Material Science & Engineering (MSE) Program Faculty Members

Xixiang Zhang
Program Chair​
Professor, Material Science and Engineering​
Ph.D., University of Barcelona

Prof. Zhang's research interests include magnetism, magnetic materials, magneto-transport, spintronics , magnetic cooling, nano materials, multiferroics materials, graphene and carbon-based materials, and bio-materials.
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Enzo Di Fabrizio
Professor, Material Science and Engineering
PhD., University of Rome (La Sapienza), Italy
 
Professor Di Fabrizio conducts an interdisciplinary activity between physics and biology that includes basic and applied research in nanotechnology. His main interests concern: design and nanofabrication of advanced plasmoinic, semiconductor and magnetic devices and materials, optical tweezers based microscopy (applied to biophysics and nanomedicine), Raman spectroscopy for single molecules detection, design and fabrication of nano-devices dedicated to drug delivery, proteomics and single molecule detection, and biophotonic (including photonic crystal and plasmonic based devices
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Husam N. Alshareef
Professor, Ma​terial Science and Engineering​
Ph.D., North C​arolina State University, USA 
husam.alshareef@kaust.edu.sa​​
 
Dr. Alshareef's research interests are in Emerging Electronics, Energy Harvesting, and En​ergy Storage. Current projects include development of nanomaterials (particularly oxides) for supercapacitors and Li-ion batteries, thermoelectric power generation, flexible and transparent electronics.
 
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Jean-Luc Bredas
​Distinguished Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., University of Namur, Belgium
jean-luc.bredas@kaust.edu.sa​​

The research activities of the Bredas group deal with the structural, electronic, optical, and interfacial properties of novel organic (nano) materials with promising characteristics in the field of electronics, photonics, and information technology. Their work is devoted to theoretical investigations based on powerful computational techniques derived from quantum chemistry, condensed-matter physics, and molecular dynamics. With such an approach, they are able to model materials reliably in order to understand and/or predict their electronic and optical properties, in particular in relation to solar-energy applications.

Website:  Laboratory for Computational & Theoretical Chemistry of Advanced Materials
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Lain-Jong (Lance) Li
Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., University of Oxford, UK

Professor Lance Li’s main research interests include the chemical vapor deposition and characterizations of two dimensional materials such as transition metal dichalcogeni​des, graphene and their hetero-structures. His group is also working on the devices based on two dimensional materials including Li ion battery, hydrogen generation and future electronics.

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​Thomas Anthopoulos
Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D.,
Staffordshire University, UK

Professor Anthopoulos' research interests are centered on understanding the properties of materials and applying this fundamental understanding to develop improved materials and devices for a wide range of applications in energy harvesting and generation, electronics, displays, lighting and sensors. He is also interested in innovative manufacturing technologies for large-area nano-electronics where the device, and ultimately system level performance, is determined by the device's physical dimensions rather than strictly by the active material(s) employed. 
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Udo Schwingenschlögl
Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.​D., Universitat Augsburg, Germany

udo.schwingenschlogl@kaust.edu.sa


Dr. Schwingenschlögl's research interests concentrate on the electronic and structural properties of nanostructured systems, in particular those including surfaces and interfaces. He has an extensive publication record approaching 50

articles.


Website: Computational Physics & Materials Science

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Aram Amassian
Associate Professor, Material Sciences and Engineering
Ph.D., Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal, Canada

Professor Amassian's research interests are in the area of molecular materials for electronic and solar energy applications. Such materials are of high interest due to their potential to become an inexpensive platform for manufacturing pervasive, disposable electronic and solar energy devices. 

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Aurelien Manchon 
Associate Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., Université Joseph Fourier, France

Professor Manchon's interests include the interaction between spin-dependent electronic transport and magnetization in heterogeneous magnetic systems. He developed his research studying the manipulation of magnetization using a spin-polarized current, known as the spin torque effect. This field of investigation is of great importance for technological applications, such as Magnetic Random Access Memories and data storage. 
 
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Frédéric Laquai
Associate Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., University of Mainz​ 

Professor Laquai's current research focuses on the photophysics of excitonic solar cells, specifically processes such as exciton dissociation, charge carrier generation, transport and recombination in polymer and small molecule organic and hybrid solar cells. He studies these processes by various steady-state and transient all-optical and electro-optical techniques, for instance, transient absorption pump-probe spectroscopy and time-resolved photoluminescence spectroscopy.
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Osman M. Bakr  
Associate Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., Harvard University, USA 

Professor Bakr's research interests are concerned with the physics and chemistry of nanomaterials. His group studies the synthesis and assembly of organic and organic–inorganic hybrid nanomaterials of novel optical, electronic and magnetic properties. The purpose of these studies is to fabricate advanced materials​ that promise to feature in the future building blocks for solar cells, batteries, photonic and optoelectronic devices. 

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​Stefaan De Wolf
Associate Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium
stefaan.dewolf@kaust.edu.sa

Stefaan De Wolf's expertise lies in the science and technology of photovoltaics for terrestrial applications. His research focuses on the fabrication of high-efficiency silicon-based solar cells, with specific attention to the fundamental understanding of interface structures and electrical contact formation, relevant to solar cells and electronic devices.
 
He is also interested in new device architectures and applications, such as back-contacted solar cells and silicon-based multi-junction solar cells, aimed at the improved utilization of the full solar spectrum for electricity generation. A prime example of these devices are perovskite-silicon tandem solar cells. 
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Tao (Tom) Wu
Associate Professor, Materials Science and Engineering
Ph.D., University of Maryland, USA
 
Professor Wu's research group focus on exploring the synthesis and properties of novel materials, particularly perovskite-structured oxides and halides, in the form of both thin films and nanomaterials, targeting at diverse energy and electronics related applications ranging from field effect transistors, nonvolatile memories to lighting devices and solar cells.​

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Iman S. Roqan 
Assistant Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., University of Strathclyde, Scotland

Professor Roqan's research interests include optical, magnetic and structural properties of rare-earth-doped wide-band-gap semiconductors, with an aim to improve the quality of the grown films and their luminescence and ferromagnetic properties. She uses energy-dispersive and wavelength-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy, as well as atomic force microscopy to characterize the materials and their surface morphologies.

Website: Semiconductor & Material Spectroscopy Laboratory
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Pedro M. Da Costa
Assistant Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., University of Oxford, UK
pedro.dacosta@kaust.edu.sa 

Professor Da Costa's research interests embrace a range of synthesis and characterization techniques for one- and two-dimensional materials, with particular focus on carbon nanostructures, semiconductor materials and electron microscopy. He is also engaged in the manipulation of discrete nanoscaled structures and the study of their response to externally applied stimuli. The aim of this work is to understand how novel materials behave at minute s​cales under near-operational conditions and use that information to optimize their design for specific technological applications. 

Website: Laboratory for Carbon Nanostructures​
Pierre M. Beaujuge
Assistant Professor, Material Science and Engineering
Ph.D., University of Florida, USA

Professor Beaujuge's research interests are interdisciplinary and span the synthesis, characterization, and practical applications of functional organic materials and organic-inorganic hybrids with unique structure-property relationships. 
 
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​ ​Affiliated Faculty with MSE​​ Program
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Charlotte A. E. Hauser
Professor, Bioscience
Ph.D., University of Cologne, Germany
 
Charlotte Hauser’s research interests lie at the interfaces of chemistry, biomedicine, bioengineering and nanotechnology. Her focus is on the development of platform technologies using smart nanomaterials for regenerative biomedical and environmental applications. Hauser is currently working on the rational molecular design, synthesis and mechanistic understanding of novel supramolecular structures. She investigates peptide-based nanostructures with an innate propensity to self-assemble as well as biomimetic architectures applicable for biomedical applications such as cell substrates, sensors and 3-D tissue scaffolds for regenerative medicine. She is working on the rational molecular design, synthesis and mechanistic understanding of novel supramolecular structures. She investigates peptide-based nanostructures with an innate propensity to self-assemble as well as biomimetic architectures applicable for biomedical applications such as cell substrates, sensors and 3-D tissue scaffolds for regenerative medicine.
Alexander Rothenberger
Associate Professor, Chemical Science 
Ph. D, University of Cambridge, UK

Professor Rothenberger's research interests are in synthetic inorganic chemistry. He investigates the coordination chemistry of novel anions and develops solution-processable inorganic mate​​rials for next-generation solar cells.