I am a solid state chemist in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Kentucky. My current focus is to combine the synthesis and design of new nanostructured materials, with their characterization using advanced transmission electron microscopy techniques -- in particular using in situ methods to observe structural transformations directly.
I have a background in a variety of materials chemistry fields, which formed the basis for my current interdisciplinary research interests. After studying Chemistry and Mineral Sciences at the University of Cambridge, I attended Harvard University Chemistry Department, where I developed a synthesis for vanadium dioxide nanowires (a metal-insulator transition material). I received my PhD from the University of Pennsylvania Materials Science and Engineering where I moved from nanoscale to bulk materials, and used microscopy to investigate a nanochessboard structure which formed spontaneously. As a Wigner Fellow and staff scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory I focused for a couple of years on microscopy, mostly working on spectroscopic methods to map the spatial distribution of localized surface plasmon modes on the surface of metallic nanostructures. I joined the University of Kentucky's Department of Chemistry faculty in 2010, and have since maintained a joint faculty appointment with ORNL, with students in both locations.