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501 Chemistry Seminar: “The Study and Utility of Single Quantum Dots”

Thursday, 14 September, 2017

UT Host:   Dr. Tessa Calhoun

Speaker:  Dr. Sandy Rosenthal

Jack & Pamela Egan Chair

VINSE, VICB, Physical, Nanomaterials & Materials Chemistry at Vanderbilt University

Title:  “The Study and Utility of Single Quantum Dots”

Abstract: 30 years after Louis Brus demonstrated and explained quantum confinement in semiconductor nanocrystals, the utility of quantum dots has been demonstrated in wide range of applications including solar energy, biological imaging, and displays.

This talk focuses on the study and utility of single quantum dots and will describe two techniques that we have pioneered in our laboratory. The first is the correlation of an individual quantum dot’s photophysics with the exact atomic structure of that individual quantum dot. The second is the use of ligand conjugated nanocrystals to track membrane proteins that regulate neurotransmitters which are relevant to mental illness. The goal of the single quantum dot structure-photophysics correlation studies is ultimately to guide the synthesis of an ensemble of quantum dots with engineered photophysical properties. The goal of the single quantum dot protein tracking experiments is to identify molecular mechanisms of mental illness, yielding quantitative diagnostics and improved therapeutics. The lecture will illustrate the connection between these diverse ambitions.

Biography: Sandra Rosenthal earned a Bachelor in Science from Valparaiso University, graduating with Honors in Chemistry in 1987.  While at Valpo she played Division 1 basketball for 4 years.  She obtained her Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from the University of Chicago in 1993.  Following a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship at U. C. Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory she joined the Chemistry Department at Vanderbilt as an assistant professor in 1996. She is now the Jack and Pamela Egan Professor of Chemistry and the Director of the Vanderbilt Institute of Nanoscale Science and Engineering. Rosenthal has received a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, a Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Award, the Distinguished Faculty Award, the Madison Sarrat Prize for excellence in undergraduate teaching at Vanderbilt University, the Jefferey Nordhaus Award for excellence in undergraduate teaching in the College of Arts and Sciences, the SEC Faculty Achievement Award for excellence in teaching and research, and the Valparaiso University Distinguished Alumni Award. Rosenthal is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.


Visit for the 2017 Fall Chemistry Schedule.

 Web Cast: This seminar is not web cast.




Buehler Hall
Room 555
1420 Circle Drive
Knoxville, TN 37996

Event Contact

Pam Roach

Phone: 974-3260

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