photovoltaics.

 

Department of Chemistry 
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1030
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: JoaquinAlzola2021@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-6696

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Youn Jue (Eunice) Bae

Graduate Student

Eunice was born in Seoul, Korea and completed her undergraduate studies at the University of California, Berkeley under the supervision of Profs. Wendy Queen and Stephene Leone. She joined the Wasielewski research group in July of 2016, where she studies singlet fission in anthracene derivatives using visible and mid-IR transient absorption, femtosecond stimulated raman spectroscopy and electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy

Department of Chemistry 
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1032
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: YounjueBae2021@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4947

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Laura Bancroft

Graduate Student

Laura was born in Falmouth, MA and went to Wellesley College for her undergraduate work.  There, she worked and completed a thesis under Professor David Haines doing organic synthesis of non-native ligands for type II diabetes research.  She received her B.A. in Chemistry before coming to Northwestern University and joining the Wasielewski group in 2017.  Her research now focuses on optical detection of spin states, specifically measuring zero quantum coherences with high time resolution.  Laura also enjoys gardening on her back porch, rollerblading along the lake, and spending time with Jade, her leopard gecko. 

Department of Chemistry 
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1031
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: LauraBancroft2022@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4944

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Michelle Chen

Graduate Student

Michelle grew up in Woodbury, NY and graduated from Dartmouth College as a chemistry and economics double major. During her undergraduate career, she worked with Dr. James R. Gaier at NASA Glenn Research Center (2013) and Dr. Matt Eisaman at Brookhaven National Lab (2014). At Dartmouth, she completed her honors thesis under Professor Jane Lipson. Michelle joined the Wasielewski group in July of 2015; she synthesizes and characterizes singlet fission chromophores and studies their photophysical properties in solution and film.

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1030
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: MichelleChen2015@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-6696

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Su Chen

Graduate Student

Su was born in Shexian County in Anhui, China. Su did his undergraduate study in South University of Science and Technology of China (SUSTC a.k.a. Sustech) in Shenzhen, China with his  thesis advisor was Prof. Xinyuan Liu. He joined Wasielewski research group in the winter of 2016, where he synthesizes electron donor-acceptor molecules which can self-assemble into charge conduits to harvest solar energy. He loves photography, and does photoshoots in his spare time.

Department of Chemistry 
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1031
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: SuChen2021@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4944

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Joseph Christensen

Graduate Student

Joe grew up on a farm in western Iowa, and he did his undergraduate studies at Creighton University. At Creighton, Joe got his B.S. in chemistry and worked in Prof. James Fletcher’s lab, but he spent most of his time cheering on the Creighton Bluejays basketball team. In the Wasielewski group Joe is interested in developing new visible-light absorbing chromophores for driving energy demanding photo-redox reactions. Outside of the lab Joe enjoys good food and drink, playing chess (poorly), watching Lake Michigan freeze, May Day, and mushroom hunting. 

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 2022
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: JosephChristensen2019@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-491-4420

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Adam Coleman

Graduate Student

Adam grew up in the Chicagoland area. He attended the University of Chicago for undergrad, where he studied under Prof. Yossi Weismann.  He began in the Wasielewski research group in November 2015, where he studies synthesis and photophysical characterization of redox active chromophores.

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1027
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: adam.coleman@northwestern.edu
Office: 847-491-4855

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Samantha Harvey

Graduate Student

Sam grew up in Granger, Indiana. She earned a B.S. in chemistry from Indiana University. During her undergraduate career she worked in the lab of Prof. Sara Skrabalak on the synthesis of Au/Pd nanostructures by the process of seed-mediated co-reduction. In addition she spent a summer doing an REU in the lab of Prof. Cathy Murphy at UIUC using a statistical method to better understand Au nanorod synthesis. Sam joined the Wasielewski and Schaller going in 2016 and has been working on studying semiconductor nanocrystals using femtosecond stimulated Raman spectroscopy and building a time-resolved Faraday rotation setup to study spin coherence in hybrid quantum dot-organic structures. Outside of lab, Sam enjoys reading, gaming, baking, and playing piano. 

Department of Chemistry 
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1033
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: SamanthaHarvey2021@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4948

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Jenna Logsdon

Graduate Student

Jenna is a transplant from both Buffalo, NY and later Tampa, FL where she studied at the University of Tampa under the supervision of Prof. John Struss. She’s been a member of the Wasielewski research group since 2014, where her research focuses on charge transfer dynamics in model systems of organic photovoltaics.

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1032
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: JennaLogsdon2019@u.northwestern.edu 
Office: 847-467-4947

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Haochuan Mao

Graduate Student

Haochuan was born and grew up in Hangzhou, China. As he turned 18, unlike most of his high school classmates who continued staying in Hangzhou, he was tired of that city and went to Nanjing, where completed his undergraduate education in chemistry at Nanjing University in 2017. His research in college involves investigating the static spin state of some boron-centered and nitroxyl radicals under the supervision of Prof. Xinping Wang. Unsured about how working in a foreign country was like, he did a two-month research internship in the summer of 2015 at the Universty of Sydney working on Open Source Malaria with Prof. Matthew Todd and felt great. He likes spin, EPR and quantum mechanics, so he joined the Wasielewski group in 2017 and has been working to learn more about the dynamics of spin like teleportation and polarization.

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1027
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: HaochuanMao2022@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-491-4855

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Michele Myong

Graduate Student

Michele was raised in the suburbs of Dallas, TX. She obtained her BA in chemistry at Columbia University in 2016, where she worked in the research group of Professor Jonathan Owen. Soon after graduating, she joined the Wasielewski group in 2016 and works in the self-assembly subgroup. Michele enjoys reading, playing the piano, and eating.

Department of Chemistry 
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 2022
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: MicheleMyong2016@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-491-4420

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Jordan Nelson

nelson_photo

jordannelson1.2014[at]u.northwestern.edu

Ph.D. Student, Northwestern University, 2014-present

B.S. Chemistry, University of San Francisco, 2013

Ryan 1027 | 1-4855 | Subgroup: Molecular Spintronics

Brian Phelan

Graduate Student

Brian grew up in Downers Grove, IL, and completed his bachelor’s degree in chemistry in 2009 at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he worked in Jim Lisy’s lab studying the formation of solvated multivalent metal ion clusters. He then stayed at UIUC to complete his master’s degree in teaching chemistry in 2011 before moving to Monticello High School in central Illinois to teach earth science, chemistry, and physics. Brian then began the PhD program in physical chemistry at Northwestern in 2013 where he joined the Wasielewski lab. His research focuses on the use of ultrafast time-resolved spectroscopies to study the excited state dynamics of and electron transfer to covalently-bound chromophore pairs.

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1032
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: BrianPhelan2018@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4947

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Natalia Powers-Riggs
May 2016

nataliapowersriggs2015[at]u.northwestern.edu

Ph.D. Student, Northwestern University, 2015-present

B.A. Chemistry and East Asian Studies, Wesleyan University, 2013

Ryan 1033 | 7-4948 | Subgroup: Solar Electricity

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Brandon Rugg

Graduate Student

Brandon was born in El Paso, TX, but grew up primarily in Stafford, VA. He completed his B.S. in chemistry with a minor in mathematics at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA, and performed undergraduate research in the labs of Drs. Daniel Downey and Brian Augustine. His work in the Wasielewski and Ratner groups at Northwestern focuses on the study of molecular spin physics with potential applications in quantum information processing. Outside of lab, he enjoys playing music, video games, and playing chess slightly better than Joe Christensen (according to Chess.com, not World Chess Federation ranking).

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1031
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email:  brandon.rugg@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4944

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Jon Schultz

Graduate Student

Jon grew up in Stevens Point, WI, and attended the University of Minnesota Twin Cities where he worked with Professors R. Lee Penn and Renee R. Frontiera on problems ranging from groundwater remediation to improving the sensitivity of ultrafast Raman spectroscopy. During the summer of 2015, he worked with Professor Benjamin J. Lear on the photothermal effect at the Pennsylvania State University through the NSF REU research program. Jon received his bachelor’s degrees in chemical engineering and chemistry from UMTC in the spring of 2017 and began pursuing his Ph.D. in physical chemistry at Northwestern University in the fall. As a joint student in the Wasielewski and Ratner groups, his research concerns fundamental quantum phenomena that facilitate efficient energy and electron transfer in organic photovoltaic systems.

Department of Chemistry
Northwestern University, Ryan Hall 1032
2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208
Email: JonathanSchultz2022@u.northwestern.edu
Office: 847-467-4947

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Alumni

Our alumni page has moved! Click here to access. If you’re a Wasielewski alumnus/alumna and would like to be featured and/or added to our alumni listserv, please email the administrator at wasielewski-ofc@northwestern.edu